Martin Luther (quotes)

  • The devil is God’s ape!
  • Pray, and let God worry.
  • Unthankfulness is theft.
  • Music is the 5th gospel.
  • Reason is the enemy of faith.
  • Forgiveness is God’s command.
  • Faith is the yes of the heart.
  • Animals are footprints of God.
  • Faith is under the left nipple.
  • Nothing is easier than sinning.
  • A unjust law, is no law at all.
  • Each betrayal begins with trust.
  • The cross alone is our theology.
  • Here I stand; I can do no other.
  • Your God is altogether too human.
  • Beer is made by men, wine by God.
  • There is no wisdom save in truth.
  • Thoughts are not subject to duty.
  • Despair makes priests and friars.
  • Your thoughts of God are too human
  • God may delay, but He always comes.
  • I did nothing. The Word did it all.
  • Every evening brings us nearer God.
  • No great saint lived without errors.
  • Nothing good ever comes of violence.
  • We should die relying on grace alone
  • A woman has no control over herself.
  • Christians are rare people on earth.
  • When the Scripture speaks, God speaks
  • Peace if possible, truth at all costs.
  • When schools flourish, all flourishes.
  • Take away the Mass, destroy the Church.
  • I would rather obey than work miracles.
  • Sin is essentially a departure from God.
  • Blood alone moves the wheels of history.
  • Whatever we make the most of is our God.
  • Against the flying ball no valor avails.
  • Whatever you love most, that is your god.
  • I cannot neglect prayer for a single day.
  • We are at fault for not slaying the Jews.
  • The defects of a preacher are soon spied.
  • To pray well is the better half of study.
  • The hair is the richest ornament of women.
  • The devil won’t stay where there is music.
  • To do so no more is the truest repentance.
  • My conscience is captive to the Word of God
  • The fewer the words, the better the prayer.
  • Prayer, study, and suffering make a pastor.
  • Teaching is of more importance than urging.
  • God’s mark is on everything that obeys Him.
  • Prayer is climbing up into the heart of God.
  • A man cannot do good before he is made good.
  • Some people need a fig-leaf on their mouths.
  • The devil doesn’t stay where there is music.
  • A penny saved is better than a penny earned.
  • You have as much laughter as you have faith.
  • Christian life consists of faith and charity
  • I have to hurry all day to get time to pray.
  • A wicked tyrant is better than a wicked war.
  • Stubbornness should have been my middle name.
  • Reason should be destroyed in all Christians.
  • A dairymaid can milk cows to the glory of God
  • A happy fart never comes from a miserable ass.
  • The Clergy is the greatest hindrance to faith.
  • To pray diligently is more than half the task.
  • All of a Christian’s life is one of repentance.
  • The Bible is the cradle wherein Christ is laid.
  • My temptations have been my Masters of Divinity.
  • Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope.
  • Make sure to send a lazy man the angel of death.
  • Obedience is the crown and honour of all virtue.
  • Therefore the blind Jews are truly stupid fools.
  • When I am angry I can pray well and preach well.
  • As long as we live there is never enough singing.
  • Faith is the master, and reason the maid-servant.
  • God can be found only in suffering and the cross.
  • The Gospel is nothing less than laughter and joy.
  • How can a reason which hates God be called sound?
  • …Hope endures and overcomes misfortune and evil.
  • The organ in the worship service is a sign of Baal.
  • Brief let me be. The fewer words the better prayer.
  • The fool will upset the whole science of astronomy.
  • Come, let us sing a psalm, and drive away the devil.
  • To progress is always to begin always to begin again
  • The God of this world is riches, pleasure and pride.
  • The recognition of sin is the beginning of salvation
  • The heart of religion lies in its personal pronouns.
  • Faith ever says, “If Thou wilt,” not “If Thou canst.
  • Music is the art of the prophets and the gift of God.
  • Riches, understanding, beauty, are fair gifts of God.
  • Faith is a living, daring, confidence in God’s grace.
  • Our loving God wills that we eat, drink and be merry.
  • What will you do in the mundane days of faithfulness?
  • A penny saved is of more value than a penny paid out.
  • I see a word that hates evil more than it loves good.
  • Many pass for saints on earth whose souls are in hell.
  • Everything that is done in this world is done by hope.
  • The Holy Ghost must here be our only master and tutor.
  • Of whom shall I be afraid? One with God is a majority.
  • False preachers are worse than deflowerers of virgins.
  • Great thieves go Scott-free, as the Pope and his crew.
  • God is not hostile to sinners, but only to unbelievers.
  • Demons live in many lands, but particularly in Prussia.
  • Ah, if I could only pray the way that dog looks at meat.
  • The heart of the giver makes the gift dear and precious.
  • I do not admit that my doctrine can be judged by anyone.
  • We should throw the Epistle of James out of this school.
  • To be a Christian, you must pluck out the eye of reason.
  • Before every great opportunity God gave me a great trial.
  • There are two days in my calendar: This day and that Day.
  • One Book is enough, but a thousand books is not too many!
  • The law works fear and wrath; grace works hope and mercy.
  • The law of God cannot be fulfilled by external obedience.
  • No gown worse becomes a woman than the desire to be wise.
  • The irony is I stopped going to church a few weeks later.
  • God does not need your good works, but your neighbor does.
  • Nothing in the world causes so much misery as uncertainty.
  • In this Revolution no plans have been written for retreat.
  • Christ is the master; the Scriptures are only the servant.
  • Divinity consists in use and practice, not in speculation.
  • The church converteth the whole world by blood and prayer.
  • Women should remain at home, sit still, and bear children.
  • Scripture is the manger in which we find the Christ child.
  • I more fear what is within me than what comes from without.
  • Let the man who would hear God speak, read Holy Scriptures.
  • Next to the Word of God, music deserves the highest praise.
  • Music is one of the fairest and most glorious gifts of God.
  • Though in midst of life we be Snares of death surround us.
  • If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write.
  • Remove Christ from the Scriptures and there is nothing left.
  • We are but the instruments or assistants, by whom God works.
