Thursday, April 18, 2019

Responses to Catholic Nick's article on Imputation as part of Justification by Faith Alone

https://apologeticsandagape.wordpress.com/2019/04/18/response-to-catholic-nick-on-imputation-as-part-of-justification-by-faith-alone/

From several years ago, Joey Henry wrote an excellent 8 Part response to "Catholic Nick" (linked to on Devin Rose's blog) on Imputation as part of Justification by Faith Alone, which I hope to write more about later if and when I find the time.

Monday, April 15, 2019

"Faith Alone" and the 1483 Nuremberg Bible?

Did a pre-Reformation German bible include "faith alone" (allein durch den glauben) in its translation of Romans 3:28? Commenting on Romans 3:28, Charles Hodge stated:
That a man is justified by faith. If by faith, it is not of works; and if not of works, there can be no room for boasting, for boasting is the assertion of personal merit. From the nature of the case, if justification is by faith, it must be by faith alone. Luther's version, therefore, allein durch den glauben, is fully justified by the context. The Romanists, indeed, made a great outcry against that version as a gross perversion of Scripture, although Catholic translators before the time of Luther had given the same translation. So in the Nuremberg Bible, 1483, "Nur durch den glauben." And the Italian Bibles of Geneva, 1476, and of Venice, 1538, per sola fede. The Fathers also often use the expression, "man is justified by faith alone;" so that Erasmus, De Ratione Concionandi, Lib. III., says, "Vox sola, tot clamoribus lapidata hoc saeculo in Luthero, reverenter in Patribus auditur." See Koppe and Tholuck on this verse.
It appears particularly the 1483 Nuremberg Bible fact is misinformation. Give credit where it's due, one of Rome's defenders, William Albrecht, tracked down an online version of the Nuremberg Bible and makes a strong case that the Nuremberg Bible of 1483 does not translate Romans 3:28 in such a way.  Here is a look at Romans 3 from an online scan of a copy of this Bible:


What appears to have happened is that "nur durch glauben" is in the Nuremburg Bible, but found in its translations of Galatians 2:16 (not Romans 3:28):


Hodge says to "See Koppe and Tholuck on this verse." I was able to track down Tholuck, and he mentions Galatians 2:16 as well.

Conclusion
Truncated versions of Hodge's information has traveled far across cyberspace, even finding its way into print by well-respected authors (for instance, R.C. Sproul utilized a version of it in his book, Faith Alone: The Evangelical Doctrine of Justification). In one of my earliest posts here on this blog, I also utilized some of what Hodge stated:
Even some Catholic versions of the New Testament also translated Romans 3:28 as did Luther. The Nuremberg Bible (1483), “nur durch den glauben” and the Italian Bibles of Geneva (1476) and of Venice (1538) say  "per sola fede."
At this point, I do not recall what source I used. It was not original to my 2006 entry, but was added in some time between 2009- 2010 (along with a copyist error). I don't recall if I picked up this tidbit directly from Hodge, Sproul, or some other source (I suspect I used Sproul).  At the time of posting the information, I had not checked the accuracy of the facts, nor do I recall attempting to locate a 1483 Nuremburg Bible (and I suspect I would not have easily been able to locate this Bible at the time!). It's an instance in which I relied on a secondary source without checking the accuracy of the facts. I mention this admission of error and correction in order to be consistent with my overall approach taken on this blog.

Addendum
This of course calls into question "the Italian Bibles of Geneva (1476) and of Venice (1538)." Time does not allow me at the moment to dig into the accuracy of these facts, but they're on my radar. For transparency's sake, I have not checked all the uses of "faith alone" that Roman Catholic scholar Joseph Fitzmyer mentions, which I include in that same old blog entry.

Monday, April 08, 2019

Luther: "Jesus in His Human Nature Got It Wrong" ?

Here's an odd Luther-related statement attributed to Tim Staples from the Catholic Answers Forums:
In a recent episode of Catholic Answers focus, Tim Staples said that there was an instance where Martin Luther said Christ in his human nature was in error on the subject of free will and that St. Paul was more reliable. I had never heard this and would be very interested to read where Luther said that. Could anyone here point me to a citation?
There were a number of comments before I joined in, including: that Mr. Staples misinterpreted a section from the Book of Concord,  to
"I very much doubt that Luther made such a remark..."
"This sounds like a case where Luther was probably saying something to the effect that we look at passages that speak directly to an issue to clarify the meaning of a passage which does not address an issue directly..."
"...anything that Tim Staples says about Lutheranism or Luther with a huge grain of salt..." "...Or smaller If he provided no context or source,"
"If Luther had ever said, or written, that Christ was in error, I think we would have heard about it before now. In error about anything at all, however trivial..." 
I had never heard anything like this before either. Luther was prone to strong hyperbole. Mr. Staples could easily be referring to an obscure Table Talk comment. Often those comments lack clear contexts that secure a definite theological position.

