"Faith in an Unknown God"
November 28, 2014
For as I passed along and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, "To the unknown god." What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. Acts 17:23
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.
In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
Lujan is in the city of Buenos Aires where I live. It is also called "the city of faith."
A big basilica was built here many years ago, and it is the destination of many groups who come here on a pilgrimage from many different parts of the country. In late September the gauchos take several days during the rainy season to make their pilgrimage to the basilica. It is a colorful occasion as they bring their horses, carts and others personal objects to be blessed by the Virgin of Luján.
This year's pilgrimage day coincided with the holding of our workshop Equipping the Saints or Cristo Para Todas las Naciones ("Christ for all Nations") at the congregation of Lujan. During that event we remembered how necessary it is to search for the lost and to proclaim the true God to the religious people.
The proclamation of the Savior who gave His life so our forgiveness and salvation might be won is news to many who think their sacrifice or their pilgrimage will win God's good pleasure or defuse His wrath for their sins.
In many ways these people remind us of the folks whom the apostle Pablo met in Athens. Like many people they worshipped a god, but not the true, Triune God.
It is impossible for us to guess just how many such people there are who are making their own special pilgrimages. We do know there are such people all around the world, and we recognize they will continue in their error, until someone shows them the true God of Pablo.
Work righteousness is just one of the many manifestations of a false faith we see around us.
There are others. For example, there are those who put their faith in things which are created, not in the Creator. Then there are those who feel they can desert the God of Scripture and invent one made in their own image.
Now the necessity of human beings to believe and trust in a superior being is evident.
But how painful it is to see that many people fill this necessity with a creation of their own, which has been twisted to meet their own evil and selfish trends. Such people seldom hear the real Word of God and when they do, it has been distorted in such a way and to such a degree they cannot truly see the Lord and His love, which saves us by grace alone.
All of this is a reminder to those of us who have the true Gospel.
God has placed us into the world at this particular time and place. Using Word and Sacrament, this is our time to share the story of salvation with others. For me, that means making a proclamation in Lujan, the city of faith. For you, that mission will be in another location.
But the message we share will be the same: repent, behold and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, who has done all which was needed to save you.
THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus, help us to see our lost neighbor and give us courage and confidence to proclaim You as the only true Savior of humanity. In Your Name we ask it. Amen.
Biography of Author: Today's international devotion was written by Pastor Hector José Fester. Pastor Fester was born March 12, 1969, and is married to Mariel Emilce Lange. He and his wife have two children: Josué and Eliana. Pastor Fester is a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Argentina and serves the congregation in Luján, Buenos Aires. He also serves as chaplain for the Lutheran Hour Ministries office in Argentina.
Established in Buenos Aires in 1947, LHM-Argentina (known in-country as Fundacion Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones) connects with communities in many ways. This ministry center works closely with the Lutheran Church of Argentina (IELA), along with its seminary and congregations. It does this through a joint mission program. Using LHM's Equipping the Saints (ETS), Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC), Project JOEL (a youth outreach program), print media, radio broadcasts, text messaging, and the Internet, it shares the Gospel and empowers believers in this South American country of 42 million people. This ministry center also works closely with the Lutheran Church of Argentina (IELA) and its seminary and congregations via a joint mission program.
You can click here to visit its blog and read about the Lutheran Ladies League from a congregation in Maschwitz and its recent visit to an area nursing home.
To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhmint.org.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries