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This promise of success on these three conditions have also been given to us. Christ has assured us that those who know and keep His word will succeed. We are told in Luke 0:47-48 that if we hear and do His word we shall be like a man who builds his house on a rock, it shall stand.
2. I promise of rest. Rest meant more perhaps in Christ's day than it does in ours. While there were many idle people, many who had only two interests in life-bread and the circus-yet those first followers of Christ were workers. Many of them were slaves, who knew little but the dull round of toil. While others were poor workmen who labored from early until late to earn enough to live and keep their families. They knew and appreciated the meaning of the word "rest."
Christ promises that those who would enter His service should know what true rest is. He did not promise idleness and ask for no service. But the rest that He spoke of was rest for their weary and burdened souls.
This promise is for us, too. We find rest for our troubled hearts and peace for our souls when we give ourselves to Christ in complete surrender.
3. A promise of fellowship. This is a promise of a
new and close relationship. The brothers and sisters of our Lord felt that they had a special claim upon His time and favor. But He tells them and His disciples that all who do the will of His Father are His brothers and sisters. This meant and means many things. But above all else it means that ií we are brothers and sisters to the Lord Jesus, we are with Him heirs to the blessings that will come to those who are of the Father's household. We are not slaves shut out from the inheritance, but heirs of the promise. Suggested Questions:
1. How do we know that God will keep His promises ?
2. Is the human condition that goes with many of the promises important?
3. What promise is the most help to you as a Leaguer ?
the Lord, and disregard His invitation to come to Him; who hate knowledge and have no desire to learn the will of God; who do not choose to walk in the fear of the Lord; who will not listen to His counsel and admonition, and who despise His reproof and make light of His censure.
In the hour of calamity, when they face destruction, and fear cometh upon them, and they are in dire distress, and their hearts torn in anguish, then shall they call upon the Lord for help, and seek Him whom they rejected and despised, but He will not hear their call, nor heed their seeking, and they must reap that which they have sown, and suffer the consequences of their misdeeds.
Eramples from history. The pyramids of Egypt remind us of the glory of former days. Babylon, though mighty, was brought low. Greece, cultured and renowned, has but the memory of her past. Rome, the master of the world, was humbled by the most despised of nations, The Jews, God's own chosen people, are
an exiled nation, a people without a country. Saul, the first King of Israel, proved a failure. Judas, one of the apostles, betrayed his Lord and Saviour. Pilate failed to grasp the living truth and was lost. King Agrippa, almost persuaded to be a Christian, did not know it was the acceptable time. Sad, indeed, are the examples of neglected opportunities. But look further. Thousands of Christians in this country
not gathered into the churches, thousands of Lutherans have been lost to our Church, the cry of untold millions in the heathen world was not heard.
How terrible the results of neglected opportunites!
Opportunities of Today. I. We need only mention in passing the opportunities in economic and industrial spheres, both as far as nations and individuals are concerned, as demonstrated by the wonderful achievements of the present day.
II. The greatest and by far the most important opportunities are found in the religious world. (a) Foreign missions. The call came to Paul in a vision, “Come over to Macedonia and help us” (Acts 16:9). From all parts of the world the same call comes to us. Japan cries, "Show us the way"; India calls, "Reveal the truth to us”; China is praying for the “bread of life”; Corea is thirsting for the "living water”; Africa appeals to "light" to dispel the darkness; Asiatic Turkey
Tenth Week after Trinity. August 11, 1912. Noglocting Our Opportunities
Proverbs 1:24-33. Topic reviewed by Mr. N. Jensen. In these words of wisdom our attention is vividly called to the consequences which must be suffered by those who refuse the call of
is sobbing for freedom. Millions are crying to uis in the anguish of their souls.
(b) Home missions. From the larger cities of every State in the United States and Canada comes the appeal, Send us men to preach the gospel, to help us organize congregations, build churches and establish schools and seminaries. Send us men to minister unto the unchurched millions, and gather the hundreds of thousands of Lutherans in these cities.
