Pastor Fritz Foltz

Pastor Foltz is Pastor Emeritus of Saint James Lutheran Church in Gettysburg, PA and author of the the Frontline Study content.

Lesson 6: The Lord’s Prayer in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

Lesson 6: The Lord’s Prayer in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

I am going to examine the primary thoughts that appear throughout Luther’s explanation. You can study his treatment of particular petitions here. Perhaps the first thing that jumps out is Luther’s use of justification by grace through faith alone. His treatment of every petition assumes Jesus’ declaration that God knows our needs before we ask […]

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Lesson 5: The Third Article of the Apostles’ Creed in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

Lesson 5: The Third Article of the Apostles’ Creed in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

This is one of the best statements of Luther’s signature theological principle, justification by grace through faith alone. Implications of the doctrine have permeated every other explanation in the Small Catechism. At this place, we get the full effect. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness […]

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Lesson 4: The Second Article of the Apostles’ Creed in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

Lesson 4: The Second Article of the Apostles’ Creed in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

Luther’s explanation is a beautiful short statement of the Gospel. He conveys the unbounded joy associated with this good news by placing it in the context of an individual hearing it for the first time. All seems to have been done “for me.” There is pure relief that everything is going to be all right. […]

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Lesson 3: The First Article of the Apostles’ Creed in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

Lesson 3: The First Article of the Apostles’ Creed in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism

Luther’s explanation of the Creed’s first article is another classic. He uses everyday language to interpret creation as God’s ongoing action to provide for all our needs, protect us from all dangers, and preserve us through all changes. This is far from the deism most of our contemporaries associate with creation in which God sets […]

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Lesson 2: The Ten Commandments in Luther’s Small Catechism

Lesson 2: The Ten Commandments in Luther’s Small Catechism

I do not intend to examine every part of the catechism. You can do that yourself here. Instead, I shall highlight some of the more important parts of Luther’s explanations, especially emphasizing some of his distinctive insights. He numbered the commandments just as he was taught in the Catholic Church. The first three included those […]

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Lesson 1: The First Commandment in Luther’s Small Catechism

Lesson 1: The First Commandment in Luther’s Small Catechism

Being that this is the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s posting the 95 Theses Against Indulgences, I plan to offer two series on the reformer this fall. The second will expand on a lecture I am giving at La Roche College on November 1, 2017. It suggests that the Lutheran and Roman Catholic narratives these […]

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Lesson 15: An Advent Sermon Reflecting Revelation Teachings

Lesson 15: An Advent Sermon Reflecting Revelation Teachings

I preached this sermon the Sunday after one of the first major terrorist attacks in Europe. I was attempting to place this in the context of the Advent theme focusing on Jesus’ Second Coming. The sermon also incorporated the baptisms being celebrated that day. Let’s start with an old trivial pursuit question, “What do angels […]

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Lesson 14:  Gettysburg and Revelation

Lesson 14: Gettysburg and Revelation

One of the questions Revelation raises is, “For what should we give our lives?” Martyrdom is a primary feature from the beginning to the end of the book. The Apostle warns dying for the Pax Romana serves evil. Even though the empire claims to be founded on law, it really depends upon the military suppressing […]

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Lesson 13: Reasons for Reading Revelation (Part 2)

Lesson 13: Reasons for Reading Revelation (Part 2)

Let me continue mentioning reasons I find important for reading John’s Apocalypse. Close after the Prophet’s broadening our concept of church-state relationships and narrowing our definition of the Christian community, I would place enhancing our understanding of prophecy. A good half of the Old Testament books are the prophets. Obviously, prophecy makes up a great […]

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Lesson 12: Reasons for Reading Revelation (Part 1)

Lesson 12: Reasons for Reading Revelation (Part 1)

For approximately half of my life, I thought we all would be better off if the Church had never included Revelation in the Bible. Then a friend, who became ill, asked me to teach his seminary course. Although he had written a respected commentary, he suggested I do my own research before consulting with him. […]

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