The person who originally brought this up was gracious enough to grant my request to provide a link to the broadcast in which Mr. Staples made the remarks in question.  Advance the show to around 15:50. Mr. Staples is having a discussion with Cy Kellett]. Here is a transcription:
Tim Staples: How man times in Matthew 23:37.... Jesus weeps over... at least in Luke's version he weeps... but in Matthew's version, "Oh Jerusalem Jerusalem you that killeth the prophet how often I would have gathered you as a hen gathers her chicks... but you refused...you refused..." Luther was so... Cy, I don't know if I've ever shared this with you, but... this is gonna shock you. Luther was adamant with this understanding of the passivity of the will, that he actually wrote that Jesus in his human nature got it wrong there.
Cy Kellett: oh Man! 
Tim Staples: He got it wrong there. 
Cy Kellett: Jesus is not a reliable teacher. 
Tim Staples: He didn't have the fullness of the revelation that Saint Paul later got. 
Cy Kellett: oh, so you put Saint Paul over Jesus.
Conclusion
Mr. Staples launches into his discussion of Luther by first commenting on Matthew 23:37. The obvious place to look for such a quote as described is Luther’s Bondage of the Will. The passage is discussed, but not quite as explained by Mr. Staples.

See LW 33:144-147 (or Packer’s translation 175-177). There Luther explains that God incarnate weeps and laments over “the perdition of the ungodly.” Then he states, “Nor is it to for us to ask why he does so, but to stand in awe of God, Who can do, and wills to do, such things.” God as the incarnate word in his humanity weeps for those who rejected him. Then Luther presents a typical counter to this… that some would run to the secret will of God when things don’t quite add up. Luther then goes on shortly thereafter to state it’s not his argument to refer to the secret will of God, but Paul’s in Romans, that God is the potter and he can do what he wants to in his hidden and secret will.

Here is link to an inferior English translation of Luther’s Bondage of the Will. This link goes directly to the page in which Luther begins comments on Matthew 23 (the same passage Mr. Staples was commenting on before his Luther comment). This translation refers to Christ shedding “useless tears” over Jerusalem. Luther then goes on to contrast this with Paul’s revelation of the secret will of God (p.168). If possible though, use LW 33 or the Packer translation for reference.

If this is the passage from Luther Mr. Staples has in mind, I can sort of see how, given Tim's presupposition of the freedom of the will, he could make the interpretation he’s making. I think its misconstruing Luther’s words, but only Mr. Staples can clarify if this is the passage from Luther he has in mind, and then explain how he reads it. I believe Mr. Staples was probably speaking “off the cuff” or extemporaneously and misspoke that Luther exactly wrote what he attributes to him. Rather, I think given an opportunity to clarify, Mr. Staples may say his comments about Luther are his conclusion of what Luther's words imply. I’ve interacted with Mr. Staples before. I suspect if I ask him about what he was referring to, this is the context from Luther that he had in mind. I suspect also, if given another opportunity, he would flesh out his remarks and make them more cogent.

To echo one of the folks on the forums, "If Luther had ever said, or written, that Christ was in error, I think we would have heard about it before now." Without actually contacting Mr. Staples to clarify, I suspect this is the context from Luther he's referring to.

Monday, April 01, 2019

The Failure of Luther's Reformation?

Was Luther's Reformation a failure? Here's a snippet of text used by a defender of Rome saying just that:
"From the time of the formation of the Protestant League, Luther retired gradually from the forefront of the reformation movement. His last years were by no means happy. The Protestant princes confiscated the wealthiest bishoprics and monasteries for their own use, whilst the preachers often suffered the direst want. Irreligion and immorality and vices of all sorts flourished wherever the new gospel gained the ascendancy. "We experience it daily," he says in a sermon, "that the people are seven times worse today than ever before under the Papacy; they are more avaricious, more unchaste, more envious, more intemperate, more dishonest..." He was especially dissatisfied with the state of things in his own Wittenberg. "Let us get out of this Sodom," he wrote to his wife in 1545. "I prefer to wander about homeless, and to beg my bread from door to door than to poison my poor last days by the spectacle of all these disorders."
"Against the Pope, Luther vented his rage to the last. In 1545 he wrote the coarsest of his pamphlets, Against the Papacy Founded by the Devil, in order to hinder his followers from attending the Council of Trent."(Fr John Laux, Church History, pp. 431-432)
It doesn't look like reformation was the goal after all, but revolution.

The basic gist is that Luther's Reformation career was ultimately a failure. The proof? His later years were wasted away in utter despondency. His alleged "reformation" of the church didn't produce any real fruit, and his own words and the sinful state of Protestantism at that time proves it. For Rome's defenders, Protestantism isn't a movement of the church. Protestantism is the result of heresy, and heresy never leads anyone to true holiness, nor the church collectively to "reformation." Statements like those above are typically brought forth from late in Luther's career, indicting him of regret for the mess he made. Rome's defender seals the quoted argumentation by declaring, "It doesn't look like reformation was the goal after all, but revolution."

I've gone through a number of these quotes already (see my series, Did Luther Regret the Reformation?). The argumentation for Reformation "failure" is typically the product of pre-1930 Roman Catholic scholarship. Let's take a fresh look at this paragraph, examine its nuts and bolts,  and see what's going on.

Documentation
The source provided is "Fr John Laux, Church History, pp. 431-432." According to the Roman Catholic publisher Tan Books, "Father John Laux, M.A., was a high school religion teacher who wrote his own Catholic curricular books after spending a large number of years teaching and researching. His works were first published in 1928...Though Father Laux originally wrote his books for high school students, they remain very informative for those in college and even adulthood as well."

