The Glory Has Departed

Books are being donated to those studying
Justification by Faith and fighting UOJ, and for the mission in the Philippines.

Norma Boeckler, Artist-in-Residence

The Lutheran Library Publishing Ministry

Pastor Jordan Palangyos -
Philippine Mission.

Bethany Lutheran Worship on
Ustream - Sunday, 10 AM
Central Daylight Time.
Greek Lessons Resume This Week - Gospel of Mark, 7 PM, Central Daylight

Saved worship files and Greek lessons are at the live worship link.

email: greg.jackson.edlp@gmail.com,
which also works as gregjacksonedlp@gmail.com too.

Luther's Sermons, Lenker Series
Book of Concord Selections
Martin Chemnitz Press Books

Norma A. Boeckler Author's Page

Pastor Jackson's Amazon Author's Page

Dropbox links to free public domain books, Lenski Commentaries, Keil-Delitzsch, Luther's Sermons,
plus books edited and written by Pastor Gregory L. Jackson
WWG1WGA - D5

I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4

Alec Satin, Lutheran Library Publishing Ministry

Laissez les bons livres rouler!

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

The Failure of Christian News Is Self Evident

 Note the clever marketing for Schwan Foods.
Thrivent? Thrivent is all over LCMS and at CN too.

Lutheran News (the name of the non-profit) became Christian News to reach a broader base. That marketing move worked, because Roman Catholic conservatives and Babtist conservatives used the tabloid to reach their audiences.

Christian News was definitely not independent. Otten, the son of a successful painting contractor, played both sides of the issues, as he wrote in defending his profits from The Facts (sic) about Luther, that he "sold to both sides."

Nor was Otten independent. He had minders in each synod who made sure their scandals did not get out. If they did, the lurid stories were hidden on page 17 - like the Hochmuth arrest  and child porn at WELS headquarters. So the synod leaders hated Otten (supposedly) and kept his publishing on a leash at all times.

Each LCMS Synod President - from Jack Preus to Matt the Fatt - campaigned for office through Christian News. I was at his office when John Johnson (Concordia, St. Louis) was flattering him and Otten was calling that new version of Seminex the "greatest seminary in the world."

 I learned from CN that every church body has horrible scandals, except for the LCMS, WELS, ELS, and CLC (sic). For those members, heaven will be a big disappointment.
Missouri sponsored the Hour of Schauer.


Otten fluttered around about the Chief Article of Christianity and Church Growth. He had faint praise for Dr. Walter A. Maier, but his heart belonged to CFW Walther, BA. Otten never faced the truth of Walther's Pietism, poor education, and covering for Stephan's sex crimes. The myth continues and the blinded Missourians make the veneration of Mary seem rather tepid. The Great Walther answers every question! Just ask LutherQuest (sic).

Otten honored his long-time friend Kurt Marquart with a series of reprints, but the editor was eager to promote David Valleskey's Church Growth idiocy - We Believe, Therefore We Have Sneaker Services.

Marquat's criticism of Church Growth was doctrinal and devastating. Which side was Otten on? Marketing.


Pastor Herman Otten Died Today, April 24th

Breaking news - 2012 - when he retired.

Mark 2:1-12 Greek Lesson - Paralytic - Untiling the Tiles.
7 PM Central Daylight Wednesday



Parser - tells us the I.D. of the word

Lenski's Mark Commentary - download as a PDF


Lenski on Chapter 2 of Mark:
All the pericopes from 2:1 to 3:6 emphasize the Jewish opposition to Jesus. This feature has led some commentators to make 2 :l-3:6 a subdivision of Mark's Gospel. But Mark himself furnishes us a better clue to the division he intended to make. He closes the first subdivision in a ratiier unmistakable way by a sum mary view of Jesus' activity, 1:35-39; he does the same in 3:7-12 in closing the second subdivision; the appointment of the Twelve as apostles, 3:13, etc., un doubtedly begins the third subdivision. We deem it best to follow these marks which are introduced with such plainness by the evangelist himself. The hostility of the Jews that runs through most of the pericopes in the second subdivision lends its own characterization to these paragraphs while Mark still abides by his great theme to exhibit Jesus as the Son of God by means of his mighty words and works.


και παλιν εισηλθεν εις καπερναουμ δι ημερων, και ηκουσθη, οτι εις οικον εστιν
και ευθεως συνηχθησαν πολλοι, ωστε μηκετι χωρειν μηδε τα προς την θυραν, και ελαλει αυτοις τον λογον
και ερχονται προς αυτον παραλυτικον φεροντες αιρομενον υπο τεσσαρων
και μη δυναμενοι προσεγγισαι αυτω, δια τον οχλον, απεστεγασαν την στεγην 
οπου ην, και εξορυξαντες χαλωσιν τον κραββατον εφ ω ο παραλυτικος κατεκειτο
stegosaurus - lizard
These could easily be lifted and afterward put into place again. The real difficulty lies in the removal of the support of the tiles. All we have to express this is the participle €^o/)v|avres. Objection is voiced to what is here described as •being altogether impossible, a mere piece of imagination on the part of the evangelists. But Mark has received the account from Peter who was present when the thing was done. Some object on account of the danger to those in the room below, but no one was hurt, nothing was dropped. The entire proceeding is so unique in every way that invention of the facts or embellishment of lesser facts are most certainly excluded. So the man was lowered on his  (more common than, Matthew and Luke, or , Luke) right down in the middle of the room in front of Jesus (Luke).

ιδων δε ο ιησους την πιστιν αυτων, λεγει τω παραλυτικω "τεκνον αφεωνται σοι αι αμαρτιαι σου"
ησαν δε τινες των γραμματεων εκει καθημενοι και διαλογιζομενοι εν ταις καρδιαις αυτων
τι ουτος ουτως λαλει βλασφημιας - τις δυναται αφιεναι αμαρτιας ει μη εις ο θεος
και ευθεως επιγνους ο ιησους τω πνευματι αυτου, οτι ουτως διαλογιζονται εν εαυτοις, ειπεν αυτοις, "τι ταυτα διαλογιζεσθε εν ταις καρδιαις υμων?"
τι εστιν ευκοπωτερον ειπειν τω παραλυτικω, αφεωνται σοι αι αμαρτιαι, η ειπειν εγειραι και αρον σου τον κραββατον και περιπατει
10 ινα δε ειδητε οτι εξουσιαν εχει ο υιος του ανθρωπου αφιεναι επι της γης αμαρτιας, λεγει τω παραλυτικω
11 σοι λεγω, εγειραι και αρον τον κραββατον σου, και υπαγε εις τον οικον σου
12 και ηγερθη ευθεως, και αρας τον κραββατον, εξηλθεν εναντιον παντων, ωστε εξιστασθαι παντας και δοξαζειν τον θεον, λεγοντας οτι ουδεποτε ουτως ειδομεν.

Lenski
This is the great a^cats, "dismissal" or "remission," of which the Scriptures speak so constantly. In the entire Bible no sweeter word meets the sinner's eye. The sins are sent away from the sinner so completely That they shall never be found again, to the depth of the sea (Micah 7:10), are blotted out so as to be removed from the record (Isa. 43:25); are removed from the sinner as far as the east is from the west (Ps. 103). This is what we usually call "forgiveness," and stronger descriptions of it cannot be found. Only God is able to send our sins away in this manner.

Creation Lessons - Short Versions

 Salatin is the Lunatic Farmer, using chickens to feed themselves from newly grazed and heavily manured pasture. The chicken house is moved all the time, just like the cows.

Sassy and I ventured out to see the world this morning. She saw the father of a favorite. He grinned at her until she was close enough for petting. She trotted faster when she noticed him.

The rose garden is a three-dimensional vision, with most of the plants leafing out, growing stronger, showing the results of a winter well spent in root extensions.

 Carbon Cowboys use cover crops to harness the rain, to avoid drying up and flooding.

 Where does this harmony, design, engineering, and management come from?

Below are some positive lessons learned about Creation Gardening and the sources.


  1. Aim for earthworms with organic matter and composting. Rodale and earlier pioneers, English of course.
  2. Compost on the surface will be pulled down as needed. English writer - Shewell-Cooper.
  3. Mulch is little more than organic matter spread around for good effect, composting on the spot, blocking weeds, holding in rain. Ruth Stout.
  4. Roses and other favorites enjoy companion plants (roses - garlic) so a mixed planting works very well.
  5. The biggest positive factor in the soil is the growth of fungal strands, which should not be broken up by rototilling, plowing, and general mischief. Though earthworms are important in measuring fertility, soil health depends on avoiding toxins and ending the osterizing of soil. The foundation is microbial - fungus, bacteria, protozoa, etc.
  6. I knew most insects were beneficial so I never cared for garden pesticides. Jessica Walliser wrote the book on matching ordinary plain Jane  plants with the beneficial bugs they attract.
  7. Gardening anecdotes are fun to read, long lasting in my memory, and beneficial. A Blessing of Toads is essential reading for Creation Gardeners.
  8. Carbon Cowboys taught me about deep-rooted plants contributing to rain conservation, soil fertility, and beneficial bug production. "A living root should be left in the ground as long as possible." The bucket challenge is pouring a five gallon bucket of water on an established deep-rooted plant. It goes down like it is a drain in a sloped parking lot. Try that on a new plant - goodbye plant.
  9. Lunatic Farming illustrated many new ways to renew the soil, harness God's creatures to do mutually beneficial work, and improve nutrition all around.
  10. Norma A. Boeckler is a gardening artist, where her illustrations are often adorned with flowers, and her garden looks like a painting. That has to be seen to be appreciated.

