Wednesday, October 29, 2008

WAS MARTIN LUTHER AN ANTI-SEMITE?

Today at 3PM I will be on Chris Arnzen's Iron Sharpens Iron show. The show can be heard live over the Internet, and the MP3 will be available for download around 4:30 PM.

MP3 Available Here


JAMES SWAN, who is involved in teaching ministry at the Pompton Plains Reformed Bible Church in New Jersey, will address "WAS MARTIN LUTHER AN ANTI-SEMITE?"

October 31 marks the 491st anniversary of Martin Luther nailing the 95 Theses to the castle church door in Wittenberg Germany. Protestants all over the world mark this as the birth of the Protestant Reformation. Martin Luther is celebrated as a hero who stood alone against the tyranny of the Roman Catholic Church. Luther is heralded as a mighty voice proclaiming salvation by faith alone and scripture alone!

But did Martin Luther have a dark side? Many who oppose the Reformation today say that Martin Luther was not the "great Reformer" but actually a "great anti-Semite." Far from being a champion of human freedom, Luther preached hate against the Jewish people. Luther stated:

“Let their houses also be shattered and destroyed . . . Let their prayer books and Talmuds be taken from them, and their whole Bible too; let their rabbis be forbidden, on pain of death, to teach henceforth any more. Let the streets and highways be closed against them. Let them be forbidden to practice usury, and let all their money, and all their treasures of silver and gold be taken from them and put away in safety. And if all this be not enough, let them be driven like mad dogs out of the land.”

Those who oppose the Reformation wonder how Protestants can claim Luther was a hero of freedom and human dignity and neglect to mention such blatant hatred for an entire group of people! They question whether or not the Reformation Luther started against the Roman Catholic Church was a movement really interested in freedom and human dignity. They posit that perhaps Luther has been overly romanticized: the Church he fought against really wasn’t as bad as portrayed. Luther’s anti-Semitic statements prove unhesitatingly he could not have been a “Reformer” in any sense of the word. A true man of God could never say such awful things.

Today, James Swan tackles this controversial subject head on, as he discusses his paper Luther and the Jews, hosted on Christian apologist Dr. Eric Svendsen's New Testament Research Ministries' website. Luther and the Jews is one of the most in-depth treatments of this subject available on the Internet.

James is also a member of "Team Apologian", contributing articles to the blog on the web site of renowned Bible scholar Dr. James R. White's Alpha and Omega Ministries , contributes Reformation articles for Christian apologist Dr. Eric Svendsen's New Testament Research Ministries' website, and has had articles published in the Reformed periodical, The Outlook . He also runs his own daily blog, Beggars All: Reformation and Apologetics , dedicated to historical and Biblical research on the Protestant Reformation.

1 comment:

L P Cruz said...

If people read what Luther said about his own country men and what names he called them, he cannot be misunderstood as being anti-semite.

LPC