Blog / Book of the Month / Perseverance / Matthew 10 / Pr. Lucas Andre Albrecht / June 25th, 2023/ Confirmation Sunday - Season of Pentecost

Perseverance / Matthew 10 / Pr. Lucas Andre Albrecht / June 25th, 2023/ Confirmation Sunday - Season of Pentecost

Perseverance / Matthew 10 / Pr. Lucas Andre Albrecht / June 25th, 2023/ Confirmation Sunday - Season of Pentecost



Matthew 10
Theme: “Perseverance”
Intr –  Perseverance. This could be the word of the day. We heard Jesus talking in the Gospel about this. It would be hard when the end of times come; lots of trouble. And he adds, “But the one who perseveres to the end will be saved.” Why is that important? Because that’s the end of our faith, salvation and life eternal. In the epistle we heard: “But now that you zhave been set free from sin and ahave become slaves of God, bthe fruit you get leads to sanctification and cits end, eternal life. 23 dFor the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

        Today is Confirmation Sunday for Mount Olive, and Perseverance is in the order of the day. Faith is something for today, but especially for tomorrow – eternity. Even one of the questions they will answer talks about persevering until the end, preferring everything even death to abandoning the faith.

        It is a hard matter though. Persevering in faith comes with lots of challenging aspects. In good times it may be not that bad, but when trials come, things may take a turn to the south. Even when we hear Jesus letting us know that we will be hated because of Christ’s name… who really desires such fate?

        This is our life as Christians though. We have good and bright days living our faith. And we have the dark deep days holding on to our faith. Two specific Biblical teachings chosen by Dessa and Leighton help us in both today – living and holding on. The Confirmands usually choose a topic to present and the two topics chosen by then dovetail perfectly with the theme of the day, Perseverance.

        I will use what they expressed in their essays as the essence of what we want to remember and once again confirm, with them, that we want to be faithful until the end of our lives.

1 – Baptism

        First topic is Baptism. Why is it so important to our perseverance in faith, since it happen in a given day way in the past? That’s true. But its effects are lifelong lasting. Once baptized, always baptized. You are a child of God and have his presence in and with you to your last day. Here is what Leighton wrote about it:

“For my confirmation essay, I chose Baptism as my topic. I chose this topic because it is a sacrament I have experienced. The word Baptism means “to wash with water.”  However, baptism is not just going to church and getting sprinkled with water. This sacrament means a lot more. Baptism involves using the water included in God’s command that is combined with God’s word. Baptism is not just a way to come into God’s family, but it is also a reminder that Christ is with us always.

In the 16th century, Martin Luther reinforced the Biblical teaching about Baptism as a Sacrament in which faith is awakened in the heart. Throughout time, certain beliefs were challenged (For example, the belief of infant baptism). But the Lutheran Church always taught this important biblical teaching. In His Catechism for example Martin Luther wrote “Baptism works forgiveness of sins, delivers from death and the devil, and gives eternal salvation to all who believe this.”

There is no age limit to be baptized. In the Lutheran church, infant baptism is the most common. Not to get it over with, but to live a full life as part of Christ’s family. There is no age limit to be baptized because Christ's family is open to everyone. I was baptized at Mount Olive when I was 6 months old. I do not remember it, but I have my candle and photos. My parents tell me I was well behaved. No surprise. Since then, I have been a part of the Lutheran faith.

When you become baptized, you get your own sponsors. These sponsors are called “God parents.” They are your second parents, through the church. They are encouraged to pray for their God child every day.

To become baptized, you get water sprinkled over your head while getting blessed by a pastor. Except the water that gets sprinkled on your head is not just mere bathroom tap water. It is holy water because it is blessed with God’s word. The water is holy when the Pastor makes use of it for Baptism. The water transports you into God's close family, while also forgiving you of your sins.

When you get baptized, you receive regeneration and God’s promise of salvation. Regeneration is the exclusive work of God by which he imparts new life to an individual. That new life is yourself after Baptism. This is God’s commitment to me. These are two important things you receive with Baptism.

To conclude, baptism is a fantastic way to become a part of God’s family and pursue your Lutheran faith. It is an amazing blessing that you get to share with your God parents and your family.”

         Yes, Baptism is an amazing blessing. When you are hated or when you are loved, when you are persecuted or when you are looked after, in the bright and in the dark days, remember: I am baptized. I was chosen by God to belong to His family and to live with Him forever.

 2 – Lord’s Prayer

The second topic is prayer. More specifically the Lord’s Prayer. The perseverance life of a child of God is a life of prayer. Because we know we have a Father who knows us, listens to us and answers to our prayers according to his wise, all-knowing will. To pray is an important discipline in our faith life, as we pay attention to God’s command to pray and to ask Him everything we need. Here’s what Dessa Mitchell wrote:

“The topic I will be talking about today is the Lord's Prayer. You may be wondering what is the point of saying a prayer like he is gonna hear it or answer you back. But it means so much more than you think. So I will be telling you what it means to me.

To start it off : “Our Father who art in heaven hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” What it means to me is: That you can ask God anything at any time, day or night, and to always worship him and honor his name on earth and heaven.

Next up is: “Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our tresspasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.” What it means to me is: That you need both food and water to survive properly but that is not yet close to all you need; you also need to have forgiveness to be able to live with people.

Lastly is: “And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.” What it means to me is: That you ask God to take you away from evil and take you somewhere safe and away from it completely. It also means he has the power and the glory to take you somewhere safe. He also has the power over everything else to guiding us to follow on the path Jesus had made in his righteousness he molded for us.”

              Yes, he has the power and the glory to make you safe. Even when the world is crumbling apart around you, the Father keeps you safe in Christ right inside His love. A life of prayer reflects this certainty and confidence in the Lord.


Cc -         “I am baptized.”

        “Our Father in Heaven.”

        Identity and belonging. Baptism and prayer. Those are two powerful foundations for your life in faith. As you go in the world, you will be invited to find your identity in other things: money, possessions, social class, gender, career and many more. In the world you will be told that “thoughts and prayers” are disposable since the imaginary friend up there can’t hear anything. This is part of “being hated”, or at least “softly mocked” in our world. Don’t give up. Persevere. Confirmation day reassures you: Jesus, the Son of God, is your Lord. Remember at all times that you are baptized, that your Father hears you always and that faith is not just for today, but is for tomorrow. The life that started in your conception, and then started again in your Baptism will never end.