(c) Inner missions. Hundreds, yea, thousands of young people are pouring annually into our large cities from the country districts. Whither are they going? The devil has all his agencies at work. The saloons, with their attendant evils, the public dance halls, the cheap theaters and moving picture shows, stand ready to welcome the stranger and lure him into their nets. Our jails and prisons are full of those who yielded to temptation, and fell into sin, vice and crime. Even for these Christ died. Who is to bring them the message? The sick in our hospitals, the poor and unfortunate in our institutions of mercy, appeal to us to visit them and minister unto them.
(d) Local congregational work. There are thousands of children not in our Sunday schools, and thousands of young people not connected with our churches. Our churches are appealing to our young men to study for the gospel ministry, to our young women to prepare themselves for the deaconess calling. Our Sunday schools are in need of teachers, our Luther Leagues are crying for workers.
Responsibilities. I. Of the Church. These are some of the opportunities which confront the Church. If she neglects them, if the Lutheran Church fails to take advantage of them, the consequences will be sad indeed. Human souls are in the balance; shall the Church be found wanting ? Let her remember the message to the church at Ephesus, and repent and do the first works, lest the Lord remove her candlestick (Rev. 2:5).
II. Of individuals. (a) Salvation is offered to all (John 3:16) (John 1:29) (Matt. 11:28) (Rev. 3:20). Every Lord's day the gospel is preached and the Holy Spirit calls us through the Word. Eternal life and salvation is freely offered to everyone through Christ Jesus. How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation (Heb. 2:3). Many treat the question of the salvation of their souls as a trivial matter, and give it little or no consideration ; they fail to realize that it is the most impor
tant of all questions, and that there is no escape for them if they refuse to hear the call of Jesus and accept Him as their Saviour.
(b) If we have accepted the offer of salvation, does our responsibility then cease? We have mentioned some of the opportunities which lie before the Church and before us as individuals. Have we no responsibilities with reference to these vast opportunities? Are we not in a measure responsible for the souls of our fellow men?' God has entrusted each one of us with his talents, some five, some two, some only one (Matt. 25:14-30). We must therefore employ these talents in His service, according as God has dealt to us. It is not sufficient to say, “Lord, Lord,” to attend service, whether regularly or spasmodically, or perhaps to join in the praise; but we must do the will of our Father which is in heaven (Matt. 7:21).
We must consecrate our lives to the service of our Master. We must give of our time, our means and our prayers.
If we neglect these opportunities we will be rejected by the Lord (Matt. 25:41-46).
If we neglect these opportunities, think of the consequences to the millions in the heathen lands, the thousands of unchurched at home, the thousands who have fallen into sin and are in the bondage of Satan.
Ninth Week after Trinity. August 4, 1912. Somo Promisos from tho Word of God
Josh. 1:8; Matt. 11: 28-30; 12:50.
Hymns 19 and 40.
Collects (pp. jji and X, Luther League Hymnal, No. 8).
Read Josh. 1:8; Matt. 11:28-30, 12:50.
1. What do God's promises mean to you? Give one point and one illustration.
2. Why do you know that they are true? Give an experience from your life illustrating this.
3. Why does obedience to God lead to success? Give one example.
4. Without God and His Word, what would this world be? Illustrate from condition of heathen world.
Special music (previously arranged).
Close by using "Closing Service" in Topics and Luther League Hymnal. •
2. Families should be taught God's Word (Deut. 4:9-10).
3. Families should be duly regulated (Prov. 31:27; I Tim. 3:4-5, 12).
4. Families should live in mutual forbearance (Gen. 50:17-21; Matt. 18:21-22).
Recitation (selection suitable to theme).
Select a number of persons to tell about the Christian homes of Lazarus (John 11:1-5), Cornelius (Acts 10:2, 33); jailer of Philippi (Acts 16:31-34); Lois (II Tim. 1:5).