  • Without images we can neither think nor understand anything.
  • Christ desires nothing more of us than that we speak of him.
  • All who call on God in true faith…will certainly be heard.
  • Mary was not only holy. She was also the mother of the Lord.
  • I know not the way God leads me, but well do I know my Guide.
  • You should point to the whole man Jesus and say, That is God.
  • All we who believe on Christ are kings and priests in Christ.
  • Now just behold these miserable, blind, and senseless people.
  • The Law is for the proud and the Gospel for the brokenhearted.
  • If a man serves not God only, then surely he serves the devil.
  • Can he who understands not God’s word, understand God’s works?
  • The Holy Spirit has a way of His own to say much in few words.
  • Every book is a great action and every great action is a book!
  • It is the duty of every Christian to be Christ to his neighbor.
  • No other God have I but thee, born in a manger, died on a tree.
  • This is true faith, a living confidence in the goodness of God.
  • One drop of Christ’s blood is worth more than heaven and earth.
  • Here again you confuse and mix everything up in your usual way.
  • The gospel cannot be truly preached without offense and tumult.
  • A safe stronghold our God is still. A trusty shield and weapon.
  • Pure Christian love is not derived from the merit of the object.
  • Let Christ’s righteousness and grace, not yours, be your refuge.
  • This error of free will is a special doctrine of the Antichrist.
  • Strange, though I am saved from sin, I am not saved from sinning.
  • It is neither safe nor prudent to do anything against conscience.
  • If I am not allowed to laugh in heaven, I don’t want to go there.
  • To turn one’s eyes away from Jesus means to turn them to the Law.
  • Christ wants to slay reason and subdue the arrogance of the Jews.
  • For what God gives I thank indeed; What He withholds I do not need
  • what is sought by means of free choice is to make room for merits.
  • There never yet have been, nor are there now, too many good books.
  • The man who has the will to undergo all labor may win to any good.
  • Good works do not make a good man, but a good man does good works.
  • God himself will milk the cows through him whose vocation that is.
  • The more a person loves, the closer he approaches the image of God.
  • I had rather be in hell with Christ, than be in heaven without him.
  • I feel much freer now that I am certain the pope is the Antichrist.
  • Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved.
  • Faith must trample under foot all reason, sense, and understanding.
  • Our Lord God doesn’t do great things except by violence, as they say
  • The quest for glory can never be satisfied, it must be extinguished.
  • We need to hear the Gospel every day, because we forget it every day.
  • We are saved by faith alone, but the faith that saves is never alone.
  • A lie is like a snow-ball; the longer it is rolled, the larger it is.
  • I should have no compassion on these witches; I should burn them all.
  • May the Lord fill you with His blessings and with hatred of the Pope.
  • Blessed is he who submits to the will of God; he can never be unhappy.
  • I have so many things to do today, I dare not ignore my time with God.
  • God created Adam lord of all living creatures, but Eve spoiled it all.
  • Those with prodigious skill in music are better suited for all things.
  • Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive them that trespass against us.
  • Show me where a man spends his time & money, and I’ll show you his god.
  • Whoever does not know God hidden in suffering does not know God at all.
  • The Devil fears the word of God, He can’t bite it; it breaks his teeth.
  • Whoever wants to be a Christian should tear the eyes out of his reason.
  • The devil should not be allowed to keep all the best tunes for himself.
  • They are trying to make me into a fixed star. I am an irregular planet.
  • There are only two days on my calendar… today and the day of judgment
  • I have so much to do today, I’ll need to spend another hour on my knees.
  • A lie is like a snowball: the further you roll it the bigger it becomes.
  • War for the sake of war is sin, but war for the sake of defense is duty.
  • I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.
  • If you could understand a single grain of wheat you would die of wonder.
  • After theology I give to music the highest place and the greatest honor.
  • When the gospel flourishes in the church, everything flourishes with it.
  • For where God built a church, there the Devil would also build a chapel.
  • The less I pray, the harder it gets; the more I pray, the better it goes.
  • The veneration of Mary is inscribed in the very depths of the human heart
  • We find no rest for our weary bones unless we cling to the word of grace.
  • Prayer is a powerful thing; for God has bound and tied himself thereunto.
  • We must meet hate with love. We must meet physical force with soul force.
  • No man understands the Scriptures, unless he be acquainted with the Cross.
  • He who loves not women, wine, and song Remains a fool his whole life long.
  • Drive them [Jews] like mad dogs from our land… let not one of them live.
  • If we esteem them too highly, good works can become the greatest idolatry.
  • A simple man with Scripture has more authority than the Pope or a council.
  • Is it not wonderful news to believe that salvation lies outside ourselves?
  • The only saving faith is that which casts itself on God for life or death.
  • I must remain a child and pupil of the Catechism, and am glad so to remain.
  • Many of the ugly pages of American history have been obscured and forgotten
  • Whoever wishes to be a Christian, let him pluck out the eyes of his reason.
  • They gave our Master a crown of thorns, why do we hope for a crown of roses?
  • Faith is permitting ourselves to be seized by the things that we do not see.
  • A good servant is a real godsend, but truly this is a rare bird in the land.
  • It is not the imitation that makes sons; it is sonship that makes imitators.
  • I’d rather see heaven crash from the skies than one grain of God’s truth die.
  • Faith is the ‘yes’ of the heart, a conviction on which one stakes one’s life.
  • It’s not what I don’t know that bothers me – it’s what I do know and don’t do!
  • Religion is not ‘doctrinal knowledge,’ but wisdom born of personal experience.
  • We are nothing with all our gifts be they ever so great, except God assist us.
  • It is God who creates, effects, and preserves all things through his almighty.
  • I have so much to do today that I must set apart more time than usual to pray.
  • A gospel that doesn’t deal with the issues of the day is not the gospel at all.
  • You are not only responsible for what you say, but also for what you do not say
  • Undoubtedly they do more and viler things than those which we know and discover
  • All creatures are merely veils under which God hides Himself and deals with us.
