Read: Psalm 51
The First Part - Of The Misery Of Man
Lord’s Day 2
Question 3. Whence knowest thou thy misery?
- Answer. Out of the law of[a]
Question 4. What doth the law of God require of us?
Answer. Christ teaches us that briefly, Matt. 22:37-40, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength. [b] This is the first and the great commandment; and the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."
Question 5. Canst thou keep all these things perfectly?
Answer. In no wise; [c] for I am prone by nature to hate God and my neighbor. [d]
[a]: Rom. 3:20
[b]: Luke 10:27
[c]: Rom. 3:10; 1John 1:8
[d]: Rom. 8:7, Tit. 3:3
Lord’s Day 1 ended with the question of how we are to gain for ourselves this wonderful comfort that brings us peace and happiness in our life, in death and forever. We were told that the attainment of this comfort involves knowledge. Comfort is not some sort of wishy-washy feeling that creeps up on us from we know not where. True comfort is the result of knowing some things.
Our teachers in whose classroom we are to learn about our comfort have lessons to teach us, and we must learn our lessons. There are, says our teacher, three things that are absolutely essential to know before we can really have that wonderful comfort which our souls crave.
The three things we have to know are very surprising things. We would never have thought that our lessons in comfort would include that kind of knowledge that the HC says we need.
Those three things are, you will recall: One, the knowledge of how great our sins and miseries are. Two, how we are delivered from our sins and miseries. Three how we are to be thankful to God for deliverance from sins and miseries.
And so the HC is divided into three sections, each section teaching us what is meant by these three things we need to know. The first section tells us about our sins (LDs 2 – 4). The second section teaches us about our deliverance through Christ’s work (LDs 5 – 31). This section is the longest by far. And the third section deals with how we show our thankfulness to God (LDs 32 – 52). It explains the ten commandments and the Lord’s Prayer, because we show how thankful we are for our deliverance from sin by keeping God’s law and by praying.
The emphasis throughout is on the sovereignty of God in the work of salvation. This emphasis compels the Catechism to deal with some crucially important doctrines, and also compels the Catechism to include questions and answers that show the errors of some Roman Catholic teachings and some Lutheran teachings.
In this way, the HC calls the confessing Christian to an antithetical life in his calling to hold fast to the truth: he must reject wrong doctrine and he must hold fast to the truth.
So, let us begin our study of the lessons we are to learn. We really want comfort in our lives. We want comfort more than anything else. So, under the guidance of our teachers, let us set about learning our lessons.
Prof. Herman Hanko (Wife: Wilma)
Ordained: October 1955
Pastorates: Hope, Walker, MI - 1955; Doon, IA - 1963; Professor to the Protestant Reformed Seminary - 1965
Emeritus: 2001Website: www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?speakeronly=true&currsection=sermonsspeaker&keyword=Prof._Herman_Hanko
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