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Table of Contents:

Fall 2001  |  Fall 2002  |  Fall 2003  | 
Fall 2004  |  Fall 2005  |  Fall 2007  | 
Fall 2008  |  Fall 2010  |  Fall 2011  | 
Fall 2012  |  Fall 2013  |  Fall 2014  | 
Fall 2015  |  Fall 2016  |  Fall 2017  | 
Spring 2002  |  Spring 2003  |  Spring 2004  | 
Spring 2005  |  Spring 2006  |  Spring 2007  | 
Spring 2008  |  Spring 2009  |  Spring 2011  | 
Spring 2012  |  Spring 2013  |  Spring 2014  | 
Spring 2015  |  Spring 2016  |  Spring 2017  | 
Spring 2018  |  Summer 2001  |  Summer 2003  | 
Summer 2004  |  Summer 2005  |  Summer 2006  | 
Summer 2007  |  Summer 2008  |  Summer 2010  | 
Summer 2011  |  Summer 2012  |  Summer 2013  | 
Summer 2014  |  Summer 2015  |  Summer 2016  | 
Summer 2017  |  Summer 2018  |  Winter 2001  | 
Winter 2002  |  Winter 2003  |  Winter 2004  | 
Winter 2005  |  Winter 2007  |  Winter 2010  | 
Winter 2011  |  Winter 2012  |  Winter 2013  | 
Winter 2014  |  Winter 2016  |  Winter 2017  | 
Winter2 017a  | 

Fall 2001

Resting in Christ: Why the Reformed think Lutherans are Second Class Christians by Dr. Gene Edward Vieth

Lutherans are not second- class Christians, but citizens of God's heavenly kingdom.
tags: reformed

Where are you God? by Rev. Scott Stiegemeyer

The question "Where are you God?" is asked and then answered as we struggle to understand God in the face of recent terrorist attacks.

Dare to be Lutheran on Campus by Rev. Marcus Zill

A look at the challenges young Lutherans face when they go off to college for the first time.
tags: college

An Inside-Out View of Contemporary Christian Music by Lori Lewis

Read about Lori Lewis' journey into the world of CCM and how she rediscovered the Lutheran Church.

The Summit by Adriane Dorr

How would you defend the Christian doctrine of Holy Baptism at summer camp? Adriane Dorr shows us how she did it.

The Lutheran Difference by Rev. Prof. Lawrence R. Rast, Jr.

See how Rev. Rast dealt with being a parish pastor in Tennessee in the midst of an anti-Lutheran environment.

Left Behind by Rev. Klemet Preus

Rev. Preus critiques the popular Left Behind book series and shows that its message should not be trusted.
tags: left behind

What is Lutheran? Jello, Confirmation and the Catechism by Rev. David Petersen

Rev. Petersen describes the vows that are made at confirmation, and how the Catechism serves as a road map to help explain faith to others.
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Fall 2002

The World of Christian Art by Dr.Gene Edward Veith and Steve Blakey

Christian art communicates God's message of salvation to us and helps focus our worship.
tags: art, worship

Making Waves by Rev. Daniel Woodring

tags: making waves

Hot Dogs in the Real World by Kathy Luder

Can Lutheran schools provide students with the "street smarts" to survive in the real world?

The Hulk Lies Down With the Lamb by Rev.David Petersen

Governments and military leaders rule by force and violence. How does that compare to God's kingdom?
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Fall 2003

The Masks of God by Dr. Gene Edward Veith

What is God's calling for you? Concordia University Professor, Dr. Gene Veith, explores the Lutheran understanding of vocation.
tags: vocation

The Messenger is the Message: God's Great Angel Visits His People by Rev. Steven R. Weist

Jesus is in the Old Testament, already showing how He will save His people.

PULSE: SEX-Ploitation by Rev. Eric R. Andrae

tags: pulse, sex
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Fall 2004

Tell What Jesus Did by Rev. Klemet Preus

How do you communicate the message of the Gospel of Christ? What does the Bible say about the way we speak the Good News? Test your knowledge with this informative article.

The god of the City by Rev.Tim Pauls

Graffiti on a concrete wall becomes a sermon for the religion of the 21st century: you are god. Read on to see just how pervasive this belief truly is.

A Family Feast by DoRena Stuckwisch

A grassroots Higher Things retreat leaves this 17-year-old writer reflecting on fun, feasts, and the best Supper of all.

Not Nearly Enough by Gene Edward Veith

We all have friends from different Christian traditions. How exactly are Lutherans different?

A Fourfold Hallelujah! by Rev. Bill Cwirla

This poetic sermon sweeps us into the hallelujahs of Revelation 19.
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Fall 2005

Equal to the Apostles by Rev. Dr. Norman Nagel

DTBL rocked!one participant gushed. See how awesome it was in this photo collage, and get a taste of the worship life at DTBL by reading the sermon preached by Dr.Nagel at the DTBL Divine Service at Concordia Seminary.

Cosmetic Surgery: Reality Check by Darren Eliker

Cosmetic surgery, reality TVs hottest trend, blends fairytale beauty with ordinary looks. Darren Elikers article helps us think about beauty, reality, and finding contentment in Christ.

Ladybug Lies and Sliding Shirts by Kathy Luder

Kathy helps her friend Molly with fashion tips, dating advice, and learns a lesson about letting it slide.

Catechism: The Promise of the Law: Blessing in Time by Rev. David Petersen

God gives us the law to curb our sin and fight against our natural tendency to do wrong. But are there also blessings in obeying the law?
tags: catechism, law

Handling Hell by Seminarian Ryan Fouts

Do you think about heaven and hell? Are you nervous about your eternity? Read the second part of a pair of articles by Pastor Borghardt and Seminarian Fouts to think about eternity beyond the grave.
tags: eternity, heaven, hell

Heaven: Why It Doesn't Matter by Rev. George Borghardt

Do you think about heaven and hell? Are you nervous about your eternity? Read the first part of a pair of articles by Pastor Borghardt and Seminarian Fouts to think about eternity beyond the grave.
tags: eternity, heaven, hell
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Fall 2007

Sacred Spaces or Meeting Places? by Rev. Kevin Vogts

The mega-church down the street has cup holders, recliners, and an ATM in the lobby. Your church has pews and a pulpit. Does the way your church looks affect how you worship? If church architecture and stained glass tickle your fancy, Pastor Vogts' article is for you.

Image Is Everything by Julie Beckwith

Everyone who's someone in your class shops at H & M, and the popular kids say you have to get your jeans at Abercrombie. Even your little sister can't go to the mall without stopping at the Gap. But if you're made in God's image, shouldn't brand names be irrelevant? Your worth doesn't stem from the logo on your clothes, and Julie Beckwith tells you why.

For You by Rev. Christopher Esget

Christ died for you. He rose for you. He will come again for you. And if that isn't enough, Pastor Esget's sermon from Asheville outlines a whole slew of other things your Lord has done--all for you.
tags: Esget, for you, sermon

Catechism on Closed Communion by Rev. Paul Beisel

Your best friend is staying over on Saturday night and plans to go to church with you on Sunday. But she's not Lutheran, and she doesn't understand why she can't go to Communion with you. If you need a refresher course on the Lord's Supper or if you have a hard time discussing it with your friends, check out Pastor Beisel's questions and answers.

Why study Latin? by Rev. John Nordling

Only geeks learn Latin. It's an old-fashioned language. Nobody uses it anymore. Wait just a minute. You've got it all wrong! There are many benefits to learning Latin you may not realize. Pastor Nordling explains why Latin's not quite as bad as you might think.
tags: latin, Nordling

Stick a Bible in My Eye by Rev. David Petersen

You hear it everywhere--in the mall, at school, during volleyball practice. Sometimes it just slips out. Other times it's very deliberate. But any way you cut it, taking the Lord's name in vain, blurting out, "Oh my God!" is an abuse of your heavenly Father's name, and Pastor Petersen tells you why it's a dangerous habit to get into.

The Football Star by Kathy Luder

When Kathy agreed to meet up with friends for some food and fun after the football game, she figured it would just be another average party. But she never imagined the night would end up like it did. Read with caution. This cliffhanger shows how much one decision can change a person.
tags: luder, party
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Fall 2008

The Language of the Parables: Why Jesus? by Rev. Bryan Wolfmueller

It's hard to understand parables. Are they about you, or your neighbor, or Jesus, or Christians, or non-believers? How can you tell? Pastor Wolfmueller helps to sort out the confusion by pointing you back to your Savior.

Swimming in Faith by Mr. Kyle Verage

Swimming is hard work. Sometimes it's fun. Sometimes not. Sometimes it's easy. Sometimes it's hard. Daily prayer, personal devotion, and church attendance are hard work too. Sometimes they're not fun or easy either. So, why bother? Swimmer Kyle Verage talks discipline, grace, and faith.

Amen Sermon by Rev. Christopher Esget

You heard Pastor Esget preach at the Amen conference and wished you had a copy of his sermon to read again. Well, now you do! For a little light reading on your salvation and God's mercy, read on.
tags: amen, Esget, homily

The ABCs of Christian Living by Rev. Jim Roemke

Have you stopped to wonder why we sing the Alleluia when we do in church? Or what the point of the Offertory is? Pastor Roemke lays out the Divine Service in a few easy steps so that you can understand exactly what's going on on Sunday morning.
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Fall 2010

The Beatitudes by Rev. David P. Scaer

Few Gospel passages have been mischaracterized as much as The Beatitudes. Can you inherit the earth if you're just meek enough? See God if you’re just pure enough? Some would say that, but Dr. David Scaer sets the record straight and brings the focus where it should be with these heavy words—on Christ!

The American Revolution by Rev. Robert Kieselowsky

“Going to the mission field“ might make you think of some brave soul heading into deepest, darkest Africa. Bet you never thought of Colonial America as a mission field but the Lutheran church certainly did. It sent Henry Melchior Muhlenberg to work with pastors in Pennsylvania on the cusp of the American Revolution, where he found himself stuck in the middle of a massive moral dilemma. Find out more about this influential pastor as told by Rev. Kieselowsky and let his life serve as an encouragement to you.

So You Want to Be a Wise Guy, Eh? by Timmothy Heath, Jr.

If you watch most reality TV shows, you’ll quickly realize that wisdom is a scarce commodity. It doesn’t seem to be valued much today and those who do seek after it often look for it in all the wrong places. Mr. Heath reveals where true wisdom begins and ends, and the good news is that it’s available to YOU.
tags: heath, reality, tv, wisdom

Christ on Campus by Rev. Philip Young

Nobody was more surprised than Rev.Young after the Nashville conference this summer. To his astonishment, the glory of heaven was revealed at Vanderbilt University, a secular haven, when more than 1,000 Lutheran teens and adults joined together for Divine Service.

Sing! by Rev. Larry Peters

Pipes don’t have perfect pitch? Sing like a sick cow? No worries! Sing unto the Lord a new song! Rev. Peters will encourage the most timid among you to wrestle with the words of the hymns in your hearts, even if you don’t utter a sound. You may discover that you want to sing in spite of yourself.
tags: hymns, peters, pipes, sing, song

Spiriligiosity by Rev. Jonathan Fisk

With pinpoint accuracy, Rev. Fisk zeroes in on today’s false notion of “spirituality.” Are you open-minded or close-minded? Why is “religion“ a bad word in our postmodern culture? Be prepared to get a book’s worth of helpful insight in this article via Rev. Fisk’s pull-no-punches way of communicating Gospel truth.

Speaking Hope to Homosexuals by Anonymous

There’s a high likelihood you know someone who struggles with homosexuality. Maybe it is your own personal battle. The author of this article seeks to equip you to speak Jesus to your friend, who may not know where to go with this agonizing conflict, and handles this complex and sensitive subject with wisdom and grace.

Feasting with Our Lord: The Day of Atonement by Rev. Thomas C. Messer

“Yom Kippur” shows up on calendars every year, but what is it? It’s the Day of Atonement, and Rev. Messer once again shows us how the rich ceremonial laws of the feast pointed forward to Christ. Discover how even the smallest details of this feast find their fulfillment in the Cross.

Lead Us Not Into Temptation by Rev. William Cwirla

“Don’t eat the forbidden fruit!” Tempting, isn’t it? Hence the need for this 6th Petition of the Lord’s Prayer. If sin weren’t such a delectable choice, we wouldn’t so readily gravitate toward it. Rev. Cwirla artfully reminds us that our arsenal to fight such temptation is overflowing: It is Christ and Him crucified, who perfectly resisted temptation on our behalf!
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Fall 2011

I'm Adopted by Rev. Joel Fritsche

Nowadays adoption is often in the spotlight because one celebrity or another has decided to adopt a child. Well, it's always been big news for God! Rev. Fritsche gives you a window into his own rewarding experiences with adoption and shows how precious your adoption in Christ truly is.

Sheep Don't Keep Track by Rev. Todd Wilken

Sheep are not known for being the smartest animals in the world, but they have a special place in God's Word. Our Shepherd, Jesus, who cares for us, uses them many times in His parables and illustrations. Rev. Wilken expounds on one such instance, and in doing so, will make you revel in your sheephood.

The Gifts of God's Dos and Don'ts by Rev. George Borghardt

Someone just gave you a lovely, beautifully wrapped gift. You tear open the paper with enthusiasm and look at it, stunned...it's God's Law? How can it be that very thing that St. Paul calls a ministry of death, is a gift from God? Learn why this is a reality as you read this article crafted in true Rev. Borghardt fashion.

Genetic Engineering: Blessing or Curse? by Rev. Dr. John I. Lamb

"Hi, I'd like one baby boy with blue eyes, blond hair, and athletic ability on the side." Going through the drive-through to order your baby? That may seem far-fetched, but as Christians, we need to tread lightly when it comes to the topic of genetic engineering. Dr. Lamb carefully navigates through the final part in his series and grapples with the questions: HOw far is too far when it comes to genetic engineering?

The Morning Rush by Christina Harman

Whether it's Starbucks or a 3-mile jog, a protein shake or Good Morning America, nearly everyone has something in their morning routine that they find it very hard to manage without. Christina presents a Christ-centered, compelling case for making time with God an essential start to your day.

