Our Hope Is in Him

"So the last will be first, and the first last."
MATTHEW 20:16
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Our Hope Is in Him
So here is the summary of this Gospel: no one is so high, or will get so high, that he does not have to be afraid that he may become the very lowest (see 1 Corinthians 10:12). On the other hand, no one has fallen so deeply, or can fall so deeply, that he cannot hope to become the highest, because all merit is abolished and only God's goodness is praised. It has been determined most surely: "The first shall be the last, and the last shall be the first." When He says, "The first shall be the last," He takes away all your arrogance and forbids you to exalt yourself above any prostitute, even if you were Abraham, David, Peter, or Paul. But when He says, "The last shall be the first," He prevents all your despair and forbids you to cast yourself below any saint, even if you were Pilate, Herod, Sodom, and Gomorrah.

From the Church Postil, sermon for Septuagesima on Matthew 20:1-16 (Luther's Works 76:319)
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