 Now I buy plants with bugs in mind, beneficial bugs.

Norma Boeckler is the Monet of gardening, planting and painting beauty - and writing about it.
 This book helps explain why gardening center supplies stink and the garden smells heavenly.

Romans, Part 1 - The Path To Understanding Justification




Romans – The Central Doctrinal Epistle


Paul’s Epistle to the Romans is not the first work written by him but the most important of his doctrinal letters. Just as the doctrinal Gospel of John is a handy book for heretics, so is this epistle cited but lightly studied by the furtive Pietists and closet Universalists.
Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. 17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
16 ου γαρ επαισχυνομαι το ευαγγελιον του χριστου δυναμις γαρ θεου εστιν εις σωτηριαν παντι τω πιστευοντι ιουδαιω τε πρωτον και ελληνι
17 δικαιοσυνη γαρ θεου εν αυτω αποκαλυπτεται εκ πιστεως εις πιστιν καθως γεγραπται ο δε δικαιος εκ πιστεως ζησεται
While District President Buchholz and WELS have declared that everyone is saved, regardless of faith, following WELS Professor JP Meyer, Paul teaches clearly that the Gospel is the efficacious power of God for salvation for everyone who believes. Everyone is modified by believers, or more accurately, Paul’s emphasizes all believers, not limiting the kind or quality or worthiness of the believers. This salvation is revealed as from faith to faith.
The first three chapters of Romans eliminate all arguments for salvation through the Law, whether it is based on the Old Testament or man’s own moral law. What follows this brilliant and clear argument is the answer already given in Romans 1:16-17.
Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: 23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; 26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. 27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith. 28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.
22 δικαιοσυνη δε θεου δια πιστεως ιησου χριστου εις παντας και επι παντας τους πιστευοντας ου γαρ εστιν διαστολη
Readers should consider the precise translation of the KJV above and the unusual construction, by faith of Jesus Christ, which also appears in Galatians and Philippians. Did Jesus have faith? His human nature is often neglected when speaking of His divine nature. His human nature means He was tempted and angered, that He was hungry and thirsted. His sermons in the Gospel of John constantly refer to His glorifying the Father. To go steadfastly toward Jerusalem, toward His death, He also had faith that the terrible days ahead were for mankind and walked there in obedience to the Father’s will.
The righteousness of God comes to us only by faith of Jesus, as Paul wrote earlier, from faith to faith. Jesus as Peter was not the rock, nor was his faith the rock on which the Church would be built, so the faith communicated to us is the faith of Jesus, and not the faith of the apostles.

Some want to build a little fort on Romans 3:23-25, which reveals the lack of reading comprehension in modern seminary graduates.
23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
The word for redemption used here means “a release effected by payment of a ransom.” The word for propitiation means “a sin offering,” so both refer to the Atonement described in Isaiah 53 and Psalm 22. Neither term teaches that everyone in the world was forgiven and saved, as some claim, because the terms apply to what Jesus did. Teaching the Atonement, which was always central to the Apostles, is the Gospel, because God willed and accomplished this without man’s cooperation and before humankind could imagine what it meant. To be justified freely does not mean the entire world, regardless of faith. Certain sects connect “freely” and “by grace” to the whole world – apart from faith, and many – but not all – are Calvinists.
The sectarian approach is to isolate a verse, part of a verse, or a few verses to shape their little group, to the exclusion of the rest of the Scriptures. Although the books of the Bible were not numbered by chapter and verse until later, the sections show clear themes and transitions. Those writers were not so daft that they did not know how to do this with common Greek words bridging those sections. These three verses (23-25) are followed immediately by this great statement:
Roman 3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. 27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith. 28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.
26 εν τη ανοχη του θεου προς ενδειξιν της δικαιοσυνης αυτου εν τω νυν καιρω εις το ειναι αυτον δικαιον και δικαιουντα τον εκ πιστεως ιησου 27 που ουν η καυχησις εξεκλεισθη δια ποιου νομου των εργων ουχι αλλα δια νομου πιστεως 28 λογιζομεθα ουν πιστει δικαιουσθαι ανθρωπον χωρις εργων νομου
λογιζομεθα ουν – Therefore we conclude…
The verb translated “conclude” in verse 28 is a pesky one for the false teachers, because it connects Romans 4 to Genesis 15:6, and transitions from this section to the central argument based on Abraham in chapter 4. Paul used the futility of works to teach Justification by Faith, which introduces Abraham as the central figure, a positive example.


Romans 4 – Abraham as the Example of Justification by Faith


Romans 4:1-3

What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? 2 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. 3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
τι ουν ερουμεν αβρααμ τον πατερα ημων ευρηκεναι κατα σαρκα
ει γαρ αβρααμ εξ εργων εδικαιωθη εχει καυχημα αλλ ου προς τον θεον
τι γαρ η γραφη λεγει επιστευσεν δε αβρααμ τω θεω και ελογισθη αυτω εις δικαιοσυνην
Repetition is a form of emphasis - because Paul declared Justification by Faith at the end of chapter 3. He opened chapter 4 connecting Abraham with Justification by Faith and quoting the passage from Genesis 15:6.

Romans 4:4-5 Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. 5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

Isolating part of a verse will satisfy those who cannot see Justification by Faith in these two verses, this chapter, this Pauline book, these unified and harmonious Scriptures. “He justifies the ungodly! Romans 4:5” has been used repeatedly, as if fencing off a few words will reveal the essence of the verse.




Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Jacobs Book of Concord Now Available - from Alec Satin's Lutheran Library Publishing Ministry




The Book of Concord: The Symbolical Books of the Evangelical Lutheran Church by Henry Eyster Jacobs and Charles Krauth

Here is a clear, trustworthy and easy-to-search and navigate version of the Lutheran Confessions. This edition was prepared by Henry Eyster Jacobs for the use of all the Lutheran Churches in America.

Table of Contents

About the Translation

“The translation of the Augsburg Confession adopted in this volume is the well-known one of Dr. Charles P. Krauth, which he has kindly revised as the proof-sheets passed through his hands.
“In the Small Catechism, the translation prepared by Dr, Charles F. Schaeffer with the co-operation of a committee of the Ministerium of Pennsylvania, and in universal use in the English churches of the General Council, is reprinted, with the addition of the formula for confession contained in the Book of Concord.
“The Large Catechism was translated for this work by Rev. A. Martin, Professor of the German Language and Literature in Pennsylvania College, to whom the Editor is greatly indebted for assistance and advice also in other directions.
“The Apology of the Augsburg Confession, the Smalcald Articles and the Formula of Concord were translated by Henry Eyster Jacobs. The rendering of the Apology is from the Latin, the German translation of Justus Jonas of the Concordienbuch being more of a paraphrase than a translation, differing sometimes from the original by the omission, introduction and transposition of entire paragraphs, and therefore inducing the editors of some of the best German editions of the Symbolical Books to prepare fresh translations. We have, accordingly, carefully revised our translation from the Latin, by comparing it with the German translations of Schöpf, Köthe, Spieker and Bodemann.

Summary of the Contents

  • I. The General Creeds: The Apostles’ Creed. The Nicene Creed. The Athanasian Creed.
  • II. The Augsburg Confession
  • III. Apology Of The Augsburg Confession.
  • IV. The Smalcald Articles.
  • V. The Small Catechism of Martin Luther
  • VI. The Large Catechism of Dr. Martin Luther.
  • VII. The Formula Of Concord.
  • Appendix: The Saxon Visitation Articles

Download the eBook 


Publication Information

  • Lutheran Library edition first published: 2019-04-23
  • Version 4 update: 2019-04-23
  • CopyrightCC BY 4.0

The Path To Understanding Justification - Psalm 22 and Isaiah


Psalm 22 Portrays the Crucifixion 

My Old Testament graduate students are stunned by Isaiah 53 and the clear prediction of the crucifixion in Psalm 22.
Jesus’ cry from the cross – 
Psalm 22:1 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
The mockery of the crowd around the cross – 
Psalm 22: 6 But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people. 7 All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, 8 He trusted on the Lord that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.
The hostility of everyone, the crowd, religious and Roman officials, abandonment –
Psalm 22:11 Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help. 12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round. 13 They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.
The effect of flogging, beating, and crucifixion –
Psalm 22:14 I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels. 15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.
Details of the crucifixion, being nailed to the cross –
Psalm 22: 16 For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
The division of Jesus’ clothes, but rolling dice for the seamless garment –
Psalm 22: 18 They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture. Jesus’ ministry was declaring the glory of the Father and being obedient to Him –
Psalm 22: 22 I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.
Justification by faith in His righteousness will follow –
Psalm 22:31 They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.

