Thy Kingdom Come: Lent and Easter Sermons

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With over sixty sermons spanning Pre-Lent, all forty days of Lent, and the Sundays after Easter, Thy Kingdom Come by David H. Petersen serves as an excellent daily devotion for both pastors and parishioners. Browse around our website for excerpts or have a look at the Table of Contents, Scripture Index, and Reviews.

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“Almost no one I know of has the ability that Fr. Petersen has to simply speak God’s truth to us – both in its devastating exposure of the darkest secrets of our hearts and in its intense comfort to the troubled conscience. You can tell the man likes and reads poetry. You can tell the man likes, reads, and knows his Luther.”     -Rev. William Weedon

“Preaching is not primarily teaching, but teaching goes on in the process of proclaiming the Good News. Pastor Petersen has a way of cutting to the chase quickly in explaining biblical symbolism…He preaches with an eye on the text’s literary devices, such as tying the forbidden fruit hanging in the Garden to our Lord’s body hanging at Golgotha – imagery that is not only vivid and striking, but theologically connecting Eden to the cross, and further making the connection between the cross and the Lord’s Supper.  He has the gift to speak with accessible profundity without falling into academic jargon. Pastor Petersen also brings in etymology and translation issues from the original languages, at times preaching in poetic patterns and lushly picturesque turns of phrase, thereby searing biblical imagery into the mind.”     -Rev. Larry Beane, “Meet my New ‘Old Friend'”

“[W]hen I’m in the Divine Service, when my Lord is there for me really and bodily, I need to hear that I stink, that I’m an awful sinner, that I need to be humbled at every turn. I need to hear that He’s forgiven me for all those things, that the way in which He loved me was to die for me, that He is my comfort and peace, that He fills all the gaps and the holes I didn’t even know I had and the ones I’m painfully aware of….You get a chunk of Law and a heaping dose of Gospel, a lethal and loving set of Lent and Easter sermons in Thy Kingdom Come….The comfort of the Gospel isn’t vague and nebulous in these sermons. It’s real. It’s actual. It’s Christ incarnate for you in ways you’ve never understood before. You will know hope and peace. You will be relieved of your suffering because Jesus lives.”                                                                                   -Adriane Heins, “A Resolution You Can Keep”

“Pastor Petersen gets himself out of the way to be a mouthpiece of the Lord’s gracious voice. His sermons are concise in a way that reminds one of Peter Chrysologous, the Doctor of Homilies. In this respect, I commend this book of sermons for pastors to hone the art of purposeful and exegetically grounded preaching….It is helpful for pastors to read the sermons of other faithful pastors to break free their own style and usual vocabulary to express the unchanging faith. Pastor Petersen gives much in the way of a model for both new and experienced pastors who want to deliver a sound proclamation of Christ into our postmodern context. For the laity, sermons are most always good devotional material to read….I would certainly commend Thy Kingdom Come as reading for Lutheran laity who wish to have additional good devotional reading to supplement their prayers and reading of Scripture or perhaps in the context of using the daily office at home (Matins, Vespers et al). While Pastor Petersen’s sermons are meaty and substantive, they are also very accessible, and most of them are brief enough for a brief gathering of the family for prayer and catechesis.”     -Rev. John Frahm, a review on Brothers of John the Steadfast

“This is the hallmark of a good sermon: does it preach Jesus Christ crucified for you, a sinner? If it doesn’t, no matter how good it may be in other respects, it is not a good sermon. St. Paul himself said, ‘For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified’ (1 Cor. 2:2). Jesus requires this of his preachers. He charges His Church with the task of preaching repentance and the forgiveness of sins in His Name to all nations (Luke 24:47)….Every one of Pr. Petersen’s sermons is a bloody mess of Law and Gospel. The mess of your sin and the mess of Jesus’ cross are on display in every sermon. No matter the occasion, no matter the readings, every sermon is about Jesus in His saving work, Jesus crucified for you.”     -from the Forward by Rev. Todd Wilken of Issues, Etc.

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Thy Kingdom Come: An Excerpt from Septuagesima

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“God isn’t like you. He doesn’t think the way you think. His ways are not your ways. And He doesn’t owe you, or anyone, anything. For reasons all His own, however, He loves and welcomes you into His kingdom—not for free, but for the bloody, torturous death of His beloved Son. This is the essence of the Gospel: The Lord rewards those
who don’t deserve it. He loves those who hate and abuse Him. He gives gifts to those who steal from Him. He is generous, merciful, and good despite you. If that doesn’t send a tingle down your spine, and you haven’t just lost a baby or your mother, shame on you. The Gospel doesn’t promise an emotional reaction, but it almost always gives it. The Bible calls that emotion joy.”

