In the mid-nineteenth century, Charles Porterfield Krauth was faced with many of the same misunderstandings of the Church as we see in our own day. Listen carefully to his description of the Church:
“For as the Church is the mother of believers, as she is to bring forth children
of whom God is the father, so she is to train up in the faith those who are born of her, is to nourish her infants with milk, her adult children with solid food, to confirm the doubting, to strengthen the sorrowing and tempted, to arouse men from the sleep of sin, to lead the secure to repentance, to bring back into the way of salvation those who have wandered, and to keep all men in that way. But for these duties she needs more than those parts of doctrine which are the only necessary ones for the simple, who have neither the mental strength nor intelligence to go further. She needs for her ork the entire doctrine of Scripture, 'for perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.' --C. P. Krauth, A Documentary History of the General Council p. 365
What exactly does the mother of believers do?
1. She brings forth children of whom God is the Father. Holy Baptism
2. She trains them up in the faith. Apostles’ Creed
3. She nourishes her infants with milk, her adults with solid food. Lord’s Supper
4. She confirms the doubting. Confession
5. She strengthens the sorrowing and tempted. Lord’s Prayer and Daily Prayer
6. She arouses men from the sleep of sin. Ten Commandments
7. She leads the secure to repentance and back into the way of salvation those who have wandered. Take up the Cross daily and deny yourself.