20

This is only a sample of what can be taught from Psalm 22, so the student of the Bible can see what a powerful foundation was built for Justification in Jewish study of the Law, Prophets, and Writings – another name for the Old Testament – and in their worship services. One can encapsulate some of this foundational teaching in the Virgin Birth of Isaiah 7:14, His divine nature and roles in Isaiah 9:6-7, His atoning death in Isaiah 53, and the divine power of the Holy Spirit in the Word in Isaiah 55:8-11.
Nothing in the New Testament is contrary to the Old Testament, so the Justification so clearly taught in Genesis 15:6 onward is revealed in the glory of God’s grace in the Gospels, articulated with great clarity in Paul’s letters.


Monday, April 22, 2019

Luther's Household Sermons 1 Is Done, Volumes 2 and 3 Are with Janie Sullivan


Janie Sullivan had some eye surgery, so she needs some rest before she finishes the last two House Postils, but she does have them.


  • One set of three will be in color.
  • One set will be in black and white.
  • Kindle ebooks, in color, will be set at the lowest price.
  • Gems will be mined for a one volume sampler.
  • All four will be merged for a free, color PDF.


Doting Works in the Creation Garden

Next to the mailbox is the 2012 Crepe Myrtle.

 This is the same bush in 2017.


Long ago I agreed to let agricultural partners and associates and subsidiaries send me information about gardening. As a result of that, and a few modest purchases, I reached critical mass and found many gardening catalogs and offers in the mailbox and emailbox daily. The temptations were great to try this or that plant, photographed by professionals from 3 inches away, printed in ravishing colors on glossy paper or in the best graphics. Unfortunately, the specimens that enticed me arrived as seeds to be devoured by garden critters or plants equally satisfying to devour. "At least I added organic matter to the soil," I said to myself.

Every year I pick a few plants to dote on, to spoil, to give the most attention. For example, I did everything possible for the straggly Crepe Myrtle in the front yard. One aspect was placing mushroom compost, grass clippings, wood mulch, and leaves at the base. The second concentration was pruning. I cut away branches gone to seed and all extra growths up to eye level. Like roses, Crepe Myrtles will put more energy into the bloom if the roots are no longer feeding extra growth. Pruning also promotes new bud growth and expansion of the root system.

When I tell our seminarian, "It's going to rain," he finishes the sentence - "so you are going to water the roses." That is exactly right. I have barrels and buckets holding rainwater in the back, but I also dump them out before they become mosquito obstetrical wards. I haul rainwater to the front and give roses - and some starter plants - extra hydration and usable nitrogen at the same time.

Sassy and I walked this morning, and it was cool and breezy. She guarded our front lawn while I fetched rainwater from the back and wood mulch from beside the driveway.

I remember the great Dr. Abraham Malherbe at Yale teaching about this construction in Greek - "each and every one." In watering and mulching each and every plant, I found the roses that needed more water, some mulch, a little trimming. Some new bare root roses do not quite make it out of dormancy, so I look for those and give them a boost if it seems possible. Falling in Love was a rose I thought I lost twice and yet came back.

Older roses have extensive roots, leaf out earlier, and begin to grow new canes. Now we have warm weather, bright sun today, and steady rain tomorrow.

The Crepe Myrtle is still dormant, but the two Clethras decided to sprout. I snipped away their seed remnants, to spark some growth.

Some Ways To Dote on a Few Plants

  • Grow them where they will be seen - that also scares rabbits away.
  • Mulch them with paper, cardboard, or shredded wood.
  • Save rainwater and pour it on certain plants and see how much difference it makes.
  • Pruning promotes growth, so a little pruning each day pays off.




Now Appearing -
Daisies are just starting to grow, so is Joe Pye.
Cat Mint started early and is already a large mound ready to bloom.
Mountain Mint is growing too, adding scent to the air.


ELCA Hosts Twin Events through ELM - Extraordinary Lutheran Ministries

 Exposing the ELCA got the scoop on this.

 Exposing the ELCA also let people know how Anders Nelson, about to be ordained, Luther Seminary, danced  his heart out at the chapel, to the whoops and hollers of  his friends.


Trinity Lutheran Seminary, once the seminary of Lenker, Lenski, and Leupold, posted this graphic to promote the event. The seminary's poor supervision led to its insolvency from lawsuits due to ordaining a known predator.

Luther's Sermon for Easter Tuesday - Luke's Text Immediately after the Emmaus Appearance



TUESDAY AFTER EASTER

OR THIRD EASTER DAY.

SECOND SERMON, LUKE 24:36-47.


KJV Luke 24:36 And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. 37 But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. 38 And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? 39 Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. 40 And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet. 41 And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat? 42 And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. 43 And he took it, and did eat before them. 44 And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. 45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, 46 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: 47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.


I. A COMFORTING EXAMPLE AND PICTURE OF CHRIST.

1. In the first part of this Gospel we have for our consolation another example showing how Christ manifests himself and how he is wont to act toward his beloved disciples. They have scarcely begun to speak of him, when he himself comes and stands in their midst and greets them with these kind and cheerful words: “Pax vobis!” (Peace be unto you!) The disciples, however, are frightened at this and suppose they behold a spirit. But he suffers them not to be thus frightened, rebukes them for allowing such thoughts to enter their hearts, and shows them his hands and feet; that they may see that he is not a spirit, nor another Christ than he has been in the past, but is of their own flesh and bones and of the selfsame nature as they.

This he does that they may not be afraid of him, but may rejoice in him and be comforted, and look to him for good things.

2. For this example of his conduct is to serve as an object lesson as it were, instilling comfort into all terrified hearts; especially against that spectre called a false Christ. For the devil also has the habit of coming to people, both in public and in private, either through false doctrine or through secret inward working, and he even pretends to be Christ himself. He begins with a pleasant greeting, with a smiling “good morning;” but ere long he smites the heart with sorrow and dread, that it knows not what has become of Christ.

3. For his delight is to deceive us under the name and guise of Christ; and he is ever desirous of aping God and of imitating him in all that he sees him do. Now, when God reveals himself he employs the following manner:

First, in deed, he terrifies those who have not been terrified as yet. Besides, hearts that are naturally timid always stand in dread of his words and works by reason of their timid nature. But those who are terrified already, he comforts again and speaks kindly to them. The devil imitates this and likewise comes with the name and works of Christ; but both his comfort and his terrors are counterfeit. For he reverses the two, terrifying and dismaying those who stand in need of comfort, and comforting and strengthening those who should be afraid and stand in fear of God’s wrath.

To shield ourselves against this deception, we should learn from this Gospel to distinguish correctly between the doctrines and ideas that come to our notice, both such as terrify and such as comfort, that we may know which of them are of God and which of the devil.

4. For, in the first place, that lying spirit, already in Paradise, began this sweet deception when he approached Eve with his courteous, kind, and honeyed words: Why, there is no danger. You need not stand in fear and dread of eating of one single tree. Do you suppose that God has really forbidden you this one fruit, that he begrudges you the eating of this one tree? Indeed, he knows, if you eat thereof, you will become much wiser and will be as God. This was, indeed, very encouraging and a pleasing sermon, but it left an abominable stench behind, and by it the whole human race was led into the evil, which we all to this day deplore. For this reason it has become a common saying among men who have striven to be devout and sought to discern the spirits, that the devil always comes with winning and cheering words at first, but leaves terror and a troubled conscience in his wake, while the Good Spirit does the contrary.

5. And it is true, this is one of the wanton tricks he practices. He creeps in unawares, like a serpent, and first makes himself attractive, in the manner indicated, and insinuates himself into favor; but before one is aware of it he strikes with his tail and leaves a poisoned wound. For this reason one should not be too credulous when a preacher comes softly like an angel of God, recommends himself very highly, and swears that his sole aim is to save souls, and says: “Pax vobis!” For those are the very fellows the devil employs to honey people’s mouths. Through them he gains an entrance to preach and to teach, in order that he may afterward inflict his injuries, and that though he accomplish nothing more for the present, he may, at least, confound the people’s consciences and finally lead them into misery and despair.

6. This same thing he does by means of thoughts which he causes to arise within the heart, by which he tempts people and even entices them to gross sins. Here, too, he invariably begins with the word “Peace!” that he may first cause the people to lose sight of the fear of God; making light of grave matters, and always preaching and proclaiming: “Pax et securitas!” There is no cause for worry! But much more does he do this with those great and serious sins pertaining to the faith and the glory of God, in which he moves people to idolatry and to a trust in their own works and holiness. Here he at first pretends to be holy and pious and impart the very sweetest of thoughts: Oh, there is no cause for alarm, God is not angry with you. Even as the prophets say of such. Jeremiah 6:14; Ezekiel 33:30. They will hear thee and suffer thee to preach, but they will ever comfort and bless themselves and say: Oh, there is no reason to fear; hell’ is not so hot, the devil is not so black as he is painted. This is the devil’s entrance and deception, even though he speak peace and extend a friendly greeting. Not until afterwards, when one is already enmeshed and cannot escape, does one see what injury and distress he has caused. Thus experience teaches that many a man falls into sin, shame, and punishment, so easily that he himself is not aware of it, being drawn in by means of subtle and pleasant thoughts, as it were by a hair or a straw.

