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Wednesday Devotion: What Are Our Rights?

It was Dr. Charles Arand, a professor at our Lutheran Seminary in St. Louis, who first wrote that “compassion” was a helpful term regarding our interaction with creation. He was saying how much better that term was than others our society uses like “animal rights”. I think rightly, Dr. Arand shies away from terms like “animal rights” because terms like that actively seek to blur the distinction between the animals and people. Saying something like “animal rights” should be especially problematic for us Lutherans because we don’t really believe that ANY-thing in creation, besides God, has ANY rights!

After all, we confess just about every Sunday what it is our “right” to do: that is, we confess what we DESERVE. As sinners, what are our rights? To die and to be separated from God for our sins! That’s what we deserve! That is our “right”! But by his mercy, and by his grace, and by his love, and by his sacrifice, and by his death, and through the POWER of the resurrection, the Lord gives to us mercy beyond our rights. He doesn’t wield his authority over us to destroy us. Instead, HE has compassion.

-Aj Neugebauer LCMS pastor

Filed under Creation Jesus God Christianity Lutheran rights animal rights death salvation eternity compassion St. Louis Seminary Dr. Arand