The Christian Faith:

A Lutheran Exposition

Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church

Palo Alto, California

OUTLINE

1: Introduction

What is this all about?

We begin by describing the purpose and goals of the eight-week course.

2: Where Do I Begin?

How Do I Know What I Know?

Man, the Measure of What?

This delves into the issues of foundations for belief and practice, e.g., how all-encompassing is the use of reason? Does the Christian faith shun reason and science?

3: Houston, We’ve Still Got a Problem

Failure and Futility & Sound and Fury (Sin)

Why are “wrongs” called sin? What do are failures reveal about ourselves?

death and Death

The questions of mortality, life after death, and judgment are addressed.

Is Someone Out to Get Me? (Evil)

What else might be “out there” What causes these deep-seated problems in and for humanity?

4: Everybody Has A Story

Besides the story that our eyes see and ears hear and which we seem compelled to read and be part of, Christians read and participate in another story …

Prologue (Jesus Christ; Bible)

The Plot Thickens (Law and Gospel)

The Hero (Plan of Salvation)

5: Who Do You Say Jesus Is?

Jesus of Nazareth (The Proclamation of Jesus)

More than idea … More than an historical figure …

The Holy Spirit and other spirits (Conversion and Holiness)

Can a heart / will of a person be changed? How does it happen?

6: Hypocrites, Institutions, Sinners, and Gathering Together (Church)

Gathering with Those I Might Not Like (Visible Church)

Here is addressed what we commonly call “church,” people we see and physically gather with

Brothers and Sisters (Hidden Church)

Yet what binds Christians together is not being in the same place but faith “hidden” in the heart, which cannot be seen

Is Anybody Listening? (Prayer)

I Like to Sleep In (Corporate Worship)

What really happens when Christians gather?

7: Where Do I End?

The Last Things & The New Beginning

What about that other place—supposedly ruled by a figure with horns, pointy tail, and a pitchfork? Is “eternity” about floating on clouds and strumming harps?

8: What Happens before the End?

Life in a Christian Congregation

Do Christians have “regular” lives? Besides gathering to sing and listen to the Bible, are there other aspects of a congregation?

Appendices