LOOKING TO PRAISE AND WORSHIP JESUS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. 18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

Saturday, February 25, 2006

FROM JOHNATHAN MOORHEAD'S BLOG

Saturday, February 25, 2006
The Faith of Martin Luther

The following Luther quotation was taken from Doug Eaton's "Godward Thoughts".

"Faith is not what some people think it is. Their human dream is a delusion. Because they observe that faith is not followed by good works or a better life, they fall into error, even though they speak and hear much about faith. ``Faith is not enough,''they say, ``You must do good works, you must be pious to be saved.'' They think that, when you hear the gospel, you start working, creating by your own strength a thankful heart which says, ``I believe.'' That is what they think true faith is. But, because this is a human idea, a dream, the heart never learns anything from it, so it does nothing and reform doesn't come from this `faith,' either.

Instead, faith is God's work in us, that changes us and gives new birth from God. (John 1:13). It kills the Old Adam and makes us completely different people. It changes our hearts, our spirits, our thoughts and all our powers. It brings the Holy Spirit with it. Yes, it is a living, creative, active and powerful thing, this faith. Faith cannot help doing good works constantly. It doesn't stop to ask if good works ought to be done, but before anyone asks, it already has done them and continues to do them without ceasing. Anyone who does not do good works in this manner is an unbeliever. He stumbles around and looks for faith and good works, even though he does not know what faith or good works are. Yet he gossips and chatters about faith and good works with many words.

Faith is a living, bold trust in God's grace, so certain of God's favor that it would risk death a thousand times trusting in it. Such confidence and knowledge of God's grace makes you happy, joyful and bold in your relationship to God and all creatures. The Holy Spirit makes this happen through faith. Because of it, you freely, willingly and joyfully do good to everyone, serve everyone, suffer all kinds of things, love and praise the God who has shown you such grace. Thus, it is just as impossible to separate faith and works as it is to separate heat and light from fire! Therefore, watch out for your own false ideas and guard against good-for-nothing gossips, who think they're smart enough to define faith and works, but really are the greatest of fools. Ask God to work faith in you, or you will remain forever without faith, no matter what you wish, say or can do."

Martin Luther - An Introduction to St. Paul's Letter to the Romans

posted by Jonathan Moorhead

7 Comments:

Blogger bluecollar said...

I have dear friends on both sides of the LS debate. For whatever it is worth I do not wish to ruin those friendships. However, in light of a comment found on another blog that twists and mischaracterizes Reformed (my) belief system as it pertains to faith that justifies I have found it necessary to stand my ground here. It truely brakes my heart to have to make this stand.

Mark Pierson

February 25, 2006 4:14 PM

 
Blogger Kc said...

Brother Mark I wouldn't expect you to do anything less and I hope this difference in our understanding won't disrupt our fellowship.

February 25, 2006 5:19 PM

 
Blogger Doug E. said...

This really is a debate between true Christians as far as I am concerned. We should be able to make this stand with disrupting fellowship. The different sides have strong implication on our Christian life but as you said. We really do have "freinds" on both sides.

With that said this is a great quote by Luther.

Doug

February 25, 2006 6:25 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Casey, Doug: I literally love my brothers and sisters on both sides. I would be Sick to my stomach to lose fellowship. I have been very sad since posting this. I must though stand by what I have posted. It is the true representation of what I believe.

Mark D. Pierson

February 25, 2006 6:44 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

This is the part that I "AMEN!"

"Instead, faith is God's work in us, that changes us and gives new birth from God. (John 1:13). It kills the Old Adam and makes us completely different people. It changes our hearts, our spirits, our thoughts and all our powers. It brings the Holy Spirit with it. Yes, it is a living, creative, active and powerful thing, this faith. Faith cannot help doing good works constantly. It doesn't stop to ask if good works ought to be done, but before anyone asks, it already has done them and continues to do them without ceasing. Anyone who does not do good works in this manner is an unbeliever. He stumbles around and looks for faith and good works, even though he does not know what faith or good works are. Yet he gossips and chatters about faith and good works with many words."

I realize that Luther was addressing RC theology at this point but the above quote is rather applicable to a raging debate today.

February 25, 2006 7:04 PM

 
Blogger Doug E. said...

Mark,

You said, "I have been very sad since posting this."

This shows a Godly heart. We never find joy in pointing out error. Luther many times made similar comments as he addressed the RC church.

Doug

February 25, 2006 7:31 PM

 
Blogger bluecollar said...

Thank you Doug!

February 25, 2006 7:41 PM

 

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