The 500th Anniversary of the Reformation 1517-2017


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Pastor Ludwig serves in Novosibirsk, Siberia, Russia at the Lutheran Seminary





Encouragement for Today: Getting More than We Can Ask

Concordia and Koinonia

Today’s Daily Lectionary New Testament reading is St.Matthew 8: 1-17 which includes the narrative of the healing of the centurion’s servant.  The Lord exclaims that he had never seen such faith in all of Israel.  St. John Chrysostom has this faithful commentary on this reading:

“…though (the centurion) has such great faith, he still accounted himself to be unworthy.  Christ, however, signifying that the centurion was worthy to have Him enter into his house, did much greater things, marveling at him and acclaiming him and given him more than he had asked.  For he came indeed seeking for his servant bodily healing, but went away, having received a kingdom…and not by this alone did He honor him, but also by indicating upon whose casting out he is brought in.  For now from this time forth, Christ proceeds to make known that salvation is by faith, not by works of…

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What Keeps Mormons Enslaved to Mormonism?

Life After Ministry

Ephesians 6:11-12; “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

A few days ago a friend suggested we write about the slavery of Mormonism. Specifically, she wanted to know what things in Mormonism kept Mormon people enslaved to their religious convictions.

My default answer on anything like this are the two verses listed above. Of course, there’s always more to the story as they say, but ultimately it’s Satan.

In answer to her request the articles I’ve written since that time are my answer. The order listed below is totally random, meaning one doesn’t take precedence over another.

Here’s a synopsis of what Melissa and I have posted going…

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A Primer We Need


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Concordia and Koinonia

Today’s appointed New Testament reading in the Daily Lectionary is the “Love Chapter”, 1 Corinthians 13:

13 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogantor rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.


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The Terrible Lost State of the Mormon People

Life After Ministry

As my good friend, Ed Decker, and I were talking yesterday via e-mail, he told me about the dreams he keeps having lately, and asked me if he could use something on our site in an article about his experience.

In light of all that, we’re posting the thoughts he jotted down to share with readers of what God has placed on his heart lately. This is definitely something you don’t want to miss. Not only is it an eye-opener, but it’s heart wrenching as well.

Also, be sure to check out his site at, where you’ll find this article and other news! And yes, he has another book at the publisher we’re excitedly anticipating! As a friendly reminder, Saints Alive is always grateful for everyone’s prayer, and financial support!

The Terrible Lost State of the Mormon People

They are without hope in Christ.

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Lutheran Confessional Quotes of the Day on St. Matthew 11: 28

Concordia and Koinonia

“…faith is conceived and strengthened through Absolution, through the hearing of the Gospel, through the use of the Sacraments, so that it may not give in to the terrors of sin and death while it struggles. This method of repentance is plain and clear. It increases the worth of the Power of the Keys and of the Sacraments. It illumines Christ’s benefit and teaches us to make use of Christ as Mediator and the Atoning Sacrifice…Christ says, “Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). Here there are two parts. The “labor” and the burden signify the contrition, anxiety, and terrors of sin and death. To “come to” Christ is to believe that sins are forgiven for Christ’s sake. When we believe, our hearts are brought to life by the Holy Spirit through Christ’s Word. Here, therefore, are these two…

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“Doggy Doors”


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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries
By Pastor Ken Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour


“Doggy Doors”
July 1, 2017
James 1:14-15 – But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
Ask around and the experts will tell you about the greatest fights in history. In the top 10, most would likely list the “Thrilla in Manila” between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. Others would mention the 1952 battle between Rocky Marciano and Jersey Joe Walcott. That battle was won by Marciano who finished his career undefeated.

Truly, those were epic contests, but they were mere skirmishes when compared to the 2016 battle waged by “Boone the boxer.” Before I go further, allow me to share that Boone the boxer is a dog owned by the Scott Gray family of Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Dog or no, right before Halloween last year, Boone got himself into a prime-time fight. And if you’re wondering how this battle began, I can tell you: the Gray’s house has a dog door to make Boone’s comings and goings more convenient.

Unfortunately, that dog door can be used by other animals — other animals like skunks, for example.

The Grays were not at home the night an uninvited skunk came in through the doggy door. A few hours later when the family returned, Boone and the skunk were still at it. Mr. Gray managed to corner the skunk in a bedroom and have it removed by the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

Experts were called in to tell how the Grays might restore their home to pre-fight conditions.