Fr. Laux's book went through a few different editions. The earliest edition is from 1930, entitled,  Church History, A Complete History of the Catholic Church to the Present Day The title was revised to Church History, a History of the Catholic Church to 1940, For Upper High School and College Courses and Adult Reading.  The quote cited above was taken from the 1980's TAN reprint.  The paragraph being cited falls particularly under the heading, "Luther's Last Years."

The author does not cite precise sources for his historical information or his Luther quotes, but in his "Hints for Study" at the end of the same chapter he states,
O'Hare, Facts About Luther (N.Y., 1916) gives a very readable account of Luther, the man and his teachings. See also article on Luther in the Cath. Encyclopedia. Janssen, History of the German People, Vol. II, should be consulted for the historical background of the Protestant Reformation. H Belloc, How the Reformation Happened, should be in every library. It contains an admirable exposition of the remote and proximate causes of the reformation. MacCaffrey, The Church from the Renaissance to the French Revolution, 2 vols., is the best general history of the Church in modern times available in English.
Patrick O,Hare (1916), The Catholic Encyclopedia (1910), Johannes Jannssen (1896), Hilarie Belloc (1928), James MacCaffrey (1915)... all these sources are Roman Catholic, and all had editions of the books recommenced prior to 1930, thus all date from the period of destructive Roman Catholic criticism of Luther.

Luther's last years were by no means happy?
There are a number of historical assertions made by Fr. Laux (none of them documented). He states Luther's "last years were by no means happy."  It's true that Luther had aging and health issues, as well as apocalyptic driven concerns about the state of the world. His later years saw many "petty disputes" and all the pressures of church and state did lead to pessimism fueled by "apocalyptic hopes and fears" (source).

Despite this, these elements should not be used to paint a picture of total despair. Roland Bainton refers to the last years of Luther as the period between 1530 and 1546 (sixteen years). Bainton gives an overview of some of the controversies Luther was involved with in this period and also gives an overview of his impact after his death, beginning by saying, "Luther's later years are, however, by no means to be written off as the sputterings of a dying flame." Mark U. Edwards did an entire book dedicated to this period. Looking at the wealth of data from this period, Edwards states, "From these [Table Talk] remarks and from his voluminous correspondence and the observations of friends and guests, there emerges a picture of Luther as a devoted, often tender-hearted father, a loving, teasing, and sometimes irritable husband, a man of strong friendships, and a compassionate pastor and counselor."

Confiscated Bishoprics and Impoverished Protestant Clergy?
The Protestant princes confiscated the wealthiest bishoprics and monasteries for their own use, whilst the preachers often suffered the direst want.
This is a one-sided Roman Catholic criticism that appears to assume the situation before the Reformation was ideal. Edwards explains,
On the eve of the Reformation the medieval church was failing especially on the lower level. Rome's extensive ecclesiastical bureaucracy, which had been the unity of Europe during the Middle Ages, was disintegrating in many areas... This well-entrenched benefice system of the church, the muscle of patronage, which had permitted important ecclesiastical offices to be sold the highest bidders and residency requirements either to go unenforced or to be fulfilled by poorly qualified substitutes, revealed its deleterious effect especially on the local level. Bishops were traditionally appointed from the nobility and not always known to have either a shepherd's heart or a theologians mind.
Edwards goes on to describe quite a number of moral and fiscal complaints against the church prior to the Reformation. Wasn't the Reformation fueled by the indulgence controversy? In order to pay to keep the papal machine operating, Rome had devised quite a number of methods to extract money from the masses to help them through purgatory unto eternal salvation.

It's true that the early Protestant preachers lacked funds. Luther complained that when people thought giving money to the church would help secure a right standing with God, funds flowed more freely. He came to realize that often the masses were not interested in supporting a local church for the right reasons. On the other hand, the early Reformation churches were connected to the state, so they did go on to survive and thrive,of course, not to the fiscal excesses Rome did, but they did grow.

The Immorality of the Reformation?
Irreligion and immorality and vices of all sorts flourished wherever the new gospel gained the ascendancy.
Once again this is a one-sided Roman Catholic criticism that appears to assume the situation before the Reformation was ideal. It was not! This criticism is also reminiscent of the conclusions of an old small anthology of Luther quotes peppered with vilifying commentary from Roman Catholic polemicist Henry O’Connor (see my review here). O'Connor argued, "Every reasonable person will agree with me, that Luther can only have been a Reformer chosen by Almighty God, if his teaching caused an increase of virtue and a decrease of vice." Is O'Connor's argument biblically true? Were those chosen by God in the role of prophets, teachers, or preachers guaranteed the results of "an increase of virtue and a decrease of vice"? Think of the Old Testament prophets. They typically came with messages that the people did not heed, nor want to hear- and this provoked God's judgment. If one were to evaluate their calling and ministry based on O'Connor's paradigm, we could throw out more than a few prophets. Consider some of the early churches in the New Testament as well. Corinth was given a rather pure dose of apostolic teaching, was it not? When one reads 1 and 2 Corinthians, the moral state of the church described by Paul is less than stellar. Latter on in an an early post-biblical document, 1 Clement, we find the Corinthian church still in disarray. Or, take the argument and apply it to Rome's infallible magisterium and pick a century or a recent decade.

