The Glory Has Departed
Bethany Lutheran Worship on
Wednesday, June 6, 2018
Each morning, I start my day by reading a section of Luther’s works that were compiled into a devotional called “Day by Day We Magnify You: Daily Readings for the Entire Year”.
Here is today’s gem, if you will, with added emphasis mine:
“Faith is such a knowledge that, although it is completely and utterly dark and nothing is visible, it is yet sure and, in such utter darkness, sees that it really holds Christ, just as in former times our Lord God was seated in the midst of darkness on Mount Sinai and in the temple. Therefore our righteousness, which makes us appear just before God and well pleasing to him, is not the love that gives this appearance to faith, but it is faith itself, and the hidden mystery and the secret knowledge in the heart, that is a trust in what is invisible, which means in Christ invisible and yet really present. But the reason why faith makes us just is that it seizes Christ, the noble and precious treasure, and keeps him present. But human thought cannot express how he is present, for as I have said, it is pure darkness, which means that it is a hidden, high secret, and unsearchable knowledge. Therefore, where there is such a full trust and genuine confidence of the heart, there, certainly, is Christ within the dark mist and in the faith. That is the right justification, which causes the person to be regarded as righteous and acceptable before God.”
Lectures on Galatians. Luther's Works 26:130; WA 40/2:288f
There. Right there. UOJ/OJ/SJ/GJ whatever... is knocked down in glorious terms in this wonderful section from the Reformer. Luther could not be clearer in his words! There is no parsing or hemming or hawing, the Lord makes it clear and Luther repeats with succinct emphasis: Justification by Faith Alone. Luther even calls it the “right justification”!
What a blessing it has been to be able to read the words of Luther himself! Compared to synodical drivel, it shines like a beacon. The Scriptures are conveyed with assured confidence and words are not minced or cajoled to fit a threadbare at best narrative.
Thank you again for spurring my interest in the works of Luther and his fellow Reformers,