  • Prayer is not overcoming God’s reluctance. It is laying hold of His willingness.
  • The Lord commonly gives riches to foolish people, to whom he gives nothing else.
  • Let him who wants a true church cling to the Word by which everything is upheld.
  • After the devil himself, there is no worse folk than the pope and his followers.
  • So preach that those who do not fall out with their sins may fall out with thee.
  • What harm would it do, if a man told a good strong lie for the sake of the good.
  • If ever the church is to flourish again, one must begin by instructing the young.
  • Superstition, idolatry, and hypocrisy have ample wages, but truth goes a begging.
  • Be a sinner and sin strongly, but more strongly have faith and rejoice in Christ.
  • Earth has nothing more tender than a woman’s heart when it is the abode of piety.
  • I almost feel like throwing Jimmy into the stove, as the priest in Kulenberg did.
  • A Christian is never in a state of completion but always in a process of becoming.
  • A simple layman armed with Scripture is greater than the mightiest pope without it
  • Grace was not given to heal the spiritually sick but to decorate spiritual heroes!
  • All the cunning of the devil is exercised in trying to tear us away from the word.
  • There is no gown or garment that worse becomes a woman than when she will be wise.
  • The body they may kill: God’s truth abideth still,  His Kingdom is forever.
  • Every man must do two things alone; he must do his own believing and his own dying.
  • If I could today become king or emperor, I would not give up my office as preacher.
  • What shall we do with…the Jews?…their homes also should be razed and destroyed.
  • Our God is the God from whom cometh salvation: God is the Lord by who escape death.
  • The conscience is eternal and never dies. Peace if possible, but truth at any rate.
  • The devil flees before the sound of music almost as much as before the Word of God.
  • A religion that gives nothing, costs nothing, and suffers nothing, is worth nothing.
  • Medicine makes people ill, mathematics make them sad and theology makes them sinful.
  • By faith we began, by hope we continue, and by revelation we shall obtain the whole.
  • Prayer is a strong wall and fortress of the church; it is a goodly Christian weapon.
  • If I could believe that God was not angry with me, I would stand on my head for joy.
  • Personally I declare that I owe the Pope no other obedience than that to Antichrist.
  • It cannot, indeed, be denied, that a good man is more worthy of love than a bad one.
  • God is a blank sheet upon which nothing is found but what you yourself have written.
  • The multitude of books is a great evil. There is no limit to this fever for writing.
  • The saved are singled out not by their own merits, but by the grace of the Mediator.
  • Nothing is more beautiful in the eyes of God than a soul that loves to hear His Word.
  • Heavy thoughts bring on physical maladies; when the soul is oppressed so is the body.
  • In a mouse we admire God’s creation and craft work. The same may be said about flies.
  • The gospel cannot be preached and heard enough, for it cannot be grasped well enough.
  • Next to the Word of God, the noble art of music is the greatest treasure in the world.
  • God is entirely and personally present in the wilderness, in the garden, in the field.
  • I cannot forbid a person to marry several wives, for it does not contradict Scripture.
  • Science gives man knowledge which is power; religion gives man wisdom which is control.
  • Wealth is the smallest thing on earth, the least gift that God has bestowed on mankind.
  • Mankind has a free will; but it is free to milk cows and to build houses, nothing more.
  • I’ve got so much work to do today, I’d better spend two hours in prayer instead of one.
  • If anyone could have gained heaven as a monk, then I would indeed have been among them.
  • To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without breathing.
  • Be thou comforted, little dog, Thou too in Resurrection shall have a little golden tail.
  • Truly, if faith is there, the believer cannot hold back… he breaks out into good works.
  • Let us keep to Christ, and cling to Him, and hang on Him, so that no power can remove us.
  • Jews and papists are ungodly wretches; they are two stockings made of one piece of cloth.
  • Thus every matter, if it is to be done well, calls for the attention of the whole person.
  • Let your holy Angel have charge concerning us, that the wicked one have no power over us.
  • It is better to think of church in the ale-house than to think of the ale-house in church.
  • The authority of Scripture is greater than the comprehension of the whole of man’s reason.
  • True faith will no more fail to produce [good works] than the sun can cease to give light.
  • To have peace and love in marriage is a gift which is next to the knowledge of the Gospel.
  • Works indeed are good, and God strictly requires them of us, but they do not make us holy.
  • What would it matter if, for the sake of the Christian Church, one were to tell a big lie?
  • Sacred scripture tells us that Joshua commanded the sun to stand still, and not the earth.
  • What do we older folks live for if not for the care of the young, to teach and train them?
  • Every week I preach justification by faith to my people, because every week they forget it.
  • Either sin is with you, lying on your shoulders, or it is lying on Christ, the Lamb of God.
  • How is God’s name hallowed among us? When both our doctrine and living are truly Christian.
  • Reason is the greatest enemy that faith has: it never comes to the aid of spiritual things.
  • The curses of the ungodly are more pleasing to God’s ears than the hallelujahs of the pious
  • Pray like it all depends on God, then when you are done, go work like it all depends on you.
  • If you see yourself as a “little sinner” you will inevitably see Jesus as a “little savior”.
  • Our works do not generate righteousness, rather our righteousness in Christ generates works.
  • The first duty of the gospel preacher is to declare God’s law and to show the nature of sin.
  • Married love burns as fire, and seeks nothing more than the mate. It says, “I want only you”
  • When Satan tells me I am a sinner he comforts me immeasurably, since Christ died for sinners.
  • Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave.
  • Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree.
  • Faith is a free surrenderand a joyous wager on the unseen, unknown, untested goodness of God.
  • Power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic.
  • Whoever does not accept my teaching may not be saved – for it is God’s teaching and not mine.
  • If I should neglect prayer but a single day, I should lose a great deal of the fire of faith.
  • I was increasingly compelled to see the war as an enemy of the poor and to attack it as such.
  • Nothing is more sweet than harmony in marriage, and nothing more distressing than dissension.
  • Sinners are attractive because they are loved; they are not loved because they are attractive.