Give summary of the five points in the discussion of the subject in Topics.
Have someone else give summary of discussion in LUTHER LEAGUE REVIEW.
Closing service in Topics or Luther League Ilyminal.
Tenth Week after Trinity. August 11, 1912. Noglecting Our Opportunity
Prov. 1:24:33. Hints for Leaders.
Opening service as given on inside first cover page of Topics.
Hymns 11 and 61.
1. What opportunities have I neglected today?
2. What special opportunities for service have I experienced in my life?
3. Do my spiritual opportunities become more clear to me as I grow in grace?
4. What special opportunities have I as Luther Leaguer ?
Be brief but pointed in giving answers.
Select four persons to summarize the neglect of Israel. Jehosaphat, Judas Iscariot, Ananias and Sapphira, for which see Daily Readings in Topics.
Ask the pastor to read Isa. 1:2-23.
Close as given on inside cover page of Topics or in Luther League Hymnal in Closing Service.
Twelfth Week after Trinity. August 25, 1912.
The Heavonly Home
John 14:2-3. Opening as in “Opening Service" inside page of Topics or
Luther League Hymnal.
Hymns 22, 226.
Scripture lesson read by leader; Jolu 14:1-12.
Prayer by pastor.
Select three persons in advance and have them read selections from Drummond's address, “The City Without a Church." Have one to read from the sections “I Saw the City”; another from "His Servants Shall Serve Him," and another from “I Saw No Temple There."
one summarize discussion in Topics
Hlave some one summarize discussion in the REVIEW.
Recitation, “Heaven and Earth," by Faber, or “The Land o' the Leal,” by C. Lady Nairn, or some other appropriate selection.
Review of Topic ly pastor.
Eleventh Week after Trinity. August 18, 1912.
Tho Christian Family
Luke 10:38-42; John 11:1-3. llints for Leaders.
Hymns 65, 51.
Scripture lesson (Luke 10:38-42; John 11:1-3).
OFFICIAL ORGAN OF THE LUTHER LEAGUE
18SUDD MONTHLY BY THE
Luther League of America
IN THE INTERESTS OF
The Lutheran Church and her Young People
Editod by E. P. EILERT
WITH W. C. STOEVER,
I. S. RUNYON, Philadelphia, Pa.
New York, N. Y. LUTHER M. KUHNS,
C. ELVIN HAUPT, Omaha, Neb.
AS SPECIAL ASSOCIATES,
Luther League of America
SUBSCRIPTION, 50 CENTS A YBAR.
Club Terms on Application. Remittances may be made in stampo, Poot once or Expreu Money Order, Draft, or Registered Letter. Ad dress all communications and send all remittances to
tice certain things have come to be recognized as established principles in the League, and these principles affirmed by conventions of the Luther League of America. These are the lines, primarily, upon which the League was originally organized. The design of the leaders of the Luther League from the beginning was to keep this movement near the Church. In fact, the idea was that it should be the Church working in and through and for the development of its own young people. Naturally, the sphere for this activity was and only can be in the local congregation. Conservative and progressive in its spirit, it must be in the local congregation that skilful leadership and wise planning must enlist and equip the youth of the Church for usefulness. In the departures from this designed sphere for the activity of the Luther League there are involved dangers, and they are likely to arouse opposition. It was welcomed in the great conservative Lutheran Church. Beyond question, the usefulness and desirability of such an agency in the congregation was apparent.
With the youth united in zeal and energy, the Church lent encouragement and co-operation. To depart from the fundamental principles of the League is to undervalue and discard the accomplishments of the past sixteen years of work. Opportunities for co-operation are just as favorable today as ever, and to secure a practical society in the congregation it is necessary that the clear purpose of the League as an adjunct and agency for service in the Church shall be observed, and its position as such conserved by all who are, in any way whatever, its responsible officers or committees. Experience, observation and experiment show that the field for Luther League activity is in the local society, and there anything approved by the authorities of the congregation may be undertaken.