The Luther Quotes Used by Fr. Laux
"We experience it daily," he says in a sermon, "that the people are seven times worse today than ever before under the Papacy; they are more avaricious, more unchaste, more envious, more intemperate, more dishonest..."
The interesting thing about this first Luther quote given by Fr. Laux is the English wording. It appears his English translation may be unique to him. Maybe he did his own translation from the original languages? Did he simply reword someone else's English translation? I don't know

There are a few of these "seven times worse" Luther quotes, as well as a few of these Luther-bemoaning-vices quotes. In Laux's version, Luther complains of excessive greed, sexual misconduct, envy, lack of control, and dishonesty. Laux also says it was taken from a sermon.  No reference is given. I suspect the sermon Laux is referring to is from 1533, First Sunday in Advent, Matthew 21:1-9. I've gone into detail on this context here. In context, Luther doesn't blame his teaching for the current state of affairs, but rather the people and ultimately Satan. One version of the context shows Luther also states those who accept the Gospel will have fruit follow and "will daily become more humble, obedient, gentle, chaste and pious. For this doctrine is of a character to make godly, chaste, obedient, pious people." Those who do not receive it are those who become seven times worse.   
“Away from such a Sodom! I would sooner wander about and beg my bread than vex my last days with the irregular proceedings at Wittenberg.”
This quote is easier to determine. The English version used by Laux was not his own. It can be found as early as 1888.  I've gone in to great detail of this quote here. Luther's comment is from a letter he wrote to his wife late in his life. It appears that which finally provoked the comparison of Wittenberg to "Sodom" was women's fashion! Luther states, "...they have started to bare women and maidens in front and back, and there is no one who punishes or objects." According to LW 50, Luther did return to Wittenberg and "(upon the Elector’s orders) ordinances directed against the poor public behavior" were put in place.

Luther Wrote a Pamphlet to Hinder Protestants from Attending the Council of Trent? 
"Against the Pope, Luther vented his rage to the last. In 1545 he wrote the coarsest of his pamphlets, Against the Papacy Founded by the Devil, in order to hinder his followers from attending the Council of Trent.
Actually, Luther wrote at the prodding of secular authorities against two papal letters sent to the Emperor. The Emperor sought to have a church council held and had suspended the attacks against Protestantism. The Papacy was upset by both of these things and wrote to the Emperor expressing their disapproval. The Papacy argued it was only they who were able to call a council of the church. In one version of the papal letter, the "heretics" were not to be invited! A good overview of the historical background can be found here


Conclusion
Fr. Laux sought to paint a picture of Luther dying in depression and misery with a failed attempt at church reform. This is the typical methodology of earlier Roman Catholic Reformation criticism. There is though another way to look at the facts of Luther being pessimistic at the end of his life and that the world by the Reformation did not turn into a Shangri-La of purity and virtue. Luther saw the world  becoming worse because of the preaching of the Gospel. In his writings there is a reoccurring theme that he viewed his time period on the cusp of the return of Christ. In my explorations into Luther's writings, I've never come across him stating the opposite- that because of the preaching of the Gospel, the world would become more holy and pious. For Luther, mankind has and will always oppose God's truth en masse and rebel against it, for that's what Satan and sin have always done in battle against God's word. Luther consistently held that the Gospel would find great opposition, and would be attacked from all sides. The Gospel would be used by the world as a licence to sin and all sorts of evil because of Satan. The Gospel would indeed make those of the world worse. But on the flip-side, the Gospel would also transform those whom God intended to redeem, and they are those who comprise the church, however few in number they may be.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Rome's Defender says, "I'm not going to follow that Nazi, Martin Luther"

Here's a brief interaction on a difficult subject, Martin Luther's antisemitism. I do not condone Luther's treatises against the Jewish people, nor should anyone. However, if your own church is guilty of harsh rhetoric against a particular group of people... well... best not bring up Luther's antisemitism as proof you belong to the right church!

This conversation was slightly edited (formatting, not Luther-related content). The original can be found beginning here.






When I look at Martin Luther or any religion in comparison, Lets look at that whole package.

On the Jews and Their Lies -- By Martin Luther

In the treatise, he argues that Jewish synagogues and schools be set on fire, their prayer books destroyed, rabbis forbidden to preach, homes burned, and property and money confiscated. They should be shown no mercy or kindness,[2] afforded no legal protection,[3] and "these poisonous envenomed worms" should be drafted into forced labor or expelled for all time.[4] He also seems to advocate their murder, writing "[W]e are at fault in not slaying them".[5]


1500 years not a peep, this guy invents Faith Alone. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the...and_Their_Lies



Jesus Christ gave clear indication of Justification.

Matthew 12

37“For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”


Why wasn't the Jesus word on the matter good enough on justification and salvation?

If it ain't broke don't fix it.

I'm not going to follow that Nazi, Martin Luther.
Originally posted by utilyan View Post
When I look at Martin Luther or any religion in comparison, Lets look at that whole package.