-David H. Petersen in Thy Kingdom Come

Pre-Lent begins with Septuagesima, which is only 11 days away! With over sixty sermons spanning Pre-Lent, all forty days of Lent, and the Sundays after Easter, this book serves as an excellent daily devotion for both pastors and parishioners. Use the tag cloud in the right sidebar to find more excerpts and also have a look at our reviews.

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God With Us: The Eighth Day of Christmas

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“Baptism is greater than circumcision. It is not just for boys. It is not bloody and does not hurt, but don’t fail to notice this is: it is deadly. It drowns the old man even as it raises up the new man, and it attaches us to God. See how it fulfills circumcision? It places God’s name upon us. Baptism is Baptism because Jesus was baptized, because He was anointed for the sacrifice. As His circumcision ended and fulfilled circumcision and counted for us, so also His baptism began Baptism and counts for us. And since He was born under the Law, we are born above it.”

-Pr. David H. Petersen in God With Us, from the sermon for The Eighth Day of Christmas: The Circumcision of our Lord

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The Brotherhood Prayer Book: A Hymn for the Holy Innocents

Audio: Listen to A Hymn for the Holy Innocents chanted

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Sweet flowerets of the martyr band,
Plucked by the tyrant’s ruthless hand
Upon the threshold of the morn,
Like rosebuds by a tempest torn;

First victims for the incarnate Lord,
A tender flock to feel the sword;
Beside the very altar, gay,
With palm and crown, ye seemed to play.

Ah, what availed King Herod’s wrath?
He could not stop the Savior’s path.
Alone, while others murdered lay,
In safety Christ is borne away.

O Lord, the Virgin-born, to Thee
Eternal praise and glory be,
Whom with the Father we adore
And Holy Ghost forevermore. Amen.

Salvete, flores martyrum by Aurelius C. Prudentius, d. 413, trans. by H.W. Baker, alt.
From The Brotherhood Prayer Book

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Collect: O God, whose martyred innocents showed forth Thy praise not by speaking but by dying: mortify all vices within us, that our lives may in deed confess Thy faith which our tongue uttereth; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

The picture a 19th-century fresco from the Imperial Cathedral of Speyer, Germany. Find similiar pictures here. Many thanks to Pr. Sean Daenzer for chanting.

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New: A review of An Explanation of the Common Service

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“The answer, ‘that’s the way we’ve always done it,’ to the question of, ‘why do we do what we do in worship?’ is not only unhelpful, but it’s also false. We do know ‘why we do what we do in worship.’ Sometimes we just don’t know where to find the answer to the question. An Explanation of the Common Service helps give concrete answers to questions that would otherwise be left in abstract thought and speculation. What would seem to be a daunting number of questions and answers (250) is eased by the reality that the book is just 120 pages in length, which includes a history of Christian hymnody; liturgical colors and their significance; and index and glossary.”

Many thanks to Pr. Mike Grieve for an excellent and thorough review. It is well worth reading in its entirety at Lutheran Treasures of the Old Missouri Synod.

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The Brotherhood Prayer Book: O Antiphons

BPB-new pictureThe O Antiphons are historic antiphons designated for the Magnificat, which is the traditional canticle for Vespers. There are seven O Antiphons, sung on the seven Vespers leading up to December 24th. Two years ago, we asked Pr. Sean Daenzer to record these Antiphons sung to the Gregorian tones in The Brotherhood Prayer Book, beginning on page 397, along with the Magnificat. We’re posting them again this year with links to each one.

The order for singing this Vespers canticle is Antiphon, Magnificat, Antiphon. The name of each antiphon is derived from Old Testament titles given to the Messiah. In fact, the hymn, “O Come, O Come Emmanuel,” is a lyrical version of these antiphons.

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November 30: St. Andrew’s Day

APOSTLES_EVANGELISTSThe First Sunday in Advent is that Sunday closest to St. Andrew’s day (November 30). But who was St. Andrew? Even though he was one of the twelve apostles, he doesn’t seem very well known to us.