  • It is a tremendously hard thing to pray aright, yea, it is verily the science of all sciences.
  • Be a sinner and sinÔªøÔªø boldly,Ôªø but believe andÔªøÔªø rejoice in Christ even more boldly.
  • The will of man without grace is not free, but is enslaved, and that too with its own consent.
  • A man must completely despair of himself in order to become fit to obtain the grace of Christ.
  • Holy Christendom has, in my judgment, no better teacher after the apostles than St. Augustine.
  • Bewilderment is the true comprehension. Not to know where you are going is the true knowledge.
  • We are not yet what we shall be, but we are growing toward it, the process is not yet finished.
  • Who waits until circumstances completely favor his undertaking, will never accomplish anything.
  • God creates out of nothing. Therefore, until a man is nothing, God can make nothing out of him.
  • Whatever your heart clings to and confides in, that is really your God, your functional savior.
  • The winds are nothing else but good or bad spirits. Hark! how the Devil is puffing and blowing.
  • Anything that one imagines of God apart from Christ is only useless thinking and vain idolatry.
  • The truth is mightier than eloquence, the Spirit greater than genius, faith more than education.
  • It is pleasing to the dear God whenever thou rejoicest or laughest from the bottom of thy heart.
  • We know, on the authority of Moses, that longer than six thousand years the world did not exist.
  • I simply taught, preached, wrote God’s Word: otherwise I did nothing. The Word of God did it all.
  • The word and works of God is quite clear, that women were made either to be wives or prostitutes.
  • God has set the type of marriage through creation. Each creature seeks its perfection in another.
  • It is a good thing to let prayer be the first business of the morning and the last of the evening.
  • I have done nothing; the Word has done and accomplished everything…. I let the Word do its work!
  • Our bodies are always exposed to Satan. The maladies I suffer are not natural, but Devil’s spells.
  • The bible is the cradle that holds the Christ, without him it is nothing more than wood and straw.
  • Whenever the word is rightly preached, and attentively heard, it never fails to bring forth fruit.
  • I compare it with a lie, which like to a snowball, the longer it is rolled the greater it becomes.
  • I would not have preachers torment their hearers, and detain them with long and tedious preaching.
  • That the Creator himself comes to us and becomes our ransom – this is the reason for our rejoicing.
  • At Sussen, the Devil carried off, last Good Friday, three grooms who had devoted themselves to him.
  • Therefore we Christians, in turn, are obliged not to tolerate their wanton and conscious blasphemy.
  • Christians fight best on their knees. Whatever good may be done is done and brought about by prayer.
  • Grant that I may not pray alone with the mouth; help me that I may pray from the depths of my heart.
  • The whole Turkish empire is nothing else but a crust cast by Heaven’s great Housekeeper to His dogs.
  • God created the world out of nothing, and so long as we are nothing, He can make something out of us.
  • The Bible is alive, it speaks to me; it has feet, it runs after me; it has hands, it lays hold of me.
  • A theologian is born by living, nay dying and being damned, not by thinking, reading, or speculating.
  • True Christian love is not derived from things without, but floweth from the heart, as from a spring.
  • Prayer is a very precious medicine, one that certainly helps and never fails, if you will only use it.
  • Our Lord has written the promise of resurrection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in springtime.
  • Whoever sees Christ as a mirror of the Father’s heart, actually walks through the world with new eyes.
  • I maintain that some Jew wrote it who probably heard about Christian people but never encountered any.
  • The bible is a remarkable fountain: the more one draws and drinks of it, the more it stimulates thirst.
  • There is no more lovely, friendly and charming relationship, communion or company than a good marriage.
  • Everything is from God himself, both commandment and fulfillment. He alone commands; he alone fulfills.
  • We old folks have to find our cushions and pillows in our tankards. Strong beer is the milk of the old.
  • Not only the words (vocabula) which the Holy Spirit and Scripture use are divine, but also the phrasing
  • As long as there is poverty in this world, no man can be totally rich even if he has a billion dollars.
  • Many demons are in woods, in waters, in wildernesses, and in dark poolly places ready to hurt…people.
  • I can’t keep the sparrows from flying around my head, but I can keep them from making a nest in my hair.
  • I put the Scriptures above all the sayings of the fathers, angels, men and devils. Here I take my stand.
  • Human reason is like a drunken man on horseback; set it up on one side, and it tumbles over on the other
  • Adam and Eve derived the fullness of joy and bliss from their contemplation of all the animal creatures.
  • When I was a child there were many witches, and they bewitched both cattle and men, especially children.
  • God writes the Gospel not in the Bible alone, but also on trees, and in the flowers and clouds and stars.
  • What man, if he were God, would humble himself to lie in the feedbox of a donkey or to hang upon a cross?
  • Those who lapse from the Gospel to the Law are no better off than those who lapse from grace to idolatry.
  • I am so busy now that if I did not spend three hours each day in prayer, I could not get through the day.
  • We must beat the Gospel into peoples’ heads incessantly because it’s the one thing we’re prone to forget.
  • Ambition begat simony; simony begat the pope and his brethren, about the time of the Babylonish captivity
  • If it were art to overcome heresy with fire, the executioners would be the most learned doctors on earth.
  • We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation.
  • We do not become righteous by doing righteous deed but, having been made righteous, we do righteous deeds.
  • When God creates faith in a man, that is as great a work as if He created heaven and earth all over again.
  • All laws and philosophy merely tell us what should be done, but they do not provide the strength to do it.
  • To worship God in spirit is the service and homage of the heart, and implies fear of God and trust in Him.
  • If I had power over the Jews, as our princes and cities have, I would deal severely with their lying mouth
  • For they who think they make an end of temptation by yeilding to it, only set themselves on fire the more.
  • I have such hatred of divorce that I prefer bigamy to divorce. Anyway, I think we should see other people.
  • And I myself, in Rome, heard it said openly in the streets, “If there is a hell, then Rome is built on it.
  • God does not love sinners because they are attractive; sinners are attractive to God because he loves them.