Christ on Campus: Have you Apologized Lately? The Law and Gospel of Christian Apologetics by Rev. Ian Pacey

Whether you're in college or not, at some point your faith in Christ will be challenged. Scripture calls us to be able to give a reason for the home that we have, so where do we start? Rev. Pacey gets the ball rolling for you as he provides some basics.

Put Me in, Coach! I'm Ready to Live the Christian Life by Rev. Chad Hoover

For nearly as long as there has been American football, there have been CHristians attempting to use it as a picture of the Christian life. Rev. Hoover has a unique twist on this analogy and shows us that perhaps it has a place after all, which gives us a real reason to celebrate!

Green Without the Black by Rev. Alan Kornacki

As Christians, where do we find that middle ground between apathy toward the environment and screaming obscenities at folks who wear fur, neither of which are acceptable? Rev. Kornacki lays out an approach to being the wise stewards God calls us to be and to care for this groaning creation that awaits the glorious coming of Jesus Christ!

Being a Perfect Lutheran by Scott Johnson

Overachiever. Task-oriented. Hard on yourself. Do these sound familiar? If you find yourself constantly trying to see if you measure up, then Scott's words will gently remind you where your value lies and how that can bring you peace.

Catechism: Thy Will be Done by Rev. William Cwirla

These words in the Lord's Prayer are not some sort of complacent surrender...they are a battle cry, but also a source of great comfort. Rev. Cwirla sweeps away some of our misconceptions about these four words we often tack onto the end of our prayers.
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Fall 2012

"That" by Rev. George F. Borghardt

If you've listened to or been around Rev. Borghardt for any length of time, you'll know what "that" is. It actually stems back to one of his most popular conference topics: sex. In his usual impassioned manner, Rev. Borghardt makes the Biblical case for the blessings of putting "that" in its correct context of marriage.

Homosexuality in the Home: The Christian in Crisis by Rev. Ryan J. Ogrodowictz

It's one thing to be inundated by all of teh politically oriented arguments regarding homosexuality, same sex marriage, etc. It's an entirely different story when you have someone near and dear to you reveal that they are choosing to live that lifestyle. How on earth does the CHristian deal with this when faced with it? Rev. Ogrodowicz demonstrates how Law and Gospel are the most vital tools to help you minister to your loved one in their time of need

Art Set Apart by Kelly Klages

A fine artist herself, Kelly masterfully creates a beautiful picture of the role of art in the Lutheran church. Discover its distinct purpose and history as well as how art in the church is a unique blending of tradition and Christian freedom. It's all about Jesus!

The Emperor's New Clothes Part 2 of a Two-Part Series by Barbara S. Helmkamp, PH.D.

Yes, it's true. The Emperor's new clothes still leave little to the imagination. Dr. Helmkamp directs our attention to the skies as she bolsters the case, using both science and faith, for us to question the most popular theory proposed about the origins of our universe: the Big Bang.

Baseball and Prayer by Rev. Michael J. Schmidt

Rev. Schmidt takes us back in time, to his own childhood, when his simple, persistent prayer for a wonderful baseball season set the tone for his future prayer life. Let the four lessons he took away from his own experience encourage you as you pray.

Be Healed by Tysen Bibb

No, that isn't the latest reality TV show you've stumbled across while channel surfing--it's a faith healing service. Tune in to Tysen's article, where he addresses the claims of those who promote such services and explains how God brings true healing into the lives of Christians.

Christ on Campus Dare to Be Lutheran: Challenged Accepted by Caitlyn Baker

So what's it like to attend a Higher Things Conference for the first time? Read this first timer's enthusiastic review and judge for yourself. A bit of a skeptic at first, Caitlyn discovered that the Twelve conference in Irvine, California was a Christ-centered benchmark in her life as she prepared to start college.

Catechism FAQs by Rev. William Cwirla

Okay, so you've done your share of studying the catechism, memorized parts of it and may even think that it isn't of any real practical use post-confirmation. Well, think again. Rev. Cwirla handily deals with the most commonly asked questions by Lutherans and non-Lutherans alike about the Small Catechism's origin, purpose and encouraging role in your life.
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Fall 2013

Rock Star Pastors? by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Describe your pastor in one or two words…Go! Geek. Rock Star. Grumpy. How about…shepherd? In fact, a shepherd is the perfect description of your pastor, as Rev. Borghardt explains. And even though your pastor may have either geeky or rock star qualities, what makes him someone you should want to be around is that He is Christ’s representative for you, here to faithfully remind you of the sweetness of the Gospel through Word and Sacrament.

Coming Down from the Mountaintop by Jonathan Kohlmeier

From the highest peaks to the lowest valleys, life can be a harrowing journey, but very often, it is simply middle-ofthe- road ordinary. And it’s at those times when the really important things—Baptism, Absolution, the Lord’s Supper, ground us and grant us strength for the next mountain or valley.

Higher Things from a Youth's Perspective by Jared Timm

Thinking about attending a Higher Things conference? Find out what it’s like for your average, everyday teen. Jared makes a pitch that just might persuade you to attend Crucified 2014 next summer!

Christ on Campus Higher Things Through the Eyes of a CCV by Alayna Brandt

Upon completing her first adventure as a College Conference Volunteer, Alayna was compelled to share her experience in the hopes of encouraging others to do likewise.

Youth Ministry Are You Ready for a Miracle? by Sandra Ostapowich

This is the inaugural article of our new regular feature dedicated to helping and encouraging youth leaders. Sandra makes the case that Lutheran youth crave the richness and depth that the traditional liturgy offers, as opposed to the latest, greatest cultural offerings.

Catechism The Table of Duties: Husbands and Wives by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Rev. Cwirla expands on the occasionally used analogy of a dance to explain the role of husbands and wives in light of the Table of Duties, making it crystal clear how this union is a reflects that of Christ and His bride, the Church, and how that plays out in everyday lives.
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Fall 2014

Dare to Be Lutheran: What Does This Mean? by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Rev. Borghardt reminds us that "Dare to be Lutheran" is more than a motto-it's a phrase that points us back to the Solas of the Reformation: faith alone, grace alone, Scripture alone and it declares boldly: It's all about Jesus!

Legacy Hardware by Stan Lemon

Higher Things' own tech guru, Stan Lemon, reflects back on his 10 years with Higher Things and expresses his excitement about the future as HT continues to promote our basic Lutheran distinctives.

It's Time to Silence the Whipsers by Rev. Harrison Goodman

Just like Paul encourages Timothy "Let no one despise you for your youth" (1 Timothy 4:12), Rev. Goodman urges us to remember that young people aren't the church in seed form, they already ARE the church.

Seven Apologists Every Christian Should Know, Pt. 2 The Convincing Case of William Lane Craig by Rev. Mark A. Pierson

Christian apologetics at its best is what you'll be served up if you watch or listen to any debate featuring William Lane Craig, a highly regarded Christian philosopher. Rev. Pierson explains just what makes Craig such a skilled defender of the Christian faith.

Communion Is for Real by Daniel Baker

Regardless of your opinion of the movie, Heaven is for Real, it fared well at the box office, but Daniel, especially when reflecting back on his HT conference experiences, rejoices that Communion is as REAL as it gets: real food for our souls, real flesh and blood, and real forgiveness.

Uncle Walther Wants You!... to Become a Lutheran Teacher by John Brandt

Countless kids dream of being a teacher and if you are one of those, you might want to consider directing that desire toward teaching at a Lutheran school. John, a teacher himself, lays out the perks of this vocation.

Table of Duties: To the Young, the Old and Everyone by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Rev. Cwirla covers the last of our Table of Duties catechism studies. It all comes down to: faith in Christ, love for neighbor and a keen appreciation for what we have in the Small Catechism.
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Fall 2015

Law and Gospel in Worship by Rev. George F. Borghardt

We often think worship is about what we offer to God and indeed we do have something to offer Him: our sins. In return, we receive the glorious gift of Jesus in Word, water, Body and Blood, for which, declares Rev. Borghardt, we get to respond to God with praise for the sake of our neighbor!

Just Shut Up and Die! by Rev. Donavon L. Riley

Death is a brutal reality. It is inescapable because we are slaves to the power of sin. But, as Rev. Riley reassures us, we are baptized children of God, and so we are raised daily in the waters of our Baptism. We can tell our Old Adam where to go because death is not the end.

Te Deum 2015: What Did It Mean? by Monica Berndt

After her inaugural experience of being a College Conference Volunteer, Monica enthusiastically takes us on a tour of how a Higher Things conference helps to strengthen faith and equip youth.

Apologists Every Christian Should Know, Part 5 The Masterful Mind of John Warwick Montgomery: Why You Can Know the Truth by Rev. Mark A. Pierson

Rev. Pierson explains how the arguments and writings of John Warwick Montgomery will help you stand up and fight the truth decay that is saturating our culture.

Slaying the Monster of Uncertainty by Rev. Dr. Matthew Richard

Rev. Richard offers great insight into the origin of that monster who likes to terrorize us with claims that we can't really know we are saved and he reminds us Who the mighty Slayer of that monster is.

MARVEL Movies and the Creed: Defend, Guard, Protect and Avenge by Rev. Ted Giese

You know the Apostles' Creed word for word, right? You might have even memorized some of the dialogue from your favorite MARVEL movie as well. Yes, there's a connection. Movie reviewer Rev. Giese gives us a look into how the Creed can be used as a jumping off point to evaluate movies, books and art of all kinds.

Catechism: The Third Commandment by Rev. William M. Cwirla

So how is the Sabbath made holy? It's far more than observing a day of rest from work, it's about a person: Jesus Christ, and the rest we find in Him and in His restful Word.

Bible Study: Why You Can Know the Truth by HT

Be sure to check out this sample of one of our student Bible studies which links up with Rev. Pierson's article on P. 12.
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Fall 2016

The Sophia of Worthy Reception by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Do you ever wonder if you're truly worthy to receive Christ's Body and Blood? By giving you a peek into the precious life of his 14-year-old daughter, Rev. Borghardt addresses that concern with compelling clarity.

Praying for Your Front-Line Pastor by Rev. Duane Bamsch

October is Pastor Appreciation Month and what greater way to show gratitude for your pastor than to pray for him. As an experienced pastor himself, Rev. Bamsch lays bare the typical struggles that characterize his vocation.

Higher Things Conferences: A Life-Changing Experience by Benjamin Heinz

Benjamin's enthusiasm is contagious as he recounts his adventures as an attendee and College Conference Volunteer at numerous HT conferences. He might just convince you to sign up!

Who Am I? by Rev. Harrison Goodman

That's a good question and probably one of the most common asked by each one of us. The key, according to Rev. Goodman, is deciding whether you are going to listen to the world's answer or God's declaration.

Free to Sing in Faith by Taylor Schmidt

Maybe you have the dulcet tones of an angel. Or perhaps your pipes could make paint curl (at least you think so). Even so, there is a great deal of richness in the historic liturgy that magnifies God as giver and us as receivers, which Taylor strives to encourage you to remember as you sing in church.

Does Everything Happen for a Reason? by Sarah Grandfield-Connors

Isn't it the classic question of the unbeliever to ask, "If there's a God why does he allow so much suffering and pain?" Even if your identity is found in Christ, you will have times when you ask, "Why?" Sarah poignantly shares her story of grief and how God has answered that question for her.

The Stepfamily Redemption Connection by Katie Hill

To say the forming of a stepfamily is a life adjustment would be a major understatement. Katie explains that, in the midst of all of that adjusting, God sees a stepfamily as fertile ground to work His redemption through Christ Jesus.

The Gift of Stuff by Rev. William M. Cwirla

We may never find out what happened to Rev. Cwirla's yellow Schwinn bicycle but by the time you finish this article, you'll definitely have a better understanding of the Seventh Commandment.
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Fall 2017

Why Be a Lutheran? by Rev. George F. Borghardt

You don’t to hold to the Lutheran confessions to be a Christian, but if you are looking for the clear proclamation of the Gospel as found in the Scriptures, those confessions won’t disappoint. Rev. Borghardt explains why this is the case by sharing his own story, which is all about Jesus.

On What—or Whom—Do We Stand? by Rev. Chris Hull

It’s been 500 years since the curtains that obscured the Gospel began to part as Martin Luther nailed the 95 Theses on the church door in Wittenberg! What’s at the heart of the Reformation? Find out as Rev. Hull recaps his plenary sessions from the San Antonio conference.

A Profound Mystery by Sandra Ostapowich

There’s more to the “leave and cleave” aspect of marriage in Genesis 2 than meets the eye. Sandra sheds the light of Christ on this mystery that Paul describes in Ephesians 5.

Sometimes the Devil Loves It When You Pray by Rev. Harrison Goodman

Sometimes we are afraid to be honest with God when we pray. Rev. Goodman encourages us to come before God openly since He knows the depths of our hearts anyway and loves us for the sake of His Son, Jesus.

Purpose and the Queen of Persia by Rev. Kurt Onken

Do you wonder what it is God wants you to do this life? Rev. Onken’s retelling of Queen Esther’s story will help to give you some perspective.

Leviticus: A Book of Shadow by Rev. Ryan J. Ogrodowicz

If you’ve ever tried to tackle the book of Leviticus, you might have found yourself lost in a maze of ceremonial laws. However, Rev. Ogrodowicz encourages you to look at this book through the lens of Jesus because it will reveal God’s amazing plan of grace for His people throughout the ages.
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Spring 2002

Baptism and the Great Tribulation by Rev. Daniel Woodring

Holy Baptism does not take away the Great Tribulation. It unites us with Christ so we will never suffer hardships alone.
tags: baptism

A Life Beyond Yourself: The Story of Polycarp by Rev. Todd A. Peperkorn

In the 2nd century, St. Polycarp died a martyr's death. As Christians today, we can learn from Polycarp's death and know that Christ will never abandon us.
tags: martyr, ploycarp

More than a Makeover: A Christian View of Death by Rev. Scott Stiegemeyer

Jesus has broken the power that death has over each one of us. When we each stop breathing one day, death won't be a defeat, but a means for God to glorify us as He glorified His eternal Son, Jesus Christ.
tags: death, makeover

The Other Side by Sandra Ostapowich

The Cross stands between us and God. When He looks at us through it, He sees the new us clothed in Christ, without a body marked by sin.
tags: cross, ostapowich

Good Grief: How Depression is a Blessing in Disguise by Rev. James Winsor

In the darkness of depression the love of Christ is all you have. And as it turns out, you don't have Christ at all until all you have is Christ.
tags: depression

Doughnuts in the Kingdom of God by Kathy Luder

Is there more to Sunday School than just eating doughnuts?
tags: kathy luder

Pride--A Virtue or Sin? by Rev. David Petersen

Pride may seem right, but it really is selfish, self-centered, and, yes, sin.
tags: pride
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Spring 2003

Silent No More by Terri F. Meckes

Terri shares the story of her abortion at age 16, but her story doesn't end in guilt and condemnation. We, like Terri, rest in the forgiveness and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Cloning: A Body Double or Double Trouble? by Dennis DiMauro

How can Christians approach the controversial subject of cloning intelligently and with compassion? Dennis DiMauro, a Lutherans for Life regional executive, sheds light on this difficult issue.
tags: cloning

The Shattered Chalice: Arthur and Christ in Howard Pyle by Kathryn Ann Hill

Christians are people of the Book -- God's inerrant Word. But when you're not reading the Good Book, where do you turn for a good read?

F-A-T by Adriane Dorr

Adriane's friend suffered from bulimia. How does Christ unravel the twisted messes we make of our lives?
tags: bulimia, fat

Girl Power by Kathy Luder

At a school dance, the music is slow, the couples are close, and Kathy has to decide how close is too close for her and Steve.
tags: dance, dancing

What if the Bible were Pro-Choice? by Rev. Klemet Preus

What if God's Word didn't include the fifth commandment? These poems provide a thoughtful look into how the Scriptures would be different if the Bible was "pro-choice".
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Spring 2004

The Greatest Comeback Ever by Dr. David Scaer

"Easter is not for the languid, the lethargic, the indifferent, nor for those who don't care who wins. A wounded but undefeated Jesus steps out of the grave to confound the odds. He's alive, and that's what counts." Read this powerful sermon to find out about the greatest comeback ever.
tags: comeback, easter

Learning to Be a Wuss by Nathan Fischer

How do you usually celebrate the Fourth of July? With firecrackers, parades, fun, and parties? Read about Nathan's difficult experience, and lessons about depending on God.

Christ Puts Death to Death: Does Suicide Give Life to Death? by Adrianne Dorr

Adrianne Dorr tackles the difficult and heart-wrenching issue of suicide, and explores the Biblical view as well as Luther's thoughts on the topic.
tags: suicide
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Spring 2005

Holy by Contact by Dr. Gene Edward Veith

Our God is a consuming fire -- but what does this mean? In this issue Dr. Veith explores the concept of holiness in the book of Leviticus.

The Mind of Christ by Kathy Luder

Kathy's autistic cousin visits for the weekend and Kathy reflects on broken minds, broken bodies, and our hope in Christ.
tags: autism, autistic

Love Songs for Jesus by Mollie Ziegler

Mollie reflects on Contemporary Christian Music and its portrayal of God. Do the lyrics of popular CCM songs convey a Biblical viewpoint?

Life in the Blood by Rev. Erik Rottmann

Celebrities like Michael J. Fox and Christopher Reeve are examples of prominent supporters of embryonic stem cell research. But is there another way to use stem cells without murdering the unborn?

I Believe that I Cannot Believe by Rev. Tim Pauls

Can you make a decision for Christ? Or choose to accept Christ as your Savior? Read Rev. Pauls' examination of Luther's explanation of the Third Article of the Creed to find out.
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Spring 2006

Putting Christ in Christianity by Dr. Gene Edward Veith

Why are most Christians so reluctant to talk about Jesus? Are good works more appealing than our Savior? Dr.Veith outlines the importance of focusing on Christ and the forgiveness He offers.

The G-Bomb by Rev. Tom Chryst

Your friends, television actors, and maybe even you misuse the Lords name. Check out Rev. Chrysts article to see why three little words say more than you might think.

Your Alpha to Omega: What to do after Graduation by Rev. George F. Borghardt III

Are you finishing school this year? Do you feel unsure of what life has in store for you after graduation? Rev. Borghardt reminds us of the hope and promise we have in Christ.

A Few Lies Satan Tells about Himself by Vicar Charles Lehmann

Vicar Lehmann weighs in on Satans anger, our sin, and Gods gift of Jesus for our redemption.

The Pinch: Caught in the Middle of the School Prayer Debate and Other Church/State Stuff by Rev. Tim Pauls

Prayer in public schools is a good thing. Or is it? Rev. Pauls discusses multiculturalism, secularism, and the fine line between church and state. Accompanying his essay is a compelling article on school prayer by Mollie Ziegler.

Intelligent Design: Science or Religion? by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Who ya calling pond scum?? Were you created with a purpose or did you evolve from gunk? Can science and Christianity coexist? Read Rev. Cwirlas defense of Intelligent Design to find the answers.
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Spring 2007

The Goodness of the Law by Rev. David Petersen

We're always hearing about the Gospel, but what about the Law? Is it good for us? Why should we pay attention to it? Wouldn't we be better off without it? If you're interested in the benefits of the Law, read Pastor Petersen's column to learn more.
tags: law, petersen

Dare to be Lutheran: Pentecostalism by Zelwyn Heide

Do you have Pentecostal friends who speak in tongues? What do they really believe about the Holy Spirit? They're both important things to know more about, and Zelwyn Heide's done all the research for you.

Pulse: Pray... And Pass the Ammunition by Seminarian Doug Taylor

Many adults say video games aren't healthy because they're so violent. But what about Christian video games that aren't healthy because they're so non-Christian? If technology is your thing, this article by Seminarian Doug Taylor is for you.

Christ on Campus: The Strange Land by Rev. David Kind

You've gone to church your whole life. You know your Bible and catechism. But now you're in college, and teachers are telling you that Christianity isn't true, the Bible is a sham, and Jesus is no better than Ghandi. Are you ready for this? How do you react? Read this article, and be better prepared.

On Being Lutheran: Common Culture or Common Confession by Betsy Schroeder

Have you ever wondered what it really means to be Lutheran? Are we defined by our beliefs or just our infamous potlucks and Jell-O? To get a more detailed study on the matter, look at Betsy Schroeder's article.

God's Will and Me by Rev. George F. Borghardt III

Thinking about the future can be a little overwhelming even scary at times. You may be unsure, and there may not seem to be many answers. But take heart. Your Savior has a plan for you. He'll work it all for your good.

Is Christianity a Disease? by Rev. Tim Pauls

A well-known celebrity has claimed that Christianity is a dangerous disease. Is it true? What's his proof? And are you in danger of being infected? Check out Pastor Pauls' article for all the answers.
tags: disease, paul
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Spring 2008

A Purpose Driven Death by Mr. Caleb Kuddes

Bookstores are full of books on self-help and Christian living, but what does all this mean in the big scheme of things? Mr. Kudes takes us back to the apostles' lives and Christ's words to remind us that our life begins in one death.

HIgher Than Feelings by Rev. Kenneth Wieting

You've been there. It's Sunday morning, and you just don't feel like going to church, much less taking the Lord's Supper. After all, you just received it last Sunday. Do you really need it again so soon? Pastor Wieting will fill you in on why you just might.

Is Your Mind Open or Closed? by Rev. Bruce Scarbeary

Christians sometimes get labeled "close-minded" and "intolerant." But are we really? Or are we just interested in getting at the truth, no matter how hard it might be? Pastor Scarbeary has been told to be more open-minded, and he'll recount his experience first-hand.

Christ on Campus: Myths about Relationships by Rev. W. Max Mons

Relationships are hard work. It's difficult to find the right person, tough to decide if he or she is the right one, and equally tricky to keep the romance alive. If you think you've found true love (and it's not with a quart of ice cream and Sleepless in Seattle on a Friday night) or if you just have some questions, Pastor Mons will debunk all your relationship myths.

Guilt and Shame Removed by Rev. David Petersen

It's an all too familiar feeling. You've done something wrong, you've repented, but you just can't seem to shake the guilt. Has God rally forgiven you sin? And if He has, why do you still feel remorse? Check out Pastor Petersen's article.
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Spring 2009

No More Stressing by Mrs. Nikki Boyle

Is there something that makes you uniquely you? Is it your number of IM contacts, your amount of Facebook friends, or how many people sit at you study hall table? Nope. It's none of those. Mrs. Nikki Boyle went through what you're going through, and she's here to help you see that your identity is in Christ, not your clothing brand.

Father Knows Best: The Power of Prayer by Rev Tim. Pauls

Praying isn't easy. You're not always sure what to pray for or if you should really be praying it or if the Lord is actually even paying attention to what you're saying in the first place. But Pastor Pauls is here to remind you that the Lord hears, answers, and works all things for your good (just in case you forgot).

The Enemy: Death by Mr. Michael Fieberkorn

Man was not created to die. Death should be unnatural. But after our first parents' fall in the garden, death and doubt are our way of life. Mr. Michael Fieberkorn helps you understand the consequence of sin, the origin of death, and the hope that is yours in Christ Jesus.

Curtis and Confession by Curtis the Confessor

Pastors are great... except for when you have to talk to them. Curtis has gone through some rough times at school, and now his mom is making him meet face-to-face with Pastor Michaels to talk about it. Will Pastor Michaels' words of comfort be able to help? Or will Curtis keep his fears bottled up inside?

Heresy, Confusion, and the Holy Trinity by Rev. David Peteresen

Every good Lutheran teenager knows about the Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. In fact, your Sunday School teachers probably explained it to you using apple, baseball baseball player, and egg analogies. It's not that simple though, and Pastor Petersen is here to delve into the mystery with you.
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Spring 2011

Here You Stand by Rev. Georg Borghardt

You can do no other! It’s true—you can’t stand alone before a holy God. That’s why Jesus does it for you. Let Rev. Borghardt’s words remind you of that glorious reality.

The Divine Service Liturgy: Perfect Praise Every Time by Rev. Jon J. Sollberger

Rev. Sollberger clearly lays out the benefits of a liturgical divine service.This isn’t about loving what’s traditional for the sake of traditional. Find out the rhyme and reason behind such a liturgy.

Lord I Forgive; Help Me in My Unforgiveness by Rev. Rich Heinz

With Star Wars overtones, Rev. Heinz assures us that our pastors, too, are in need of forgiveness, which is why they are so qualified to speak the words of absolution to us.

Stem Cell Research: Understanding the Basics by Rev. Dr. John I. Lamb

A thorough read of Dr. Lamb’s article will provide you with specific ways to respond to the popular push for the research of embryonic stem cells—often hailed as the holy grail for the treatment of numerous diseases and disorders.

Use and Abuse: The Proper Role of Reason in the Christian Faith by Rev. Steven R. J. Parks

Like all gifts from God, reason is to be used wisely. Find out exactly what that entails in Rev. Parks’ concise handling of this weighty subject.

Ghosts and the Gospel by Rev. Jeffery W. Grams

So what are those things that go bump in the night? Rev. Grams brings Scripture to bear upon this rather unsettling question.

Put Guilt in its Place by Mrs. Katie Micilcavage

Guilt can often take the helm as you steer your way through life’s waters. However, there is freedom from that guilt to be found in Word and Sacrament—gifts from the One who bears our burdens.

Words, Words, Words by Rev. Daniel Burhop

“In the beginning was the Word...” In college there are words everywhere you look. Discover the connection Rev. Burhop makes between “the Word” and these “words.”

Deconstructing Evolution's Icons by Rev. Joshua V. Schneider

It’s a sad commentary that many of our science textbooks still insist in promoting some of the original falsehoods of evolution. Rev. Schneider arms you with his deconstruction of these “icons” of evolution.

Vocation 101 by Mr. Dan Engle

Are you In high school or college and haven’t yet figured out your future career? Mr. Engle explains that this doesn’t mean you don’t already have a vocation...or two...or three...

God Gives Himself-For You! by Rev. Brent W. Kuhlman

Not only are we STANDING before God on account of Christ, we are also RECEIVING all of the gracious gifts our Father loves to bestow upon us. Rev. Kuhlman’s invigorating article makes that crystal clear.

Catechism: Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread by Rev. William Cwirla

You can’t get more basic than bread, but there’s more to this staple food than meets the eye. Rev. Cwirla, in his usual winsome way, sheds a great deal of light on this straightforward request from the Lord’s Prayer.
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Spring 2012

Lutheran Apologetics, Augsburg Style by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Rev. Borghardt takes us back to the movers and shakers at Augsburg, where defense of the Scriptures was a matter of life and death. Find out how we can learn greatly from these men and appeal to the resulting Confession of Faith in our own apologetic efforts.

Did the Resurrection Really Happen? by Rev. Jonathan Fisk

Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:19 that we Christians, of all people, are most to be pitied if the resurrection of Christ did not happen. Rev. Fisk Commandingly lays out the historically based argument for the reality of the Resurrection, which is at the very heart of our defense of the faith.

Text, Typos and Transmission: Why You Can Trust the New Testament by Rev. Mark Pierson

When critics attack the Christian faith, one of the first areas they will zero in on is the New Testament. After all, they say, it's full of errors and we don't have the originals. Rev. Pierson, who has an extensive background in this area of study, presents a compelling argument for the reliability of the New Testament.

Is Faith Unreasonable? by Rev. William M. Cwirla

"Faith is the great cop-out." "Religion is a crutch for the weak-minded." "Faith is all emotions-based." Rev. Cwirla handily debunks those and other notions that attempt to claim that faith and reason are opposed to one another.

Christianity's Answer to the Problem of Evil by Rev. Ian Pacey

We've all either asked or have been asked this question: "Why would a good God allow bad things to happen?" Rev. Pacey, who often has to field questions of this sort in his campus ministry at the University of Arizona, dissects all of the typical arguments and gives you tools to provide an answer

Answering the Knock by Rev. Brent Kuhlman

Mormons aren't naive young men in white shirts riding their bicycles around your neighborhood. They have been intensely trained to defend THEIR faith, so it is vital for you to know what YOU believe, so when that inevitable knock on the door comes, you can answer with confidence. Rev. Kuhlman will get you started.