7. Behold, this is one of his ways, by which he misleads many foolish, secure, and careless minds; he leads them to imagine that they are resting in God’s lap and playing with dolls, with him. And they become so intoxicated with these imaginations and this sweet poison of the devil, so proud, hardened, and obstinate, that they simply will not listen nor give heed to anybody. However, some God-fearing people have noticed this and have warned others against the devil’s wiles, declaring how he enters in so softly and pretends he is bringing divine comfort, but at last leaves a stench behind betraying that he has been about. But this is comparatively easy and a matter for younger disciples. Every Christian should certainly possess enough wisdom to be on his guard against such pleasant poison. For he who insists on learning by experience to guard against the devil’s wiles, pays dearly for his learning and then he doesn’t fully understand the devil’s trickery.

8. His second way of doing is this: He frightens people, even in trifling matters, by means of jugglery, for example, and by apparitions. He has been very busy in the past with tappings which were supposed to be the work of departed souls. In this way he harasses and terrifies timid and fearful hearts and thus passes on, leaving no comfort behind. Much worse, however, is it, when he comes into the heart and there begins to argue and reason, quoting even such passages as Christ himself uttered, thereby causing the heart to become so awe-stricken that it has no other thought than that it hears the voice of God and Christ. And when thoughts of this kind prevail the heart must at last despair, for where else shall it hope to find comfort when it feels that God himself, who should be its comfort, is terrifying it and aiming his arrows at it; as Job complains in 6, 4: “For the arrows of the Almighty are within me, the poison whereof my spirit drinketh up: the terrors of God do set themselves in array against me.”

Though it is not God that does this but the devil, who takes pleasure in thus piercing hearts with his arrows (as also he did to St. Paul,2 Cor 12), yet Satan had gained such a hold on Job’s heart that the poor man could say and think nothing but this: It is God that doeth these things.

9. This, then, is a much greater and more dangerous deception of Satan’s, when he comes without any kindly greeting, bidding us neither “Good morning” nor “Peace” but frightens and terrifies the heart — and all in the voice and guise of God. So that man, overpowered and stricken down hereby is unable to raise himself up and think: It is the devil. For since his heart imagines and feels as if it were God, against whom no man can prevail, heaven and earth seem to him as a narrow cell, the hand of every creature is against him and everything he sees and hears affrights him.

10. As contrasted with this shameless lying Satan, Christ has here portrayed and pictured himself as he really is. For although it is true that he, too, sometimes comes with terrors, sometimes with comfort, still it is his sole and final purpose to give life and comfort and make glad the heart.

And yet the heart of man is so void of understanding in both cases that it does not recognize him (the devil at the same time assisting in the delusion with his suggestions), and does not think that it is Christ, or straightway makes of him a false Christ, even as the Apostles here take him for a spirit or spectre; and they have neither heart nor mind to believe it is Christ, in spite of the fact that they see Christ’s form and features. It is, therefore, the part of great art and understanding to tear the false Christ out of one’s heart and to learn to picture him truly, because as has been said, one must bear in mind that the devil pictures to us a false Christ, yea clothes himself in Christ’s form.

11. So then, this Gospel shows what the true Christ and his Word are, namely, in the first place, that he says, “Peace be unto you,” which is a portion of the comfort that he brings; and, in the second place, that he reproves the people and will not suffer them to form false and fretful ideas of himself and says: “Why are ye troubled? and wherefore do questionings arise in your hearts?” No wealth of money or goods could ever pay for this text, because a troubled heart may learn from it and conclude: Even though the devil quote all the passages in the Bible in order to terrify the heart, yet if he continue too long and fail to bring comfort afterward, then it is surely the devil, even if you see the form of Christ as plainly as when he hung upon the cross or as he sits at the right hand of the Father. For it may, indeed, happen, that Christ comes and terrifies you at first; though it is by no means his fault, but the fault of your nature, that you ‘do not rightly know him. But he that assails you with terrors and ceases not until he leads you into despair, is the devil himself.

12. Therefore you must clearly distinguish between the terrors of Christ and those of the devil. For even though Christ begin by terrifying, yet he is certain to bring comfort with him and does not will that you remain in terror. The devil, however, cannot cease from his terrifying although at first he comforts and acts pleasantly. This a Christian must know: he must learn to discern Christ from the devil. Especially in great afflictions, when he feels anxiety and dread, he must bear in mind that there will not be terrors only and continually, but that they will’ cease and that comfort will follow.

13. But, you say, it is Christ and his Word after all, for he, too, preaches about God’s wrath on account of sin, as he says, Luke 13:5: “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish,” etc. I answer: Indeed, with this he is pleased and it must come to pass that you become terrified on account of your sins (in case you have not yet experienced this terror). Yea, by reason of your timid nature he must let it come to pass that you be terrified even at him, as these disciples were. But it is not his intention to have you remain in terror; on the contrary, he wills that you cease from it. Yes, he even reproves you for it, and says that you are doing him an injustice by such thoughts, imputing such things to him. In short, he does not desire that you should be frightened at him, but that you should take comfort and joyful assurance, thus driving away your terror.

14. Now, if these thoughts which terrify you arise from his words and works, let him thus begin with you, but then simply send him away to those who are still secure, hardhearted, and obdurate, for whom his terrors are intended. Upon them he must cry out his woes and them he must threaten with the eternal fire of hell. For they are people who in no wise fear God; on the contrary, when one wishes to put them in awe with the name and Word of God, they throw up their horns, toss their heads at God, and grow harder than steel or flint. But you, when you feel that you have become terrified (God grant it, whether the true Christ does it, or not), just remember to make an end of it and cease your fears. For if it be. Christ indeed, it is not his will that you continue thus; but if it be not he, still less should you do so.

15. Therefore mark and keep in mind this text and its example: Christ does not will that his own be terrified, and it does not please him to find you appalled at the sight of him. On the contrary, it is his will that you learn to know him as one who, when he finds you troubled and alarmed, rejoices to come to you, and that you too should rejoice over him and dismiss your thoughts of fear. And do not fail to learn that this is his way of speaking: “Why are ye troubled, and why permit ye such thoughts to arise in your hearts?” Ye picture me as a spectre and as one that cometh only to terrify you, and lo! I am come to comfort you and to make you glad.

16. For these reasons, when such oppressive thoughts concerning Christ come to you, be wise and understand that they assuredly come not from Christ but from the devil; and that even though you be terrified at him, a little sudden terror shall do you no harm. For it is in accord with our nature that it never prompts us to anything good, especially when the heart is naturally timid and fretful. Never mind your thoughts and notions. Take heed to hear Christ’s words, who takes no pleasure in seeing you terrified in his name, but desires that you rejoice in him and receive him as one who would comfort your poor, sinful and troubled heart. Let the others be terrified, those headstrong, impenitent sinners, the pope, the tyrants, and all of Christ’s enemies and blasphemers. These people need a sledge hammer that will shatter boulders, rocks and mountains.

17. Therefore, if there be a Christ who terrifies, he is and desires to be such only to these obstinate heads; although they themselves do not believe this, but proudly disregard it until their last hour has come, and the time when he without any mercy whatever must trample them under his feet. But he does not desire to be such to his beloved disciples and believers, who are too backward and timid as it is, insomuch that they become alarmed even in the presence of their beloved Savior. For it is by no means his intention, as St. Matthew says in 12:20, quoting from the prophet Isaiah 42:3, to utterly break and quench the bruised reed and the smoking flax; that is, broken, troubled, humbled, and fearsome consciences. Now, what if these hardened, proud, and brazen, Satanic minds do pay no heed at all to his terrilyings? Should timid, fearful hearts suffer these terrors in their stead and bring such fear upon themselves, when in short he wants them to be of good courage? Or, since no terrors and threats avail with the former, should therefore no comfort avail with the latter? In this case Christ’s cause were lost entirely, and his kingdom would find no room and bear no fruit on earth.

18. Hence, if you feel terrified and faint-hearted, let your heart herein take comfort, so that Christ may find room in you; for he does not by any means find in you a proud, impenitent heart, unwilling to humble itself; otherwise you would have good cause and need to fear him as one who is set to be a judge over the wicked and the scorners. But he comes to you in order to bring and offer you grace and peace, even as you desire and pray. I say again, take care in this matter, lest you cast from you this friendly greeting and your own salvation, and lest you make a Satan of this dear Savior, or rather, lest you, instead of hearkening to Christ, hearken to the devil, who is a liar and a murderer and takes delight in vexing weak and troubled hearts. And he never desists from so doing; and if he finds himself unable to cause enough terror with one verse he comes with ten or a hundred, and continues to oppress until the heart is completely overwhelmed and drowned in sorrow.

19. Now, you as a Christian can conclude with certainty that such thoughts are not and cannot be of Christ. Yea, even if it were possible that it were Christ himself, nevertheless you here have his Word and true testimony, which you should believe more than all apparitions. And surely this is to be preferred to all private visions of Christ or of an angel from heaven, for these can err and deceive and are naught but speechless images. But here you have his living voice and Word, publicly speaking before all his disciples and reproving them for such thoughts, that we may know he is displeased with them.

