God’s Word: in the Divine Service, in our home devotions, and in our hearts.
Gathering around the Family Altar
The Hausvater Project presents:
- “Have You Built a Family Altar?,” by Dr. Ryan MacPherson
- “Constructing a Family Altar Board,” by Mrs. Marie MacPherson
- Part 11 in Pastor Jonathan Conner’s series on the Divine Service
Have You Built a Family Altar?
By Ryan MacPherson
Every family has an altar—the questions are: To which god? and, How often is it used?
After the Flood, Noah built and altar to the Lord (Genesis 8:20). So did Abraham (Genesis 12:7), Isaac (Genesis 26:25), and Jacob (Genesis 33:20). Moses (Exodus 17:15), Joshua (Joshua 8:30), Gideon (Judges 6:24), Samuel (1 Samuel 7:17), and David (2 Samuel 24:25) built altars to the Lord as well. In the Books of 1 and 2 Kings, and in the writings of the prophets who ministered during that time, God repeatedly commanded that altars to false gods be torn down. After times of idolatry, the altars to the true God had to be rebuilt.
Have you torn down the altars in your home devoted to false gods? Have you built an altar to the true God? Would a visitor to your home recognize that you have a family altar? Will your children’s memories of the childhood you now are building for them be centered around the family altar?
Click to Continue Reading: http://www.hausvater.org/articles/354
Constructing a Family Altar Board
By Marie MacPherson
We use a 2' by 3' white board, which we have drawn on with both permanent and dry-erase markers. All of the boxes and labels are permanent, as is the cyclical church calendar. Then, each week, we update the pertinent information with a dry-erase marker. In the center, there is an erasable message or a simple picture drawn representing something in the church year or from our devotion.
There are 4 basic areas:
- Divine Service Summary (top left)
- Church Calendar (top right)
- Christian Virtue (bottom left)
- Home Devotions (bottom right)
It's a very simple idea which has grown into a powerful family tradition.
Each Sunday after church, our family sits down to summarize and discuss our church service and our plans for spiritual discipleship for the week.
Click to Continue Reading: http://www.hausvater.org/articles/353
The Divine Service, Part 11: Receiving the Lord’s Supper
By Jonathan Conner
Upon receiving the body and blood of Christ it is appropriate for worshipers to cross themselves in the Name of the Triune God. ... “Why make the sign of the cross?” is the first question thinking Christians typically ask in response. In brief, we cross ourselves A) to remember our baptism where we are joined to Christ’s cross and burial with the promise of being joined to His resurrection, B) to remember the cross of discipleship that we joyfully bear daily, and C) to acknowledge the centrality of Christ’s cross to the Christian Faith.
Throughout the Divine Service worshipers are invited to make the sign of the cross:
- during the Invocation
- after the Absolution
- at the conclusion of the Creed
- during the Words of Institution
- during the reception of the Lord’s Supper
- during the Benediction
Perhaps the most evident signing of the cross is during the celebration of Holy Baptism. The pastor, while making the sign of the cross over the baptismal candidate, says, “Receive the sign of the holy cross both upon your + forehead and upon your + heart to mark you as one redeemed by Christ the crucified.”
Click to Continue Reading: http://www.hausvater.org/articles/346
Forgiveness in Christ: it’s for you and your children. (Acts 2:38-29)
The Hausvater Project seeks to equip Christian men and women for distinctive and complementary vocations in family, church, and society, by fostering research and education in light of Holy Scripture as proclaimed by the Lutheran Confessions.