Islam, Muslims and the Gospel by Dr. Adam S. Francisco

Although you might hear a lot about the Muslim world by watching the evening news, you may no know what Islam really teaches. And because it is an ever-growing religion, and Christians in other countries are already in a position of having to vigorously defend their faith, it is vital that we take steps to understand that religion. Learn from Dr. Francisco how to approach a conversation with aMuslim, and in doing so, share the sweetness of the Gospel at the same time.

Christ on Campus: Evangel-less Christianity on Campus by Craig A. Parton

College campuses are growing increasingly more secularized. This hasn't happened overnight. Mr. Parton explains this history but doesn't leave it there. By the time you are done reading, you will have resources to draw from and know some of the basics as you endeavor to defend your Christian faith on the college or high school campus or wherever you might find yourself.

Catechism: Hallowed Be Thy Name by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Continuing in his backward trek through the Lord's Prayer, Rev. Cwirla clearly explains the First Petition and even manages to cleverly tie it into our theme of apologetics.
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Spring 2013

A Little Bit of Latin Goes a Long Way by Rev. Mark Buetow

Let a little Latin fly and your friends will think you are an intellectual heavyweight. Well, perhaps that’s a bit of a stretch, but once you’ve finished reading this article you’ll be familiar with two Latin phrases that help you focus on what’s important in salvation. And the good thing is that the focus is not on you!

One Hundred Percent Free-One Hundred Percent Servant by Rev. George F. Borghardt

One of our Lutheran distinctives is the desire to work out that delicate balance we call Christian liberty. This is just what Rev. Borghardt successfully communicates in his capable handling of the some of the principles from Martin Luther’s work, On Christian Liberty.

Marching for Life with the LCMS by Megan Hammond

The recent commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision brought about a great deal of controversy but it also invigorated those who stand for the unborn. Megan’s account gives you a small window into her life-changing experience at the LCMS Life Conference.

The Occult: Hollywood or Holy War? by Rev. Christopher C. Tiews

There’s something about the supernatural that seems so magnetically intriguing. Hollywood is clearly enamored with the subject. There are a host of TV series that supposedly profile people’s encounters with ghosts, demons, or other supernatural beings and plenty of movies that glorify these things in some way. Rev. Tiews shines the light of the Scriptures on this often distorted reality.

True Confession by Dr. C. Matthew Phillips

History doesn’t have to be a bunch of dry events laid out in chronological order with a lot of dates your teacher wants you to memorize that you’ll never use. And the same goes with our Lutheran heritage. See for yourself as Dr. Phillips provides a quick but thorough summary of the pivotal events surrounding the formation of our foundational document of the faith—the Augsburg Confession.

Trail Mix by Jenny Sollberger

Nothing satisfies the appetite during a challenging hike like a handful of trail mix. In the same way, nothing fills our spiritual hunger on the road of life like the Word of God. And, as Jenny articulates, trail mix is the best when all of its ingredients blend together with each bite, much the same way the Scriptures are.
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Spring 2014

Christian Marriage as Fellowship by Rev. John Drosendahl

"Mawage. Mawage is what bwings us togeder today. That bwessed awangement, that dweam within a dweam..." Think the Impressive Clergyman from The Princess Bride got it right? Perhaps if Humperdink hadn't cut him off we'd have found out. Pastor Drosendahl, on the other hand, clearly explains God's purpose in marriage.

Lustful in Adam; Chaste in Christ by Rev. George F. Borghardt

The completeness that God gave to Adam through Eve is something that we've taken and twisted since the Fall. This is why we so desperately need to remember what is true about us in Christ. As always, Pastor Borghardt gives us a huge serving of Gospel, seasoned with his impassioned expressiveness.

Baptized Not "Gay" by Rev. Mark Buetow

We're not sinners because we sin; we sin because we are sinners. That is who we are in Adam. But as baptized Christians, we are also saints. That is who we are in Christ. Pastor Buetow boldly asserts that it is the very same with homosexuality. Who we are in Christ trumps that and every other struggle we have with sin.

My Parents Are Divorcing...Now What? by Rev. William M. Cwirla

You may be right in the throes of divorce at this very moment. Maybe it's been a few years, but you're still dealing with the fallout. Or perhaps you know someone else who is trying to navigate this storm of life. Pastor Cwirla's Gospel-filled advice will buoy the most struggling of hearts.

Children: A Full Quiver of Blessing by Rev. Joel Fritsche

Pastor Fritsche focuses on the many ways God blesses us through children, no matter what the circumstances. We especially get insight into His Fatherly love for us and see how God even blesses our neighbor through His gift of children to us.

Is Singleness Really a Gift? by Sandra Ostapowich

Sandra is crystal clear as she lays out the answer to that question. And if you think you are going to find the same pat answers you tend to encounter about being single, think again.

Dark Addictions Need the Light by Rev. Ryan J. Ogrodowicz

Evil doesn't take a vacation, but we do know where to find it: hiding in the dark and buried in secrets. Pastor Ogrodowicz urges us to combat the struggle with pornography by boldly shining the light of the Gospel on it.

A Nerdy Lutheran's Guide to Dating by Rev. Sam Schuldheisz

Wisdom can come from some very interesting places, which you'll soon discover after reading Pastor Schuldheisz' character-packed advice on dating.
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Spring 2015

Hung Up on the Law by By Rev. Mark Buetow

Hear the Law in all of its ferocity! You have nothing to fear, though, for Christ has borne its requirements and punishment on your behalf, just as Rev. Buetow shows us.

The Hyperbolic Goodness of the Gospel by Rev. George F. Borghardt

See the Gospel in all of its sweetness! Just when you think you know how good the Gospel really is, Rev. Borghardt reminds us of how truly outrageous the promises of God are!

3D Law by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Let Rev. Cwirla's special 3D presentation clarify your perspective on the three uses of the Law...no special glasses required.

This Life Is Edited for Content by Rev. Donavon Riley

Rev. Riley convincingly lays out how the Holy Spirit is the life editor we sinners desperately need.

Looking for Assurance in All the Wrong Places: Even Christians Need the Gospel by Rev. Jonathan Fisk

There isn't a sinner alive, Christian or not, who doesn't need to regularly hear and embrace the Gospel. And, just as Rev. Fisk explains, Jesus' righteousness is enough.

The Lord's Supper IS the Gospel! by Rev. Brent Kuhlman

Our gracious God brings us the Gospel in a tangible way: the Lord's Supper. Rev. Kuhlman reminds us of the delight in knowing God gives us something outside of us - something we can see, touch and taste - to deliver His promise of salvation.

Law and Gospel: The Deadly Mix by Rev. Timothy J. Pauls

You may not think very often about your last moments on this earth, but Rev. Pauls effectively uses that very scenario to illustrate what happens when we don't properly distinguish between Law and Gospel.

The Devil Loves Your Good Works by Rev. Craig Donofrio

As we wrestle with Law in our lives, the pendulum can swing either toward antinomianism or legalism - both of which, warns Rev. Donofrio, the devil delights in capitalizing upon.

Law and Gospel in the Home by Rev. John Drosendahl

Law and Gospel apply to all parts of life, especially within the family! Rev. Drosendahl brings his own sometimes amusing childhood experiences to bear on the subject.

The First Commandment by Rev. William M. Cwirla

When it comes down to it, the root of our sin is connected in some way to our disobedience of the First Commandment. Yet this God whom we are to fear, love and trust above all things, says Rev. Cwirla, works in our hearts and makes things right through His Son.
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Spring 2016

The Bridegroom and His Bride by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Rev. Borghardt poignantly illustrates how marriage is a picture of Christ and His Bride, the church and how, on the Last Day, we will finally see ourselves as He does now: pure, blameless and forgiven.

Judgment Day: You're Ready by Rev. Aaron T. Fenker

Are you prepared for Judgment Day? That's the wrong question to ask, according to Rev. Fenker. Find out why Judgment Day is nothing we need to fear.

If You Love the End Times So Much Why Don't You Marry It? by Rev. Gaven M. Mize

Rev. Mize zeroes in on the blessed gifts of the Sacraments and the Liturgy that sustain us until the end of all things...until we, the church, the Bride of Christ, set our eyes on Jesus, our Bridegroom.

The End Times: Still All About Jesus by Katie Hill

What does the Bible really have to say about the end times and what are the keys that help us unlock that knowledge? No, it doesn't require a decoder ring or some other gadget...just some basic principles, as Katie explains.

Millennialitis and Its Rapture Fever by Rev. Brent W. Kuhlman

No need to look at WebMD to see if you suffer from this disease. Just read through Rev. Kuhlman's article and get the facts and the cure.

The Narnia Guide to Surviving the Apocalypse by Rev. Samuel P. Schuldheisz

Rev. Schuldheisz takes us through a magical tour of The Last Battle, bringing courage and comfort for the End Times along the way.

Jesus: The Grave's Sheol by Rev. Donavon Riley

Rev. Riley shines the bright light of Christ onto that rather dark and mysterious word we see in the Scriptures: Sheol.

Teach Us to Number Our Days by Rev. Joel Fritsche

What happens when we die? How are we supposed to truly live when we know the Grim Reaper stands ready to pounce? Rev. Fritsche reminds us that in Christ, we live in the light of our new life in Him.

New Heavens. New Earth. by Rev. Mark Buetow

Eternal life isn't a floaty existence in a bland whiteness. Instead, Rev. Buetow declares, we'll be face to face with a flesh and blood Savior, including scars, and live in a paradise that we can tangibly experience and enjoy forever.

The Fifth Commandment: The Gift of Life by Rev. William M. Cwirla

As Rev. Cwirla explains, what makes this commandment so compelling is that it is undergirded by a love for life and a need to preserve it in every sense because that is what Jesus has done for us.
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Spring 2017

It’s All About the Seed, Not the Sower by Rev. Eric Brown

When we read the Parable of the Sower we tend to spend a lot of the time puzzled over why the sower seems to be so careless. Rev. Brown demystifies this parable by showing us that all we need to focus on is what Jesus is telling us: The seed is the Word of God.

Seven Apologists Every Christian Should Know, Conclusion: Declare First, Defend Second: Why Apologetics Takes a Backseat to Evangelism by Rev. Mark A. Pierson

How much of a role does apologetics play in evangelism? Find out in Rev. Pierson’s masterful conclusion to his “7 Apologists Every Christian Should Know” series.

Evangelism on the College Campus: Fish Don’t Want to Be Caught by Rev. Philip Young

As a former college ministry advisory pastor, Rev. Young has keen insight into how evangelism happens on a college campus and what results should really look like. (We think his 2012 HT Magazine article provides a such significant understanding of our topic that we are revisiting it).
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Spring 2018

#whoami by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Rev. Borghardt emphasizes that, as a baptized child of God, you are free to live in Jesus and rest in the knowledge that He promises to work good in your life - no matter how many times you might try and fail - that you might show His love to others.

Called to Serve: The Second Table by Rev. Aaron T. Fenker

Rev. Fenker delves into Ephesians 2:10 - no holds barred. What does it mean that we are "God's workmanship?" What are those "good works which God prepared beforehand?" Find out!

Vocational Variety: God's Wisdom for Women by Deaconess Ellie Corrow

We hear so many mixed messages from our culture about what women can or should do. We don't need to look any further than the pages of Scripture to discover the particular ways God gifts and equips women to fulfill their varied vocations.

So What Do I Do with My Life? by Rev. Mark Buetow

Have you figured out what you're doing after high school? Whether or not you think you have zeroed in on what your future career plans are, one thing is certain: As you are living your life in Jesus, He will make you a blessing to others.

Catechism: Three Orders: Table of Duties by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Rev. Cwirla walks us through the Table of Duties found in our handy dandy Small Catechism, explaining how vocation is worked out in three overlapping spheres designed to work together, to the glory of God and for the betterment of our neighbor!

Jesus for You, Jesus Through You by Rev. Harrison Goodman

Rev. Goodman assures us that our callings aren't about us, they are about Jesus for us, and therefore He equips us in every way, despite our weaknesses.
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Summer 2001

Clouds and Gutters by Rev. James Winsor

What do we mean when we say "Higher Things"? Learn about how Christ comes down and raises us up to Him.

Dying to Live by Rev. Harold Senkbeil

A poem to the youth of the church. Word pictures from the Dying to Live Youth Conference, Laramie, WY, July 2001.

Soul Searching by by Julie Stiegemeyer

Have you ever had your faith shaken to its very core? Julie Stiegemeyer has. Read how this former Methodist Christian found Lutheranism and the clearly proclaimed message of Christ crucified.
tags: methodist

Going to Hell at the Happiest Place on Earth by Rev. Grant A. Knepper

Disneyland is called the happiest place on earth because inside its gates reality is masqueraded to portray fantasy and even a trip to hell. But for Lutheran Christians, reality is found inside the church. The reality of font, pulpit and altar. The reality of the words, "given and shed for you." Inside the doors of the church we find THE ANSWER that is just as real and true inside as it is outside.
tags: disney

Catechism by Rev. David Petersen

You probably memorized the Catechism, but can't quite recite it anymore. Pick it up again. Look at it anew. It is not simply a book of instruction, it also is a book of prayer and faith.
tags: catechism
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Summer 2003

War Is Hell by Rev. Scott E. Stiegemeyer

The common phrase "war is hell" describes the horror of the battlefield. But is war as bad as hell gets?
tags: hell, war

God Armeth the Patriot by Kathryn Ann Hill

Does God give special blessings to war heros? A Scottish hero's story helps us ponder faith and patriotism.

Role-Playing in the Heavenlies: How Giving Up Dungeons and Dragons Turned Me into a Nerd by Rev. Daniel Woodring

Are demons lurking behind role-playing games? Rev. Daniel Woodring reflects on spiritual warfare and the victory of the conquering Christ.

What I Thought I Knew by Rev. Dr. Kent Heimbigner

An ex-Mormon describes the lure of the cults and the saving grace of Jesus Christ for those who stray.
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Summer 2004

Clothed with Christ by Kathryn Ann Hill

Through Holy Baptism you have been clothed with Christ. Will you dress like a wise virgin or a belly dancer?

