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Monday, June 4, 2018

The Gems Volume Is in Print. The Sermons of Martin Luther, Lenker Edition -
Are Now Complete - Surprise Coming!

Gems Mined from Luther's Sermons is now in print at Amazon. This volume is a collection of the best quotations from all eight volumes. Of course, not all of the best could be included. However, they represent great Biblical insights unequaled today, after the plague of Fuller Seminary chatterboxes.

I will start sendingout  expected volumes today.

No wonder the synodocrats hate Luther.

 Christina E. Jackson

I often read the Lenker edition of Luther’s Sermons to my wife Christina, especially in Columbus. We were constantly struck by the way the Reformer addressed the issues of life and the carcinogens of Fuller’s Church Growth Movement. That pattern turned into a plan to put the best quotations into a database nicknamed Megatron. Four of the eight volumes were filled with inked exclamations about the topic addressed. Many more resources were added from various denominations and programs of Enthusiasm.

Help in research did not begin or end in Columbus. We turned the libraries inside-out in Waterloo Ontario, at Yale Divinity and Yale Medical, at Notre Dame and Augustana, at the Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, and the Vatican owned seminary near her work at an engineering firm. Sometimes I helped her in medical and engineering research, but she always helped in me theological research and publishing.

The decades of enjoyment in reading Luther led to consternation as the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation approached. The old Lenker set was hard to find and expensive. Christina encouraged me to reproduce it in an expensive edition, and the Kindle ebooks will be free. She cheered on the year’s work and helped in editing. The LCMS member who worked on all the volumes kept saying, “This paragraph is a gem!” and marked it. So Virginia Roberts’ exclamations turned into a new version of what Chris and I began together, 30 years ago – these Gems Mined from Luther’s Sermons.

If people wonder why so many books and articles have come from my cramped study, they only need to credit – or blame – Christina, who always encourages more projects and cheers them on. There are many ways to find gems –

Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
Proverbs 31:10-12 KJV

 Anniversary present - a real rose preserved in plastic and edged in gold.

The Surprise!

God willing, there will soon be a another way to have, to hold, and to study Luther's Sermons.

I have asked our finishing editor, the incomparable Janie Sullivan, to stitch together the nine volumes into one PDF. I will post that via Dropbox, so people have a free version to use and share.

Why the all-in-one volume? I found the PDF of Thy Strong Word was quite useful in finding and quoting sources for other books or booklets, especially Making Disciples.

A PDF is portable so it can be read on all digital devices.

The all-in-one can be shared freely. This old geezer is staggered that a set of books can be made available all over the world, simply by posting the DropBox link.

This PDF will help preserve a beautifully illustrated - the only illustrated one - set of Lenker.

Norma A. Boeckler designed all the covers and illustrated all nine volumes. Today she wrote, "I have a large collection for the Gospel of John Commentary."

Wait There's More!

I have asked Janie Sullivan to set the Kindle version of Luther's Sermons (all nine) as FREE for FIVE DAYS. They will go to 99 cents after that. I would keep them free at all times, but Kindle has  a base price of 99 cents.

I will be doing this with all the other books, and there will be a DropBox folder posted for all the free book files (PDFs).

Janie Sullivan finishes each volume for Amazon and Kindle publication.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Breaking News - Volume 8 of Luther's Sermons Is Finished at Amazon. The Gems Mined from Luther's Sermons Will Be Sent Today

When I see this Veterans Honor rose in the garden, I recall the funniest story told by my wife's cousin Peter. He was on KP duty for some reason, but was forced to keep potato peeling and cleaning for an extremely long day. Peter was short and about 110 pounds. The sarge came in and wanted to keep him working hours more. Peter got excited about that and began yelling and waving his little potato knife in the process.

The sarge reported him for attacking him with a knife. When Peter repeated the entire experience to the officer, the man could not help but laugh about Peter being a threat, waving a little potato peeler and yelling in frustration at this big muscular sargeant. Peter was judged innocent, and he had us doubled over in laughter about the whole story.

Publishing is like that, because there may be a jealous someone who wants to make something out of nothing. But nevertheless, the Sermons are done and the Gems are finishing today. Certain events have made me decide to make all the published books free online, although I am not sure about the platform. Q may need to liberate Kindle before this is all done, but there are many, many options for ebooks, including DropBox.

Rest in Peace, Peter Ellenberger, one of five family members born in Europe, but hserved in the US military.

Friday, May 4, 2018

Luther's Sermons - So Far

Volume 6 was tied up for a time by HAL - long story. The color version has been set free.

A Kindle issue is being addressed.

The Gems Mined from the Sermons of Martin Luther volume needs to have pagination added to each quotation - not a big job, really a fun and inspiring task.

Gems - selections from each of the eight volumes, designed to introduce people to Luther's Sermons. This is smaller in size so it will be full color only and Kindle.

Volume 8 is being prepared by Janie Sullivan for Amazon-Kindle.

If someone does not grasp this gem from Luther, he does not understand the Reformer, the Gospel, or the Scriptures.