20. Besides he shows the very same thing by his outward signs and works: the words with which he reproves their thoughts do not suffice him, he also shows them his hands and feet that they may feel and see it is he himself.

As though he thus would say: Why will ye still have doubts concerning me and in your thoughts make a spectre of me? Ye surely have never yet handled a devil or a spirit, nor seen one having flesh and blood as I have, although they at times assume such form and deceive the senses.

21. Thus he gives them, in addition to his Word, a sure and potent sign and comforts them by his actions, that they may fear him not in the least. He shows them what he has done for them. For this is in truth a lovely, comforting, and cheerful picture, the sight of this dear Savior’s hands and feet, pierced for my sake, and together with which also my sins are nailed to the cross. This he shows me as a token and testimony that he has suffered, has been crucified, and has died for me, and is by no means disposed to be angry with me and cast me into hell.

22. For this is really seeing his hands and feet, if I, through his Word and faith, perceive that what he has done was done for my good, my salvation and comfort. Here I see no executioner, surely no death nor hell, but only sweet, delightful grace toward all poor, sorrowing souls, at which grace I cannot be affrighted or terrified; excepting only in this that his work is entirely too great for the heart sufficiently to grasp and understand. Thus he would, both by word and deed, free us from fear even though at first we be terrified at the sight of him.

23. On the other hand the devil, although at first he comforts us, at last he also shows his hands and feet; these are the horrible, abominable claws of the wrath of God and of eternal death. So finally he comes with naught but terrors, murder, and slaughter, which are his works from the beginning, He knows how to portray to the soul all the terrible scenes, examples, and histories of all the abominable sins, murders, and terrible punishments that have ever taken place, and the number and prominence of the people whom he has ever misled, blinded, and cast into perdition.

24. Now, where Christ is thus rightly understood, there, in consequence, true joy begins, and in such measure, like the Evangelist says, as to make the disciples marvel in their faith for very joy, and as to hamper them still.

This again is a peculiar text and a strange saying. At first their faith was hampered by fear and dreadful thoughts; now their joy hampers their faith, a joy which even is far greater than at first their terror was. The disciples are now so full of joy at the reproof of the Lord and the sight of his hands and feet that they are still unable to believe.

25. This, too, is one of the Christian’s afflictions, as we have said before, that grace is entirely too great and glorious a thing when we look upon our littleness and unworthiness in comparison with Christ, and that the comfort is so exceedingly abundant that our hearts are far too small to receive it.

For who could have the boldness to conceive in his heart the truth that Christ proves himself to be so kind a Savior to me, a poor, sinful man, that he gives me at once all that he has done? Must not the heart presently start with alarm at its own boldness and say: Do you really think it is true that the great and majestic God, the Maker of heaven and earth, has so regarded my misery and so mercifully looked upon me, deeply and manifoldly as I have sinned against him, having deserved and brought upon myself wrath, death, and hell a thousand times? How can such grace and such a treasure be grasped by the human heart, or in fact by any creature ?

26. To sum up all, faith in man’s heart is assailed on both sides and upon both occasions, in terror and melancholy and also in joy. Either the lack or the abundance is too great, and the consolations too few or too many. At first, while the disciples were yearning for something great, all the blessings of God were too small and too insignificant to comfort their hearts, when Christ was still hidden from them; but now that he is come and shows himself to them, this is far too much for their hearts, and for very wonderment they cannot believe he is risen from the dead and is standing before them alive. 27. Finally he shows himself even still more friendly: he sits down with them at the table, eats with them of broiled fish and honeycomb, and preaches to them a beautiful sermon, to establish them in the faith, that they may nevermore fear nor doubt, but may now grow strong in the faith: and thus all their melancholy passes away.

28. Therefore let us learn from this to understand Christ’s character and manner, to-wit, that when he comes and manifests himself he thereupon takes leave and bids us adieu, leaving naught but comfort and joy; for at the last he must come with comfort, otherwise it is not Christ. But when constant fear and dread remain in the heart, you may freely conclude that it is not Christ, though it may seem so to the heart, but the accursed devil.

Therefore pay no heed to such thoughts, but cling fast to the words he speaks to you, “See my hands and my feet,” etc. In this way your heart will again be made glad, and afterward the fruit will follow, that you will understand the Scriptures aright, and his Word will taste pleasant to you, being naught but honey and the sweetest consolation.

II. SERMON CHRIST PREACHED TO HIS DISCIPLES AFTER HIS RESURRECTION.

29. The second and chief part of this Gospel is that in which Christ, after he expounded the Scripture to them and opened their minds, says in conclusion: “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer, and rise again from the dead the third day; and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name to all the nations.”

30. Here you see how the Lord again directs and leads his disciples into the Scriptures, there to strengthen and confirm their faith. So that, though he was revealing and showing himself to them in visible form, yet in the future, when they no longer beheld him, he desired them to cling to the Word and by the testimony of the Scripture make sure both their own and the faith of others. For, after all, the power and the comfort of the resurrection are not understood nor received except through faith in the Word, as we have heard: although the disciples see him, still they do not recognize him, but are rather terrified at the sight of him until he speaks to them and opens their minds by means of the Scriptures.

31. Furthermore he wished to teach them by these testimonies of Scripture how his kingdom on earth is to continue and wherein it is to consist; namely, that it is not to be a new government or kingdom, concerned with earthly and temporal things, but a spiritual and divine power, whereby he would everywhere rule invisibly within the hearts of men through the Word and ministry and would cause them to pass from sin, God’s wrath, and eternal death into grace and eternal life in heaven: for which purpose, in truth, he also suffered and rose again from the dead.

32. All this he shows and indicates in these few words, and in them includes the sum and substance of the entire Gospel and the chief parts of Christian doctrine, which we should at all times preach and practice in the church: namely, repentance and the forgiveness of sins. Therefore we must say something on these themes also.

33. Concerning repentance the whole papal church has until now known nothing else to teach than that it consists of three parts, which they call contrition, confession, and satisfaction (compensation). And yet in regard to none of these could they rightly instruct the people. Now, the Latin word “satisfactio,” meaning “compensation,” we have, to please them, allowed to stand, hoping that by moderation on our part we might be able to lead them to the true doctrine; but with the understanding that this means not our compensation, as we in reality can render none, but Christ’s satisfaction, in that he by his blood and death has paid for our sins and reconciled God. Since, however, we have heretofore so many times experienced and still plainly see that nothing whatever can be gained from them by moderation, and that they steadily continue the more violently to oppose the true doctrine, we will and must cleanly strip and sunder ourselves from them, and refuse in any way to recognize the fictitious names which they use in their schools and with which they now only strive to establish their old errors and falsehoods. For this reason also this word “satisfaction” shall hereafter in our church and our theology be null and dead, and referred to the judiciary and the schools of law, where it properly belongs and whence the papists borrowed it. Let these use this word and by it teach people who have stolen, robbed, or who are in possession of goods gotten by unrighteousness, how they are to make compensation and restitution.

34. The word “contrition” (Latin “contritio”) is, to be sure, taken from the Scriptures, which speak of a “cor contritum,” that is, a broken, troubled, and miserable heart, Psalm 51:17; but neither has this word been rightly understood and explained by the monks. For they have called contrition the act, extorted from one’s own thoughts and free will, of sitting in a corner, hanging one’s head, and with bitter meditation contemplating the sins one has committed; from which process, however, no real sorrow or displeasure on account of their sins followed, but they have rather tickled themselves with such thoughts and strengthened their sinful lust. And no matter how long they talked of it, still they could not decide how great one’s contrition should be in order to be adequate to the sin. Wherefore they were compelled to console and help themselves out by this piece of patchwork, that he who could not attain to truly perfect contrition should, at least, have what they called “attritio,” a sort of half-contrition, and be, at least, somewhat sorry for his sins.

35. Then they made of confession an unbearable torment and anxiety; for they thought that it was everyone’s duty at least once a year to enumerate all of one’s sins, mentioning all the details, including also those sins one might have forgotten and might later recall. And yet they gave men’s consciences no real instruction concerning the comfort of absolution, but directed the people to trust in their own works, and informed them that when they had become sufficiently contrite to make a clean confession of sin (which was, according to their own teaching, impossible), and also render satisfaction for the same, then their sins would be forgiven. Here not a word was said of Christ or of faith, so that unenlightened and afflicted souls who earnestly desired to be free from sin and sought comfort were kept in eternal suspense on this doubtful foundation.

36. And—this was the worst feature of the matter—they did not rightly teach what constitutes sin; they knew nothing more of it than what lawyers call sin or offenses, and what comes within the sphere of the courts and of peace statutes. Their knowledge did not enable them to speak of original sin or of the inward impurity of the heart. For they even claimed that human nature and the powers of man’s free will were so perfect that a man might in his own strength manage to fulfill God’s law and thereby earn God’s grace, and be so free from sin that he would not have need of any repentance. However, that they might nevertheless have something to make confession of, they were compelled to invent sin where there was none, just as on the other hand they invented good works of their own.