  • If the earth is fit for laughter then surely heaven is filled with it. Heaven is the birthplace of laughter.
  • Whoever has skill in music is of good temperament and fitted for all things. We must teach music in schools.
  • People must have righteous principals in the first, and then they will not fail to perform virtuous actions.
  • God wants us to pray, and he wants to hear our prayers-not because we are worthy, but because he is merciful.
  • Rough, boisterous, stormy and altogether warlike, I am born to fight against innumerable monsters and devils.
  • My heart, which is so full to overflowing, has often been solaced and refreshed by music when sick and weary.
  • It is a miracle how God has so long preserved His Book! How great and glorious it is to have the Word of God!
  • I have grounded my preaching upon the literal word; he that pleases may follow me; he that will not may stay.
  • To gather with God’s people in united adoration of the Father is as necessary to the Christian life as prayer.
  • A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing: our helper He amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing.
  • The mystery of the humanity of Christ, that he sunk himself into our flesh, is beyond all human understanding.
  • Marriage is a civic matter. It is really not, together with all its circumstances, the business of the church.
  • Human nature is like a drunk peasant. Lift him into the saddle on one side, over he topples on the other side.
  • It is not I that smite, stab, and slay, but God and my prince, for my hand and my body are now their servants.
  • I am more afraid of my own heart than of the pope and all his cardinals. I have within me the great pope, Self.
  • The certain mark by which a Christian community can be recognized is the preaching of the gospel in its purity.
  • We must not regard what or how the world esteems us, so we have the Word pure, and are certain of our doctrine.
  • He that has but one word of God before him, and out of that word cannot make a sermon, can never be a preacher.
  • Whoso hearkens not to God’s voice, is an idolator, though he perform the highest and most heavy service of God.
  • As for the demented, I hold it certain that all beings deprived of reason are thus afflicted only by the Devil.
  • When asked what he would do if he knew the world would end tomorrow, Martin Luther said, “I would plant a tree.”
  • Justice is a temporary thing that must at last come to an end; but the conscience is eternal and will never die.
  • God freely forgives us on account of Christnot on account of our works, contrition, confession, or satisfactions.
  • Put thou thy trust in God; In duty’s path go on; Fix on His word thy steadfast eye; So shall thy work be done.
  • God’s love does not love that which is worthy of being loved, but it creates that which is worthy of being loved.
  • An angel is a spiritual creature created by God without a body, for the service of Christendom and of the church.
  • In our sad condition our only consolation is the expectancy of another life. Here below all is incomprehensible.
  • Always preach in such a way that if the people listening do not come to hate their sin, they will instead hate you
  • It would be a good thing if young people were wise and old people were strong, but God has arranged things better.
  • To preach Christ is to feed the soul, to justify it, to set it free, and to save it, if it believes the preaching.
  • Whenever I have prayed earnestly, I have always received more than I asked for. God may delay, but He always comes.
  • The soul can do without everything except the word of God, without which none at all of its wants are provided for.
  • so it is with human reason, which strives not against faith, when enlightened, but rather furthers and advances it.
  • None can believe how powerful prayer is, and what it is able to effect, but those who have learned it by experience.
  • It is impossible to separate works from faith- yea, just as impossible as to separate burning and shining from fire.
  • What shall we do with…the Jews?…I advise that safe-conduct on the highways be abolished completely for the Jews.
  • This is the reason why our Theology is certain: because it seizes us from ourselves and places us outside ourselves.
  • Twas a special gift of God that speech was given to mankind; for through the Word, and not by force, wisdom governs.
  • The whole being of any Christian is faith and love. Faith brings the person to God, love brings the person to people.
  • There are three conversions necessary (for the Christian life): the conversion of the heart, the mind, and the purse.
  • When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said, ‘Repent,’ he willed the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.
  • Every doer of the law and every moral worker is accursed, for he walketh in the presumption of his own righteousness.
  • If God were willing to sell His grace, we would accept it more quickly and gladly than when He offers it for nothing.
  • In a delightful garden, sowing, planting or digging are not hardship but are done with a zeal and a certain pleasure.
  • The hair is the finest ornament women have. Of old, virgins used to wear it loose, except when they were in mourning.
  • People give ear to an upstart astrologer [Copernicus]…this fool wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy
  • The slender capacity of man’s heart cannot comprehend the unfathomable depth and burning zeal of God’s love toward us.
  • As is the business of tailors to make clothes and cobblers to make shoes, so it is the business of Christians to pray.
  • To be convinced in our hearts that we have forgiveness of sins and peace with God by grace alone is the hardest thing.
  • Faith cannot be inherited or gained by being baptized into a Church. Faith is a matter between the individual and God.
  • Without armaments peace cannot be kept; wars are waged not only to repel injustice but also to establish a firm peace.
  • Did I not tell you earlier that a Jew is such a noble, precious jewel that God and all the angels dance when he farts?
  • I cannot believe that my illness is natural. I suspect Satan, and therefore I am the more inclined to take it lightly.
  • Spare the rod and spoil the child – that is true. But, beside the rod, keep an apple to give him when he has done well.
  • Thus, dear friends, I have said it clearly enough, and I believe you ought to understand it and not make liberty a law.
  • True humility does not know that it is humble. If it did, it would be proud from the contemplation of so fine a virtue.
  • Leave the ass burdened with laws behind in the valley. But your conscience, let it ascend with Isaac into the mountain.
  • Nothing is more unbecoming to a teacher of the Word than flippancy. He must be serious and should not act like a clown.
  • Let a man be endowed with ten virtues and have but one fault and the one fault will eclipse and darken all the virtues.
  • One learns more of Christ in being married and rearing children than in several lifetimes spent in study in a monastery.
  • Though we be active in the battle, if we are not fighting where the battle is the hottest, we are traitors to the cause.
  • The Bible is the book that makes fools of the wise of this world; it is only understood by the plain and simple hearted.
  • Men are so delving into the mysteries of things that today a boy of twenty knows more than twenty doctors formerly knew.
  • Adam was created, as it were, intoxicated with rejoicing toward God and was delighted also with all the other creatures.
