Aug. 29, 2006

I Cor. 16:9  “For a wide door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many adversaries.”

Thumbnail Sketches – I Peter
Do you want to find out about suffering? First of all go to the end of the four Gospels and see it in our suffering Servant, Jesus Christ. Secondly, go to this epistle. Words for suffering are used fifteen times in this short letter. Yet it is not a complaining letter. Far from it, “In this you rejoice, though now for a little while you may have to suffer various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold which though perishable is tested by fire, may redound to praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 1:6-7 Peter would have us focus on the end, the second coming of Christ and in the meantime know that suffering will benefit those who suffer for righteousness sake. 3:14 As we live our faith in a pagan and hostile society, we should fully expect to suffer for His sake. If they did what they did to Him, what better could we really expect from the wicked world. In the midst of this He cares for us. 5:6-7 So we willingly suffer for “a little while, The God of all grace…will Himself restore, establish, and strengthen you.” 5:10
I Salutation – 1:1-2
II The Blessings of the Redeemed – 1:3 – 2:10
III The Duties of Believers – 2:11-4:11
IV Constancy in Trial – 4:12-5:11
V Conclusion and Benediction – 5:12-14

Thumbnail Sketches – II Peter
II Peter and Jude have many similarities, both focusing on the judgments that come due to unbelief. In the midst of the warnings comes a glimpse into the heart of God, our loving God. “The Lord is not slow about His promise as some count slowness, but is forbearing toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” 3:9 If you knew that death was close, as Peter states he knows in this letter (1:13-15), what would you say or write? Read Peter and know. And as he says, “…grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 3:18
I Salutation – 1:1-2
II True Knowledge – 1:3-21
III False Teachers – 2:1-22
IV The Second Advent of Christ – 3:1-18

Noting a 300 year anniversary…
“India’s Coral Strand”

Fifth in a Series.

Continued Lutheran Work in the Nineteenth Century

The two most prominent men in the Lutheran/Danish/Halle missionwork in India
after the beginning are Philipp Fabricius, who served for 46 years and
Christian Frederick Schwartz, who served for 48 years. Just down the road
from the hotel that I stay at in Chennai is a school bearing the name of
Fabricius. He labored in the Chennai area until 1788. But Schwartz above all
is the one recorded in mission history for the breadth of his labors. Under
him the Tranquebar mission was at its zenith. Under Schwartz the work
continued throughout Tamil Nadu State: orphanages and charity schools,
preaching and catechizing, patient Indian catechists going from village to
village and from house to house. And that is the way God said to do it. He
sent out the twelve and the seventy to bring the Word to the people.

The next century, the nineteenth, became a century of rampant rationalism
with smarty-pants philosophers and wordly-wise types trying to discard the
Bible and replace it with their tripe. Despite all of this, the nineteenth
century was the century of missions.

In 1847 the Danish/Halle Mission was turned over to the Leipzig Mission
Society.  Formed in 1836, it became the “Aristocrat among Missions” because
of its great objectives and great work. Although Leipzig was mistaken in its
attempt to unite all Lutherans in the missionary enterprize,forgetting the
differences of doctrine that precluded working together, otherwise they had
sound rules. Some of these were: to carry on the work of missions in the
spirit of the Lutheran Church, to give the missionaries a thorough course of
instruction, to adapt the preaching to the needs of the people, to leave the
heathen unmolested in customs not in conflict with the Word of God.


Unfortunately, the Leipzig Society did not improve in its Bible position,
rather it declined. Pastors John Frederick Zucker and Carl Manthey Zorn
withdrew from the Leipzig work in India in 1876. They joined the LC-MS.
President Walther encouraged Pastor Zorn to return to India to work there
under a new arrangement.  But it was not to be, until another two pastors
withdrew from Leipzig nearly twenty years later in 1893. Pastors Theodor
Naether and Franz Mohn withdrew and with them Missouri Synod started work
October 14, 1894 in the southern tip of India. This was the first foreign
field of the Missouri Synod.

General Synod Earlier

The first American Lutheran foreign missionary though was from the other
liberal Lutheran background, John Christian Frederick Heyer in 1842.
‘Father’ Heyer as he was affectionately known in India came from the General
Synod to Guntur at the age of 50, not exactly a spring chicken to begin such
demanding work.  It is exciting to read about this colorful stalwart for
outreach. He worked back and forth from the USA and India until he went for
the last time to Rajahmundry at the age of 77. Remember that this was in
those primitive days of 1870. He labored faithfully for over a year. The
present Andhra Evangelical Lutheran Church which hearkens back to the work
of men like Heyer is the largest Lutheran church in India numbering upwards
of 800,000. This church is centered in the areas of Andhra Pradesh where our
sister church, the CLCI is located. One might think then that we might be in
conflict in villages. Far from it, with over sixty million people in Andhra
Pradesh, most of whom are unconverted, there is ample elbow room to work
without conflicts.

There are many more in other denominations who have worked in India in the
great century of missions.  The Anglican Henry Martyn arrived in India in
1805 and referred to the passage II Cor. 12:15, “I will most gladly spend
and be spent for your souls.”  And sure enough, after ten years of intensive
translation work, he went home to the Lord.  The Anglican Bishop of
Calcutta, who was a gifted composer, died after three years of labor in
1826. But he has left us the fine heritage of his hymns, one of which is the
missions hymn “From Greenland’s Icy Mountains.” A line from this hymn is the
title for this series, “From India’s coral strand.”

Our prayer is still as Heber wrote it:

Waft, waft, ye winds, his story,
And you, ye waters, roll,
Till like a sea of glory
It spreads from pole to pole;
Till o’er our ransomed nature
The Lamb for sinners slain,
Redeemer, King, Creator,
In bliss returns to reign. (TLH 495:4)

–Missionary David Koenig

Upcoming Travel
This is to alert our brothers in our sister churches about my travel plans, God-willing.
India – I arrive in Chennai Sept. 9th and leave Oct. 18th. Our English Pastoral Conference is Sept.27-29. A mission trip to the Andaman Islands is also planned during this time with Pastors D. Paul and Deepak.
Kenya – I arrive in Nairobi Oct. 18th and leave Nov. 19th. During this time we will have our English Pastoral Conference at Etago from Oct. 14th. During the time I will be making arrangements to travel to Uganda and Tanzania working out the details with our brothers in the CLCK, LCEA and CLCEA.
South Africa – I arrive in Johannesburg Nov. 19th and leave Dec. 11th. During this time I will be getting the visa for Congo and traveling there and back. Pastor Povolny will be also going to Congo at the same time. We pray then that he will be able to go to Congo each year replacing me.
Ghana – I arrive in Accra Dec. 11th and leave Lagos Dec. 24th. During this time I will be traveling to: Denu(Ghana), Lome(Togo), and  Efa Anyam(Nigeria).
While I delight to work with our brothers and sisters in Africa, I recognize that there is more time needed there. We are praying that God will give us other volunteers like Pastor Povolny to go to the other of our sister churches with regularity. The Mission Board of the CLC is continuing calling a second foreign missionary to go to India and also travel in Africa for the time being. May we all pray that that call of our God is answered. As of now plans are also in place for Pastors Ohlmann and J. Fleischer to come to work in India beginning Nov. 14th. We thank the Lord for such willing workers. May God raise up even more.

Pastor Koenig