Anticipated Results

When everything is done, the sermons in black and white will be about $40 TOTAL for all eight volumes - author's price. With sales tax and shipping for the whole set, that might be $60 - 70 or so. Sales tax varies quite a bit.

The Gospel Sermons - Volumes 1-5 - would be about $40 with taxes and shipping. Don't kid yourself, the Epistle Sermons are just as good.

Kindle ebook prices will be a little higher but I may run some specials, which will be noted here.

Gems will be $10-15 (author's price) and a good gift or library addition by itself.

Pastors who get stuck for sermon ideas should turn to Gems, or the complete set of Luther's Sermons, not to ELCA preaching books (yuk!), or Calvin's Commentaries (Why?) or the Pietistic Spoonfuls on Purpose.

 No, we saved a few titles.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Gems Mined from the Sermons of Martin Luther

This is the kernel of the Gospel, in which the nature and character of faith is explained as an assurance of things not seen. It clings alone to the words of God and follows the things that are not seen, as alone conveyed in the word of God, and looks askance at many things which urge it to disbelieve the Word. What nature calls playing the fool, faith calls the true way. Nature may be wise and clever, faith remains nature’s fool and idiot, and thus comes to Christ and finds him. St. Paul’s words, 1 Corinthians 1:25 apply here: “The foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.” For feeling and believing do not get together.
The Sermons of Luther, Epiphany

Volume 8 is being prepared for printing by Janie Sullivan.

Norma Boeckler is illustrating the final volume, Gems Mined from the Sermons of Martin Luther.

Nice, but where's my coffee?

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Thy Strong Word Reviewed - Loved by Laity, Hated by Sect Leaders,
Banned by Marvin Schwan's Logorrhea Journal

 Thy Strong Word is found on Amazon as a printed book,
on Kindle as an e-book. Copies can be ordered at the author's price, too.

Today, someone wrote - There's so much information in the book, it must have taken you years to put it all together. As you said in the preface, the book can be used as a reference source for documentation regarding the efficacy of the Word. 

Thanks for writing it.


Top customer reviews

February 28, 2018
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase

Gregory L Jackson, PhD is a leading figure in confessional Lutheran theology today, the principles of which are found in the writings of Martin Luther and the Lutheran reformers and in the Book of Concord. A key Lutheran doctrine is that the Holy Spirit is an active, vital force which works through the preaching and hearing of the God's Word. God's Word is “quick and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit” Hebrews 4:12.

Dr. Jackson stated his reason for writing this book in the preface:

“I have written Thy Strong Word for one purpose: to teach the Biblical doctrine of the efficacy of the Word and thereby utterly destroy the Church Growth Movement in the Lutheran Church. ... Until recently the efficacy of the Word was taken for granted by all Lutheran, even by the liberals ... Now we have a generation or two of pastors and laity who cannot refute the Reformed errors cunningly promoted by their own synodical leaders and seminary professors.”

Using his decades of experience in teaching and the ministry, Dr Jackson chronicles the erosion of the centrality of the Lutheran confessions in the preaching of the conservative synods (ELS, LCMS, and WELS). He traces the erosion to the influence of rationalism and Reformed doctrine, which caused the synods to turn away from faith in the effectiveness of preaching and teaching God's Word. This goes with the Reformed idea that God's Word needs man's help to be effective.

Rationalism and Reformed doctrine diminished the vitality of the conservative synods beginning in the 20th century and accelerating in the 21st century. The symptoms include declines in membership, infiltration of various false doctrines, and synod hierarchies more interested in prestige and perks than the preaching the Gospel.

Dr Jackson shows how synod leadership reacted not by restoring sound doctrine, but instead by adopting Madison Avenue sales techniques and gimmickry (known as the Church Growth Movement or CGM) with the hope that these would put people into the pews of their emptying churches.

Dr Jackson begins his critique of CGM by presenting the principles of Lutheran doctrine: the authority of the Bible, justification by faith alone, the efficacy of the Word of God, and the power of the Sacraments.

Then, Dr Jackson presents quotes from CGM leaders and contrasts them with quotes from Luther and Lutheran foundational documents to illustrate how the principles of CGM are non-Lutheran, or anti-Lutheran, in nature.

This book is 533 pages, the information is detailed, the sources are foot-noted. This isn't a book that you should expect to read in one sitting. The dust jacket calls it a textbook for Lutheran biblical theology. You can consider it a teaching tool as well as a reference source. Dr Jackson includes a suggested reading list consisting of 3 pages of book titles. That being said, his writing style presents the information in an interesting and engaging manner, so you shouldn't find yourself becoming bogged down, as you might when reading a dry textbook on theory.

If you want to understand the foundational principles of confessional Lutheranism, then you should read this book. If you want to understand the problems of present day confessional Lutheranism and what the solutions are, then you should read this book.

Dr Jackson discusses the problems of present day Lutheranism on his internet blog, Google ichabodthegloryhasdeparted for the URL. He conducts a weekly Lutheran worship service via the internet, the blog has a link to the broadcast site which also has archived broadcasts. If you want to hear solid, scripture-based, Lutheran sermons, you'll find them in his worship services.