  • Christianity can be summed up in the two terms faith and love…receiving from above [faith] and giving out below [love].
  • God works by contraries so that a man feels himself to be lost in the very moment when he is on the point of being saved.
  • An earthly kingdom cannot exist without inequality of persons. Some must be free, some serfs, some rulers, some subjects.
  • Feelings come, and feelings go, and feelings are deceiving. My warrant is the Word of God, naught else is worth believing.
  • If you young fellows were wise, the devil couldn’t do anything to you, but since you aren’t wise, you need us who are old.
  • Should anyone knock at my heart and say, ‘Who lives here?’ I should reply, ‘Not Martin Luther, but the Lord Jesus Christ.’
  • [The Psalms are] a Little Bible, wherein everything contained in the entire Bible is beautifully and briefly comprehended.
  • Dearest Jesus, holy child, make thee a bed, soft, undefiled, within my heart, that it may be a quiet chamber kept for thee.
  • What shall we do with…the Jews?…I advise that all their prayer books and Talmudic writings…are to be taken from them.
  • So great are the effectiveness and power of the Word of God that the more it is persecuted the more it flourishes and grows.
  • Peace is more important than all justice; and peace was not made for the sake of justice, but justice for the sake of peace.
  • The forces of good and evil are working within and around me, I must choose, and in a free will universe I do have a choice.
  • Sin cannot tear you away from him [Christ] even though you commit adultery a hundred times a day and commit as many murders.
  • I’ll trust in God’s unchanging Word, till soul and body sever. For though all things pass away, His Word shall stand forever.
  • Someone asked Luther, “Do you feel that you’ve been forgiven?” He answered, “No, but I’m as sure As there’s a God in Heaven!”
  • Lord God…use me as Your instrument — but do not forsake me, for if ever I should be on my own, I would easily wreck it all.
  • I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all; but whatever I have placed in God’s hands, that I still possess.
  • Father and Mother are apostles, bishops and priests to their children, for it is they who make them acquainted with the gospel.
  • All our experience with history should teach us, when we look back, how badly human wisdom is betrayed when it relies on itself
  • The Holy Ghost has called me by the gospel and illuminated me with his gifts and sanctified and preserved me in the true faith.
  • God doesn’t slack his promises because of our sins or hasten them because of our righteousness. He pays no attention to either.
  • You should not believe your conscience and your feelings more than the word which the Lord who receives sinners preaches to you.
  • Love is an image of God, and not a lifeless image, but the living essence of the divine nature which beams full of all goodness.
  • If you want to interpret well and confidently, set Christ before you, for He is the man to whom it all applies, every bit of it.
  • Either God must be unjust, or you, Jews, wicked and ungodly. You have been, about fifteen hundred years, a race rejected of God.
  • Christ designed that the day of his coming should be hid from us, that being in suspense, we might be as it were upon the watch.
  • If men only believe enough in Christ they can commit adultery and murder a thousand times a day without periling their salvation.
  • You may as well quit reading and hearing the Word of God, and give it to the devil, if you do not desire to live according to it.
  • The Devil has a great advantage against us inasmuch as he has a strong bastion and bulwark against us in our own flesh and blood.
  • Faith looks to the word and the promise; that is, to the truth. But hope looks to that which the word has promised, to the gift .
  • Some plague the people with too long sermons; for the faculty of listening is a tender thing, and soon becomes weary and satiated.
  • When God wants to speak and deal with us, he does not avail himself of an angel but of parents, or the pastor, or of our neighbor.
  • God uses lust to impel men to marry, ambition to office, avarice to earning, and fear to faith. God led me like an old blind goat.
  • We may well lie with what seems to be a woman of flesh and blood, and yet all the time it is only a devil in the shape of a woman.
  • God does not give grace freely in the sense that He will demand no satisfaction, but He gave Christ to be the satisfaction for us.
  • We will win our freedom because the sacred heritage of our nation and the eternal will of God are embodied in our echoing demands.
  • When questioned whether the Blessed will not be saddened by seeing their nearest and dearest tortured answers, “Not in the least.”
  • We need not invite the Devil to our table; he is too ready to come without being asked. The air all about us is filled with demons.
  • Whenever the true message of the cross is abolished, the anger of hypocrites and heretics eases and all things seem to be at peace.
  • Faith does not inquire whether there are good works to be done, but even before asking questions, faith has done the works already.
  • He that will maintain that man’s free will is able to do or work anything in spiritual cases, be they never so small, denies Christ.
  • Godly people are waiting for the Lord; therefore they live, therefore they are saved, therefore they receive what has been promised.
  • We are determined here in Montgomery to work and fight until justice runs ‘down like water, and righteousness like a mighty stream.’
  • When God contemplates some great work, He begins it by the hand of some poor, weak, human creature, to whom He afterwards gives aid.
  • The best way to drive out the devil, if he will not yield to texts of Scripture, is to jeer and flout him, for he cannot bear scorn.
  • Singing has nothing to do with the affairs of this world: it is not for the law. Singers are merry, and free from sorrows and cares.
  • Whoever teaches differently from what I have taught, or whoever condemns me therein, he condemns God and must remain a child of hell.
  • I would not give one moment of heaven for all the joy and riches of the world, even if it lasted for thousands and thousands of years.
  • Two devils rose from the water, and flew off through the air, crying, ‘Oh, oh, oh!’ and turning one over another, in sportive mockery.
  • Faith is a living, daring confidence in God’s grace, so sure and certain that the believer would stake his life on it a thousand times.
  • A preacher should have the skill to teach the unlearned simply roundly, and plainly; for teaching is of more importance than exhorting.
  • It is impossible for a man to be a Christian without having Christ; and if he has Christ he has at the same time all that is in Christ.
  • Grace remits sin, and peace quiets the conscience. Sin and conscience torment us, but Christ has overcome these fiends now and forever.
  • He who hears this name [God] from a Jew must inform the authorities, or else throw sow dung at him when he sees him and chase him away.
