Friday, November 13, 2015

Luther on Repentance and the importance of the study of the original languages of Scripture

I missed this video by Dr. Rob Plummer (Professor of Greek and New Testament at Southern Seminary) on Oct. 31, 2015, but just saw it yesterday, and thought it worth posting.  It is a good reminder of the importance of the Greek word for repentance instead of the Latin, which was wrongly translated and contributed to the wrong understanding of repentance in the middle ages as "do penance", which grew into an emphasis and a focus on the external outward act or ritual that one had to do that the priest would assign, in order to gain satisfaction for full forgiveness.

Dr. Plummer goes over the first three of the 95 theses and how important that is, regarding true repentance.  True inward repentance results in fruit and good works and, as Luther says,  results in "various mortifications of the flesh".  (see Acts 26:20; Matthew 3:8; Luke 3:8; 2 Corinthians 7:7-10)

The "mortifications of the flesh" was a convicting comment, in light of the ongoing battles against "remaining sin" (James 1:19-21) like sinful anger, lust, gluttony, laziness, pride, complaining, worry, sinful fears, etc. (see Colossians 3:5; Romans 8:13; and 1 Corinthians 9:27)

Dr. Plummer's videos of "The Daily Dose of Greek" are very good for reminders; and helping those of us who had NT Greek in seminary, but have become rusty by not being in it so much every day.  I was keeping up with this in 1 John and Mark off and on pretty good until the last 3 months.  Life is like that; the Lord is good to give opportunities and grace, so we can start back again in our desires for good disciplines.

The quote that Dr. Plummer cites from Luther about the importance of the original languages - I remember reading that somewhere.  Dr. Plummer does not cite the source, but I found some references to it in John Piper's book, The Legacy of Sovereign Joy, (about Augustine, Luther, and Calvin), on page 97, (which I highly recommend), and he cites that as coming from W. Carlos Martyn, The Life and Times of Martin Luther, 1866, pp. 474-475.  (It is a slightly different translation from the one that Dr. Plummer cites.)  Maybe James Swan has cited this before or done an article on this before; I did not search a lot, but some, and could not find it here.

I found the 1866 W. Carlos Martyn book The Life and Times of Martin Luther, here.

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