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When You Gather in My Name

August 07, 2018
By Martin Luther

Praise is due to You, O God, in Zion. . . . O You who hear prayer, to You shall all flesh come.

 PSALM 65:1-2

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When You Gather in My Name

Psalm 65 calls Him a "hearer of prayer" because our Lord God's proper work is to hear prayers and help those who cry to Him. Therefore, it says, 'All flesh shall come to You." No other house in the world had borne the name "a house of prayer," except for the temple in Jerusalem. If anyone lived far from Jerusalem or was unable to travel there quickly, he knelt down and simply faced the temple and made his prayer toward Jerusalem [cf. Daniel 6:10]. . . But the true Church has been established for prayer. We also have here in Wittenberg our temple, where we gather to hear Christ's Word, receive Baptism, the Supper, and Absolution. And Christ Himself is also here, as He says in chapter 18 [:20] of Matthew: "Wherever two or three are gathered in My name, there I am in the midst of them." And the Lord Christ should be sought nowhere except where such a group gathers, where the Gospel is preached purely, and where people have the Sacraments and the power of the Keys in the proper understanding and practice. Then it is certain that Christ is there. Apart from that, He has no certain place or location. This is true, for the temple is now as wide as the world. For the Word is being preached and the Sacraments are being administered everywhere.

From Sermons on Matthew 18-24 (Luther's Works 68:88, 93)

August 7

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