14 October 2007

Luther on Becoming and Healing

This is one of my absolute favorite quotes from Martin Luther:

“This life is not godliness, but growth in godliness; not health, but healing; not being, but becoming; not rest, but exercise. We are not now what we shall be, but we are on the way; the process is not yet finished, but it has begun; this is not the goal, but it is road; at present all does not gleam and glitter, but everything is being purified.”

Martin Luther,
“A Defense and Explanation of All Articles”
(AE 32:24).


Christopher Orr said...

"Early" Luther?

Randy Asburry said...

I suppose, for those who make a big deal of such things. "Defense and Explanation of All the Articles" is dated at 1521.

The better question to ask, however, is this: "How does this citation measure up to Holy Writ and the Church's teaching through the centuries?" It seems to me that Luther's words in this quote are in well-pleasing harmony with the Scriptures and the Church through time.

BTW, for those who strive to highlight early- vs. late-Luther (as opposed to merely middle-aged Luther? ;-) it's always helpful to remember that Luther said some pretty outlandish things in his later years as well. Thus, in my mind, the real question should always be: Does Luther, however old he may be, speak in concert with the Scriptures and the Church?