Monday, January 12, 2015

Walther, 1906. Chapter 36, “The Pastoral Care of the Dying”

Chapter 36, “The Pastoral Care of the Dying” (pp. 223-225)

When called to a death bed the pastor must not only remind of sin but especially give the Gospel, asking the person specifically if he believes Christ alone. The pastor can then strengthen the dying person with divine comfort. He is there to bless and commend the saint to Christ’s mercy.

Walther discusses communion and the dying in chapter 18. The death bed is a time for the person trusting in Christ to receive assurance of grace.

In the case of visiting a criminal who is receiving the death penalty, Walther presents the same scenario - the prisoner has been confronted with sin but needs to hear the news of Jesus’ care. The pastor is obligated, when desired by the prisoner, bot continue bringing comfort to the last moment (p. 225).

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