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Welcome

Welcome to the homepage of Martin Luther Church!
 
We are a Bible-based Christian Church located in Neenah, WI, and we would love to share what we have with you! 
 
Members, you can use this site to find all the latest news and information on what's going on at church. 
 
If you're not a member, feel free to look around anywhere you'd like, but you might want to start here.  Please let us know if there is ever any way we can serve you!
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We are a member of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS).  For more information about our Synod, click here
Today's Devotion
Through My Bible In 3 Years
Faith Related Q and A
I was (am) of the belief that Adam (Eve) was the only one with the option of free will. I was told recently that once a person comes to faith they now have free will. Is that true?

Ever since the fall into sin in Eden, the free will that people have is limited to making decisions about their earthly lives. So, people choose to marry or remain single, enter into this or that vocation, live in a certain area, etc. Of course, when it comes to making decisions like those, people may not always be able to follow through on what they would like to see happen in their lives. After the fall into sin, people by nature can choose only evil in the spiritual realm. “The sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so” (Romans 8:7). The inclination of the heart is only evil by nature (Genesis 6:5; 8:21). This certainly means that no one can choose to believe in God. Romans 8:7 explains that people do not want anything to do with God in the first place. Then, when we add passages like 1 Corinthians 2:14, Ephesians 2:1 and Colossians 2:13, we understand that even if we wanted to choose to believe in Jesus we could not do that because we were spiritually blind and dead by nature. All we could do was sin and reject God. Thanks be to God that he sent his Holy Spirit into our hearts to join us to Jesus so we could personally enjoy the forgiveness of sins he won for all people. As Christians we now have a new self that desires to live life God’s way (Ephesians 4:24). As a child of God, my will is much different than before my conversion. Now my new self wants to use the means of grace to strengthen my faith; now I want to follow God’s law as a tangible way of showing my thankfulness to him for my salvation in Jesus his Son. However, even when I, as a child of God, want to do those things in life that are good and godly, I recognize that it is God working in me: “It is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” (Philippians 2:13).

What is the role of the 10 Commandments for WELS Lutherans? For New Testament Christians? Does the WELS agree with Paul?

A starting point to your questions is that the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20; Deuteronomy 5) are part of the Mosaic Law that God gave to his Old Testament people of Israel. The Mosaic Law had limited purpose and duration. Its obligations ended when Jesus Christ came into our world as the fulfilment of all the prophecies of the Messiah. We can see from the Mosaic Law wording of the third commandment (“Sabbath day”) and the fourth commandment (reference to the Promised Land) that not all the content of the Ten Commandments applies to New Testament followers of the Lord. So, how do Christians view the Ten Commandments? We rightly regard them as a summary of God’s moral law: his will for all people of all time. We do see Jesus (Luke 18:20) and the apostle Paul (Romans 13:9) restating some of the commandments in a different order from the Old Testament listing. (I am thinking this was your reference to the apostle Paul.) Presenting the commandments in that way illustrates how we, as New Testament Christians, are free from the Mosaic Law wording of the Ten Commandments and yet look to the Ten Commandments as a summary of God’s will for our lives. As a mirror, the Ten Commandments show us God’s demands for holy living and our failure to live up to those demands. As a rule or guide, the Ten Commandments lay out for us tangible ways in which we can express our gratitude to God for our forgiveness of sins. Jesus kept the law perfectly for us (Romans 5:19; 10:4; Galatians 4:4-5) and paid the penalty we deserved for not keeping God’s law perfectly (Isaiah 53:6; Galatians 3:13; 1 Peter 2:24). “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).