Pastor David Nehrenz
Dear Fellow Redeemed,
Greetings in our Lord Jesus Christ!
On Sunday, September 23 will be our annual Mission Sunday – sponsored by the Board of Evangelism. This will be a very special day! Why?
Our former Vicar from 2008-2009, Pastor Jacob Gaugert, will preach at both services that day and make a mission presentation at 9:15 a.m. for a combined Bible class. Pastor Gaugert teaches courses in Lutheran theology at The Centre Luthérien d’Etudes Théologiques (CLET), or Lutheran Center for Theological Studies, in Dapaong, Togo, in West Africa. He also teaches distance learning and continuing education courses in Central Africa as needed. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, he assists with coordinating visiting professors and supervising LCMS projects in the region. Go this link and consider supporting him in his work in the Lord’s kingdom: https://www.lcms.org/Gaugert
Jacob was born in Sullivan, Wis., and was baptized and confirmed at St. John Evangelical Lutheran Church in Sullivan. He graduated from Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon, in 2004 with a bachelor’s degree in theological and classical languages. He received his Master of Divinity from Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., in 2010.
While in seminary, he spent a year as an exchange student at the Lutherische Theologische Hochschule (LThH), an LCMS partner seminary in Oberursel, Germany. Before becoming a missionary, Jacob served as a pastor at The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Dr. Martin Luther (LCMS SELC District) in Chicago, Ill., where he was involved with urban/crosscultural mission work in the Latino community. He is travelling through the USA for 3 months to make presentations about the work being done there. So we look forward to him being with us on Sunday, September 23, and invite you to be with us that day!
I encourage you to MAKE SUNDAY A 2-HOUR COMMITMENT EACH WEEK!!
This is how you can plan your Sunday morning church commitment:
8:00 a.m. Divine Service → –
9:15 a.m. Bible Class / Sunday School →
10:15 a.m. Concluded!
9:15 a.m. Bible Class / Sunday School → –
10:30 a.m. Divine Service → –
11:45 a.m. Concluded!
I look forward to a greater participation on your part to the Divine Service and Bible Study. May God the Holy Spirit move you to see Sunday as a TWO HOUR COMMITMENT to Word and Prayer!
In our Lord Jesus,
Pastor David Nehrenz
Vicar David Keating
The OU semester is just around the corner, and with that comes the start of LCMS U! This year, the students and I will be diving into the Gospel of John. The Bible study throughout the semester will focus on learning about the unique ways in which John presents the ministry of Jesus.
While the synoptic Gospels are focused on linear narrative, walking the reader through the historical events (birth, ministry, death, resurrection, ascension, etc.), the Gospel of John presents things differently. John is explicit in his reason for writing this Gospel. John writes, “…but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” (John 20:31)
Given that John is focused on the persuasion of his audience toward faith, he will apply different literary devices within this Gospel. Instead of focusing on writing a step-by-step account of Jesus’ time on earth, John will group his narrative texts around themes. The calling of the twelve, for instance, will come far earlier in the Gospel (John 1) compared to the synoptic (Matthew 10; Mark 3; Luke 6). Here, at the outset, John tells his readership that the Christian community derived from the teaching of Christ will be the only place where salvation can be found.
Also in John’s Gospel, more than any other, Jesus is a cause for division. The use of light/dark imagery will help to emphasize the way that the Christian Church is something distinct from the culture of the time. John will tell his audience about the ways in which light does battle with the darkness and overcomes it (1:5), that Jesus is the “light of the world” (9:5), and that this light is the only thing that can guide our path (12:35).
The way that John presents Jesus is simply fascinating. Apart from being a thematically rich Gospel, John also gives provides insight into our historic Christology. Christ, as our light, is what casts out the darkness. It is out of light/dark themes found in John that hymns such as Before the Ending of the Day, one of our earliest Christian hymns, were written.
So, I ask that as this Gospel is studied this year, you would continue to pray for LCMS U, all of our college students, as well as their teacher so that their study of the Word would be fruitful and edifying.
Vicar David Keating