I noticed I was mourning inside and if not for my penchant for busy-ness, I would have been dysfunctional for quite a number of days.
As I thought of the Rev, a popular passage often quoted/recited in that church was Jeremiah 17:5-8 . There were good and not so good teachings, so you do it like when you are eating a fish, you get the meat but chuck away the bones. Here is what that passage states and how it can be mis-applied and used to stress faith in faith, giving it a hue of works.
5Thus says the LORD,Focusing on verses 5 & 7 brings a challenge, is where I am at. The promise there can easily be turned to a Law. For example, let us say, you are sick and your attitude is that - "that is ok the meds will do th job - she'll be right mate". Or you are in a financial fix and you say in your heart --"she'll be right mate, the bank will lend me money". Seems like those attitudes can easily condemn. Also it can be turned into Law when you encounter doubts about the capacity of God to deliver you, and thus it is rock crushing you. In such a case, we can easily with no help from the devil run ourselves to the ground as we frantically notice our anxieties, our heart accuses us with an alert "hey I am not trusting in God in this trouble, I am cursed". It is quite subtle in that for the case of being sick, perhaps to show faith in God, you might not go to the doctor or not take medicines and we have heard of this happened before right? For the second example, you may just look to the sky hoping that God may open up heaven and drop you a bundle of $100 bills. Silly, I know but wait...
"(M)Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind
And makes (N)flesh his strength,
And whose heart turns away from the LORD.
6"For he will be like a (O)bush in the desert
And will not see when prosperity comes,
But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness,
A (P)land of salt without inhabitant.
7"(Q)Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD
And whose (R)trust is the LORD.
8"For he will be like a (S)tree planted by the water,
That extends its roots by a stream
And will not fear when the heat comes;
But its leaves will be green,
And it will not be anxious in a year of (T)drought
Nor cease to yield fruit.
It seems to me there is further application of this. For example, say in terms of my salvation and being accepted by God - am I internally saying to God, "I should be ok with you and you should let me in since I am a member of your one True Church", or "I should be ok with you I have been giving to the poor, I give my excess stuff to Salvation Army", or "I should be ok, I have been faithfully going to mass or services all my life, I have been coming to Bible Studies, doing my devotionals, " etc. or any such things? In this case the curse does apply, doesn't it? It is mankind trusting in their own selves, their own strength whereas the latter, the one blessed, has no other trust but in and the Lord alone. The latter strips himself of anything his heart relies on and has nothing to hang on to but God in His kindness.
The Small Catechism has this for the 2nd Commandment:
We should fear, love, and trust in God above all things.
From Augsburg, Article IV: Of Justification.
1] Also they teach that men cannot be justified before God by their own strength, merits, or works, but are freely justified for 2] Christ's sake, through faith, when they believe that they are received into favor, and that their sins are forgiven for Christ's sake, who, by His death, has made satisfaction for our sins. 3] This faith God imputes for righteousness in His sight. Rom. 3 and 4.