Word of the Month

Profession of faith

October 1998

"Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)" (Hebrews 10:23)

What is the profession of our faith and what is our hope directed at? Towards redemption, through the supreme sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and the promised return of the Lord! May this hope be so strong that it carries us to the goal of our faith, right up to that moment when we will see God as he is.

Noah, who faithfully and with a God fearing heart, did everything that the Lord commanded him, was saved. His salvation was great, but yet it was not redemption. The prophet Elijah experienced a wonderful answer to his prayer when he was in quarrel with the priests of Baal, yet this also was not redemption. It was Jesus Christ, by his death and sacrifice at the cross, who took onto himself all the debts and sins of mankind and thereby, through his victory over hell and death, brought redemption to all. In every divine service we are offered grace, forgiveness and redemption; when we receive this with due respect, we profess our faith.

The assurance that Jesus Christ will return is a second corner stone of our hope. The Son of God promised: "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also." (John 14:3). We hold fast to this promise and do not waver in our hope. Where one has the profession of faith in ones heart, based on the fact of the redemption through Christ and the assurance of his promised return, one will not waver. Not to waver also means to continue steadfastly, like our brothers and sisters did in the first time; testimony to this can be found in the Acts: "And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers." (Acts 2:42).

Let us have our hope strengthened time and again by the faithful taking in of the spirit inspired word revealed at the altar and by the effect of the sacraments, "for he is faithful that promised" (Hebrews 10:23). This is none other than the Son of God, who has been described in Revelation as the "faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead" (cf. Revelation 1:5). He will complete his work, no one can hinder or stop him. It is he, who helps us to reach the goal of our faith.

Most sincerely,<br/>

Richard Fehr