Luther -- Quick, costly obedience

“Quick, costly obedience”
-- Wolfgang Simson, present-day German theologian

This statement describes a major characteristic of God’s kingdom: If people are under God’s rule, they will do what He says and they will do it quickly.

This is also the best way to get to know God. People who follow Christ’s lead will fellowship with Him on a level that lip-service Christians can’t comprehend. The best way to honor Christ is to do what He says.

So also Luther obeyed Him at every major turn, from the lightning in the road to his lifetime of resisting religious corruption. He grappled with self-condemnation, which was the best thing he could derive from Catholic doctrine. Then he discovered the simple and obvious fact that God must love people and desire their salvation if He sent Jesus Christ to die for them. From there, he put one foot in front of the other to discover a more liberated quality of faith that does not depend on religion tradition. Thus, by the time he re-discovered salvation through grace, not through works, this seemed radical to most people of his time. To Luther, on the other hand, this seemed like common sense.

Though Luther possessed an impressive intellect, his actions were relatively simple: He did whatever he knew best at that time. He had a brain, so he used it. He had a congregation, so he taught them. He knew German, Greek and Latin, so he translated the Bible in to German for everyone to read.

He learned a vast amount of information, which he put to good use, but it was his actions that truly changed the world. His life didn’t alter the course of history and transform the church as people knew it because of his logical arguments, but because He put his life on the line to defend his conscience and the simple truths put forth in Scripture. We can look back on history and see how God honored Luther’s courage by causing his actions to bear much fruit.

1 comment:

DP said...

great article. I have yet to see the newer version of Luther, but as a former Lutheran I have always respected his idea of Christianity. If you have never seen the older version of Luther I highly recommend it. It's a wonderful film.