  • For in the true nature of things, if we rightly consider, every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of gold and silver.
  • All who call on God in true faith, earnestly from the heart, will certainly be heard, and will receive what they have asked and desired.
  • Of all deadly sins, this is the most deadly, namely, that any one should think he is not guilty of a damnable and deadly sin before God.
  • The fact that the biblical book Hebrews is not an epistle of St Paul, or of any other apostle, is proved by what it says in chapter two.
  • Jesus Christ never died for our good works. They were not worth dying for. But he gave himself for our sins, according to the Scriptures.
  • Music is a discipline, and a mistress of order and good manners, she makes the people milder and gentler, more moral and more reasonable.
  • Glory to God in highest heaven, Who unto man His Son hath given;  While angels sing with tender mirth,  A glad new year to all the earth.
  • There is no rustic so rude but that, if he dreams or fancies anything, it must be the whisper of the Holy Ghost, and he himself a prophet.
  • Whoever drinks beer, he is quick to sleep; whoever sleeps long, does not sin; whoever does not sin, enters Heaven! Thus, let us drink beer!
  • Now the Church is not wood and stone, but the company of believing people; one must hold to them, and see how they believe, live and teach.
  • Angels are our true and trusty servants, performing offices and works that one poor miserable mendicant would be ashamed to do for another.
  • The article of justification is fragile. Not in itself, of course, but in us. I know how quickly a person can forfeit the joy of the Gospel.
  • Music must be supported by the king and the princes, for the maintenance of the arts is their duty no less than the maintenance of the laws.
  • God’s entire divine nature is wholly and entirely in all creatures, more deeply, more inwardly, more present than the creature is to itself.
  • And though this world with devils filled, Should threaten to undo us, We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us.
  • Some will object that the Law is divine and holy. Let it be divine and holy. The Law has no right to tell me that I must be justified by it.
  • When Jesus Christ utters a word, He opens His mouth so wide that it embraces all Heaven and earth, even though that word be but in a whisper.
  • The Holy Ghost is not a Sceptic, and He has not inscribed in our hearts uncertain opinions, but, rather, affirmations of the strongest sorts.
  • In many countries there are particular places to which devils more especially resort. In Prussia there is an infinite number of evil spirits.
  • The world says of marriage: A short joy and a long displeasure. But he who understands it finds in it delight, love, and joy without ceasing.
  • Count it one of the highest virtues upon earth to educate faithfully the children of others, which so few, and scarcely any, do by their own.
  • People go through three conversions: The conversion of their head, their heart, and their pocketbook. Unfortunately, not all at the same time.
  • He who receives a sacrament does not perform a good work; he receives a benefit. In the mass we give Christ nothing; we only receive from Him.
  • How often have not the demons called ‘Nix,’ drawn women and girls into the water, and there had commerce with them, with fearful consequences.
  • The inner man cannot be forced to do out of his own free will, what he should do, except the grace of God change the heart and make it willing.
  • Good works are the seals and proofs of faith; for even as a letter must have a seal to strengthen the same, even so faith must have good works.
  • In the Church, great wonders daily occur, such as the forgiveness of sins, triumph over death . . . the gift of righteousness and eternal life.
  • A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject of all, subject to all.
  • The works of the righteous would be mortal sins if they would not be feared as mortal sins by the righteous themselves out of pious fear of God.
  • What can only be taught by the rod and with blows will not lead to much good; they will not remain pious any longer than the rod is behind them.
  • A preacher must be both soldier and shepherd. He must nourish, defend, and teach; he must have teeth in his mouth, and be able to bite and fight.
  • The dog is the most faithful of animals and would be much esteemed were it not so common. Our Lord God has made His greatest gifts the commonest.
  • I pray that God would open the mouth in me and the heart in you and that he would be the teacher in the midst of us who may in us speak and hear.
  • The Devil…clutched hold of the miserable young man…and flew off with him through the ceiling, since which time nothing has been heard of him.
  • Wer nicht liebt Wein,Weib und Gesang, Der bleibt ein Narr sein Leben lang. Who loves not woman, wine and song Remains a fool his whole life long.
  • women and girls begin to bare themselves behind and in front, and there is nobody to punish and hold in check, and besides, God’s word is mocked.
  • God delights in our temptations and yet hates them. He delights in them when they drive us to prayer; he hates them when they drive us to despair.
  • Music is a fair and glorious gift of God. I am strongly persuaded that after theology, there is no art which can be placed on the level with music.
  • The worship of God….should be free at table, in private rooms, downstairs, upstairs, at home, abroad, in all places, by all peoples, at all times
  • It is the most ungodly and dangerous business to abandon the certain and revealed will of God in order to search in to the hidden mysteries of God.
  • Good news from heaven the angels bring, Glad tidings to the earth they sing: To us this day a child is given, To crown us with the joy of heaven.
  • God our Father has made all things depend on faith so that whoever has faith will have everything, and whoever does not have faith will have nothing
  • Everything that is done in the world is done by hope. No merchant or tradesman would set himself to work if he did not hope to reap benefit thereby.
  • A great variety of reading confuses and does not teach. It makes the student like a man who dwells everywhere and, therefore, nowhere in particular.
  • He [Christ] died for me. He made His righteousness mine and made my sin His own; and if He made my sin His own, then I do not have it, and I am free.
  • The will of man without the grace of God is not free at all, but is the permanent prisoner and bondslave of evil since it cannot turn itself to good.
  • I cannot and will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I can do no other, so help me God. Amen.
  • Let us not flutter too high, but remain by the manger and the swaddling clothes of Christ, ‘in whom dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.’
  • There is on earth among all dangers no more dangerous thing than a richly endowed and adroit reason…Reason must be deluded, blinded, and destroyed.
  • The church that preaches the gospel in all of its fullness, except as it applies to the great social ills of the day, is failing to preach the gospel.
  • We ought first to know that there are no good works except those which God has commanded, even as there is no sin except that which God has forbidden.
  • When God works in us, the will, being changed and sweetly breathed upon by the Spirit of God, desires and acts, not from compulsion, but responsively.
