As Lutherans, we believe that all people are born alienated and separated from God, the Source of true life, joy, and peace. Even worse, we are helpless to do anything about our fallen condition!
Yet, through God’s fully undeserved love, He has shown compassion to us. God the Father sent His Son to take on our flesh and blood, to win forgiveness of sins for all people, and to give us a share in His own divine nature.
Jesus Christ won this forgiveness of sins for all people by His life of perfect love and by His suffering and death on the cross. His resurrection was God the Father’s public proclamation that He accepted His Son’s sacrifice of love for all.
God gives the salvation that Jesus Christ won for all on the Cross through His specially appointed ways, through which the Holy Spirit is promised to be at work. These are the preached Word and the Sacraments, that is, Holy Baptism, Holy Absolution, and the Lord’s Supper. Through these, God is at work, providing and strengthening faith to accept the joyful salvation our God there gives.
This salvation is the cause of endless joy for believers. It reveals the heart of God toward them and the assurance that it gives. It shows a loving heavenly Father, an eternal home, a place at our Father’s table for all eternity, the healing of all earthly sorrows, and a joyful reunion with all believers with God in eternity.
Our gracious and loving God wants all people to have a share in this joy. He is grieved when people refuse and reject His lavish gift of salvation. When people do so, they relegate themselves to unspeakable eternity, not benefiting from what Jesus Christ did from them in His perfect life, suffering, death, resurrection, and ascension.