My dear congregation! I am sure that you have noticed at the end of these familiar stories [Matthew 2:13-23]–the flight of Egypt, the massacre of the innocents in Bethlehem, and the return of the Holy Family to Nazareth–each time there is a phrase from the Old Testament, and these words are introduced by, “So was fulfilled what was said.” We have often passed over these words and through of them simply as a repeated formula. In this way we have overlooked something important and beautiful in our text. “So was fulfilled.” That means that nothing could happen to Jesus which God had not already determined beforehand. That also means that if we are with Jesus, nothing can happen to us which God has not already decided and promised beforehand. Despite all the thinking, planning, and mistakes that we as humans make, even the gruesome hands of the murderous Herod play their part. Finally everything goes the way of God had foreseen, had wanted, and had spoken. God never lets the control go out of his hands. That is a great consolation: God only fulfills what God himself had promised. Anyone who has the Holy Scriptures in his hand and in his heart will again and again have evidence for this great consolation (“The Cross Over the Manger” (1940), DBW 15.492)
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