The Luther League had its rise in the expression of the desire of the young people in our great Lutheran Church to develop their spiritual life, increase their personal efficiency, and also to render effective service in establishing the Kingdom of God in the world. For a long time it had been observed that the great army of young Lutherans were not developing their latent energies. The praiseworthy motives mentioned were largely responsible for the conception of the League. This organization has now existed for sixteen years. During these years competent pastors, experienced laymen, active workers have devoted attention and time to the work recognized as the proper and legitimate sphere of this organization. As a result of observation, experience and prac
Sunday School Teachers
A few words for Sunday school teachers First, be a teacher, if God has given you any talent for teaching; second, prepare the les
son, not forgetting that prayer is the most for power and beauty in the expression of the essential part of preparation; third, come sublime and eternal truths—the interpretation promptly at the hour for opening, and greet they utter of Christian idea. your class with a smile and a warm grasp of Historically, the Lutheran Church "fell heir the hand; fourth, let your aim in teaching be to the art treasures and convictions of the to lead each soul to Christ; fifth, inquire con- Romish Church." But her evangelical charcerning absent ones, and go after them; sixth, acter necessitated a modification, reinterpretavisit your scholars regularly, and be solicitous tion, and assimilation of this valuable inheritabout their salvation; seventh, never be absent ance. Through emigration slie has lost vers from your class without giving them an ex- much in this respect; and the remedy lies in planation and providing for them a teacher. the cultivation of a more artistic taste, and
also in the study of correct principles of art.
It is not well to sacrifice everything esthetic Church Art
for utility. The building of the Temple was the first work Solomon undertook. Nothing else in
Our Pledge his reign can compare with it. It was monu- The Luther Leaguer sees in the baptismal mental. Its architecture was unique, its dec- covenant assumed at confirmation the only oration and furnishing were elaborate, and its pledge deemed necessary. In the Christian effect on the future character of the people Endeavor there is a well defined pledge setmost profound. It showed great art.
ting forth: (1) To strive to do what Jesus The relation of art to the Church is neces- would wish; (2) to pray and read the Bible sary. Art has been defined as "the discovery every day; (3) to support the Church by atand formulating of the principles of correct tending her services, participating in the Y. and influential expression by such things as P. S. C. E. prayer meetings, except providenaddress the senses."
tially prevented. These are excellent and calWe may regard it as applying to artistic culated to benefit the Y. P. S. C. E. But as construction, embodying the beautiful in sen- the plain duties of every Christian no special suous forms. It has usually risen superior to pledge can make them more binding as the distinctive creeds.
Christian duty than does the confirmation Church art must utter Christian ideas, and vow, “I renounce the devil and all his works interpret Christian feeling. It is to be ob- and ways, and give myself to the Triune God, served that, "where there is life there will Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, in faith and be new expressions of it: the substance of the obedience unto the end. I promise conChristian life is, indeed, the same in all ages scientiously to use the means of grace, to be and in all men; yet in every soul, in every obedient to the order and discipline of the congregation, on almost every occasion, it will congregation and to be a faithful member of Hame out in some special form.' Whether or the Evangelical Lutheran Church." It is the not its general basis is piety, we rightfully pledge we take in making public profession expect Church art to give expression to Chris- of Christ and assuming the obligations of distian feeling. In sculpture, painting, building, cipleship. It makes for renunciation and for decorating, music, or in liturgical forms wa consecration, and contains all that is vital in should expect “a harmonious expression of the Endeavor pledge; and it is comprehensive the direct word of God, combining profound of the whole sphere of Christian activity and devotional earnestness with cheerful artisti: duty. Surely confirmation, if it means anybeauty." Church art must not be allowed to thing, means this much for loyal service for degenerate into trifling mannerisms. It calls Christ.