Sex. Little WordBig Deal by Maggie Karner

Sex. Such a little word, but such a big deal. Funny how something can be so wonderful, and in other ways, terribly destructive.
tags: sex

The Voice of the Gospel by Rev. George Borghardt

Have you ever heard the Gospel's voice? It sounds more familiar than you might think.

I Am Simply Urging You to Be a Christian by Lynnette Fredericksen

I DON'T WANT TO DO IT! Why has Pastor reinstituted private confession and absolution? Is it worth it?

Don't Tell Dad by Rev. Tim Pauls

Should you tell Dad when your bad choices cause bad problems? An innocent basketball game leads to a mangled curtain rod, some tough consequences, and some thoughts on confession and forgiveness.

The 40 Six Days of Purpose: It's ALL about You! by Rev. Daniel Woodring

What is God's purpose for your life? Some would suggest that we are here to worship God or to serve Him through our works. Is that how God sees it?
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Summer 2005

Catechism: God's Gift of Life by Rev. Todd Peperkorn

Pastor Peperkorn looks at issues related to the death of Terri Schiavo and God's gift of a life worth living.

Why the Pope has Nothing on Lutherans by Dr. Gene Edward Veith

In Dr. Veith's latest column, he reflects on the new pope and the implications of the papacy on Lutheranism.

The Day I Got Punched when I Dared to be Lutheran by Rev. Paul McCain

Ever been punched for standing up for the Gospel? Read Pastor McCain's story to find out why doctrine matters.

Etiquette Moved by Grace: Why Ceremonies Matter by Rev. David Petersen

Does it really matter whether you stand or sit to shake hands? Does it matter if we have ceremonies in the way we worship? Pastor Petersen offers some insight on why ceremonies make a difference in the life of a Christian.

Myths on Prayer by Rev. George F. Borghardt III

Can a heartfelt prayer come from the words of a hymnal? Read Pastor Borghardt's article as he delves deeper into thoughts on prayer.

Losing Stupid by Rev. Tim Pauls

News about professional athletes on steroids is commonplace these days. Do 21st century sports emphasize winning at any cost -- even breaking the law? Read Pastor Pauls' thoughts on winning, losing, and healthy competition.
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Summer 2006

Catechism: A Quick Fast by Rev. David Petersen

What? Put down my granola bar and fast before the Lords Supper? Are you crazy? Read Pastor Petersens article on why proper preparation before Holy Communion is so beneficial.

Dare to be Lutheran, Dare to be Simple by Rev. Tim Pauls

Are you tempted by all the shiny, enticing things other denominations have to offer? Pinch yourself to see if youre still alive, and then read Pastor Pauls article on why Lutheran worship centers around Christ crucified and why that message is all for you.

A Bunch of Do-Do by Rev. Craig Donofrio

Doo-doo has a nasty smell, but what does that have to do with doinggood works? Pastor Donofrio clues us in on why we are completely dependent on Christ for our salvation.

It's Complicated with Facebook by Tyler Williams

Are you addicted to MySpace? Is your relationship with Facebook a little too serious? Check out Tyler Williams article about online social networks, and discover their advantages and disadvantages.

People are Like Sponges by Zach Stuckwisch

What do sinners have in common with dry, useless sponges? Read Zack Stuckwischs discussion of our sin, Gods forgiveness, and the blessings of Baptism to find out.

Pastor, I Heard God Speak to Me by Rev. George F. Borghardt III

Has God spoken to you lately? Does He still speak audibly to us like He did to Adam and Eve? Pastor Borghardt explains where God speaks to you today.
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Summer 2007

To Burn or Not to Burn by Jess Norton

Your friend just got the new Nelly Furtado CD, and its the same one youve been wanting to get. He offers to let you have it after school so that you can burn your own copy. Do you take him up on it? Or do you fork over the eighteen bucks and buy your own? Read Jess Nortons article on music piracy if youre unsure about how youd answer.

Saved Sex: A Plea for Virginity by Rev. Tim Pauls

Society tells us that sex outside of marriage is okay, that it wont hurt anybody, and that its a sure cure for loneliness. But thats not Gods plan for you. Read Pastor Pauls article to find out why God wants you to wait and why He loves and forgives you, even if you do fall prey to temptation.
tags: marriage, paul, sex

A Moonlight Drive by Kathy Luder

What started out as an innocent drive to listen to music and hang out with Molly turns disastrous for Kathy when a drunk driver loses control of his car. As a result, Kathy is forced to grow up quickly when she finds herself hurt and in trouble.

Christ on Campus: Questions from Virginia Tech by Rev. Paul Siems

The recent shootings at Virginia Tech left many Americans wondering why and how it happened. While the thought of such a tragedy happening in your own school might frighten you and give you concern about your safety, Pastor Siems reminds us that Christ has won eternal security for us in heaven.

Mining the Riches: God's Breath by Rev. Bart Day

God spoke, and things were created. His words had their intended effect. Sin has tainted that perfect creation, and now we live in a sinful world. At the same time, Pastor Day expounds on why we can wait with eager anticipation for Christs new creation where we will live with Him forever.
tags: creation, day

Good Government by Rev. David Petersen

Have you ever considered that a good government is one of the ways in which your heavenly Father gives you your daily bread? Its true! For a lesson in history, tyranny, freedom, and liberty, go straight to Pastor Petersens article.
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Summer 2008

Life's Not Fair by Mr. Gregg Hein

You just don't get it. Why do bad things always seem to happen to you? You're a good person. It's not like you deserve it. So how come things always seem to go the wrong way? If life just doesn't seem fair, check out Mr. Hein's article on suffering, tragedy, and who can answer all the why questions you have.

Hey, Good Lookin' by Mrs. Rebekah Curtis

A girl's wardrobe can explain a lot about her. (I mean, Kathy Luder wears ladybug necklaces. What does that say?) So how should a Christian young lady dress? Can she war a mini-skirt or does she have to wear a dress the size of a tent? If you're interested in maintaining your modesty, Mrs. Curtis is here to help.

Yours the Amen by Rev. George Borghardt III

Conference time is here, which means you're either sweating through the heat in St. Louis, on a flight to Irvine, or looking up Scranton on a map. Either way, conference speakers Pastor Mark Buetow and Pastor George Borghardt are here to fill you in on why "Amen" will be the word to know this summer.
tags: amen, borghardt, faith

Sins of Weakness or Deliberate Sins? by Rev. Randall Bell

Have you ever let a swear word slip out, and then, frustrated with yourself, punched your grandma? Ok, so it's a far-fetched scenario, but is there a difference between intentional sins and ones that just seem to happen? If you're unclear on the differences, take a peek at Pastor Bell's article, which just might help to clarify your bewilderment.

Dead White Guys and Their Lies by Kathy Luder

Kathy's favorite teacher is caught lying about his past. She is astonished by what she hears and devastated that he has misled her. He's apologized, but it's not easy to forgive and forget. How is she supposed to trust him from now on? Read Kathy's article for a lesson in forgiveness and faith.
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Summer 2010

The Lord Gives and the Lord Takes Away by Rev. Joel Fritsche

Why do bad things happen to good people? Why is there so much hurt in the world? Why does God allow suffering? Pastor Fritsche wrestles with these questions and reminds us that God’s will is good and best, even when we don’t understand it.

If Salvation Were a Reality Show... by Rev. Tim Pauls

Welcome to Tentatio, the reality show that’s more nerve-wracking than American Idol. Here, we pit your favorite church heroes against each other. Which of our champions will survive the Platform of Salvation? Calvin? Luther? Arminius? Stay tuned to Pastor Pauls’ broadcasting from the sidelines to find out!

Didomi: Given Unto Death by Rev. George Borghardt III

Everybody who knows Greek raise your right hand. Hello? Tap tap. Is this thing on? Pastor Borghardt wants to teach you the word didomi. It’s a little Greek verb that means “to give,” and the person who does the giving is our Lord, Jesus Christ.
tags: death, didomi, given, jesus

For Better or Worse: God's Gift of Marriage by Mr. Stan Lemon

For most of you, marriage seems a long way off. You have to get through high school, graduation, college, and finding a job. Who’s thinking about a wife and kids at age 14? Mr. Lemon gives some insight on how marriage works, why you can already be praying for your future spouse, and the gifts Christ gives in marriage.

Given a Way Out by Rev. Mark Buetow

High school and college present plenty of opportunities to do the wrong thing. Parties that get out of hand, smooth talking members of the opposite sex, parents who seem unable to understand . . . so what’s a teen to do when temptation rears its ugly head? Rev. Buetow uses a passage from 1 Corinthians to reassure you in the knowledge that Christ’s death on the cross is your way out.

Real Belief in a Real Savior by Mr. Matthew Cochran

If you’ve heard it once when talking to a non- Christian, you’ve heard it so much that now it’s just getting annoying:“That’s just your belief.” Just my belief? What does that even mean? If you’re looking for a way to talk to your friends about Christianity using just the facts, Mr. Cochran is here to help you give an apology (or defense) for the Christian faith.

He Who Has Been Forgiven Much Loves Much by Rev. Brent Kuhlman

When was the last time your mother said,“Tell your brother you’re sorry, and say it like you mean it!”? Sin, repentance, and forgiveness are hard concepts to grasp. Nevertheless, the vastness of Jesus answering for all your rot, filth, and gunk is really amazing, and Pastor Kuhlman is here to remind you of just that.
tags: given, kuhlman, love, sin, sorry

Sinners Who Know They Are Saints by Rev. David Petersen

A saint is not someone who is holy, someone declared to be holy. You can’t be a saint unless you are a sinner. You can’t be forgiven and declared holy unless you have something for which to be forgiven. Pastor Petersen breaks down what it means to be a saint, what it means to be a sinner, and why salvation is yours in Jesus Christ.
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Summer 2011

Twelve by Rev. George Borghardt III

You can't get through Genesis without noticing the significance of the number 12; that thread continues to be woven throughout the Scriptures. Find out from Rev. Borghardt about an entirely new reason to be intrigued by "12!: (Hint: next summer)

Real Ultimate Story by Rev. Jonathan Fisk

The number of super hero-oriented movies being released this summer is nearly unprecedented. Why do those story lines have such a universal appeal? Rev. Fisk marvels us with his skillful connecting of the Real Ultimate Story dots.

Hermann Sasse: A Remarkable Anti-Nazi and Lutheran Confessor by Rev. Matthew Harrison

You might have seen his name here and there but have never really known who Herman Sasse was. Rev. Harrison fills in that information gap by providing a rich snapshop of this faithful, Lutheran Hero.

Cloning: Understanding the Basics (Third In a Four-Part Series) by Rev. Dr. John I. Lamb

Dr. Lamb gives us a comprehensive overview of another controversial topic in the arena of science: cloning. It's no longer science fiction and the potential ramifications are far too real.

An Everybody Pastor by Rev. Hans Fiene

In his usual droll fashion, Rev. Fiene artfully makes the point that all pastors, no matter what their specific responsibility or title may be, share a common purpose: the forgiveness of sins.

What's a Body to Do? by Rev. Mark Buetow

Think there's a special cloud floating up in Heaven with your name on it? Think again. We are humans...BODY and soul. Unfortunately the false view that anything material takes a back seat to that which is spiritual, is continuing to seep its way into Christian circles. Rev. Buetow lays out a consistent argument as to why that is such a dangerous way of thinking.

Walking the Walk by Rick Ritchie

Do you walk the walk? What does that really mean anyway? As Mr. Ritchie begins to unpack that commonly heard phrase, you will realize how vital it is that we apply it wisely.

Born Again Virgins by Rev. Walter Snyder

Sure, you've heard that your Savior, Jesus, makes everything new, but maybe you fear there's one exception: you. Rev. Snyder reassures us that even if we fall prey to sexual temptation, God can bring restoration and a new start.

The Big Choice: How Do I choose a College? by Rev. Marcus Zill

Rev. Zill's helpful and heartfelt advice will come in handy, whether your college decisions fell like they are breathing down your neck or all still a few years down the road.

The Long-Term Benefits of a Short-Term Mission by Shelly Schwalm

Perhaps your youth group plans a mission trip each summer. You've considered going but doubted you'd have anything to really offer. Discover where the real blessing lies.

The Waffle House Confessional by Tracey Dann

We have pivotal moments in our lives when God's forgiveness and grace overwhelm us and we learn a lesson we didn't expect to encounter. Sometimes such moments occur in the most ordinary of places

Diving Into the Daily Offices by Rev. Michael Erickson

Ever heard the claim that a real prayer is only genuine if it's your words "from the heart?" Using a written guide might be seen as less spiritual. Rev. Erickson persuasively argues that this is not the case, and encourages us to discover the delight in praying through the Daily Offices.

Catechism: "Forgiven and Forgiving" by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Rev. Cwirla, with robust clarity, unpacks the Fifth Petition of the Lord's Prayer and lays out the depths of God's forgiveness. Our Lord frees us up to forgive it forward!
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Summer 2012

Holy Jesus, Holy You by Rev. Mark Buetow

Will the real "sanctification" please stand up? Rev. Buetow pinpoints exactly what this theological mouthful-of-a-word is in the christian life and directs the conversation where it needs to go: toward Christ!

On Being "Simul" New Software on Old Hardware by Rev. William M. Cwirla

So what does a cool Latin phrase have in common with 21st century computer technology? If anyone can tie them together, Rev. Cwirla can. And in doing so, he brings clarity to our understanding of the battle between Old Adam and New Man.

TrueBlood by Rev. Jeffery W. Grams

It seems like every movie season features a new twist on the old vampire story. Well, it turns out that our fascination with the undead might actually be linked to the greatest redemptive story ever. Rev. Grams skillfully connects the dots throughout his article.

Lutherans on Facebook by Jon Kohlmeier

Whether you spend hours a day on Facebook or have sworn off ever signing up for an account, you will find something to appreciate in Mr. Kohlmeier's explanation about service to our neighbor via Facebook. The principles he elaborates on apply to any social interaction we might have.

The Emperor's New Clothes Part One of a Two-Part Series by Barbra S. Helmkamp, Ph.D

Although Neo-Darwinism can lend itself to some highly technical lingo, Dr. Helmkamp carefully walks us through the fatal flaws of that theory in this first of a two-part series and shines the light of the Gospel on the discussion as well.