On the Jews and Their Lies -- By Martin Luther

In the treatise, he argues that Jewish synagogues and schools be set on fire, their prayer books destroyed, rabbis forbidden to preach, homes burned, and property and money confiscated. They should be shown no mercy or kindness,[2] afforded no legal protection,[3] and "these poisonous envenomed worms" should be drafted into forced labor or expelled for all time.[4] He also seems to advocate their murder, writing "[W]e are at fault in not slaying them".[5]

I'm not going to follow that Nazi, Martin Luther.
While it's easy to cut-and-paste Luther's harsh recommendations against the Jews and triumphantly declare, "look how awful!" consider the following Papal Bull "Decet Romanum" against a group of people, known as "Lutherans":
On all these we decree the sentences of excommunication, of anathema, of our perpetual condemnation and interdict; of privation of dignities, honours and property on them and their descendants, and of declared unfitness for such possessions; of the confiscation of their goods and of the crime of treason; and these and the other sentences, censures and punishments which are inflicted by canon law on heretics and are set out in our aforesaid missive, we decree to have fallen on all these men to their damnation.
We add to our present declaration, by our Apostolic authority, that states, territories, camps, towns and places in which these men have temporarily lived or chanced to visit, along with their possessions—cities which house cathedrals and metropolitans, monasteries and other religious and sacred places, privileged or unprivileged—one and all are placed under our ecclesiastical interdict, while this interdict lasts, no pretext of Apostolic Indulgence (except in cases the law allows, and even there, as it were, with the doors shut and those under excommunication and interdict excluded) shall avail to allow the celebration of mass and the other divine offices. We prescribe and enjoin that the men in question are everywhere to be denounced publicly as excommunicated, accursed, condemned, interdicted, deprived of possessions and incapable of owning them. They are to be strictly shunned by all faithful Christians.
Originally posted by James Swan View Post

While it's easy to cut-and-paste Luther's harsh recommendations against the Jews and triumphantly declare, "look how awful!" consider the following Papal Bull "Decet Romanum" against a group of people, known as "Lutherans":
On all these we decree the sentences of excommunication, of anathema, of our perpetual condemnation and interdict; of privation of dignities, honours and property on them and their descendants, and of declared unfitness for such possessions; of the confiscation of their goods and of the crime of treason; and these and the other sentences, censures and punishments which are inflicted by canon law on heretics and are set out in our aforesaid missive, we decree to have fallen on all these men to their damnation.
We add to our present declaration, by our Apostolic authority, that states, territories, camps, towns and places in which these men have temporarily lived or chanced to visit, along with their possessions—cities which house cathedrals and metropolitans, monasteries and other religious and sacred places, privileged or unprivileged—one and all are placed under our ecclesiastical interdict, while this interdict lasts, no pretext of Apostolic Indulgence (except in cases the law allows, and even there, as it were, with the doors shut and those under excommunication and interdict excluded) shall avail to allow the celebration of mass and the other divine offices. We prescribe and enjoin that the men in question are everywhere to be denounced publicly as excommunicated, accursed, condemned, interdicted, deprived of possessions and incapable of owning them. They are to be strictly shunned by all faithful Christians.
I'm sure there are plenty of horrible examples of Catholic leadership, I'm not accepting any change in theology they might insist.

In short two wrongs don't make a right. A Nazi pushing his theory of "FAITH ALONE" simply not going to fly with me.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
I'm sure there are plenty of horrible examples of Catholic leadership, I'm not accepting any change in theology they might insist.

In short two wrongs don't make a right. A Nazi pushing his theory of "FAITH ALONE" simply not going to fly with me.
The point of what I posted was to demonstrate that if Luther's harsh attitude towards the Jews is a proof that Luther's theology is invalid, then similarly, Rome's theology is invalid in their hatred of Lutherans as presented in Decet Romanum. This is according to the standard you have set: hatred as a defining standard of truth, as part of your, "whole package."

Here's how I like to present my worldview. If an argument I'm making also works against my own position, it's not a valid argument. Similarly, go ahead and make arguments for Rome, defend your worldview. But always ask yourself: does the argument or point i'm making apply to my own position? If it does, you've refuted yourself.
Originally posted by James Swan View Post

The point of what I posted was to demonstrate that if Luther's harsh attitude towards the Jews is a proof that Luther's theology is invalid, then similarly, Rome's theology is invalid in their hatred of Lutherans as presented in Decet Romanum. This is according to the standard you have set: hatred as a defining standard of truth, as part of your, "whole package."

Here's how I like to present my worldview. If an argument I'm making also works against my own position, it's not a valid argument. Similarly, go ahead and make arguments for Rome, defend your worldview. But always ask yourself: does the argument or point i'm making apply to my own position? If it does, you've refuted yourself.
"Luther's harsh attitude towards the Jews is a proof that Luther's theology is invalid,"

First it absolutely is Invalid because he calls it his theology. Hate the Jews as he does, embrace the entire theology of faith alone.

Let me give you some ground as there is "Luther's theology" vs "Lutheran theology".




"The point of what I posted was to demonstrate that if Luther's harsh attitude towards the Jews is a proof that Luther's theology is invalid, then similarly, Rome's theology is invalid in their hatred of Lutherans as presented in Decet Romanum."

I agree if ROME is putting out NEW theology. And in a case they TRIED it would be a internal war. I don't cease to be catholic. I don't give up and abandon the family.

"If an argument I'm making also works against my own position, it's not a valid argument."

I totally agree. Which is why this works just fine. Nothing new is being claimed.

The entire Church can decide to murder all they can tomorrow. And you can have a papal bull 50 feet long saying they are going to do it. I can be labelled heretic.

None of those things change church teaching. The clergy are not gods over laity. And the smallest unit of christian will always be the Saint himself.


When you know the truth and the guy in front of you is a flat out liar, how may opinions need to be made to convince you that the TRUTH is not so? He can have all the opinions, you already know the truth.


