The Glory Has Departed


Norma Boeckler, Artist-in-Residence

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Luther's Sermons, Lenker Series
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Monday, July 24, 2017

The Tyranny of Liberal Protestism - Schmauk



While the tyranny of Rome is the supreme authority of the Church over conscience, the tyranny of liberal Protestantism is the supreme authority of every man’s conscience over the Scripture and the Church. Both positions are extreme and sceptical. That of Rome distrusts the Truth in its power over the individual conscience, while that of liberal Protestantism suspects the Truth of Scripture and the Church, and does not believe that there is one objective and stable center of truth revealed from above in which the consciences of all perfect men can believe and unite.
Since one of the essential elements of religion, as of all truth, is unchangeableness; and since in religion there must be both unchangeableness and finality, even this Twentieth Century should see that, if it is to keep any religion at all, it must not be a religion of individualism, of poetic values, of speculative outlook, of temperamental trust, but a religion of authority. However, this authority must have the freedom of an unrestrained and living faith and a voluntary trust, as its corollary. Neither Romanism, nor the axiom, “Religion ist Privatasche” (religion is a private matter), will meet the case. (emphasis added) 2
2 Theodore Schmauk and Theodore Benze. The Confessional principle and the Confessions of the Lutheran Church. 1911. Introduction