A Place to Worship, to learn and to serve

Christ Our Savior Lutheran Church is a warm caring fellowship of Faith. Our congregation, which has grown to over 300, strives to communicate God's awesome gift of love to our ever changing world. We are a collection of natives of East Tennessee and transplants from other parts of the country who now call East Tennessee our home. We share a common faith in Jesus Christ Our Lord and Savior.

  • Pastors:  Mark Rhoads & Brian Truog

    Our Beginnings:
    • 1996 A group of people, led by the Holy Spirit sought to plant a new Lutheran Church in East Tennessee.
    • 1997 We worshipped in a store front while purchasing 7 acres on Highway 72 and Wade Road.
    • 1998 A building committee was established as Rev. Bob Torgler served as worship leader.
    • 1999 Dedicated members paid for the property
    • 2000 In May the construction of the new worship facility was begun.
    • 2001 The first worship Service in the new church was held on January 7th. On August 26th our first permanent pastor, Rev. Jim Kirk, was installed.
    • 2009 The church membership has now grown to over 300. We have added a Christian Ministry Center that will expand our worship and fellowship facilities.

    Who we are:
    • We are a people who share a common faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.
    • We are natives of East Tennessee and transplants from other parts of the country.
    • We live in Blount, Loudon, Knox, Monroe, and Roane counties.
    • We worship with different styles in order to meet people's needs
    • We are a growing church with over 200 in worship on a regular basis

  • Pastor's Message

    What if I Die?

    “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” Philippians 1:21

    Unless Christ returns soon, death is an imminent reality for each one of us. Yet, we tend to avoid or even run away from the question: “What if I die?” It often takes a major catastrophe or scare to get us to even think about this question. Many times, we wait until it is too late to have a discussion about death with the ones we love.

    In the book of Philippians, Paul is writing to a group of Christians who were very close to him. They loved him, supported him and were loyal to him, even in the tough times. He proba-bly considered them to be like family. Paul wrote this letter when he was in prison and there was a very real possibility that he could be condemned to death for his preaching. Paul’s friends from Philippi had sent a man named Epaphroditus to try to help Paul while he was in prison. (Paul may have been on “house arrest” and able to have a servant.) While he was helping Paul, Epaphroditus became sick and almost died. The people Paul was writing too were concerned about both Paul and Epaphroditus and the possibility that they might die.

    Reading the book of Philippians may be an encouragement for you to sit down with the peo-ple you love and have a discussion about the reality that the day will come when one of you will die. Paul makes it clear in this letter that, because of what God has done for us through Jesus Christ, he was not afraid to die. In fact, he looked forward to it. But he also makes it clear that he had not given up on life. He was also looking forward to the time God was giving him here on earth – time that could be used to serve God and to be with the people he loved.

    We don’t need to be afraid of death, and we don’t need to be afraid to talk about death. It’s going to happen. So why not enjoy the added comfort of knowing that you have shared with the people you love how God has given you the freedom to have a positive attitude about both life and death because of what Jesus Christ has done for us.

    Pastor Brian Truog                                                                                                                                                                                                   

  • Pastor's Message

    For the Love of Labor

    Give us this day our Daily Bread. (Luke 11:3)

    September 5 is Labor Day. The first Labor Day celebration was held on September 5, 1882 at the prompting of the Central Labor Union of New York City. At the time, working conditions and morale among workers were extremely low. The leaders were looking for a way to honor the economic and Social achievements of the American worker. The idea gradually spread to other cities and states. On June 28, 1894, Congress passed an act decreeing the first Monday in September as a legal and national holiday.

    Rather than merely taking a day off, we can also raise morale in our labor by recognizing it as a gift from God. In his explanation to the 4th petition of the Lord’s Prayer, Martin Luther says, “Daily bread includes everything that has to do with the support and needs of the body.” To the question, “How does God provide our daily bread?”, Luther reminds us God makes the earth fruitful and blesses us with the ability to work for the things we need. Our response then is two-fold. First, we pray in this petition that we would recognize all we have is a gift from a loving God and second, that we would receive our daily bread with thanksgiving.

    We see these principles at work in the assigned Gospel readings for this month. The reading for September 4 is from Luke 14, where Jesus defines discipleship as submitting one’s entire life and work to the glory of God. The next week, September 11, Jesus calls His followers to give thanks to a God who loves them with great passion and devotion. The theme of labor returns on September 18 in the parable of the shrewd manager found in the beginning of Luke 16. God has and will provide daily bread, but expects us to show our thankfulness by managing it properly. The end result of all our labor is revealed in the last week of September as we hear the story of the rich man and Lazarus from the end of Luke 16.

    I realize most of the people reading this article are retired. Regardless of your status, we all share a vocation. As baptized and believing Christians, our vocation is to labor for the cause of Christ. This is difficult. Often, we don’t see much result from our labor. Remembering God’s labor of love for us in sending his Son, Jesus, to bring forgiveness, life and salvation to us through His death and resurrection brings strength and motivation to our hearts and lives. This same God will continue to provide all we need for this life and the life to come. In response to His labor of love, let us love our labor as we pray, “Give us this day our daily bread.”

    In His service and yours,

    Pastor Mark R. Rhoads

  • What Does a Pastor Do?

    Here’s an interesting comparison by Rev. Dr. James Baneck of the LCMS that might answer that question. The lambs and sheep our Savior sent Peter to feed and tend were not the wooly kind residing on a beautiful hillside. There are, however, rich parallels between shepherding sheep and shepherding God's people.

    James Rebanks watches over real four-legged sheep in the United Kingdom. He writes about the parallels in his article, “Are You Hard Enough to Survive as a Shepherd?”
    "The romance wears off after a few weeks, believe me, and you will be left standing cold and lonely on a mountain. It is all about endurance. Digging in. Holding on. You will also need to be emotionally. tough … Carrion crows hang over our lambing fields waiting to steal the eyes out of anything sick or dead that cannot resist … You’ll need the patience of a saint, too, because sheep test you to the limit with a million ways to escape, ail, or die … It requires a body of knowledge and skills that shepherds devote decades to learning."

    How this applies to our pastors! There is nothing romantic about being a pastor; it is hard work and often lonely. It demands an endurance that comes only from God. Like carrion crows, Satan seeks to devour God’s people. The pastor stands guard. protecting and feeding God’s sheep with Christ in the preached Word and blessed Sacraments. The formation of men for the Holy Ministry begins at Baptism. And while pastoral formation is intensified during seminary, “it requires a body of knowledge and skills that [pastors] devote decades to learning."

    Pastors are to be clothed with the humility of Christ, “who humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Phil. 2:8). Pastors must be equipped to lead Gods people to the waters of Holy Baptism, where God gives new birth to sinners and opens the kingdom of heaven for them. Pastors are formed to be stewards of the mysteries of God. Pastors feed God’s sheep the Word of God in preaching and teaching and with the body and blood of our Lord at His table. Pastors listen, love and seek the lost.

    Looking at all that a Pastor does, how is he prepared for this role at the Seminars’? Can you help with this preparation? Could you sponsor a seminarian? Could you help COS in their sponsoring of eight seminary students? Please help with your gift! ‘For more information, contact John W. Smith. God bless your help.