500

In honor of the 500th anniversary of the start of the Protestant reformation I thought I would compile some of my favorite Martin Luther quotes. Here they are in no particular order…

“I am bound by the Scriptures I have quoted and my conscience is captive to the Word of God.  I cannot and I will not recant anything…”

“Scripture is the norm of norms that cannot be normed.”

“The Bible is not a naked authority.”

“What is asserted without the Scriptures or proven revelation may be held as an opinion, but need not be believed.”

“It is a glory which every preacher may claim, to be able to say with full confidence of heart: ‘This trust have I toward God in Christ, that what I teach and preach is truly the Word of God.”

“Let nobody suppose that he has tasted the Holy Scriptures sufficiently unless he has ruled over the churches with the prophets for a hundred years.”

“I simply taught, preached, and wrote God’s Word; otherwise I did nothing…The Word so greatly weakened the papacy that never a prince or emperor did such damage to it it.  I did nothing.  The Word did it all.”

“Scripture alone is the true lord and master of all writing and doctrine on earth.  If that is not granted, what is Scripture good for?  The more we reject it, the moe we become satisfied with men’s books and human teachers.”

“Do we work nothing for the obtaining of this righteousness?  I answer: Nothing at all.  For the nature of this righteousness is, to do nothing, to hear nothing, to know nothing whatsoever of the law of or works.”

“Here I must take counsel of the Gospel, I must hearken to the Gospel, which teaches me, not what I ought to do…but what Jesus Christ the Son of God hath done for me…that he suffered and died to deliver me from sin and death.  The Gospel wills me to receive this, and to believe it.  And this is the truth of the Gospel.  It is also the principal article well, teach it unto others, and beat it into their heads continually.”

“if anyone would feel the greatness of sin he would not be able to go no living another moment; so great is the power of sin.”

“If you have a true faith that Christ is your Savior, then at once you have a gracious God, for faith leads you in and opens up God’s heart and will, that you should see pure grace and overflowing love.”

“Faith…is a living, restless thing.  It cannot be inoperative.  We are not saved by works; but if there be no works, there must be something amiss with faith.”

“Wherefore it ought to be the first concern of every Christian to lay aside all confidence in works and grow in the knowledge, not of works, but of Christ Jesus, who suffered and rose for him.”

“If you want to make atonement to [God] apart from Christ the mediator, making your works…the mediation between Him and yourself, you will inevitably fall as Lucifer did…and in horrible despair lose God and everything.”

“Faith is no faith without an object.”

“Christ if full of grace, life, and salvation.  The soul is full of sins, death, and damnation.  Now let faith come between them and sins, death, and damnation will be Christ’s, while grace, life, and salvation will be the soul’s; for if Christ is a bridegroom, he must take it upon himself the things which are his bride’s and bestow upon her the things that are his…Who then can fully appreciate what this royal marriage means?  Who can understand the riches of the glory of this grace?  Here this rich and a divine bridegroom Christ marries this poor, wicked harlot, redeems her from all her evil, and adorns her with all his goodness.  Her sins cannot not destroy her, since they are laid upon Christ and swallowed up by him.  And she has that righteousness in Christ, her husband, of which she may boast as of her own and which she can confidently display alongside her sins in the face of death and hell and say, ‘if I have sinned, yet my Christ, in whom I believe, has not sinned, and all his is mine and all mine is his.”

“Faith must be taught correctly, namely, that by it you are so cemented to Christ that He and you are as one person, which cannot be separated but remains attached to Him forever.”

“The first thing I ask is that people should not make use of my name, and should not call themselves Lutherans but Christians.  What is Luther?  The teaching is not mine.  Nor was I crucified for anyone…How did I, poor stinking bag of maggots that I am, come to the point where people call the children of Christ by my evil name?”

“It is not sufficient for anyone, and it does him no good to recognize God in his glory and majesty, unless he recognizes him in the humility and shame of the cross.”

 

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