And these sins they considered the greatest and most grievous of all, as for instance, when a layman chanced to touch a consecrated chalice or if a priest stammered while reading the canon in the mass, and other foolishness of that sort.

37. Such nonsensical, visionary doctrine of the papacy concerning repentance one must therefore not lose sight of, first in order to be able to convince them of their error and blindness, since they are at present in every way whitewashing themselves and disporting themselves as though they had never taught anything wrong. Secondly, in order that by contrasting the two one may better understand the true Christian doctrine.

Therefore we will speak according to Scripture on what the real Christian repentance and forgiveness of sins are which Christ here commands man to proclaim in his name.

38. In the first place, these thoughts of our own invention, which the monks call “contritio” and “attritio” (whole and half contrition), are in all the Scriptures never called true contrition; but you are contrite when your heart becomes seriously alarmed at God’s wrath and judgment, not only on account of outward, gross sins, but on account of the real and unyielding hardness you see and feel within, the presence in your flesh and blood of nothing but unbelief, contempt and disobedience to God, and as St. Paul says in Romans 8:7, “enmity against God,” your flesh and blood being excited with all manner of evil lust and desire and the like, whereby you have brought upon yourself God’s wrath and have deserved to be cast out eternally from his presence and to burn in hell fire. Contrition, according to the Scriptures, is not partial, pertaining merely to certain acts you have committed openly against the ten commandments, and leaving undisturbed the dream and delusion of the hypocritical monkish repentance which for its own convenience invents a distinction in its works and after all discovers some good in itself; but it extends over your whole person with all its life and being, yes, over your whole nature, and shows you that you are an object of God’s wrath and condemned to hell. Otherwise the word “contrition” would still be too judicial, as in earthly matters one speaks of sin and sorrow as of a work one has done and afterwards thinks differently, and wishes he had not done it.

39. This contrition and earnest fear is not the product of man’s own resolutions or thoughts, as the monks fancy. It must be wrought in a man by God’s Word, which reveals God’s wrath and smites the heart so that it begins to tremble and despair and knows not what to do with itself. For human reason cannot of itself perceive and understand that everything which lies in the power and ability of man is an object of God’s wrath and, at the bar of his judgment, already condemned to hell.

40. Therefore this thing must be preached and proclaimed as Christ here says, if one is to direct and lead people to true repentance: they must be led to know their sins and God’s wrath, and thus first suffer themselves to be cast by the Word beneath God’s wrath and condemnation; in order that on the other hand by the preaching of the other truth, of the forgiveness of sins, they may be helped to gain true consolation, divine grace, and their salvation. Otherwise a man would never attain to a knowledge of his misery and distress and to a yearning for grace. Still less would he ever learn how he may pass from God’s wrath and damnation into grace and the forgiveness of sins.

41. And this preaching of repentance, says he, shall go forth unto all nations. Surely, a sweeping accusation, one that embraces the whole world, both Jews and Gentiles, and whomsoever they wish. Without a single exception, he concludes all—as he finds them and whatever their rank and pretensions—apart from Christ under the wrath of God and says: Ye are all condemned together, with all that ye do and are, be ye what ye may, be ye ever so many, ever so great, ever so high and holy.

42. Yea, he terrifies and condemns those most of all who parade their own holiness and never once imagine that they are sinners and need repentance.

Among the Jews the holiest Pharisees were such (of whom also Paul before his conversion was one), who lived and walked zealously according to the law; among the heathen certain cultured, highly intelligent, wise, and respectable people; among ourselves, those who may have been pious monks, Carthusians, or hermits, who sincerely undertook to be pious in God’s sight and so lived that they were not conscious of having committed any sin unto death, and in addition to this in the severest manner chastised their bodies with fasting, vigils, sleeping on hard couches, some even with bloody flagellations and the like; so that they themselves and everybody else thought that in view of such works and such a life they surely had no need of contrition and repentance. Yes, they thought therewith, as with the best and most meritorious work, to pay for whatever sins they had previously done, and honestly to earn heaven from God by such a holy life, paying for it dearly enough. Against just such people as these this preaching of repentance should be carried on most zealously, and as with a thunderbolt it should hurl to the ground and cast into hell and perdition all who are secure and presumptuous and do not yet perceive their misery and God’s wrath.

43. Even as St. John the Baptist, who prepared the way before Christ, publicly began such preaching; he courageously and spiritedly attacks the entire Jewish nation with this battle-ax and assails the holy Pharisees and Sadducees harder than all the others, saying: “Ye offspring of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?” Matthew 3:7. For they need repentance most of all and in God’s sight they also merit a greater measure of wrath than other and more open sinners (whom at least their own consciences reprove), because they lie in blindness and indulge the fancy that they have no sin, while in reality before God they are full of filth and abomination and do sin against God’s law in the worst possible way, in that they lack the fear of God and make light of his wrath, and are haughty and proud and full of presumption by reason of their own good works and their own holiness, practicing idolatry with their self-chosen service of God, in addition to the fact that their hearts are full of uncleanness and inward disobedience to God’s commandments, though outwardly they keep themselves from evil works; even as we ourselves in times past while pretending to be the most pious, did provoke God to the uttermost with the horrible idolatry of the mass, the worship of the saints, and our own monkish righteousness, wherewith we thought we were earning heaven to the disparagement of Christ’s death and resurrection and to the lamentable delusion of ourselves and others.

44. For this reason St. John also continues his preaching of repentance and in verse 8 says to such people, “Bring forth therefore fruit worthy of repentance,” etc.; that is, take my advice and do not become secure and proud from the start, but perceive your sin and God’s wrath upon you, humble yourselves before him, and implore his mercy. If ye do this not, judgment is already passed upon you, yea, the ax is already laid to the tree to destroy it, both trunk and root, as one that beareth no good fruit and is good for nothing but to be cast into the fire and reduced to ashes, notwithstanding it is so tall and sturdy and has beautiful leaves: you, namely, priding yourselves upon being Abraham’s children and the like.

45. This same preaching was later continued by the apostles. St. Peter, for instance, on the day of Pentecost and thereafter pointed out to the Jews what pious children they were and how they had earned God’s favor by denying his dear Son, nailing him to the cross and slaying him. And St.

Paul says in Acts 17:30-31: “But now he (God) commandeth men that they should all everywhere repent, inasmuch as he hath appointed a day in which he will judge the world in righteousness,” etc.: that is, it is his will that all people, everywhere upon the earth, should know themselves, tremble at God’s wrath, and understand that he will judge and condemn them unless they repent and obey this preaching.

46. So Christ also says in John 16:8 that the Holy Ghost will convict the world in respect of sin, etc. (by such preaching of repentance). For, as said above, such repentance reason cannot teach, much less accomplish, by its own strength; but, as Christ here says, it must be preached as a revelation, surpassing the understanding and wisdom of reason. As St. Paul also in Romans 1:18 calls it a revelation from heaven, saying, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven,” etc. For no man’s reason and no lawyer will say that I am a sinner and an object of God’s wrath and condemnation if I do not steal, rob, commit adultery, and the like, but am a pious, respectable man in whom no one can find anything to reprove or censure, and I am a pious monk besides. Who would believe that I, if I be without faith, merit only God’s wrath by this fine, honorable life and that I am practicing naught but abominable idolatry with this glorious service of God and this rigid training which, without God’s command, I have undertaken of my own pleasure, and that thereby I am condemning myself to a deeper hell than others who are open sinners?

47. It is no wonder then, that, when the world hears this preaching unto repentance, whereby it is reproved, the lesser portion accepts it, while the greater masses, especially the knowing and righteous ones, despise it, toss their heads in defiance and say: Ho, how can that be true? Shall I suffer myself to be upbraided as a sinner and as an accursed man by people who come along with a new and unknown doctrine? Why, what have I done? I have surely kept myself with all earnestness from sin and have striven to do good. Shall all this be accounted nothing? Has all the world before our time been engrossed in errors? Have the lives and doings of all men been vain? How is it possible that God should take such a risk with the whole world and say they are all lost and condemned? Ha! The devil has commanded you so to preach. Thus they defend and confirm themselves in their, impenitence and by blasphemy and persecution of God’s Word heap his wrath upon themselves all the more.

48. But in spite of this such judgment and preaching ever continues and forces its way farther, as Christ here commands them simply to preach among all nations, to tell everybody, wherever they go, to repent, and to say that no one can escape God’s wrath or be saved who does not accept this preaching. That to this end he rose from the dead, that he might found this kingdom, in order that this might be preached to them who should and would be saved and might be accepted and believed by them, though it anger the world, the devil, or hell.

49. Notice, we have considered the first part of this sermon, true repentance, which convicts not only a mass of evil-doers whom all the world and the lawyers call transgressors (they, to be sure, also deserve severe punishment), but attacks the very people who in the sight of the world are the most pious and righteous, (yet are without knowledge of their sin and of Christ), and condemns them. It makes of repentance, not a work of ours, brought about by our own thinking, and partial, pertaining to only a portion of our deeds and making it necessary for a man to search and consider a long time as to how, when, where, and how often he has sinned (although it is true that one single sin may give rise to this, as when David was reproved on account of adultery and murder). But repentance is a thing extending over the whole of your life and casting you all of a sudden, as by a thunderbolt from the skies, wholly and entirely under God’s wrath, telling you that you are a child of hell, and terrifying your heart so that the world becomes too small for you.

