A message from Pastor Berndt
“Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. (Ezekiel 37)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. The Valley of Dry Bones. Bones that are thirsty in this parched land of the Valley.
Funerals can be strange events. Sometimes I will hear the oddest comments at a funeral. "Death is natural." NO! No, death is not natural. God is the author of Creation. Death is not what God created. Death has come as a result of sin. The Fall into sin (Genesis 3).
Bones. Desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.(James 1) Sin results in death. Bones. Sorrow and despair for dry bones. We cannot run away from the grave.
"Can these bones live?" Ezekiel's answer is to let the Lord teach. " O Lord you know." The Lord's answer: “Prophesy over the bones." Preach. Bring my word to my people to hear and believe. Sinners filled with dry bones gather together in the Lord's House to hear the Living Voice of Christ.
Who will deliver me from this body of death?Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7) The Lord's life-giving Word ringing in your ears brings life. How? Because Jesus is the Word made flesh--takes your death. Jesus has come to save you from your sins. Jesus puts death to death. On the Cross your sins are finished. Justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ.(Romans 3)
Christ has Risen. Can these bones live? Yes, indeed. How do you know? Jesus has defeated death with His Easter Rising. Because Christ has risen so too will you who believe in Jesus. Christ has come to give you eternal life. When I open your graves, and raise you from your graves, O my people. (Ezekiel 37) How will you rise? By the Word of God. The Lord will call you forth from the grave. I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live....Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice. (John 5)
Can these bones live? Yes indeed. Jesus gives His life to you. The Holy Spirit at work through the preaching of God's Word--brings you life. The Lord forgiving your sins. Salvation given away--full and free. “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.(John 11) Jesus’ promise for you to hear and believe.
What do dry bones need? What do sinners need? Jesus. God's Word. Dry bones need Jesus’ Living Water. Having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead.(Colossians 2)
Your bones are dry no more. Dripping wet. Called forth from the Fount--as the New Creation. Called forth to live in the Lord. You believe in Jesus all by God's grace. You have eternal life living in Christ. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
O God, O Lord of Heaven and Earth(LSB 834:3)
Thou camest to our hall of death, O Christ, to breathe our poisoned air,
To drink for us the dark despair That strangled our reluctant breath.
How beautiful the feet that trod The road that leads us back to God!
How beautiful the feet that ran To bring the great good news to man!