Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Luther on Wrongly Reading the New Testament

“It has become a deplorable custom that the Gospels and the Epistles are treated like law books, in which one is to learn what we are to do, and in which the works of Christ are presented as nothing but an example held before one’s eyes.  Wherever this errant opinion remains within the heart, there neither gospel nor epistle can be read usefully and in a Christian way; such readers remain nothing but heathen,  as before.”

Luther rightly sees that all of the imperatives (do this!) are grounded in the indicatives (Christ did this).  Reading the New Testament any other way is to read it sub-Christianly. 


On a lighter note, if you are looking for a great way to insult friends consider the Luther Insult Generator


  1. I really want to understand what Luther is saying here but don't. Why is it wrong to look at Christ as an example?

  2. The key phrase us "nothing but". If Christ is only an example then we miss the gospel. That's what Luther is saying,



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