Originally posted by utilyan View Post

When you know the truth and the guy in front of you is a flat out liar, how may opinions need to be made to convince you that the TRUTH is not so? He can have all the opinions, you already know the truth.
I suspect you may not be understanding me. Perhaps I was not clear. Let me try again.

You can argue Luther was negatively this or that, and you can claim the Roman church is positively this or that. However, if the negative thing you're arguing against Luther also applies to your own position, it's not a valid argument. It's the same sort of thing going on now in the United States. The Democrats are saying this or that person is a "racist," yet it's a double standard because the Democratic party is also making racist statements.

The Roman church made similar awful statements against a group of people (The "Lutherans"). Therefore: Luther and the Roman church are BOTH guilty of racist hate filled statements against people they did not like and wanted to suppress. Should we take this further and bringiup Rome's history against the Jews at this point?

"The early Roman pontiffs of the sixteenth century had Jewish physicians and were favorable to the Jews and the Maranos of their states. Time soon came, however, when the Sephardic Jews of Italy fared differently. As early as 1532, the accusation of child murder nearly entailed the extermination of the Jews of Rome. In 1555, Paul IV revived the ancient canons against the Jews which forbade them the practice of medicine, the pursuit of high commerce, and the ownership of real estate. He also consigned them to a Ghetto, and compelled them to wear a Jew badge. In 1569, Pius IV expelled all the Jews from the Pontifical States, except Rome and Ancona. Sixtus V (1585-1590) recalled them; but, soon after him, Clement VIII (1592-1605) banished them again partially, at the very moment when the Maranos of Italy lost their last place of refuge in Ferrara. Similar misfortunes befell the Jewish race in other states of Italy as the Spanish domination extended there: Naples banished the Jews in 1541; Genoa, in 1550; Milan, in 1597. Hence-forward, most Sephardic fugitives simply passed through Italy when on their way to the Turkish Empire." [source]
Go ahead and argue against Luther. That's fair. Your argument though that one of the reasons he's wrong, or whatever, because of his comments about the Jews works the other way as well: Rome is therefore wrong because her statements about the Lutherans and her actions toward the Jews.

It's offensive for you to refer to Luther as Nazi, particularly from a Roman perspective. Physician, heal thyself.








Luther wrote down his theology and it includes murdering Jews. You can have hundreds of popes even one today say they hate jews, That does not change Catholic theology.

IN TEACHING Luther says kill Jews. He wrote an entire book on it. He determines his own theology.


The Lutherans know. ---> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin...d_antisemitism

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, in an essay on Lutheran-Jewish relations, observed that "Over the years, Luther's anti-Jewish writings have continued to be reproduced in pamphlets and other works by neo-Nazi and antisemitic groups, such as the Ku Klux Klan."[95]

Nothing in Catholic church teaching says hate anyone. Evil Catholics exist. The teaching however does not teach to hate Jews.


Luther however is writing a book teaching to HATE JEWS -->The Nazis used Martin Luther's book, On the Jews and Their Lies (1543), to claim a moral righteousness for their ideology. Luther even went so far as to advocate the murder of those Jews who refused to convert to Christianity, writing that "we are at fault in not slaying them".[55]

If a catholic wrote a book it only is what it is that does not determine church teaching. Thats why we are not caught by inventions of false teaching as Luther caught plenty with his theology of Faith Alone.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
Luther wrote down his theology and it includes murdering Jews.
This is false. Luther did not instruct anyone to murder Jews. Even in his harsh book, "On The Jews and Their Lies," Luther says, not to "harm their persons." See LW 47:274.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
You can have hundreds of popes even one today say they hate jews, That does not change Catholic theology.
The Pope officially released "Decet Romanum" in 1521. The papacy said of the Lutherans: their property is to be confiscated, those adhering to "Lutheranism" are to be treated as criminals against the Empire. They were considered "excommunicated, accursed, condemned, interdicted, deprived of possessions and incapable of owning them. They are to be strictly shunned by all faithful Christians." Had you lived in 1521, this is what the Papacy would have instructed faithful Roman Catholics to believe. That was official Roman Catholic teaching in 1521.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
IN TEACHING Luther says kill Jews. He wrote an entire book on it. He determines his own theology.
Once again, this is false. Luther never said to "kill Jews."

True, Luther wrote against the Jews, but do you want to know Luther's opinion of his books? "I would have been quite content to see my books, one and all, remain in obscurity and go by the board.... My consolation is that, in time, my books will lie forgotten in the dust anyhow, especially if I (by God’s grace) have written anything good." (LW 34:283-284). If you want to know what the essence of Luther's "teaching" is, simply go get a copy of the Book of Concord. This is the confessional standard that embraced Luther's teaching, and carried it on to subsequent generations.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
I'm not a millennial, so I don't rely on Wikipedia (even though that Wiki article refers to me at the bottom, LOL).

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, in an essay on Lutheran-Jewish relations, observed that "Over the years, Luther's anti-Jewish writings have continued to be reproduced in pamphlets and other works by neo-Nazi and antisemitic groups, such as the Ku Klux Klan."[95]
This is an invalid argument, but please, do provide some examples of this. You brought it up, so prove it.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
Nothing in Catholic church teaching says hate anyone. Evil Catholics exist. The teaching however does not teach to hate Jews.
Except of course in 1521, when all the faithful Roman Catholics were instructed via an official bull from the Pope instructing them to, in essence, hate Lutherans.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
Luther however is writing a book teaching to HATE JEWS -->
The Pope in 1521, instructed Roman Catholics to hate Lutherans,

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
The Nazis used Martin Luther's book, On the Jews and Their Lies (1543), to claim a moral righteousness for their ideology.
The Nazis picked and chose what they wanted from Luther. But by all means, instruct me here. Where exactly, or what is your proof, that the Nazis used Luther's treatise, "to claim a moral righteousness for their ideology"?

