Thursday, May 24, 2007

Luther discussions

When I find Luther related discussion threads, I’m going to link to them here, so that way I can find them easier and check in on them from time to time. This doesn’t mean I’m actively participating in the discussion.

Martin Luther had Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (From the CARM Lutheran board)

"Martin Luther had OCD, he suffered from it... Does this mean hisTheology is not valid?"

Looking for Luther Quote (From the Catholic Answers Apologetics board)

"Looking for Luther Quote ...on his authority to determine which books are canonical. I had read it in one of the many apologetic books I have, but I can't seem to locate it now. A loose paraphrase is: I can remove books from scripture on my authority; my will alone is sufficient to determine this."

Luther Suppresses Catholic Bibles (!) (From the CARM Church History Board)

"Janssen writes of a hypocritical instance of Luther's censorship (1529): Luther . . . set his pen in motion concerning this Catholic translation of the Bible. 'The freedom of the Word,' which he claimed for himself, was not to be accorded to his opponent Emser . . . When . . . he learnt that Emser's translation . . . was to be printed . . . at Rostock, he not only appealed himself to his follower, Duke Henry of Mecklenburg, with the request that 'for the glory of the evangel of Christ and the salvation of all souls' he would put a stop to this printing, but he also worked on the councillors of the Elector of Saxony to support his action. He denied the right and the power of the Catholic authorities to inhibit his books; on the other hand he invoked the arm of the secular authorities against all writings that were displeasing to him. (Janssen, XIV, 503-504)"

Calvin vs. Luther (From Christian Forums Theologia Crucis)

"Calvinists believe in an "evident" God. He can be known in the depth of His greatest mysteries. Lutherans hold to more of a "hidden" God. To search out His mysteries to make Him explainable to us in all His actions and doings is simply not even ridiculous, but goes against His body of revelation which it obscures. If such foreordained knowledge decides the elect, it kind of makes one ask of Jesus' work: what's the point?Luther was a monk and approached God with a sense of mystery. What He did not reveal, we should not presume and press for answers.Calvin was a lawyer who took the a,b,c approach of logic. It is the attempt of the finite to understand and grasp the infinite. Presumptious and ridiculous. How can a Calvinist know they are one of the elect?How can a Lutheran have the assurance of salvation?The answers provide key insights into the theologies of both, the good, the bad, the ugly."


Simon said...


Thanks for your work on Luther. I have a question about Luther. It is a little off-topic, so forgive me for that, but since you have done much valuable research on him, I thought you would be in a good position to answer it.

I have had a Roman Catholic claim to me that Luther wrote in his commentary on St. John, chapter 16, that
We are compelled to concede to the Papists that they have the Word of God, that we received it from them, and that without them, we should have no knowledge of it at all.

A little googling reveals that this quote can be found on several Roman Catholic websites, and because of this and the fact that Roman Catholics apologists frequently quote people out of context, I am suspicious.

Did Luther even write a commentary on John? If so, do you know where I can get a hold of it? If not, to your knowledge, did Luther say or write the above quote?



James Swan said...

Hi Simon,

I took a look at this quote back in November 2006:

Luther: The Infallible Church Declared The Contents of Scripture?


Simon said...

Thanks James. The article you wrote on this issue was very helpful.