50. Therefore you must make this distinction: You may refer the repentance which may be called our own work, namely our own sorrow, confession, and satisfaction, to the schools of lawyers, or to children’s schools, where it may serve for discipline and outward training; but you must keep it clearly apart from the true spiritual repentance wrought by God’s Word wherever and whenever this Word smites the heart making it tremble and quake at God’s zealous and terrible wrath, and filling it so with dread that it knows not whither to flee.

51. Such contrition and repentance the Bible illustrates by means of numerous examples: as that of St. Paul when he was about to be converted, Acts 9:4, where Christ himself preaches repentance to him from heaven saying, “Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?” etc. And presently action and power accompany the words, so that he suddenly falls to the earth trembling and says in verse 6, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” This is true contrition, not the product of his own mind; for he goes his way holding a strong conviction and assurance of his own holiness according to the law, conscious of no sin whereby he might have deserved God’s wrath. But suddenly Christ shows him what he is, namely, a persecutor and murderer of Christ and of his church, a thing which hitherto he had not perceived, rather regarding his actions as manifestations of splendid virtue and of a godly zeal. Now, however, he is seized with such terror on their account as plainly indicates that with all his righteousness according to the law. he is condemned before God; and he is only too glad to hear from Christ the gracious assurance that he may obtain mercy and the forgiveness of his sins. In like manner we are told in Acts 2 how Peter stood up on the day of Pentecost and thereafter and hurled this thunderbolt at the whole Jewish nation that they were betrayers and murderers of their promised Christ, the Son of God; as the text says in verse 37: “Now when they heard this they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and the rest of the apostles, Brethren, what shall we do?”

52. Behold, here too there is true repentance, which suddenly seizes the heart and fills it with mortal dread, because it feels God’s wrath and condemnation weighing upon it, and begins to realize its real fault, of which it has heretofore known nothing, and is constrained to say, Ah, now what shall I do? Here is naught save only sin and wrath, a thing which hitherto, alas, I have neither known nor surmised. As St. Paul also says of the power of the Word which confronts men with God’s wrath, Romans 7:9, “And I was alive apart from the law once,” that is, presumptuous and secure, knowing of no sin nor of God’s wrath. But when the commandment came and smote my heart then sin revived, so that I began to feel God’s wrath and, thus, died; that is, I fell into fear, anxiety and despair, which I could not endure and in which I must have perished and fallen a prey to eternal death had I not again found help.

53. Now, when this has been duly preached, the other message must follow which Christ here commands us to preach, to wit, the forgiveness of sins.

For it is not sufficient to speak only of sin and God’s wrath and terrify the people. It is necessary, indeed, to begin one’s preaching thus, so that the people may know and feel their sins and may also have a desire for grace, but this must not be our whole message, otherwise there would be no Christ and no salvation but only death and hell. Thus Judas, Christ’s betrayer, made a strong enough beginning in the first part of his repentance, remorse and knowledge of his sin; yea, he was too strong on this point, because no consolation followed; so that he was unable to bear it and hurled himself forthwith into destruction and eternal death; as also did King Saul and many others. But this cannot be considered preaching aright or fully concerning repentance, as Christ would have this doctrine preached. For to this extent the devil himself is willing to serve as a preacher, though he has no call to preach, just as he is ever willing to use the name and Word of God, albeit but to deceive and work mischief. For he perverts both doctrines, comforting where comfort is not in place, or engaging solely in terrifying the people and leading them into despair. But Christ’s intention is not that repentance shall be so preached as to leave the conscience in its terror-stricken state but that those who have been brought to a knowledge of their sins and are contrite in heart shall again be comforted and lifted up. For this reason he straightway adds the other part and commands us to preach not only repentance but also the forgiveness of sins. This, then, as he also says, is preaching in his name.

54. Therefore, when your conscience has become terrified by the preaching of repentance, whether it be through the spoken word or otherwise within your heart, you must remember that you are also to hear and grasp the other part Christ commanded to be preached to you, to wit: that, although you have merited eternal wrath and are deserving of hell-fire, yet God in his boundless goodness and mercy does not desire to leave you and see you perish in perdition, but he desires to forgive your sins, so that his wrath and your condemnation may be removed from you.

55. This is the comforting message of the Gospel, which a man cannot, of himself, understand as he of himself understands the preaching of the law (which was at the beginning implanted in his nature) when his heart is thereby smitten; but it is a special revelation and Christ’s own peculiar voice. For human nature and reason cannot rise above the judgment of the law, which concludes and says: He that is a sinner is condemned of God.

Wherefore all men would have to remain forever objects of wrath and condemnation if another and a new teaching had not been given from heaven. This teaching, in which God offers his grace and mercy to those who feel their sins and God’s wrath, God’s own Son himself must institute and command to be spread abroad in the world.

56. But in order that it may be apprehended and faithfully believed, this preaching must be done, as he here says, in his name; that is, not only in pursuance of his command, but also with the proclamation that sins are to be forgiven on his account and by reason of his merits. Hence we must acknowledge neither I nor any other man, with the exception of Christ, have accomplished or merited this, nor could have merited it in eternity.

For how should I be able to merit it when I and all my life and whatever I may be able to do, is, according to the first part of this sermon, condemned before God?

57. But now, if God’s wrath is to be taken away from me and I am to obtain grace and forgiveness, some one must merit this; for God cannot be a friend of sin nor gracious to it, nor can he remit the punishment and wrath, unless payment and satisfaction be made. Now, no one, not even an angel of heaven, could make restitution for the infinite and irreparable injury and appease the eternal wrath of God which we had merited by our sins; except that eternal person, the Son of God himself, and he could do it only by taking our place, assuming our sins, and answering for them as though he himself were guilty of them. This our dear Lord and only Savior and Mediator before God, Jesus Christ, did for us by his blood and death, in which he became a sacrifice for us; and with his purity, innocence, and righteousness, which was divine and eternal, he outweighed all sin and wrath he was compelled to bear on our account; yea, he entirely engulfed and swallowed it up, and his merit is so great that God is now satisfied and says, If he wills thereby to save, then there shall be a salvation. As Christ also says of his Father’s will, John 6:40: “This is the will of my Father, that every one that beholdeth the Son, and believeth on him, should have eternal life.” Also Matthew 28:18: “All authority hath been given unto me in heaven and on earth.” And in his prayer in John 17:1-2 he says: “Father, glorify thy Son, that the Son may glorify thee; even as thou gavest him authority over all flesh, that to all whom thou hast given him he should give eternal life.”

58. This now he has not only actually fulfilled, but he has done and accomplished it for the very purpose of having it preached and proclaimed to us; otherwise we would know nothing of it, nor would we be able to attain to it. Therefore it is absolutely unmerited on our part and is given to us entirely free and out of pure grace, and just for the reason that we may be assured of such grace and have no cause for doubt in regard to it; for indeed, we must remain forever in doubt if we were required to look for merit of our own and to seek worthiness inhering in us, till our attainments were such that God would consider them and be gracious to us on their account. But now Christ commands that forgiveness of sins be preached in his name, so that I may know that they are undoubtedly remitted unto me on account of that which he has merited, and this he reveals and communicates to me through the Word.

59. And moreover I and everyone else for his own personal good may take comfort in this, and besides no one has any cause to be troubled and worried as to whether he dare appropriate this great mercy unto himself, for it is natural for man’s heart to doubt and to argue thus with itself: Yes, I can easily believe that God has elected certain great men thereto, as, for instance, St. Peter, Paul, and others, but who knows whether I too am one of those to whom he is willing to grant grace? Perhaps I have not been ordained thereto—therefore Christ wills and herewith commands that this doctrine be spread not in a corner nor to certain individuals only, yea, not even solely to the Jews, or to a few other nations at most, but throughout the whole wide world, or, as he says, to all nations; yes, as he says in Mark 16:15, to the whole creation. This Christ spoke in order that we may know that it is not his will that anybody anywhere should be cut off or barred out from the blessings of this preaching if he is only willing to accept them and does not bar himself out, For, as the preaching of repentance is to be a general preaching and to extend over all people so that all may perceive that they are sinners, just so general shall also this preaching of forgiveness be, and it shall be accepted by all, even as all men have stood in need of it from the beginning, and will continue so until the end of the world. For, why should the forgiveness of sins be offered and preached to all if they did not all have sin? That the truth may remain as St.

Paul says, Romans 11:32: “God hath shut up all unto disobedience, that he might have mercy upon all,” etc.

