A Description of Lutheran Christianity

The term “Lutheran” was probably first used by Martin Luther’s enemies to label his followers. In 1522, Luther attacked this use of his name desiring that all followers of Christ simply be called “Christians.” However, the name stuck. We who are part of the Reformation movement that he began are called “Lutherans”.

We see Lutheranism as …

  • A Way of Seeing …
    Using a visual symbol of the cross is central because we believe that it is here, on the cross, that God meets us. The Cross is God’s embrace. The cross is God’s Victory. God is present and seen in the Sacrament of Holy Baptism and in the Eucharist (Lord’s Supper). And, because of Jesus, we see God in all —- in weeping where there is pain and alienation, rejoicing where there is wholeness and love.

  • A Way of Hearing …
    Just as the Holy Spirit gives us the gift of seeing —- God in the infant Jesus, God in Jesus dying on the cross, God in all creation, God in history, God in bread, wine and water —- we also believe that the same Holy Spirit bestows upon us the gift of hearing the Living Word. We believe that the Word of God is a Living Address which enters our hearts calling for radical change.

  • A Way of Teaching …
    We confess that God comes in events rather than propositions —- in Jesus crucified and risen, in water poured, in bread and wine shared, in Scripture proclaimed, in forgiveness pronounced and in love shared. However, in making this affirmation we do not say that words of faith are unimportant, because words communicate the living event. Words witness to the Living Word acting in our history. Therefore, the Holy Spirit calls preachers, teachers, and witnesses to explain the Living Word.

A Way of Following …
We believe that we are to follow Jesus in his death and resurrection which means our Baptism becomes the overpowering event in our lives, the event which tells us who we are and how we are to live. We are to submit to the will of God with absolute trust. We are to be dedicated to human liberation and in solidarity with human pain.




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