Pr. David Petersen writes in God With Us: “He was a fisherman, which is why they like him in Malta, and the brother of St. Peter, which is why they like him in Scotland. He was also something of a missionary, bringing Peter to Christ and bringing the Greeks to Christ.”  Regarding the disciples, Petersen continues:

“Hearing John, they followed Jesus. By grace, they stayed with the Lamb. They stayed even unto their own martyrdoms, even if Andrew never gets much honor of his own. But such is the way of the Advent disciples of John. Such is the way of the kingdom: its honor belongs to Christ, even as does its righteousness, but both—the kingdom of Christ and His righteousness—are declared to belong to the saints.

“What Andrew gets, you get as well.

“Behold, the Lamb of God, the coming one, who has come into the world.”
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A blessed St. Andrew’s Day to you.

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Today Only! Spend $25, Earn $5.

didache-gridToday is Small Business Saturday, which started several years ago as a sort of counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The idea is to encourage people across the country to shop at local, small businesses. Well, Fort Wayne may not be local for you, but we are definitely a small business, and we greatly appreciate all of our customers! To show our appreciation, we are offering a special one-day promotion. Until midnight tonight, you will earn $5 for every $25 you spend.*

Maybe you’ve had your eye on Ceremony and Celebration as a resource on Lutheran liturgical worship, or Didache, which teaches doctrine using the Holy Scriptures, Luther’s Small Catechism, and the hymnal. Or perhaps you’re looking for Christmas cards that combine beauty with substance.

Whether you’re shopping for yourself or for a gift, browse around our selection of books and greeting cards, and earn $5 for every $25 you spend.

*Total used to figure gift certificate excludes shipping. Gift certificate may only be used in a future order.

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Pre-Advent Sale on The Brotherhood Prayer Book + Free Beichtspiegel Download

From now through November 27, The Brotherhood Prayer Book and its accompanying CD are on sale. The Brotherhood Prayer Book includes services for the day (Matins, Lauds, Prime, Terce, Sext, None, Vepsers, and Compline), the entire Psalter, daily and seasonal propers, and a Beichtspiegel.

A Beichtspiegel (confession mirror) is a tool used for reflection and self-examination in preparation for private confession and absolution or for the general confession and absolution in the Divine Service. The Beichtspiegel offered free in our Downloads tab is published in The Brotherhood Prayer Book. The text was compiled in 2003 by Rev. Michael Frese and Dr. Benjamin Mayes, using resources from confessional pastors in both the LCMS and the SELK in Germany.

The season of Advent is a particular time of preparation for Christians. In baptism, our Lord Jesus Christ began in us a living faith, and we return to its promise every time we confess our sins and receive forgiveness. Thus, the purpose of a Beichtspiegel is to help us reflect upon our individual sins and lead us to the soothing balm of the absolution. True repentance is both sorrow over sin and faith in Christ’s forgiveness.

A Beichtspiegel helps us to consider our sins according to the Ten Commandments. It is forgiveness that we Christians seek, not a perfect and exhaustive confession, yet it is salutary to be able to better understand and articulate in what ways and how often we sin. Examining ourselves is not merely for the purpose of causing shame over our wretched sinfulness, but to focus us on the only source of comfort: Jesus.

As stated in the introduction to the Beichtspiegel:

The Small Catechism urges us to consider our place in life according to the Ten Commandments. The Commandments act as a mirror to reflect our sinful thoughts, words, and deeds. This honest reflection, on account of God’s holy Word working in us, will bear the fruit of repentance. In private confession and absolution we repent before our pastor of those sins which we know and feel in our heart, and he, in turn, grants us Christ’s forgiveness individually.

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Three days: Get a signed copy of God With Us

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Starting today and ending Friday, November 20, all purchases of God With Us by David H. Petersen will be signed by the author. With Advent just 11 days away, now is the time to pick up a copy just in time for the start of the season.

Many customers tell us that they’ve given God With Us in bulk to family members and friends, since these 59 brief sermons serve well for daily devotions. As Pr. Larry Beane writes, “This book is a treasure trove for private or family devotions, as well as a solid source of homiletical material for daily chapel or Divine Services.  If you are looking for some additional spiritual refreshment this Advent through Epiphany seasons, this is a perfect combination of brevity and potency, of meditation and instruction, but most of all, of our Lord Jesus Christ who has come to save us from our sins!”

Read the reviews, learn how we developed the lectionary for this book, take a look at the Table of Contents and Scripture Index, and find excerpts throughout the site. Better yet, sign up for occasional emails on the right sidebar or follow us on Facebook, where we post more frequent excerpts.

*Be sure to peruse our Christmas cards while you’re here. Reasonably priced, unique, gorgeous artwork…combined with a clear confession of our Savior’s birth.

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