Pastor's Pen for 05/03/2017I will speak of Your testimonies also before kings, And will not be ashamed. (Psalm 119:46)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. June 25, 1530 was the Presentation of the Augsburg Confession. Lutheran theologians put their confession in writing for the world to see. What Lutherans believe, teach, and confess. Confessing what the bible teaches is what it means to be Lutheran.

In the Augsburg Confession teaching on “Justification by Faith” or “Civil Government” or “Good Works,” the one thread that runs through the whole Confession is Jesus. The Reformers wanted to make clear that the main and most important thing in the church is that through Jesus Christ's suffering, death and resurrection, we are freely and completely forgiven of all our sins and have eternal life. (We are “justified” by grace for Christ's sake through faith).

IV: Of Justification. Teaching that men cannot be justified before God by their own strength, merits, or works, but are freely justified for Christ’s sake, through faith, when they believe that they are received into favor, and that their sins are forgiven for Christ’s sake, who, by His death, has made satisfaction for our sins. This faith God imputes for righteousness in His sight. Romans 3 and 4.

The Augsburg Confession gushes with how the Triune God has mercy on us; how Jesus is our Savior; how everything in our faith and life and worship all flows from that central truth that we are righteous in God's sight by Christ alone. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,not a result of works, so that no one may boast. (Ephesians 2)

Lutherans were willing to die rather than teach something false. Everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 10)

We are the heirs of the Augsburg Confession. We are given to confess Christ before the world with boldness and confidence in God's Word. I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes. (Romans 1)

God’s desire is for His church to be in agreement about doctrine, and to be of one mind, living at peace with one another. I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. (1 Corinthians 1)

The Lutheran Confessions are not a history lesson. Rather, it is the truth of God's Word that we boldly confess before the world. Christ’s mercy to save sinners. If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10)

Rejoice in God's Word taught in its truth and purity. For our ears to hear. Our hearts to believe. Our mouths to confess Jesus as Lord. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Lord, keep us steadfast in Your Word; Curb those who by deceit or sword Would wrest the kingdom from Your Son And bring to naught all He has done.

Lutheran Service Book (LSB 655:1)


Rev. Lance D. Berndt is a pastor of Zion Lutheran Church ( in Omaha, NE.


The Lutherans stood before the entire world and confessed. Given the opportunity to say what they believed, they freely and joyfully confessed the truth that God justifies sinners by grace, through faith, for Christ’s sake. 

The Augsburg Confession was read out loud on June 25, 1530, during the Diet of Augsburg. Written by Philipp Melanchthon, this document explained the faith of the Christian Church as taught by Luther in accordance with the Scriptures. 

Article IV contains the central confession of how God saves people. Read it. Especially Article IV.