Pastor's Message 



Knowing the Wrong Way to Know the Right Way

No one is righteous, no, not one; no one understands, no one seeks God. All have turned aside, together they have gone wrong. –Romans 2:25-3:18

How depressing! If you were to read only the above passage, you might think that Christianity, and St. Paul, see only darkness and the worst of humankind. But in the verse above, Paul is presenting his case—the ground of his theology—to help the reader understand not only how depraved and lost is humankind, but how great is the good news that we are saved by God’s grace!

Paul is writing to the Church at Rome.  He lays out, under the Holy Spirit’s guidance, one of the greatest declarations of the Gospel of Jesus ever written.  To understand the Gospel, however, they need first to understand human sin and the fact that we cannot save ourselves. So, Paul is indeed presenting the sad, tragic reality of human life—that none is righteous, no, not one. All have turned aside and gone wrong. Which then sets the stage for the next section of Paul’s letter, in which he proclaims the good news that “since all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, they are justified by His grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as an expiation by his blood, to be received by faith.” The words above must never be quoted or cited without the proclamation of the Gospel which follows! Otherwise, we are left down-hearted and depressed, hopeless because all have sinned, no one understands, all have turned aside. Rather, we must hear immediately, “Thanks be to God in Jesus Christ—that we are saved/justified by His grace, as a gift!”

During Lent, there is always the danger that we will become obsessed with our own disobedience and sinfulness. There is always the temptation to make Lent about our unrighteousness and “wrong-headedness.”  But Lent is to be first and foremost about Jesus Christ, and the forgiveness and salvation we have because of His death and resurrection!

Let us meditate and reflect first, during Lent, on our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Prayer: Lord our God, because we are saved, because we have new life in Jesus Christ, turn us again toward you—let us seek you and let us find you, in Him; the same, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


After attending the University of Washington,  John Eich received his B.A. from Northwestern College in Watertown, WI.  He then attended Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in Mequon, Wi. receiving his Masters in Divinity.   He was assigned to Grace Lutheran Church in Alma, MI in 1985.  He also served Zion Lutheran in neighboring St. Louis, Mi. until both churches merged to become Good Shepherd Lutheran.  

He serves on various district and synodical boards.  He frequently writes for the synodical magazine "Forward in Christ."  He has also been involved in the translation and review of the Evangelical Heritage Version of the Bible, a new translation of the Bible which is being prepared.

In 1983 he married Susan Ann Wendt who has been his best friend and help mate since.  Together they raised three boys who are now living their faith in Jesus away from mom and dad.