Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Martin Luther Claimed Jesus Was Sexually Promiscuous

"Martin Luther Claimed Jesus Was Sexually Promiscuous"... so claims a recent video from The statement was made by a person allegedly with "two masters degrees in Theology."  "Martin Luther had one problem. It was sex." Two examples are given, both said to come from "The Tabletalks" which were "published by Protestants, not Catholic hack-jobs" nor "refuted by the Protestant communities." They state:
He said "If the wife doesn't submit, let the maid come." His exegesis on Jesus would make your hair stand on end. He said our Lord committed fornication three there's publications, in writing from Protestant sources that have his Tabletalks, and they say well, you know he'd get a little bit of wine and he would say some things, but, he did put those things out there, that Christ committed fornication three times, and he would double down on why he said this... He said Jesus committed adultery with the woman caught in adultery.. Well how'd you get that from Scripture? He said, well how would he let her off so easy? He must've been involved."
I probably shouldn't be surprised that even with degrees in theology, this polemic was stated.  The conclusion was said to come from Father John Hardon ("Martin Luther had one problem. It was sex."). Hardon may have picked it up from earlier generations of Roman Catholic scholarship basing their conclusions on the work of Heinrich Denifle, a work by and large typically ignored by current Roman Catholic Scholarship.

Two quotes were mentioned. The first quote is not from "The Tabletalks," But rather from The Estate of Marriage, LW 45:34 (Vom ehelichen Leben: WA 10.II, 290). This quote has nothing to do with "Martin Luther Claimed Jesus Was Sexually Promiscuous." I covered this quote many years ago. The context for this polemical remark is in regard to separation and remarriage, not bigamy or adultery.

The second quote about "our Lord committed fornication three times" is from the Tabletalk. Likewise, I covered this quote many years ago. It is not something Luther actually wrote, but something he is purported to have said. The Tabletalk is a collection of comments from Luther written down by Luther’s students and friends. It is not in actuality an official writing of Luther's and should not serve as the basis for interpreting his theology. This particular utterance has no context. One does not know what exactly Luther had in mind. Was he kidding? Was he summarizing someone else's argument? Was he using hyperbole? No one knows.

The irony is that it was stated of these quotes they were not put out by "Catholic hack-jobs." Yet the very way they were presented by was.... a blatant hack job.

Addendum: Father John Hardon on Luther

Consequently, back to where we were regarding Lutheranism.  That for Luther, having been a priest, and never of course losing his priesthood, you would expect one of the key features, call it a feature of Lutheran Protestantism, would be precisely why Luther was distinct. He was a well educated priest who gave up his faith.  But we go on, still on Luther, because the stage that Luther set has been pretty much colored by his thinking over the centuries.  In English there are 54 volumes to the complete works of Martin Luther, 54 volumes.  And I’ve told people, I’m sure many of you, you can spare yourself the trouble of reading those 54 volumes, that’s a lot of reading, a lot of pages, it’s more simple to just know what besides what I’ve just said, mainly, his denial of the Real Presence of Christ, His humanity in the Holy Eucharist, and he invented the idea of Christ universal humanity. Christ already is everywhere as man, and so nothing really happens at what we call the consecration.  But, there is another distinctive feature in Lutheran Protestantism.  And that is, for Luther having struggled as, your author will point out, having struggled with his passions, especially his passion of lust.  Martin Luther had a very strong sex passion.  And, he claims, though once you get to know Luther’s life you realize just a claim. Among other things Luther stopped doing was praying.  One of the letters that he wrote was one to his sister, which he told her I’ve got so much work to do I don’t have time even to say my office.  In any case, after years of what he called struggle with his passions, he decided it’s no use, and he decided what was wrong was not Martin Luther, but the Catholic Church.  That the Catholic Church is mistaken in thinking that we, somehow we, can contribute to our either sanctification or to our control of our lower drives.  No, said Luther, it is all up to God.  If God wants….Always a sin.  Omnia qua ego facio son semper pecatum.  All the things that I do are always a sin.  That’s Martin Luther.  And that then is the second cardinal feature of Lutheran Protestantism what we’ve come to call the total depravity of human nature.  Human nature is so depraved you couldn’t be more depraved in theological language than to claim as Luther did that everything we do is always a sin.  That’s pretty depraved.  And of course the consequences of these positions, after almost five hundred years have been disastrous. [source]

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