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Old 03-27-2020, 08:28 PM   #6
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 922
Default Re: Any Good Writtings Besides the Local Church?

"Behold , how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!" (Psalm 133:1). In the following we shall consider a number of directions and precepts that the scriptures provide for us for our life together under the Word.

It is not simply to be taken for granted that the Christian has the privilege of living among Christians. Jesus Christ lived in the midst of His enemies. At the end all his disciples deserted him. On the cross he was utterly alone, surrounded by evildoers and mockers. For this cause he had come, to bring peace to the enemies of God. So the Christian too, belongs not in the seclusion of a cloistered life but in the thick of foes. There is his commission, his work.

"The Kingdom is to be in the midst of your enemies. And he who will not suffer this does not want to be of the Kingdom of Christ; he wants to be among friends, to sit among roses and lilies, not with the bad people but the devout people. O you blasphemers and betrayers of Christ! If Christ had done what you are doing who would ever have been spared?" (Luther).

"I will... gather them; for I have redeemed them: ... and they shall return" (Zech 10:8,9). When will that happen? It has happened in Jesus Christ, who died "that he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad" (John 11:52), and it will finally occur visibly at the end of time when the angels of God "shall gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other" (Matt. 24:31). Until then, God's people remain scattered, held together solely in Jesus Christ, having become one in the fact that, dispersed among unbelievers, they remember Him in the far countries.

So between the death of Christ and the Last Day it is only by gracious anticipation of the last things that Christians are privileged to live in visible fellowship with other Christians. It is by the grace of God that a congregation is permitted to gather visibly in this world to share God's Word and sacrament. Not all Christians receive this blessing. The imprisoned, the sick, the scattered lonely, the pro-claimers of the Gospel in heathen lands stand alone. They know that visible fellowship is a blessing. They remember as the Psalmist did, how they went "with the multitude... to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holy day" (Psalm 42:4).

The above is taken from the first two pages of "Life Together" by Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

As God is not a respecter of persons, the human author is not important but that it is inspired by God's Word. And, that is what makes the reading fresh, inspiring, challenging, encouraging, uplifting and builds one up in the faith.

Yes there are many, many good writings besides LSM materials.
And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14 NASB)
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