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
Luther even went so far as to advocate the murder of those Jews who refused to convert to Christianity, writing that "we are at fault in not slaying them".[55]
This is false. Luther never advocated murdering anyone who didn't convert. The quote you've cut-and-pasted "we are at fault for not slaying them" is being taken out of context, and I can prove it if need be.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
If a catholic wrote a book it only is what it is that does not determine church teaching. Thats why we are not caught by inventions of false teaching as Luther caught plenty with his theology of Faith Alone.
In 1521 the Pope releases a official document instructing Roman Catholics to hate Lutherans. If you lived in 1521, this was the official teaching of the Roman Catholic Church.

.



"We are at fault in not slaying them" --Martin Luther.


There is no other explanation for this than the one cited earlier from Moses, namely, that God has struck them with "madness and blindness and confusion of mind." So we are even at fault in not avenging all this innocent blood of our Lord and of the Christians which they shed for three hundred years after the destruction of Jerusalem, and the blood of the children they have shed since then (which still shines forth from their eyes and their skin). We are at fault in not slaying them. Rather we allow them to live freely in our midst despite an their murdering, cursing, blaspheming, lying, and defaming; we protect and shield their synagogues, houses, life, and property In this way we make them lazy and secure and encourage them to fleece us boldly of our money and goods, as well as to mock and deride us, with a view to finally overcoming us, killing us all for such a great sin, and robbing us of all our property (as they daily pray and hope). Now tell me whether they do not have every reason to be the enemies of us accursed Goyim, to curse us and to strive for our final, complete, and eternal ruin! --Martin Luther ON JEWS AND THEIR LIES.



Furthermore, if they are pious Jews and not the whoring people, as the prophets call them, how does it happen that their piety is so concealed that God himself is not aware of it, and they are not aware of it either? For they have, as we said, prayed, cried, and suffered almost fifteen hundred years already, and yet God refuses to listen to them. We know from Scripture that God will hear the prayers or sighing of the righteous, as the Psalter says [Ps. 145:19]: "He fulfills the desire of all who fear him, he also hears their cry." And Psalm 34:17: "When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears." As he promised in Psalm 50:15: "Call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you." The same is found in many more verses of the Scripture. If it were not for these, who would or could pray? In brief, he says in the first commandment that he will be their God. Then, how do you explain that he will not listen to these Jews? They must assuredly be the base, whoring people, that is, no people of God, and their boast of lineage, circumcision, and law must be accounted as filth. If there were a single pious Jew among them who observed these, he would have to be heard; for God cannot let his saints pray in vain, as Scripture demonstrates by many examples. This is conclusive evidence that they cannot be pious Jews, but must be the multitude of the whoring and murderous people. --- Martin Luther ON JEWS and THEIR LIES.




Pope Bacon can declare we should hate and kill everyone in the world. That does not equate to Catholic Theology. That is HIS theology.


We can read Decet Romanum Pontificem

Papal Bull of Excommunication of Martin Luther and his followers

http://www.papalencyclicals.net/leo10/l10decet.htm



QUOTE IT. There is nothing in an excommunication that teaches brand new theology. Quote where it says Catholic teaching is now hate Lutherans.



Its amazing how out of the way folks will go to defend a Nazi teaching.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
"We are at fault in not slaying them" --Martin Luther.
The actual place where these words from Luther occur is LW 47:267. Luther in context is bombastically arguing against the oppression of the Jews, saying rather that the Jews are oppressing the Germans! He presents the argument that it is they that are benefiting off German land, at the expense of the Germans. He further takes as true the the rumors that the Jews were killing German children and poisoning wells. "We are at fault in not slaying them" is part of a rhetorical argument in which Luther accepts the negative Jewish stereotypes of his day, then he attempts to present the case that despite these Jewish crimes, the Germans were gracious and kind to the Jews. Luther is not saying that the Germans should go out and kill the Jews. He's saying that if all the negative things are true about the Jews are true (as he previously stated, like killing children, poisoning wells, etc.), the Germans were at moral fault for allowing them to live. Rather, Germany has allowed them "to live freely in our midst despite all their murdering, cursing, blaspheming, lying, and defaming; we protect and shield their synagogues, houses, life, and property. In this way we make them lazy and secure and encourage them to fleece us boldly of our money and goods, as well as to mock and deride us, with a view to finally overcoming us, killing us all for such a great sin, and robbing us of all our property..." This is a rhetorical descriptive argument. It is not a prescription to go out and kill Jews. .