Church is Boring by Rev. Anthony Voltattorni

You caught yourself yawning at church last Sunday. Did you look around and make sure nobody noticed? Were you bored? It might surprise many people in today's culture to know that the purpose of church isn't to entertain us. Rev. Voltattorni focuses on what it is about church that is truly music to our ears.

Two Voiceless Prophets by Rev. Tim Lorenz

The David and Bathsheba story: adultery, murder, major sinful deeds. There are, however, two players in this Biblical account that you might not have given much thought to before. Rev Lorenz insightfully shows us how important their roles truly are.

Knowing Jesus by Magdalena Teske

Do you really know Jesus? How do you know? Miss Teske shares a personal account about that very challenge someone once made to her and how it firmed up what she can confidently say about knowing Our Lord.

Connected to Christ at College by Sarah Dooms

If college is on the horizon for you, it is a wise step to read something from someone who has walked that path already. Miss Dooms eloquently offers great counsel and wisdom for those who are nearing that big step in their lives.

Fish Don't Want to be Caught by Rev. Philip Young

Starting a college ministry in five easy steps! Not! And there's a reason this is unrealistic. Every campus is different but one thing generally remains the same: Students are not naturally clamoring to be a part of a Christ-focused group. Rev. Young's own experience provides encouragement to those who are fishers of men on campus.

When You Pray, Say "Our Father" by Rev. William Cwirla

Our Lord desires that we come to Him as children come to their father.. with expectancy, eagerness and trust. Rev. Cwirla reminds us of all the comfort we have to gain as he unpacks these first simple but profound words of the Lord's Prayer.
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Summer 2013

Born and Living from Above by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Your Greek 101 word for the day is: anothen. From above. Get a taste of this year’s conferences from one of our plenary speakers, Rev. Borghardt, as he sheds some light on Jesus’ nighttime conversation with Nicodemus in John 3.

Dying and Rising from Above by Rev. Mark Buetow

No matter how brave you are, the thought of getting a shot for anything is not likely to be something you relish. There’s one inoculation, however, that you can rejoice in and look back on as a purely positive experience—your baptism! Another one of our plenary speakers, Rev. Buetow, continues the theme of “from above” as he focuses on our death as Christians and the resurrection to come.

What God Cannot Do by Rev.Todd Wilken

What? There is something God is not able to do? Surely not! Thankfully, there actually are a number of things God cannot do—things which are contrary to who He is.Thank heaven for that! Rev. Wilken definitively brings the truths of Scripture to bear against the common fallacy, “God can do everything.”

This Diamond Christ Jesus by Rev. Evan Goeglein

As a child of Christ, you will have those days when your own sinful nature, the devil or the world try to force you under the weight of your burdened conscience. Thankfully, your ability to defend against this does not depend on you. Instead, it is through your Savior, Jesus, that you can freely lay your burdens at His feet, because of what He did out of His love for you.

Delirium by Kelly Klages

Read Kelly’s moving account of her own terrifying experiences where reality and her skewed perceptions became so blurred she didn’t know who she was anymore. This time of crisis for Kelly was one during which she became vividly reminded about the love Jesus has for her—the same love He has for you, no matter how dark things might become.

A New Song by Rev. Alan Kornacki, Jr.

The mark of a good hymn is a combination of a tune and words that can carry the weight of the truths of Scripture that we so treasure. Perhaps Rev. Kornacki, a hymn writer himself, will encourage you to investigate this avenue of giving to the church for yourself.

My Unbelieving Friends by Rev. Philip Young

Have you ever felt guilty because you believed that perhaps it was your fault your unbelieving friends haven’t yet bought into Christianity? Perhaps your argument wasn’t smooth enough.Your case wasn’t intellectual enough. Well the good news is, as Rev. Young explains, you can’t persuade someone to embrace Christianity. It is only through the work of the Holy Spirit—through Word and Sacrament—that your friends will come to Christ. Knowing this frees you up to be Christ to your friends who are still in darkness.

The Table of Duties: Rulers and Citizens by Rev. WIlliam Cwirla

If you’ve ever been frustrated by a particular rule that your parents enforce, or wonder why there is a need for a speed limit, you are sure to gain some insight by reading through Rev. Cwirla’s persuasively written explanation about civil authority and where we as citizens fit in.
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Summer 2014

The First Time I Died by Rev. Donavon Riley

It's a normal ambition to attempt to map out our lives. At the tender young age of 18, Rev. Riley did just that but ended up down a path where God took him face to face with Jesus. He died that day, but it was no "Heaven Is for Real" experience - he was "buried with Christ by Baptism into death." And it was then that his life truly began.

The Life You Now Live by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Drown, rinse, and repeat. This is the formula for the Christian life. It isn't about trying to follow God's law more faithfully. It's about realizing that, having been baptized through Christ, you follow God's law perfectly.

Sanctification: Jesus Living in You by Rev. Mark Buetow

Sanctification is frequently a Christian buzz word. For some it means how we become more holy or sin less the longer we are Christians. With clarity, Rev. Buetow illuminates the Biblical understanding of sanctification that takes us out of the driver's seat.

His Name Is John by Rev. Marcus Zill

What's in a name? Well, in this case, "John" means a whole lot more than meets the eye. John the Baptist's sole mission in life was to pave the way for Christ, which Rev. Zill explains was an incredible demonstration of God's grace.

Seven Apologists Every Christian Should Know, Part 1 The Lasting Legacy of C.S. Lewis: Why Imaginative Apologetics Matter by Rev. Mark A. Pierson

It's likely that you have had a taste of C.S. Lewis, due to the popularity of the Narnia movies. But Narnia is just the tip of the iceberg. Rev. Pierson looks under the surface and persuades us that an essential part of building an understanding of Christian apologetics is to investigate all that C.S. Lewis, with his incredible insight, has to offer.

Jesus.For.You. by Rev. Paul Mumme

Yes, it's true. We aren't just fans of Jesus. We are committed to Him. But what's the Christian faith really about: how well we follow Christ or how amazingly He saves us? Rev. Mumme sets the record straight regarding a popular graphic making the rounds in social media.

Great Expectations by Bethany Woelmer

More miscommunication comes from unspoken or unreasonable expectations. We who are baptized in Christ have truly great expectations that Christ Himself faithfully fulfills for us. And, as Bethany shares, knowing this will help us deal with the disappointment that comes when many of our expectations in this life aren't met.

Christ on Campus: Your Body is Beautiful by Annalise Harrison

The struggle with body image is not a new phenomenon, and most people grapple with it to some degree, but there comes a point where it becomes an idol. Annalise, through her own experience, reminds us where true beauty lies and that our confidence is in Christ.

Table of Duties: Workers and Bosses by Rev. William M. Cwirla

You get a job, you work the grind, you make money and that's it. Right? Well, not exactly. Rev. Cwirla reveals the beauty behind the vocations of worker and boss, and how Christ faithfully loves our neighbor through us.
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Summer 2015

Confirmation: All of Jesus' Gifts and Then Some! by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Not merely a rite, not just a formality, Confirmation is a process through which you learn about all of the gifts Christ won for you on the cross and how He delivers them to you in abundance! Read up on it, Rev. Borghardt style!

Your Post-Confirmation Life by Rev. Mark Buetow

Yes, there is life after Confirmation. After all, that's the whole purpose of Confirmation...to equip you for your life as a child of God! Rev. Buetow will show you how invaluable what you learn, memorize and study is for your spiritual wellbeing.

Scuba Diving for Sin by Chad Bird

You don't need a license to scuba dive down into the depths of your own or someone else's shipwrecked collection of sins. The reality is we have a natural inclination to do so. The good news, as Chad declares, is that the love of Jesus is deeper than you can even imagine and you don't have to plumb the dark depths of sin any longer.

Apologists Every Christian Should Know, Part 4 The Dangerous Defiance of William Dembski: Why Design Reveals Intelligence by Rev. Mark A. Pierson

In Romans 1, St. Paul tells us that man is without excuse if he rejects God, because all of nature reveals His handiwork. In light of this truth, Rev. Pierson methodically explains how William Dembski, through the Intelligent Design argument, provides another very helpful tool for your apologetics arsenal.

Receiving the Gospel Like a Dog by Anna Hahn

Man's best friend may be able to teach YOU a trick or two you never thought about...the Gospel! Anna shares her own observations with her beloved dogs and ties it into the reminder that we can confidently live each day, receiving Christ's gifts with joyful trust...

Weekly Communion: the Gift That Keeps on Giving by Taylor Schmidt

Just like manna was something the Israelites came to take for granted and forget how vital it was for physical survival, we, too, can easily forget the blessing that the Lord's Supper is to our souls which are desperate for nourishment that God promises to give. Taylor emphatically lays out the case for weekly communion.

Catechism: The Second Commandment by Rev. William M. Cwirla

What does it really mean to misuse the name of the Lord our God? Rev. Cwirla lays out not only what it means to break the Second Commandment, but also what makes God's Name such a precious gift revealed to us in and through Jesus Christ.
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Summer 2016

Moving On: A Letter From Father to Son by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Read this from-the-heart letter from Rev. Borghardt to his own son that reveals the love, hope and prayers that parents invest into their children and why you can draw strength from that.

Stop This Ride! Handling the Relentless Changes of Life as a Baptized Child of God by Rev. Mark Buetow

Feel like popping a few Dramamine pills as you ride this roller coaster of change that we call life? Rev. Buetow emphatically reminds us that Jesus Christ does NOT change so we can rely upon Him because He has redeemed us and strengthens us amidst the craziness through His gifts of water, Word and Supper.

You Are Not of This World by Rev. Eric Brown

Sometimes things don't work out the way we planned. Sometimes that's the best news in the world. Rev. Brown writes convincingly that this is indeed the reality through Christ.

Unplanned Parenthood and the Abundance of God's Grace by Karina Pellegrini

Karina's life turned upside down when she found out she was pregnant. Read how faithfully and tenderly her Father, through Jesus Christ, has cared for her and blessed her. He will be there for you, too!

The Logical Lynchpin of Michael Licona by Rev. Mark Pierson

It's not news that the resurrection of Jesus Christ is central to our faith, but Rev. Pierson skillfully illustrates why Michael Licona is another apologist you should get to know when it comes to apologetics: the defense of our faith.

Let's Take Jesus at His Word by Rev. William Snyder

"This is my body." or "This is my blood." These are Jesus' words and they seem pretty straightforward, so that should be the end of the matter, right? Unfortunately, the doctrine of the Lord's Supper has been the subject of great debate since the Reformation. Rev. Snyder zeroes in on these words of Christ and explains why we, along with Luther, can just take Jesus at His word.

Hymns are for Proclamation by Rev. Gaven M. Mize

Hymns aren't just lip service--they are instruments for declaring the blessed truth of the Gospel! Let Rev. Mize instruct you how to savor each phrase that you encounter.

The Ultimate Narrative by Alex Stakos

We've often heard it said that life is like a story. Alex creatively connects the idea of a story or narrative with our lives as followers of Christ.

The Gift of One Flesh by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Infidelity is just the fruit of breaking this commandment, explains Rev. Cwirla, as he lays out what is at stake when we despise the gift of one flesh.
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Summer 2017

The Law Only Instructs by Rev. Brian L. Kachelmeier

In Christ, we are no longer condemned by the Law because He has fulfilled its demands perfectly on our behalf. Rev. Kachelmeier chronicles God’s delivery of His Law to His people and demonstrates how the Law functions in your life as a baptized child of God.

Religion vs. Relationship: A Dangerous Dichotomy by Kelly Klages

Ever heard someone claim, “Christianity isn’t a religion—it’s a relationship!” That’s considered a false dichotomy because those are not two choices in opposition to one another. Kelly explains how Christianity is both a religion and a relationship and that we needn’t fear, but can embrace the term “religion.

Behold, They Stand at the Door and Knock by Joshua Ulm

If you haven’t already, at some point you’ll respond to a knock at your door and be greeted by a couple of Jehovah’s Witnesses standing there, eager to share their faith. What do they believe and how should you respond to them? Joshua hones in on some of the key contrasts and provides a few tools you can use if you encounter a Jehovah’s Witness.

Catechism: Our Restless Hearts: The 9th and 10th Commandments by Rev. William M. Cwirla

If you think about it, the root of every sin is covetousness. I want this…I need that…So how do we battle this perpetual struggle? Rev. Cwirla reminds us that Christ has fulfilled the 9th and 10th Commandments on our behalf. We don’t have to let our “want this” or “need this” lead us into sin because we are immeasurably blessed with all we could ever truly need through Christ’s death and resurrection.
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Summer 2018

My Hiding Place: Christ Is for Me by Rev. George F. Borghardt

It's been one of those days and you feel lower than whale spit. You might even wonder if God is on your side. Rev. Borghardt passionately declares that, for the sake of Jesus, the Father always has your back, your front, your sides, your everything!

How Baptized Are You? by Rev. Harrison Goodman

What an odd question! Either you're baptized or you're not, right? As Rev. Goodman points out, we live in an era where the world tries to measure everything on an emotional scale, even our spiritual status. Thanks be to God we have our Baptisms to help us remember Whose we are!

Sing a Hymn at Satan by Rev. Joshua Ulm

I'd like to dedicate this song to ... Satan! Well, not exactly, but believe it or not, there are a few hymns in our liturgical arsenal that specifically address the devil himself. Rev. Ulm reminds us that if God is for us, who can be against us, which is why singing a hymn at Satan can be a beneficial thing.
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Winter 2001

Service to God in the Military by Rev. John C. Wohlrabe, Jr. Captain, Chaplain Corps, U. S. Navy, Brunswick, ME

Is the killing and destruction that war brings be justified? Better yet. Can a Christian serve in the military and still be a Christian? Yes. They are acting as God's servant to defend their country and its citizens against violence and injustice in order to preserve peace.
tags: military, soldier, war

Notes on Islam by Rev. Dr. Frederic W. Baue

The Rev. Frederic W. Baue provides a glimpse into the world of Islam and its ever-growing affect on Christianity.
tags: islam, muslims

Diary of a Chaplain by Rev. Dean Kavouras

Take a glimpse into the diary of the Rev. Dean Kavouras and see how the love of Christ helped heal and support people in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Contending for the Faith by Rev. James Winsor

God's grace is under attack. Learn how to defend it. It's worth fighting for.

