What Does It Mean To Be Lutheran?
The basis of all Lutheran teachings is the Bible. Martin Luther and the other reformers wrote a series of documents answering accusations that their teaching was contrary to commonly held beliefs and practices of the 15th century church. These defences and arguments, based upon the Bible, were presented before a series of theological gatherings. Eventually, they were compiled into The Book of Concord. These comprise the doctrine and confession of the Lutheran Church.
The only authority and basis for the Christian faith, teaching and life is the inspired, inerrant and infallible Word of God – the Bible; that is, the prophetic and apostolic Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments.
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16).
“Sanctify them in the truth; Your Word is truth” (John 17:17).
The Bible and, as such, the Christian faith, is about Jesus Christ who alone is “the way, and the truth, and the life” (John 14:6); and as He Himself says, “You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about Me” (John 5:39).
“These are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:31).
“You have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:15).
The chief articles or main teachings of the Christian faith are compiled in the Lutheran Confessions or Book of Concord of 1580 to which all pastors and congregations of Lutheran Church–Canada subscribe because they are drawn from and based on the Holy Scriptures.