LÖHE ON JAMES 1:18

firstfruitsHe chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created. (Jam 1:18 NIV)

Somebody, who is born through the word of truth has the calling to be a kind of firstfruit. Yet temptations will still be with him as he’s not yet perfect by a long shot. He remains vulnerable. Just think of Eve in Paradise. She really was in a perfect state – and yet the tempter did not pass her by. Thus the master of lies and deception tempts the children of God and tries to usurp the divine throne. He’s the imposter – makes himself out to be an angel of light and put down the true Lord as a fake. Blessed is he, who withstands these treacherous attempts of the father of lies, who closes mouth and ears to anger and rather opens his ears for the word of truth and doesn’t shut out this truth from his heart. It’s not just a beautiful noise, but rather a power of God to save. Listen and don’t stop receiving the divine gifts and graces through this very word of God. You’ll get to know, that God’s hands and richest blessings are active, wherever his holy gospel rings out.

Lord: Let us hear your word and head your voice. Speak to us so that we understand and don’t be far from us with your comfort – especially if we’re scared and afraid to loose our soul, because your arrows are striking us where it hurts. Strengthen us in temptation and lead us through your strong word to victory and triumph. Keep us in the coming night so that the old evil foe may have no power over us. Amen.

1. I walk in danger all the way.  The thought shall never leave me  That Satan, who has marked his prey, Is plotting to deceive me. This foe with hidden snares May seize me unawares If e’er I fail to watch and pray. I walk in danger all the way.

 2. I pass through trials all the way, With sin and ills contending; In patience I must bear each day The cross of God’s own sending. Oft in adversity I know not where to flee;      When storms of woe my soul dismay, I pass through trials all the way.

 3. Death doth pursue me all the way, Nowhere I rest securely; He comes by night, he comes by day, And takes his prey most surely.  A failing breath, and I In death’s strong grasp may lie To face eternity for aye. Death dost pursue me all the way. 

4. I walk with angels all the way,   They shield me and befriend me; All Satan’s power is held at bay When heavenly hosts attend me; They are my sure defense, All fear and sorrow, hence! Unharmed by foes, do what they may, I walk with angels all the way.

5. I walk with Jesus all the way,  His guidance never fails me; Within His wounds I find a stay When Satan’s power assails me; And by His footsteps led, My path I safely tread.         In spite of ills that threaten may, I walk with Jesus all the way.

 6. My walk is heavenward all the way; Await my soul, the morrow, When thou shalt find release for aye From all thy sin and sorrow. All worldly pomp, begone! To heaven I now press on. For all the world I would not stay; My walk is heavenward all the way.  (Hans A. Brorson 1694-1764 tr Ditlev G. Ristad, 1863-1938)

This is a rather free translation of Wilhelm Löhe’s devotion for Monday after the fourth Sunday after Easter: Cantate. It is found on Pg. 188 in Lob sei Dir ewig, o Jesu!   (Eternal Praise to you o Jesus!) edited by A. Schuster and published in the Freimund Verlag, Neuendettelsau 1949.

About Wilhelm Weber

Pastor at the Old Latin School in the Lutherstadt Wittenberg
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