21 August 2010

Chained By Love

Few people have read Martin Luther's treatises (more on Luther below). Luther was a proflic writer. This excerpt is from Fortress Press fortresspress.com from Luther's book "On Christian Liberty."
"…from faith... flows love and joy in the Lord, and from love a joyful, willing, and free mind that serves one’s neighbor willingly and takes no account of gratitude or ingratitude, of praise or blame, or gain or loss. For a man does not serve that he may put men under obligations. He does not distinguish between friends and enemies or anticipate their thankfulness or unthankfulness, but he most freely and most willingly spends himself and all that he has, whether he wastes all on the thankless or whether he gains a reward. As his Father does, distributing all things to all men…[Matthew 5:45], so also the [child]…
…if we [therefore] recognize the precious things given to us, our hearts will be filled by the Holy Spirit with the love which makes us free…servants of our neighbours, yet lords of all.
Our faith in Christ does not free us from works but from false opinions concerning works, from the foolish presumption that justification is acquired by works.
Faith redeems, corrects and preserves our consciences so that we know that righteousness does not consist [of] works, although works can not nor ought not to be wanting… "

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Who was Martin Luther and what did he do?
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Martin Luther (Nov 10, 1483 - Feb 18, 1546) was a German theologian, an Augustinian monk, and an ecclesiastical reformer whose teachings inspired the Reformation and deeply influenced the doctrines and culture of the Lutheran and Protestant traditions. Luther's call to the Church to return to the teachings of the Bible led to the formation of new traditions within Christianity and to the Counter-Reformation, the Roman Catholic reaction to these movements.
Luther's contributions to Western civilization went beyond the life of the Christian Church. Luther's translations of the Bible helped to develop a standard version of the German language and added several principles to the art of translation. Luther's hymns inspired the development of congregational singing in Christianity. His marriage on June 13, 1525, to Katharina von Bora began a movement of clerical marriage within many Christian traditions.
[Citation from: http://www.theopedia.com/Martin_Luther 24 Aug 2010]