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Faith 101 Discovering the Faith

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Presentation on theme: "Faith 101 Discovering the Faith"— Presentation transcript:

1 Faith 101 Discovering the Faith
Lesson One I Believe in God the Father Almighty - But who is He?

2 Class Outline Purpose and Expectations Content Schedule
Purpose: to present the major teachings of the Christian faith, as the Lutheran church understands and teaches them. After the class, you will be offered the chance to join the church, which implies that you agree with what has been presented. If something I say does not seem right, or does not make sense, please ask me. This is your chance to explore and ask questions. I expect and want questions. Please be in attendance. Content: Broad overview, like looking out the window at 35,000 ft. Cover lots of ground, without many interesting details. Basically squeezing three years of Confirmation into ten weeks. Please be in attendance. Make up sessions in person, or borrow CD of class. Based on the Apostle’s Creed, and following the structure of Luther’s Small Catechism. But not a line by line study. Not memorization and recitation. Class will hopefully teach you how to THINK as a Lutheran, not just recite Lutheran answers Schedule: See schedule in front of book, Faith 102, New Member Sunday, Evening with Pastors

3 Three Things Only God Can Provide
Identity Security Meaning This is why all people everywhere, in every time, have searched for God.

4 How do you know? Moderns: Post-Moderns: Is it true? Is it true for me?
Examine the sources, manuscripts, archaeology, apologetics There is ample evidence that Christianity is true and reliable. Post-Modern: Does it work? Will it change my life? Is it working for you? How has it changed your life? Truth is experienced and lived out in life. Class privileges the Modern approach. This class, and Christianity in general, struggles to answer PM questions.

5 Natural Knowledge of God
Hints and Traces of God Found in Creation Conscience How do you feel about this? True, good, right, or not so sure? The Creation Challenge: What we call traces and patterns are really just random events that we assign meaning to, just as we see pictures in clouds. Answer: 1. Always need an ultimate source for creation. 2. All cultures have recognized this pull to see divine action. 3. Mt. Rushmore vs. the Indian face—just too obvious The Conscience Challenge: What about Hitler, the Aztecs, barbaric cultures who seem to contradict our notions of right and wrong? Answer: C.S. Lewis points out that values may vary in degree, but not in kind. No culture values murder. They just differ as to who deserves protection. Hitler protected the Aryans, just not the Jews.

6 Natural Knowledge of God
Tells us there Is a God Tells us that He is Powerful DOESN’T tell us WHO He is DOESN’T tell us if He loves us

7 Revealed Knowledge of God
God Makes Himself Known In His Son Jesus KEY: This is the primary source for Lutherans. We believe the Bible because of Jesus Christ, rather than believing in Jesus Christ because of the Bible. In His Written Word = The Bible

8 Revealed Knowledge of God
The Revealed knowledge of God makes known to us who God is and that He loves us! We cannot completely know God apart from his revelation to us in the person of Christ working through the Holy Spirit.

9 Revealed Knowledge of God
The Wesleyan Quadrilateral -Tradition -Experience -Reason -Scripture OR Scripture Alone

10 Revealed Knowledge of God
Do we believe in Christ because of the Bible, or Do we believe in the Bible because of Christ? Cyclical. But give the Bible a fair chance, just neutral, and it will reveal enough about Christ for us to believe in him. Then, with faith in Christ, we can believe his statements about Scripture, and come to believe in the Bible.

11 How do we study the Bible?
Some Lutheran presuppositions: Scripture interprets Scripture Interpret Scripture in Context Literally, but not Literalistically Man has fallen away from God and evil pervades all of human life, including our study of Scripture How we study the Bible is crucial. It accounts for most, if not all, of the denominational differences. Literal: raining cats and dogs

12 God Reveals Himself in His Law
Curb Design of class is first to explain connection of law and gospel, SOS, mirror and savior Enough to know that we are not perfect and need savior. Now that we know we are saved, we can study the law as a guide, as we try to grow in our faith Mirror Guide

13 God Reveals Himself in Law and Gospel
Law Gospel What we must do What God has done Shows Our Sin Show Our Savior Condemns Forgives Kills Gives Life For Secure Sinners For Alarmed sinners Walther says this is the easiest thing to understand, and the hardest thing to apply in life.

14 Who is He? Eternal Unchanging Reliable All powerful Present everywhere
Knows all Holy Perfect None like him Compassionate Gracious Forgiving

15 Who is He? God is Triune Tri/Une 3 Persons in One God Father – Creator
Son – Redeemer Holy Spirit - Sanctifier

16 Holy Trinity – Three Persons in One God
Father is God Son is God Holy Spirit is God Father is Not Son or Spirit Son is Not Father or Spirit Holy Spirit is not Father or Son There are not three Gods but only one The Christian Church has developed three creeds to help explain the Trinity, but they still don’t fully capture it. Imperfect analogies, but they do show us some measure of understanding, however imperfect. Apple analogy: skin, flesh, core CD Player analogy: Core—the source, the Father; the headphones are the Son, part of the CD Player, but distinct from the base, reveals the heart of the father. Music, the Spirit, flowing from the heart, through the headphones, into us.

17 Holy Trinity Father is neither begotten nor Proceeding
Son is begotten but not proceeding Holy Spirit is not begotten but proceeds from the Father and the Son Note Picture: from baptism of Jesus in Matthew 3 Note presence of Father in light and voice, Son Jesus, and Holy Spirit in Dove

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