Wizards, Witches and Hogwarts by Rev. Todd A. Peperkorn

Good question. Find out what the Rev.Todd Peperkorn has to say about these popular books and their role in the Christian life.

There's a Snake Around My Neck by Rev. Tim Pauls

As Christians,we all deal with the snake called "sin". Luckily for us,we know the snake's power was crushed when Christ died for us on the cross.
tags: sin, snake

The Power of Prayer by Mollie Ziegler

Falsely imprisoned in China for espionage, Dr. Gao Xue describes how Christ and the power of prayer sustained her during this horrific experience.
tags: china, prayer

Survivor of War by Rev. Daniel Woodring

Every war has its heroes. Read how one Lutheran pastor miraculously survived the ongoing war of abortion by being born.
tags: abortion

Hope in Christ in a World of Problems by Julie Stiegemeyer

Find out how a Lutheran pastor, equipped with the Word of God, is making a real difference in the lives of the young people of Sudan.
tags: mission, sudan

Deliver Us from Evil by Rev. David Petersen

Evil surrounds each of us daily. Take heart in knowing that Christ has and will Deliver Us From Evil.
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Winter 2002

The Image of God by Rev. Chad Bird

Adam and Eve were created in the image of God. Sin shattered that image, but Jesus fixed everything. In Him you see God Himself and God sees you as He wishes you to be. You're back in the image of God for you're in the Image Himself.
tags: image of god

To Do or Not Tattoo by by Rick Baue

Tattoos and piercings are becoming more and more popular with young people today. What are some things to consider before deciding whether or not to go under the needle?
tags: piercings, tattoo

Don't Drink the Water by Rev. Tim Pauls

Don't drink ocean water. That stuff could kill you. Instead, remember you're in the boat, and the One who drowned to get you there is alive and with you. He'll get you home.
tags: water

Light in the Auditorium by Lori (Campbell) Lewis

Searching for the Gospel in all the wrong places. Lori Lewis shares her experience in visiting a wide variety of denominations and what she discovers about her Lutheran roots.

What's the World Coming to? by Rev. Kevin Karner

What's the world coming to? The acceptance of homosexuality, as an alternative lifestyle, is gaining momentum. Will Christians be willing to hold out a lifeline to those who would otherwise be swept away?

Zits in the Tent by Kathy Luder

See how something as gross as zits restored a friendship between two long-time friends.
tags: zits

Sacraments or Substitutes? by Rev. Dan Woodring

Writing our sins on index cards and burning the cards doesn't take sin away. Instead, forgiveness of sins is found in Christ - in His absolving Word, and in the Sacraments of Baptism and the Lord's Supper.

Beauty on the Inside by Rev. David Petersen

We are reminded that beauty which is skin deep won't last, but beauty in our souls will.
tags: beauty
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Winter 2003

Together Again by Dr. Arthur A. Just, Jr.

God created us to be in relationship with Him and with each other. That relationship was shattered in the Fall. But Sunday after Sunday, God restores our broken relationship with Him and with each other in the Divine Service.

Out of Sync by Dr. Barbara J. Resch

What type of music do teens really want in worship? The answer may surprise you.

Something Funny in the Vestry by Kathy Luder

Kathy discovers more than just pastor's vestments in the vestry.
tags: vestry

Finding Christ in Middle Earth by Rev. Bruce Keseman

A pastor reflects on biblical images and allusions in the talents of J.R.R. Tolkein's The Lord of the Rings.
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Winter 2004

Have a Material Christmas by Gene Edward Veith

God became flesh in Jesus Christ and was born into this world as a baby to suffer and die on the cross and rise physically from the dead. Are these basic truths of Christianity contrary to popular beliefs today as portrayed in books like The Da Vinci Code? Read Veith's latest column to explore this very important topic.

Putting the MASS Back in Christ-mass by Rev. George Borghardt III

"Keep Christ in Christmas!" and "Jesus is the reason for the season" are familiar sayings these days that we hear frequently around at Christmastime. But what about keeping the "mass" in Christmas? Pastor Borghardt explains what the other half of the word "Christmas" is all about.
tags: christmas, mass

Mary, the Mother of God by Sandra Ostapowich

Whoa! Wait a minute, can we refer to Mary as the mother of God? Sandra Ostapowich examines this seemingly small point of theology and finds rich meaning in understanding our Lord Jesus Christ.

A Meditation for the Feast of Sts. Adam and Eve by Rev. Heath R. Curtis

An unusual encounter with a vicar's cat leads to some startling revelations late one Christmas Eve.
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Winter 2005

Catechism: Lead Us to Resist Temptation by Rev. David Petersen

We continually struggle with temptation, just as our Master, Jesus,was also tempted. And yet we hold fast to the hope we have in Christ when all earthly sufferings, including temptation, will finally be removed.

Pulse: I Kissed Legalism Goodbye by Adriane Dorr

In this Pulse column that reviews several books on Christian dating,Ms.Dorr reflects on boyfriends, girlfriends, hand checks, and Christs everlasting grace.

Blog War on the Wrath of God by Dr. Gene Edward Veith

Was Hurricane Katrina an example of God unleashing His wrath? Read about Dr.Veiths blog wars and Gods wrath, grace, and our hope in Christ.

Looks Can Be Deceiving by Seminarian Joshua Genig

Campus Crusade for Christ, an organization over fifty years old, has groups at more than thirteen hundred college campuses. Is this parachurch group helpful to Lutheran college students or not?

The Devils Opera by A. B. Fouts

Are praise services the cure for depression? Can praise music take away your despair? Read this intriguing article to explore the heartache of bipolar disorder and the truth of the Gospel.
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Winter 2007

Dating by Bethany Smith

It's a touchy subject, that dating. And not only is it confusing and difficult, but to make matter worse, no one seems to have any conclusive answers, Is there even a golden rule for dating? Check out Bethany Smith's article for a little clarification.
tags: dating, Smith

Broken Homes by Rev. Tim Pauls

Growing up in a broken home is hard, but far too many teenagers today are doing just that. How do you deal with separated parents? Is thee any reassurance that things will get better? If you need answers, Pastor Pauls shows just where you can find them in God's Word
tags: divorce, homes, paul

Islam 101 by Dr. Adam Francisco

How much do you know about Islam? Is it the world's fastest-growing religion? Is Allah just another name for God? Will mankind abandon the madness of cheap sandwich bags? Oh, wait. Wrong article. Anyway, Dr. Francisco's written up a little refresher course for you on this dangerous religion.

The Christmas Gift of Parents by Rev. Todd Peperkorn

Ugh. Parents can be so annoying. They're old fashioned, they don't understand you, and they're always trying to run your life. Why don't thy just give it up already? Wait, What? Could it possibly be that God has given you parents because they're good for you? Pastor Peperkorn has an insight that you just might find helpful.

The Football Star, Part 2 by Kathy Luder

The policeman has finished his report. The doctor has sent Kathy home from the hospital. Now is the time for reflection, both from Kathy and the one who was sent to keep her safe.

Friends in Heaven by Rev. David Petersen

Sometimes it's hard to imagine what heaven will be like. Will you know who your grandma is? Will you still have brown hair? Will you be able to crack jokes? Will the magazine staff still be misfits? Pastor Petersen has some reassurance for you. So, don't worry. You will still be you in heaven.
tags: heaven, petersen
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Winter 2010

Theology and The Simpsons by Rev. Robert Wentzel

Warning: Watching The Simpsons may play an unexpected role in the development of your theological discernment. Rev. Wentzel’s humorous presentation of some of the choice theology portrayed on The Simpsons may just help you get a better grasp of your own understanding of Lutheran theology. Maybe you can finally set the record straight for Homer, who has been known to claim that Christianity is “You know, the one with all the well-meaning rules that don’t work out in real life.” D’oh!

Creation and Current Questions by Rev. Frederick W. Baue

Prominent atheist Richard Dawkins has asserted that the creation account in Genesis is merely one of many mythical versions since the beginning of civilization. For the Christian, however, this first book in the Scriptures is absolutely foundational to understanding the rest of God’s Word. A fundamental misunderstanding of its account can lead to the compromise of Biblical truth. Rev. Baue shows you how some of the most “relevant” questions of our day can be dealt with from the solid truths presented in the Doctrine of Creation.

Out of Many, One in Christ by Rev. Jacob Gaugert

“There were this Mexican and a Slovak in church one Sunday...” Sounds like the start of a bad joke but it’s the reality at Rev. Gaugert’s church. Find out the history of Evangelical Church of Doctor Martin Luther in Chicago and how God’s faithfulness has brought this unique body of believers together and sustained them, in spite of substantial cultural barriers. It’s an encouraging reminder that nothing can thwart the work of the Holy Spirit.

When Jehovah's Witnesses Come Knocking by Rev. Eric Lange

Do you run and hide when your friendly, neighborhood Jehovah’s Witnesses pop by? Perhaps you politely open the door and listen to them give their earnest spiel, your eyes glazing over. Well try this on for size: Maybe you can equip yourself to handle their claims but more importantly, give an answer for the hope that is in YOU. Rev. Lange gives you some great foundational information and counsel as you consider your response for the next time you hear that knock on the door.

The Handiwork of God: Foundations by Rev. Dr. James Lamb

We live in a culture where life is attacked on many fronts. Abortion and euthanasia are two of the most prominent aggressors, but sometimes the attackers are more covert. Rev. Lamb weaves together a warm blend of family accounts and Scriptural truths in this first of four articles dealing with the preciousness of life and how we can protect it by remembering that our true value is found in Christ!

Going to Hell with Jesus by Rev. Shawn Kumm

“Go to H-E-double hockey sticks!” Usually this is merely an expression of anger. For Christ, it was a vital part of His mission to conquer sin and death on your behalf. Rev. Kumm carefully handles that somewhat mysterious phrase in the Apostles’ Creed: “He descended into Hell.”The best part is that Christ’s descent has given YOU the freedom to tell the Devil where to go with his lies and accusations.

Why do Pastors Wear Vestments by Rev. Jon J. Sollberger

In an era where pastors who wear Hawaiian shirts are seen as in touch with their congregations, it’s important to understand the tradition of vestments. Every piece has a purpose. It’s not just about the threads, it’s about the theology.

Can Modern, Rational Adults Believe in Miracles? by Mr. Mark Pierson

We carelessly throw around the word “miracle” all the time. We take it for granted. How many of us have been eyewitnesses to an actual miracle? It’s no surprise that this is one of the first areas a non-Christian will attack. Mr. Pierson’s training in apologetics (AKA defense of the faith) will help arm you to defend the rationality of believing in miracles.

[Not So] New Age by Rev. John Sound

Over the past few years you have probably caught bits and pieces of the beliefs of Scientology due to some of its more famous followers like John Travolta or Tom Cruise. Think it’s more like science fiction than a religion? Find out by reading Rev. Sound’s thorough summary of the tenets of Scientology and his clear proclamation of the sweetness of the true Gospel.

Feasting with Our Lord: The Feast of Weeks by Rev. Thomas C. Messer

Discover through the final article in this series by Rev. Messer how type and shadow find their fulfillment yet again in the New Testament. The Feast of Weeks, also known as Pentecost, a celebration of the harvests God provided, led to the beginning of a great harvest that continues to this very day. And we get to rejoice in that each time we are part of the Divine Service.

Catechism: Prayer on the Fly by Rev. William Cwirla

Does your mouth go dry and pasty when you are asked to pray aloud? Heart thump out of your chest? Perhaps you are deathly afraid of saying the wrong thing. Thankfully, in the name of Christ, we pray to a God who loves to hear what His children have to say. Rev. Cwirla provides some simple guidelines that will free your heart up to bring your petitions, and those of others’ before your gracious Father in Heaven.
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Winter 2011

Christmas in the Nicene Creed by Rev. George Borghardt

A creed, by definition, is a statement of belief, but did you know that the Nicene Creed is also a wonderful summary of the heart of the Christmas story? Rev. Borghardt enthusiastically takes you on a grand tour of this ancient creed that we so often recite but perhaps, at times, take for granted.

Joy: The Serious Business of Narnia by Rev. Samuel Schuldheisz

Just when you thought you'd discovered all the layers of the Chronicles of Narnia, Rev. Schuldheisz delights us with yet another rich facet of C.S. Lewis' timeless fantasy series: joy.

Talking to Your Non-Lutheran Friends about Jesus by Rev. Mark Buetow

Communion. Liturgy. Infant baptism. Sign of the Cross. The list goes on and on. If you haven't wrestled through topics like these with you non-Lutheran buds, you will eventually. Be more prepared by reading Rev. Buetow's wise and very clear counsel so that you can confidently bring it all back to Jesus!

Confessions of a Former Evangelical by Tamara Ockree

Tamara provides a special perspective as a Lutheran as one who converted as an adult. Lifelong Lutherans will be encouraged to remember how blessed they are and converts will be able to relate to and appreciate her journey. No matter what, gratitude will abound.

In, Not Of by Scott Diekmann

Life is a balancing act in so many ways. One tension we Christians find ourselves caught up in is being "in" but not "of" the world. This pendulum can swing too far in either direction, leading either to an unbiblical separation from the world, or a disregard for who we are in Christ. Scott gives us some instruction in spiritual "physics," and provides some helpful tips as we walk this fine line.

The Thing About Mary by Sandra Ostapowich

As Lutherans, we recognize that it's okay to give Mary the honor she deserves, yet we understand that she, too, needed a Savior as much as we do. Sandra expounds on Mary's response to what God blessed her with, showing how this young girl, the mother of our Lord, was an exceptional example of faith and trust, by the grace of God, even when faced with very unusual circumstances.

When a Loved One Commits Suicide by Rev. Peter Preus

Few acts are more profoundly devastating for those left behind than when a loved one ends his or her life. Rev. Preus plainly, but gently, grapples with this heart-wrenching topic, reminding us of where our hope ultimately lies.

