Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What, not How

I love the note for Article X of the Augsburg Confession in A Reader's Edition of the Book of Concord. It pretty much says it all:

Note: By the time the Augsburg Confession was written, deep divisions had arisen among the various reformers concerning the Lord’s Supper. The Lutherans were very careful to distance themselves from those who reject that the body and blood of Christ are in fact truly present in His Supper and distributed to all those who eat and drink. Transubstantiation, consubstantiation, or any other human speculation asks the wrong question: how is Christ present? Lutheranism has no theory or philosophical explanation of how Christ is present. Rather, Lutherans insist on answering the what of the Lord’s Supper. We believe, teach, and confess that of the bread, Christ said, “This is My body,” and of the wine, “This is My blood.” These are given and shed “for the forgiveness of sins” (Matthew 26:26–28). We reject any teaching that is contrary to our Lord’s Word.

Concordia: The Lutheran Confessions. 2005 (Edited by Paul Timothy McCain) (35). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.

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