One of the most influential theologians of last century was a Swiss Reformed thinker by the name of Karl Barth. He grew up in a time when many people naively believed modernism and progress would solve all of humanities problems. After two world wars and the great depression his theology was summed up by some as “man shut up! God speak!” He pointed us back to our greatest need, namely for a knowledge of God (the Christians Scriptures) and for a merciful God (who is made known there).
Again, today, so many seem to have lost sight of the lessons and wisdom of the past and are again trusting in humanities fallen and distorted powers. While we have an enormous responsibility under God to cooperate with Him in ordering and caring for His creation (something which we tragically are failing so dismally to fulfil), we easily forget that our foundation calling is to be connected to and directed by our loving Heavenly Father.
Since God, through His Word the Bible, declares all people are destined to face Him as the judge with our eternal destinies at stake, being right with Him through faith in Jesus Christ, God’s gift of a saviour, makes Christianity and it’s central message of the forgiveness of sins in Christ Jesus not only the most relevant matter in existence, but also the most urgent. The good news is that in Jesus, and in Him alone, we do have a merciful God. I will take Barth’s advise, shut up and let God speak. You are invited to hear and receive God through his forgiving, life giving, healing, powerful, cleansing Word and sacraments (Christ’s cleansing, life giving body and blood) every Sunday, 10.00am at the St Peters Centre (Hall), Eastside Campus. Here now is God speaking by his Spirit through the Psalmist (Psalm 32) in the Bible and addressing our deepest need, that of forgiveness. We who are but dust desperately need He who is God, Lord, Spirit, mercy and life:
Blessed is the one
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the one
whose sin the Lord does not count against them
and in whose spirit is no deceit.
When I kept silent,
my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
For day and night
your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was sapped
as in the heat of summer.
Then I acknowledged my sin to you
and did not cover up my iniquity.
I said, “I will confess
my transgressions to the Lord.”
And you forgave
the guilt of my sin.
Therefore let all the faithful pray to you
while you may be found;
surely the rising of the mighty waters
will not reach them.
You are my hiding place;
you will protect me from trouble
and surround me with songs of deliverance.
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
Do not be like the horse or the mule,
which have no understanding
but must be controlled by bit and bridle
or they will not come to you.
Many are the woes of the wicked,
but the Lord’s unfailing love
surrounds the one who trusts in him.
Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous;
sing, all you who are upright in heart!
The aim of this Page is to be a safe place to explore the ultimate questions of meaning and purpose and to enquire about and discuss the Christian faith from a Lutheran perspective.
A Little About Me
I am Pastor Michael Steicke, often referred to as Pastor Mike. I have been a Lutheran Pastor for over 30 years, having served Parishes in New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia, before moving to Tasmania to be the Pastor of St Peters Lutheran Parish in Hobart at the beginning of 2016.