Planking or Cross Beaming? by Rev. Philip Hoppe

In our social networking culture, even the most quirky, pointless maneuvers can become the latest greatest fads. Planking is no exception. Rev. Hoppe gives this popular phenomenon a bit of a Gospel twist that just might lead you to start a relevant trend of your own.

Catechism: Thy Kingdom Come by Rev. William Cwirla

Jesus is our King of Kings, so when we pray the petition in the Lord's Prayer, "Thy Kingdom come," what are we really asking for? Rev. Cwirla artfully answers that question by taking you on a whirlwind trip to the four corners of Christ's kingdom.
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Winter 2012

The Only Christian Nation by Rev. Mark Buetow

So are we a "Christian" nation? Are was a "secular" nation? Well, maybe there's another choice. Rev. Buetow explains how we can Scripturally view America by understanding the two kingdoms.

What Happens When Your Guy Loses by Rev. George F. Borghardt

No doubt about it: The results of the November 6th election managed to throw many people for a loop. Fear not! Rev. Borghardt brings his pastoral words of comfort and wisdom to bear and reminds us that the great news is God is still good and God is still in control.

Do Religion and Politics Mix? by Rev. William Cwirla

Normally religion and politics are taboo topics in our conversations. There are those who go further and believe those areas should never overlap in our daily living. Rev. Cwirla demonstrates how to manage and balance these two areas through the filter of Luther's two kingdom theology.

Christian Activism? by Maggie Karner

Is there a place for activism in the life of the Christian? That's a resounding YES! Mrs. Karner carefully explains how Luther's doctrine of the two kingdoms compels us that involvement in social activism is not just recommended, it's vital as we live as Christians in, yet not of this world.

But It's Not Fair! by Sandra Ostapowich

We live in a society that clamors around the concept of equal rights. Yet in the scheme of things and if we are truly honest with ourselves, Jesus got the short end of the stick in that game when He took on flesh and died for us. Be encouraged in your vocations at church, at home or anywhere, as Ms. Ostapowich reminds us of the reality of equal rights for the Christian

Muhlenberg: How One Pastor Kept Politics out of the Pulpit by Rick Ritchie

Take a tour through the words of Henry Melchior Muhlenberg with Mr. Ritchie as your guide. You'll soon see what a gifted pastor Muhlenberg was as he carefully navigated the dicey waters of the political climate of his time.

Islam: Mohammed and the Sword by Rev. David Ramirez

What makes Islam's use of sharia law so diametrically opposed to Scripture? There is no Jesus there. Rev. Ramirez skillfully contrasts Islam's twisting together of faith and government to God's plan for church and state.

Christ on Campus: Salvation and All That Cool Stuff by Magdalena Teske

Don't public officials talk about God all the time? Sure they often do, but that doesn't mean that they are necessarily spokespeople for God. Magdalena shows through her experience in a college course that this is indeed not the case because they usually lack on very critical message: Our greatest blessing is the gift of salvation in Christ

Catechism: Three Orders by Rev. William Cwirla

What's God's plan for your life? It's no mystery, according to Rev. Cwirla, who takes us once again into the heart of another solid catechism study and simplifies what life tries to make so very complicated.
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Winter 2013

Merry Christmas From Above by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Delve right into the spirit of Christmas as we recapture the magic of Rev. Borghardt’s impassioned, Christ-laden Gospel message from the Higher Things 2013 conferences.

They Testify of Christ by Rev. Mark Buetow

From Genesis to Malachi, Jesus is on every page of the Old Testament Scriptures. Rev. Buetow takes us on a tip-of-theiceberg tour through the OT, demonstrating how it points to the promise of the Messiah to come.

Your Church is Too Sexy: Why Church Architecture Matters by Chad Bird

Think there’s a disconnect between theology and architecture? Chad Bird artfully presents just how intertwined they actually are and why this is so important when understanding the doctrines that undergird worship.

The Mark of a False Prophet: They Draw Away Disciples After Themselves by Chris Rosebrough

There are so many messages being sent out on blogs, twitter, radio airwaves, TV channels from preachers of every stripe...how do we know whom we can trust? What distinguishes a false prophet, or a wolf from a faithful preacher? Chris Rosebrough deals with this subject on a regular basis on his radio program and shares his insight with us.

Know-Nothing Know-It-Alls? The Curious Case of Agnosticism by Rev. Mark Pierson

It’s one thing to deny there is a God. It’s another thing altogether to operate as if you cannot know if there is a God. Far from being “atheismlite,” agnosticism offers its own set of challenges. Rev. Pierson sheds some light on this lesser known belief system.

The Church Year and the Liturgy by Dr. Jon Eifert

Not only is our divine service liturgy filled with Scripture, it also sets the scene for God to give us His wonderful gifts of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper, which Dr. Eifert explains as he lays out the cool connection between this same liturgy and our Church Year.

Ambition: Should a Christian Seek Success by Rev. James Hageman

Rev. Hageman encourages us to take the talents God has given us and use them to the best of our ability for His glory. Such ambition, he says, is not contrary to the Christian life.

Catechism: The Table of Duties: Parents and Children by Rev. William M. Cwirla

We live in a day when the roles of parents and children in the home are being blurred or sometimes even obliterated. As always, Rev. Cwirla provides an excellent walk through this area in Luther’s Small Catechism, which will equip you in the faith, whether you are a child, a parent or both.
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Winter 2014

A-Caroling We Go by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Don't worry about donning your beanies or slipping on your mittens to go a-caroling. All you need to do is embark on a frolicking read through Rev. Borghardt's joyous reminders of Jesus during this Christmas season.

David's House by Rev. Mark Buetow

"The new is in the old concealed; the old is in the new revealed," is an ancient maxim about the Old and New Testaments attributed to church father, Augustine. Rev. Buetow highlights this insightful saying by illustrating the amazing connection between David, King of Israel and Jesus.

Church Universal, Church Triumphant... Church Relevant? by Kelly Klages

Universal, triumphant, invisible. These are just a few of the historically grounded adjectives that describe God's church. Now "relevant" seems to be the latest trending descriptive, but what's wrong with a church trying to be relevant? Kelly examines why this is a dangerous path for the church to take.

Seven Steps to Staying Sane During the Holidays by Rev. Todd A. Peperkorn

You don't have to chronically suffer from depression in order for the holidays to drag you down. Regardless, sometimes the blues can catch you by surprise. With a blend of humor and empathy, Rev. Peperkorn lists out some ways to keep your balance during the holiday craziness.

The Satisfying Assessment of James Sire: Why Worldviews Matter Seven Apologists Every Christian Should Know, Pt. 3 by Rev. Mark A. Pierson

In this third part of his apologetics series, Rev. Pierson profiles Christian author James Sire, who has a knack for understanding worldviews and teaching others to decode them.You'll soon discover why Sire is a vital part of your apologetics repertoire.

The Walking Dead by Rev. Dave Haberstock

Zombies...they're everywhere...but that's only in cable TV series and at the nearest Comic Con, right? Well, think again. The reality is we are all dead people who think we're alive, and the only solution to the apocalyptic madness, as Rev. Haberstock explains, is Christ alone.

Considering the Vocation of Military Service by Kay Maiwald

Have you decided yet what direction you might want to go for your career? Luther believed the vocation of soldier is a noble and honorable profession for a Christian. As Kay looks at Luther's perspective, she brings to bear her own experience as the mother of two servicemen.

Let It Go: Your Identity in Christ Trumps Your GPA by Ramona Tausz

There's a lot of pressure in academic circles to make the grade, to stand out, to be exceptional. It can become far too easy to let your GPA become your primary focus. Ramona examines the fine line between pursuing excellence and succumbing to idolatry and reminds us that ultimately it's Jesus and Him crucified in which we have our identity.

The Return of the King by Dr. Joshua T. Mears

Professional sports appeals to many of us because in a way it satisfies our need to rally behind a hero. NBA basketball is no different. Joshua shows that as exciting as LeBron James can be to follow, he will always fall short when compared to the person and work of the true King, Jesus Christ.

Catechism: Intro to the Small Catechism by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Now is the perfect time to pull your Small Catechism from the shelf, blow off the dust, and rediscover its value. Before Rev. Cwirla delves into even more Catechism goodness, he lays out its origin and development and why it is the essential tool for nurturing our faith.
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Winter 2016

Lent: Jesus' Resolution for You by Rev. George F. Borghardt

Lent: A great time to recycle your failed New Year's resolutions, right? Not so much. Rev. Borghardt will help you get to the heart of the reason for the season of Lent!

Shaming the Shamers by Rev. Mark Buetow

We've all seen the FB posts expressing outrage-veiled or overt-about how so-and-so did such-and-such. Maybe we've made a few posts like that ourselves...c'mon...admit it! Rev. Buetow explains how, in in Christ, we are rescued from wallowing in the shame of others.

The Gospel According to St. Lucasfilm: I Have a Bad Feeling About This by Rev. Rich Heinz

In light of the phenomenal success of The Force Awakens, HT's resident Star Wars aficionado, Rev. Heinz, makes the case that it's the perfect time to look at the Gospel connections that run throughout this enduring science fiction saga.

So Turn into a Dinosaur by Rev. Harrison Goodman

"All things are possible for those who believe!" Nowadays, these words of Jesus are on tee-shirts, posters, and the occasional "inspirational" meme. Without any context, this declaration is a sobering reminder that we fall miserably short in our belief. Rev. Goodman demonstrates that Jesus' words are only truly understood in light of His fulfilling the Law on our behalf.

Apologists Every Christian Should Know, Part 6 The Studious Sleuthing of Lee Strobel: Why the Gospels Are Historically Reliable by Rev. Mark A. Pierson

Once again, Rev. Pierson brings to the table a Christian apologist with impressive credentials: Lee Strobel. Learn how Strobel's personal journey to disprove the Scriptures revealed far more evidence about the reliability of the Gospels than he ever imagined.

The Bright Light of Jesus by Amber Scarbeary

The victim of a vicious sexual assault, Amber reminds us how God's mercy and grace can redeem even the darkest of days and that it is through Christ's righteousness that we-His Bride, the church-are presented to the Father, pure and spotless, and continue to live in this life by His grace.

Tasting God's Goodness by Bethany Woelmer

Bethany relates how we worship a God who comes to us via our senses. From water, Word, Body and Blood, Jesus keeps His promise to be with us until the very end of the age...giving us a delightful taste of the heavenly feast to come!

Living in Light of Our Justification by Hayden Smith

Pietism, a misplaced emphasis on Christian living as the proof of our salvation, is an -ism that we all have to fight against, whether we realize it or not. Hayden shows us that the only way to shake off the doubt it can create is to keep our eyes on the Cross and partake of Christ's gifts, for they are outside of us.

Catechism: The Fourth Commandment by Rev. William W. Cwirla

This first commandment with a promise reflects how our God of order loves us and wants what's best for us in this life. Although we struggle with and may even rebel against those authorities He has placed over us, we can trust in Christ's perfect obedience to His Father in our stead.
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Winter 2017

Down from the Mountain by Rev. George F. Borghardt

It’s in our nature to seek out mountaintop experiences, and while such times can be a blessing, Rev. Borghardt explains via the story of Jesus’ Transfiguration that His first love is to be with us and among us below the clouds as we navigate the stuff of life.

Jesus Hits the Spot by Rev. Aaron T. Fenker

Through Luke’s account of Jesus healing of the 10 lepers, Rev. Fenker affirms that no matter what spot you may find yourself in, Jesus is there, for YOU.

Metaphors, Grammar, and Scripture, Oh My! by Rev. Samuel Schuldheisz

The words we read in the Scriptures are not there by accident. As Rev. Schuldheisz demonstrates, God has masterfully used particular language choices to share His Good News.

Thank God We Are Beggars by Rev. Harrison Goodman

Does being beggars in relation to the God of the universe mean He just expects us to deal with whatever lot we are given? By no means! Rev. Goodman reminds us that it is all about to WHOM we are begging—an abundantly gracious God who has given us everything we need, and more, through Jesus Christ.

He Is Always There by Erica M. Olson

Times of struggle are inevitable in this life. Sometimes we feel desperately alone. Erica’s personal account of God working in her life will encourage you to remember God’s faithful, constant presence through His Word and Sacraments.

Catechism: Invocation by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Let’s start at the very beginning…of the Divine Service liturgy, that is! Rev. Cwirla gets the ball rolling with the liturgy/catechism connection by examining the very first words we hear in church on a Sunday morning.
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Winter2 017a

Are the Scriptures ABOUT You or FOR You? by Rev. George F. Borghardt

While the Scriptures do indeed include a lot of dos and don'ts, those things aren't central to the Bible's core message. Rev. Borghardt focuses in on what that message is: Jesus doing all that the Law requires perfectly "for you" so that you can be "for others."

Absolution Is the Answer by Rev. Aaron T. Fenker

There isn't a sin that Christ's blood can't cover and Absolution is God's way of making that crystal clear to us. Rev. Fenker reminds us that the forgiveness we are granted covers every thought, word, and deed, and that our pastors are here to deliver the comforts of Absolution to us.

The Two Parts of Repentance by Rev. Jacob Ehrhard

Repentance has been often misunderstood in our modern church era. One popular idea is that repentance means you're getting your life together and following the right path. Rev. Ehrhard clearly defines repentance and explains where the fruit of repentance comes into play.

Resting in Christ in the Midst of Depression's Betrayal by Madison Ezzell

Depression can suck the life out of you-it blinds, weighs down, and torments. Madison, who struggles with depression, sets out to encourage us as she continues to learn that the crucified, resurrected, and forgiving Christ is the one constant upon which we can rely during our lowest times.

The Fruitful Downtime of Divine Service by Rev. Michael Keith

For many of us, our phones are like extensions of our arms. It seems like we're constantly plugged into something. While technology can be a gift from God it can, if we let it, so easily distract us. Rev. Keith reminds us of the necessity of a little peace and quiet in our lives and how the Divine Service is the perfect opportunity to harness some of that.

Catechism: The Gift of Reputation by Rev. William M. Cwirla

Because we live in the era of social media it is easier than ever to get caught up in harming or not preserving the reputation of our neighbor. Taking to heart Rev. Cwirla's advice regarding the Eighth Commandment will not only increase your awareness of the pitfalls but will also encourage you with the forgiveness you have in Christ.
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