60. Hence this preaching also calls for faith; that is, I am to conclude from it with certainty and without a doubt that for the sake of the Lord Jesus Christ forgiveness of sins is granted me from the terrible wrath of God and from eternal death, and that it is God’s will that I believe this preaching, not despising the proffered grace of Christ, not casting it aside, not making the Word of God a lie. For, since he commands that this Word be preached in all the world, he therewith and at the same time demands of everyone that he receive this preaching and hold and confess it to be the invariable, divine truth, that we assuredly receive these things for the sake of the Lord Jesus Christ; and, no matter how unworthy I feel myself to be, this must not hinder nor deter me from having this faith, if only my heart be so disposed that I feel sincerely displeased with my sins and heartily desire to get rid of them. For, as such forgiveness is not offered and preached to me on account of my worthiness, for I have clearly contributed nothing, neither labored to the end that Christ should merit forgiveness for me and have it proclaimed to me as he did and does; so, on the other hand, I am not to suffer any nor be deprived of forgiveness so long as I really desire it.

61. Finally, that our comfort may abound the more, Christ here makes the following arrangement respecting this preaching of repentance and of the forgiveness of sins: It shall not be merely temporary and momentary, as it were, but shall be in continual operation, never ceasing in Christendom so long as Christ’s kingdom endures. For he wants us to have therein a lasting, eternal treasure and everlasting grace, which effectually worketh alway; so that we must not consider the forgiveness as being restricted to that one moment when the absolution was pronounced, nor as extending over previous and past sins only, as though thenceforward our works must render us perfectly clean and sinless.

62. For it is not possible in this present life on earth that we should so live as to be entirely free from sin and infirmity—not though we received grace and the Holy Spirit—owing to our sinful, depraved flesh and blood, which never ceases, this side of the grave, to bring forth evil lusts and desires, no, not in the saints; though they, on receiving grace, abstain from, and guard against, sin and resist their evil lusts, even as repentance requires; wherefore they too are still in daily need of forgiveness, even as they daily exercise themselves in repentance, by reason of these selfsame abiding infirmities and weaknesses; knowing, as they do, that their lives and works are yet sinful and merit God’s wrath (to which they would also expose them) were it not for the fact that these things are forgiven for Christ’s sake.

63. Therefore Christ has herewith instituted a kingdom on earth to be called an eternal kingdom of grace and always to be governed by the forgiveness of sins; and so powerfully it is to protect those who believe that, although sin still lurks in their flesh and blood and is so deeply rooted that it cannot, in this life, be entirely eradicated, still it shall not bring injury upon them, but be remitted and not imputed to them, provided, however, that we abide in the faith and daily make endeavors to stamp out the remaining evil lust, until it has been exterminated, and utterly destroyed by death, and has rotted away in the grave and fallen a prey to the worms, that man may arise unto eternal life perfectly renewed and cleansed.

64. Yea, even though a man who is under grace and is sanctified fall away again from repentance and faith and thus lose his forgiveness, nevertheless this kingdom of grace stands firm and unmovable, so that one may at any time be reinstated in it, if one again belong to it by repentance and conversion: in like manner as the sun rises daily in the heavens, and not only banishes the past night but proceeds without interruption to shine throughout the day, even though it be darkened and covered with thick clouds, yes, even though someone close his doors and windows against its light, still it remains the selfsame sun and, breaking all barriers down, it again and again presents itself to view.

65. Behold, this is the true doctrine of the Gospel concerning Christian repentance, laid hold of and conceived in these two parts, to wit, contrition, or a sincere alarm on account of sin, and faith in forgiveness for Christ’s sake. The entire papal church has hitherto taught nothing of this; and especially have they nowhere shown any knowledge of the faith in Christ which should be the chief part of this preaching: they have only directed people to their own works, and pronounced the absolution with this proviso that we have been duly contrite and properly made confession.

And thus Christ has been so entirely forgotten and ignored, and the preaching he here commands has been so utterly perverted and beclouded, that there has been no repentance and absolution in his name but in our own names and for the sake of our works of contrition, confession, and satisfaction. This I call suppressing by force the faith and knowledge of Christ, yea, exterminating it, and taking from troubled consciences their comfort, leading them alone to perish in doubt, if they are not to be certain of the forgiveness of sin until they have sufficiently tortured, and made martyrs of themselves by their self-invented and involuntary contrition and confession.

66. And so the pope and all his band have by this one thing, that they have thus perverted and corrupted the doctrine of Christian repentance and forgiveness of sin, well enough deserved, and they daily still more deserve (since besides they refuse to repent of all this error and deception, which they themselves are forced to acknowledge, but rather blaspheme and storm against the plain truth) that they be cursed by all Christians into the abyss of hell, as Paul to the Galatians curses all those who teach another Gospel, etc. Galatians 1:9.

67. Here we should also say a word on the confession which we retain and which we commend as a beneficial, salutary thing. For although, properly speaking, it is not a part of repentance, and is not necessary and enjoined, still it serves us well in receiving absolution, which is nothing else than simply the preaching and announcement of the forgiveness of sins, which Christ here commands men both to preach and to hear. Since, however, it is necessary to retain such preaching in the church, the absolution should also be retained; for the only difference between the two is this: in the preaching of the Gospel the Word is publicly preached in a general way, to all who are present; and in absolution this same Word is spoken especially and privately to one or more who so desire it. This is in accord with Christ’s institution, that such preaching of the forgiveness of sins should be carried on at all times and in all places, not only in a general way before a whole company but also before individual persons, wherever there are people who stand in need of it: as he says in the Gospel for the following Sunday, “Whose soever sins ye forgive, they are forgiven unto them.”

68. Therefore we do not teach confession like the pope’s theologians, that one must recite his sins, than which, according to the papists, there is no other way to confess, or that thereby one receives forgiveness and becomes worthy of absolution, as they say, On account of thy contrition and confession I declare thee free from thy sins. But we teach that one should use confession in order to hear the comfort of the Gospel and thus to awaken and to strengthen his faith in the forgiveness of sins, which is the main thing in repentance. So that “to confess” means not, as it does among the papists, to recount a long list of sins, but to desire absolution, which is in itself confession enough; that is, to acknowledge your guilt and confess that you are a sinner. And no more shall it be demanded or required that you mention by name all or several, many or few, of your sins, unless of yourself you have a desire to mention something which especially burdens your conscience and wherein you need instruction and advice or particular comfort, as is often necessary with young and inexperienced people, and also with others.

69. Therefore we commend and retain confession not on its own account but for the sake of absolution. And in confession this feature is the golden treasure, that there you hear proclaimed to you the words Christ commanded to be preached in his name to you and to all the world, so that even if you should not hear it in the confessional, still you otherwise hear the Gospel daily, which is nothing else than the word of absolution. For to preach the forgiveness of sins means nothing else than to absolve or to declare free from sin, which also takes place in baptism and in the Lord’s Supper, which were also instituted for the purpose of showing to us this forgiveness of sins and assuring us of it. Thus to be baptized or to receive the communion is also an absolution, where forgiveness is, in Christ’s name and at his command, promised and communicated to each one in particular.

This forgiveness you should hear wherever and whenever you are in need of it, and should receive and believe it as though you heard it from Christ himself. For, because it is not our absolution but Christ’s command and word, therefore it is just as good and valid as though it were heard proceeding from his own mouth.

70. Thus you see that everything that is taught concerning Christian repentance according to Scripture is wholly contained in the two parts called contrition, or alarm at God’s wrath on account of our sins, and its antidote, faith that our sins are forgiven us for Christ’s sake. For it has not been commanded that more than these two tidings be preached, to wit: the Law, which charges us with our sin and shows us the judgment of God; and the Gospel, which directs us to Christ and proclaims God’s grace and mercy in him. And, to sum up all, repentance in its entirety is just that which the Scripture describes in other words in <19E711> Psalm 147:11 and elsewhere, “Jehovah taketh pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his lovingkindness.” For there these two parts are also stated: the fear of God, which proceeds from a knowledge of our sins; and reliance upon his grace, as exhibited in the promises concerning Christ, etc.

71. What the papists say concerning “satisfaction,” however, is, as said above, by no means to be tolerated; for that which in former times was called satisfaction and whereof one may still read in the writings of the ancient teachers, was nothing else than an outward and public punishment of those who were guilty of manifest vices, which they were compelled to bear before men, just as a thief or a murderer in the world’s courts pays for his crime on the gallows or the wheel. Of this the Scripture nowhere teaches anything, nor does this contribute anything toward the forgiveness of sin, but may, as I have said, among other temporal things, be referred to the lawyers. But their claim that God punishes sins with temporal punishments and plagues, sometimes even when they have been forgiven, is true; but that is no satisfaction or redemption from sin, nor is it a merit on account of which sin is forgiven, but a chastisement which God inflicts to urge us to repentance. 72. .And even if one wished to retain the word “satisfaction” and explained it as meaning that Christ made satisfaction for our sins, it is nevertheless too weak and says too little concerning the grace of Christ and does not do honor enough to his sufferings, to which one should give higher honor, confessing that he not only has made satisfaction for sin but has also redeemed us from the power of death, the devil, and hell, and established an everlasting kingdom of grace and of daily forgiveness of the sin that remains in us; and thus is become for us, as St. Paul says in Corinthians 1:30, an eternal redemption and sanctification, as has been more fully discussed above.