Thank you for your feedback.
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April 14, 2007
Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase

I am a layman, not a theologian, but I have read fairly widely in the literature of Lutheranism, my heritage faith, so I do not hesitate to praise with the highest encomia possible this very fine and much-needed book that refutes the errors of latter-day North American Lutheranism, alike the unbelieving "liberalism" of the E.L.C.A. and E.L.C.i.C. as well as the pseudo-conservatism (which falsely poses as Confessional) of the denominations deriving from the old Synodical Conference (most notably the L.C.M.S., W.E.L.S., E.L.S., and the L.C.M.S.' sister sect, the Lutheran Church Canada), which have betrayed genuine Confessional Lutheranism with their bizarre speculations embodied in the theological paradigm of "Universal Objective Justification and Subjective Justication" (U.O.J.), which Ptr. Dr. Gregory Lee Jackson anathematises and disproves, as well he should do, showing these heinous false speculative ideas to be being neither Scriptural nor Confessional, and, hence, not genuinely Lutheran at all. (Coming back to this review to revise it some, I would point out that Jackson has written and published a separate book, one that handles the matter suberbly, on the U.O.J. heresy, titled "Luther versus the U.O.J. Pietists: Justification by Faith".) Jackson also scathingly and realistically savages the venal "Church Growth Movement" tendencies in all forms of this hemisphere's Lutheranism, liberal and pseudo-confessional alike.

There are magnificent defenses of "genesio-Lutheran" Confessional teaching versus the claims of what Ptr. Dr. Jackson calls the "Reformed" (by which he includes all non-Lutheran Protestantism and sectarianism, rather than only, more properly, the teaching of other genuinely Protestant churches that follow the doctrinal teachings of Martin Bucer, especially, and of Jean Calvin, as well as the Three Forms of Unity and Westminster Standards that so principally, soundly, and moderately codify them confessionally). Jackson's defense of the Lutheran and hence Orthodox Christian "Means of Grace" is a stunning refutation of the claims of Baptists, Pentecostals/Charismatics, the loud-mouthed "Fundamentalists" who are so fundamentally wrong, the so-called "Neo-Evangelicals", Campbellites/"Restorationists", and other "cheap white [or black] theological trash") by explicating from the Scriptures (using, wisely, the Authorised "King James" Version, free of the sectarian bias that afflicts to one degree or another the modern versions in English of the Bible) the true Lutheran and biblical teaching about Holy Baptism and the Eucharist (Holy Communion, Mass). For the fine defense of Lutheran sacramental theology alone this book would be worth the purchase, but there is so much more as well!

A fault, a minor but nonetheless somewhat irritating one, is Jackson's intemperately vituperative assaults on other Lutherans and their squabbles and peccadillos over relatively minor matters of turf, petty corruption, and so forth which, really, are of only passing interest or importance compared to the major issues that this book addresses, something that inevitably will cause this book become a bit dated in that regard. (That said, though, Jackson`s comments on such matters are reasonable and, I believe, true.) Dr. Jackson's book is already a classic of Lutheran exegesis and sound doctrinal teaching.

A note of warning is in store for those who purchase the book second-hand; the earliest printing of this book had some pagination and binding irregularities, but even a copy with these defects is worth having, since they do not affect any of the most important passaages of the book.
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October 25, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition

Friday, March 2, 2018

Volume VI of Luther's Sermons Is Done - Volume VII Is Being Readied for Amazon and Kindle eBooks

Back cover, Volume VII

Volume VII is done already, and VIII is being edited. That has been the normal state since this began. My brain keeps saying, "Out of memory, not enough for this function, reboot now."

To finish VIII and the Gems faster, I will send out expected volumes when they are also done. Exceptions are those who earned a dedication for a given volume.

From abandoning the Chief Article

Observe that these volumes are non-synodical, non-political. They are being published simply to highlight and support the primary office of the clergy - preaching.

From Luther's preaching came his insightful Bible studies, his faithful hymns, and the confessional material found in the Book of Concord.

Back cover, Volume VI

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Last Ash Wednesday, The Lost Dutchman's Goldmine.
This Year - Luther's Sermons Almost Done

 Norma A. Boeckler

Last Ash Wednesday I was finishing The Lost Dutchman's Goldmine, about Luther's Biblical Doctrine of the Word.

This year, Luther's Sermons are being finished.

  • Volume VI is with Janie Sullivan, being prepared for Amazon and Kindle.
  • Volume VII is almost ready for Norma A. Boeckler's art.
  • Volume VIII is being read and corrected by Virginia Roberts.
  • The Gems volume is almost ready, by virtue of having each volume's gems selected as we publish.
More New Testament Greek will be taught, starting tonight.

Romans 1-5 will be taught during the Easter season.

Looking ahead, these volumes are planned:
  • Luther's Two Catechisms
  • The Gospel of John in English and Greek
  • The Ichabod Lutheran Dictionary - fun and informative.
  • Some other alarms and diversions for the apostates to suffer.
 Norma A. Boeckler