What the experts said was this: get rid of your clothes; toss your furniture; tear the sheet rock off its studs, and begin over. The insurance company agreed that doing those things would be the way for the Gray family to proceed. Oh, the insurance company also said something else, something like “While we feel sorry for you, and deeply regret what has happened to your home, you should know your homeowner’s policy does not cover your domicile for damages done by skunks that gained entrance through a doggy door left open.”

As this devotion is written, the Grays have shelled out $70,000 and they estimate they will spend another $50,000 before they are done reclaiming their home.

Now there ought to be a devotional point to this sad story — and there is. The point is we need to watch what comes into the homes of our hearts.

James talks about the process of how a sin begins in a simple way. It all starts when a heart which ought to be owned by the Lord has been built with a doggy door. It doesn’t take too long before an unchristian temptation saunters in. Left unchecked, that desire will grow and become a sin which, as James says, “brings forth death.”

Now, unlike the Gray family, we do have good news for those who find their hearts have been befouled by sin. We have a Savior who can, for people of faith, remove that sin and set things straight. Scripture is clear: if we confess our sins, the Lord wall forgive us our sins. But, the Bible tells us God’s people are smart if they don’t leave open a doggy door for sin, in the first place.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, grant me the faith and the wisdom to stop sin before it starts. Keep my heart dedicated to giving thanks for the Savior who has done all to win my forgiveness and salvation. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.

The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by Adalberto Toledo for the Pittsburgh Post Gazette on June 6, 2017.


In Christ I remain His servant and yours,

Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
Lutheran Hour Ministries


Today’s Bible in a Year Reading: Ecclesiastes 10-12; Acts 10:24


Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin!  Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int’l LLL (LHM).


“Empty “




Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries


“Empty “

May 30, 2017

Colossians 2:8 – See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

My mother used to say that every day a person ought to learn something. Now that “something” doesn’t have to be a big something; it just should be something. Today I am pleased that I have learned the definition of a term — a term I had never heard being used before. Now, if you haven’t yet managed to learn something today, let me share that knowledge with you.

The term is “slack fill.” Would you like to take a guess as to what slack fill means?

No, it has nothing to do with a pair of jeans which, having been washed in hot water and thrown in the dryer, are overly tight.

Slack fill is the term various industries use to explain why their big boxes of stuff are only half-filled with product. Did you ever buy a box of breakfast cereal and, having opened it, found you needed a flashlight to see where the contents began? That’s slack fill in action. Manufacturers say slack fill happens two ways: it can happen accidentally when the product settles, or it happens deliberately because a product needs room to breathe.

No matter how you look at it, slack fill means you have more container than product.

This is a fact not lost on a Missouri man who is suing Hershey’s Chocolate for the small amount of candy he received when he bought a box of Reese’s Pieces and Whoppers. The man, Robert Bratton, says his Reese’s® Piece’s box had about 29 percent empty space, and the Whoppers had a, well, there’s no other way to say it — it had a whopping 41 percent of empty.

As of right now, nobody knows what the outcome of the suit will be. Hershey’s wants legalities to cease immediately since everybody understands the idea of slack fill, and the amounts of candy are printed on the box. Mr. Bratton says that everybody does not understand slack fill, and he wants the court to decide how much empty carton is too much empty carton.

I’m sure the court will eventually decide those differences. Sadly, there is no earthly court with the authority — or ability — to rule on the differences between the Lord’s truth and Satan’s slack fill.

When the devil tempted Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, his promises were slack filled. He promised they would be just like God, that they would be just as smart as God, that the Lord’s warnings about the forbidden fruit were ridiculous and could be discarded without any negative repercussions or ramifications.

It was a fancy package that Adam and Eve bought. In doing so they bought a fancy package that failed to deliver on its promises and enticements.

In contrast, we have the words of the Faithful, Holy Lord. What He says is — you should excuse the expression — the Gospel truth. When He says, the soul which sins will die (see Ezekiel 18:20), you can believe it. When He says faith in the Savior is the only path to heaven, you had better trust Him. Maybe that’s why the Bible says, “Thy Word is truth” (see John 17:17) rather than “The Bible is slack full.”

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, it is one thing to be deceived by half-full boxes; it is quite another to buy into Satan’s pseudo-truths. Let my faith always be placed in and centered on the Savior whose life was spent taking away the sins of the world. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.

The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by Michael Hartorne for Newser on May 20, 2017. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link, which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written. Please click here.