Posted on February 2nd, 2018
The Praesidium of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (Synod President and Vice-Presidents) collaborated on a book centered around Christ’s promise to His Church that the gates of hell would not prevail against her. The Gates of Hell: Confessing Christ in a Hostile World contains the sermons and essays of the Praesidium from the 2016 LCMS Convention, plus new chapters on the religion of sex (Scott Murray), Luther and the two kingdoms (Matthew Harrison), the status of the church in western society (John Wohlrabe), defying the devil in international mission work (Daniel Preus), the table of the Lord (Christopher Esget), the urgency of preaching (Nabil Nour), and defending against the gates of hell (Herbert Mueller). As general editor Scott Murray observes in the introduction, our outlook as the leaders of the LCMS is one of profound optimism. Now is not the time to despair! This book confesses our united confidence that Jesus Christ remains Lord of His Church, and He will never leave us or forsake us.
Here is a sample from my chapter on the Lord’s Supper:
[When we sing the Nunc Dimittis after Communion,] We are singing with Simeon that Jesus is our true peace offering, and we are now ready to die. God has fulfilled His promises in Jesus. He is salvation for Gentiles and Israelites. When the gates of hell pour forth death, we who have been comforted at the Table of the Lord see it for what Jesus has made it by the power of His resurrection: a portal to paradise, where we await our own resurrection in the body in the life of the world to come.