Within these walls we speak the ancient creed;
One Spirit, one conviction: “We believe.”
We stand with saints of every time and place:
Our voices echo centuries of faith.*
By MLC President Mark Zarling WLS ’80
“I believe.” Every Sunday the gathering of believers rises to publicly confess the truth of the one saving faith. The language might be English or Mandarin, German or Tonga, Swedish or Japanese. All over the globe, in gatherings large and small, people unite their voices to confess: “I believe in God the Father Almighty.”
In one such gathering, an octogenarian might struggle to keep pace with the rapid recitation of the creed. Though weak in voice and weak in the knees, his heart still beats firmly in the saving faith that Jesus is Savior Lord.
A few pews back, a toddler is straining against Dad’s arm. Yet a few words come from her mouth as well: “And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord.”
On the other side of church, a rabid sports fan thinks of the kickoff in another hour, but then his concentration is called back as he recites: “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Christian Church.”
Week after week, in places and languages all over the globe, a miracle occurs. People young and old raise a refrain of faith, joining Abraham and Moses, Paul and Peter, Luther and Chemnitz, in confessing the existence of the one and only Lord.
Week after week, the Holy Spirit continues to build up believers in Christ through the gospel of salvation.
With the apostle we ponder this up-building of the Holy Christian Church throughout time and place. We can be confident that this church stands firm and secure. It will not crumble or crack. It will not be bulldozed over by the trends of the time nor the temptations of the trendy. The church stands secure now and until the trumpet sounds forth, because it is built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord (Ephesians 2:20-21).
We marvel that God uses us sinners as workers with the Word for the Spirit’s construction efforts upon precious souls. Please pray with me that God richly bless the preparation of future workers at Martin Luther College, that always here “our voices echo centuries of faith.”
* From “Within These Walls” by Laurie F. Gauger DMLC ’87