Luther goes on to say a few pages later... not to "harm their persons":
And you, my dear gentlemen and friends who are pastors and preachers, I wish to remind very faithfully of your official duty, so that you too may warn your parishioners concerning their eternal harm, as you know how to do—namely, that they be on their guard against the Jews and avoid them so far as possible. They should not curse them or harm their persons, however. For the Jews have cursed and harmed themselves more than enough by cursing the Man Jesus of Nazareth, Mary’s son, which they unfortunately have been doing for over fourteen hundred years. Let the government deal with them in this respect, as I have suggested. But whether the government acts or not, let everyone at least be guided by his own conscience and form for himself a definition or image of a Jew. (LW 47:274)
Originally posted by utilyan View Post
Pope Bacon can declare we should hate and kill everyone in the world. That does not equate to Catholic Theology. That is HIS theology.
In 1521, Decet Romanum pontificem officially instructed Roman Catholics how to treat Lutherans. If you were alive in 1521, this would have been the declarations guiding the society you lived in. Would you REALLY have said, "I'm not going to follow your directive, Pope Bacon. It is not Roman theology?" How would you know it was not Roman theology?

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
We can read Decet Romanum Pontificem

Papal Bull of Excommunication of Martin Luther and his followers

http://www.papalencyclicals.net/leo10/l10decet.htm QUOTE IT. There is nothing in an excommunication that teaches brand new theology. Quote where it says Catholic teaching is now hate Lutherans.
It has been quoted to you. It was cited with the specific purpose of demonstrating your double standard. You cited Luther's calling for harsh treatment of the Jews, and I countered with Rome demanding harsh treatment of the Lutherans. You can't have it both ways: you can't accuse Luther of being a "Nazi" for what he wrote (see your post here) and then ignore that the Papacy called for the same sort of treatment of the Lutherans: Property is to be confiscated, those adhering to "Lutheranism" are to be treated as criminals against the Empire. They were considered "excommunicated, accursed, condemned, interdicted, deprived of possessions and incapable of owning them. They are to be strictly shunned by all faithful Christians.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post
Its amazing how out of the way folks will go to defend a Nazi teaching.
This is pure personal slander, but it does serve its purpose in demonstrating your double standard at best, and at worst indicates you have missed the thrust of the argument. Nowhere in this vast thing we call "cyberspace" will you find me "defending Nazi teaching." Rather, I've been critical of Luther's anti-Jewish comments for years.

Certainly Luther's comments about the Jews were terrible, but they are not the deciding factor in his theology. Good Roman Catholic scholarship typically interacts with Luther's theology rather than attacking Luther the person, because the story of Luther's negativity towards the Jews is really to tell the story of medieval Christianity and medieval society's negativity towards the Jews.

Previous to Luther there were atrocities like The Strasbourg massacre (1349). Those Jews agreeing to be baptized were spared being burned alive. Even after Luther, Pope Paul IV (1555-1559) was involved in some fairly serious Jewish persecution:

"In 1553 all copies of the Talmud found in Rome were burned in public. Pope Paul IV (1555-1559) ordered measures to be taken against the Jews, and twenty-four men and one woman were burned at the stake. On July 12, 1555, he issued a bull that renewed all the oppressive medieval legislation against the Jews, excluding them from professions, limiting their financial and commercial activities, forbidding them to own real estate, and humiliating them by obliging them to wear yellow hats" [Lewis W. Spitz, The Protestant Reformation (New York: Harper and Row Publishers, 1985), 357].

Owen Chadwick likewise documents this: "He forced every Jew to wear a yellow hat and live in a ghetto with only one exit... He caused to be published the first Index of prohibited books... Sixtus of Siena was sent to Cremona, where there was a great Hebrew school (for the destruction of the Talmud was ordered), and reported that he had burnt a store of 12,000 volumes... Under an Inquisition with extended powers, and a pope ready to suspect everyone, there was almost a reign of terror in the city. 'Even if my own father were a heretic,' said the Pope, 'I would gather the wood to burn him'" [Owen Chadwick, The Reformation (New York: Penguin Books, 1964), 271].

A cyber-acquaintance of mine stated something in passing on Luther's attitude toward the Jews that I find meaningful, not only to the Luther & the Jews dispute, but to many aspects of church history:

"Let's think about this: 500 years ago, someone demonstrates that his view of people different than himself sociologically or politically is pretty provincial and, if we can say it plainly, insulting. In every generation after him, because of his influence in general, every biographer of him points out the fault, decries it, and indicates we shouldn't be like him. All the people who follow this guy theologically and denominationally all repudiate his faulty views, and they confessionally reject these views. His 500 years of influence are thereafter gleaned for the best of his ideas and the worst are literally called out and rejected, and reasonably-healthy churches are thereafter grown."
Even though I'm not a Lutheran, I think this is the actual paradigm Lutheranism has followed. From my perspective, I use the same paradigm for church history, be it Chrysostom, Origen, Augustine, etc. I realize that the voices from the past often have sins and faults. The cliche is to chew the meat and spit out the bones. That's what I do with Luther- that's why I can read him, even while not being a Lutheran, and I can appreciate him.



Simply James you are absolutely correct in how you have misunderstood it. Neo-Donatism doesn't work and hypocrites are wrong. I 100% agree.

If you could split the hairs between Lutheran and Luther's theology, you could better understand my POV.

LUTHER's theology is flat out wrong.

Originally posted by utilyan View Post


Simply James you are absolutely correct in how you have misunderstood it. Neo-Donatism doesn't work and hypocrites are wrong. I 100% agree.

If you could split the hairs between Lutheran and Luther's theology, you could better understand my POV.

LUTHER's theology is flat out wrong.
Wow. Tilt. Game completely over.