Word of the Month

The Lord lives!

April 2010

In his later years, Martin Luther was often disillusioned and quite burdened as a result. He was sad about certain developments that had taken a different course than he had hoped they would. Katharina, his wife, saw this and tried to help him. She remembered that in earlier years Martin used to write the Latin word “Vivit!” (which means “He lives!”) on the table with chalk. He used to justify himself by saying: “Jesus lives, and if He did not live, I would not desire to live even another hour. It is only because He lives that we too will live through Him, as He Himself said: ‘Because I live, you will live also’” (cf. John 14: 9).

It was then that Katharina hit upon an idea. She asked a stonemason to carve a single Latin word above their door: “Vivit!” Everyone who entered the house was reminded: “The Lord lives!”

This is something I would also like to write over the doors of our hearts: He lives! Jesus Christ lives! When we are burdened and when certain things do not turn out as we had hoped, then let us remember: He lives! He knows about everything and will not abandon us. What comfort lies in these simple words: He lives! That is the presence of God. That is strength from on high – and it is still active today. May the power of God fill our hearts so that we can be a source of blessing and help to others!

One glance into the time in which we live will suffice to show the influences to which we are exposed on a daily basis. They will not stop at our heart’s door but will seek to push their way in. That is why it is so important not to be indifferent toward the events of Easter. This knowledge must remain alive within us: the Lord has gained the victory over death and hell, and when He returns, the victorious power of the Son of God will be revealed.

Happy are those who then are permitted to share in His victorious power!

The events associated with Easter are so aptly summarised by Apostle Paul in the letter to the Corinthians: “And God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power” (1 Corinthians 6: 14). That is a clear and precise description of our future.

We will be transformed when the Lord returns. Our body will then be like the glorified body of the Lord, and we will have eternal fellowship with the triune God. This glad Easter message is summarised here in a single sentence: “God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power!” We will share in the victory of the Son of God over death!

(From a divine service by the Chief Apostle)