  • War is the greatest plague that can afflict humanity, it destroys religion, it destroys states, it destroys families. Any scourge is preferable to it.
  • I greatly fear that the universities, unless they teach the Holy Scriptures diligently and impress them on the young students, are wide gates to hell.
  • We ought not to criticize, explain, or judge the Scriptures by our mere reason, but diligently, with prayer, meditate thereon, and seek their meaning.
  • Rest in the Lord; wait patiently for Him. In Hebrew, “Be silent in God, and let Him mould thee.” Keep still, and He will mould thee to the right shape.
  • If by any effort of reason I could conceive how God, Who shows so much anger and iniquity, could be merciful and just, there would be no need of faith.
  • Christ is no Moses, no exactor, no giver of laws, but a giver of grace, a Savior; he is infinite mercy and goodness, freely and bountifully given to us.
  • If you preach the gospel in all aspects with the exception of the issues which deal specifically with your time, you are not preaching the gospel at all.
  • If we wish to wash our hands of the Jews blasphemy and not share in their guilt, we have to part company with them. They must be driven from our country.
  • I shall never be a heretic; I may err in dispute, but I do not wish to decide anything finally; on the other hand, I am not bound by the opinions of men.
  • I have before me God’s Word which cannot fail, nor can the gates of hell prevail against it; thereby will I remain, though the whole world be against me.
  • If God is to create or to preserve a creature, God must be present and must make and preserve God’s creation both in its innermost and outermost aspects.
  • The fool will upset the whole science of astronomy, but as the Holy Scripture shows, it was the sun and not the earth which Joshua ordered to stand still.
  • A Christian is free and independent in every respect, a bond servant to none. A Christian is a dutiful servant in every respect, owing a duty to everyone.
  • There is no justification without sanctification, no forgiveness without renewal of life, no real faith from which the fruits of new obedience do not grow.
  • It is the nature of all hypocrites and false prophets to create a conscience where there is none, and to cause conscience to disappear where it does exist.
  • I have undertaken to translate the Bible into German. This was good for me; otherwise I might have died in the mistaken notion that I was a learned fellow.
  • Be a sinner, and let your sins be strong, but let your trust in Christ be stronger, and rejoice in Christ who is the victor over sin, death, and the world.
  • If any man doth ascribe of salvation, even the very least, to the free will of man, he knoweth nothing of grace, and he hath not learnt Jesus Christ aright.
  • He who loses sight of the word of God, falls into despair; the voice of heaven no longer sustains him; he follows only the disorderly tendency of his heart.
  • Blessed is the man that hath not walked in the way of the Sacramentarians, nor sat in the seat of the Zwinglians, nor followed the Council of the Zurichers.
  • The sin underneath all our sins is to trust the lie of the serpent that we cannot trust the love and grace of Christ and must take matters into our own hands
  • One thing, and only one thing, is necessary for Christian life, righteousness, and freedom. That one thing is the most holy Word of God, the gospel of Christ.
  • For from the error of not knowing, or understanding, what sin is, there necessarily arises another error, that people cannot know or understand what grace is.
  • Let every man recognize what he is, and be certain that we are all equally priests, that is, we have the same power in the word and in any sacrament whatever.
  • Snakes and monkeys are subjected to the demon more than other animals. Satan lives in them and possesses them. He uses them to deceive men and to injure them.
  • God wants to be praised for nourishing and cherishing, for He cherishes all creatures. He is not only the Creator, but He is also the Sustainer and Nourisher.
  • Anyone who is to find Christ must first find the church. How could anyone know where Christ is and what faith is in him unless he knew where his believers are?
  • Faith, like light, should always be simple and unbending; while love, like warmth, should beam forth on every side, and bend to every necessity of our brethren.
  • Beautiful music is the art of the prophets that can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most magnificent and delightful presents God has given us.
  • The two chief things are faith and love. Faith receives the good; love gives the good. Faith offers us God as our own; love gives us to our neighbor as his own.
  • Exhort your household to learn [the Ten Commandments] word for word, that they should obey God. ¶For if you teach and urge your families things will go forward.
  • Astrology is framed by the devil, to the end people may be scared from entering into the state of matrimony, and from every divine and human office and calling.
  • what the situation will be like in the world before the Lord returns, namely, Christ will be despised, and the preachers of the Gospel will be regarded as fools.
  • Yes, I see the Church as the body of Christ. But, oh! How we have blemished and scarred that body through social neglect and through fear of being nonconformists.
  • Maternity is a glorious thing, since all mankind has been conceived, born, and nourished of women. All human laws should encourage the multiplication of families.
  • You parents can provide no better gift for your children than an education in the liberal arts. House and home burn down, but an education is easy to carry along.
  • I often laugh at Satan, and there is nothing that makes him so angry as when I attack him to his face, and tell him that through God I am more than a match for him
  • Do not suppose that abuses are eliminated by destroying the object which is abused. Men can go wrong with wine and women. Shall we then prohibit and abolish women?
  • The Holy Spirit is no Skeptic, & the things He has written in our hearts are not doubts or opinions, but assertions – surer & more certain than sense & life itself.
  • Next to theology I give to music the highest place and honor. And we see how David and all the saints have wrought their godly thoughts into verse, rhyme, and song.
  • If the heart has been reformed by the spirit, it makes use of both the useful and delightful things created and given by God in a holy manner and with thanksgiving.
  • He who is well acquainted with the text of scripture, is a distinguished theologian. For a Bible passage or text is of more value than the comments of four authors.
  • Our Lord God doeth work like a printer who setteth the letters backwards; we see and feel well his setting, but we shall see the print yonder – in the life to come.
  • from you, my dear Erasmus, let me obtain this request, that just as I bear with your ignorance in these matters, so you in turn will bear with my lack of eloquence.
  • We refuse to have our conscience bound by any work or law, so that by doing this or that we should be righteous, or leaving this or that undone we should be damned.
  • Isaiah calls the Church barren because her children are born without effort by the Word of faith through the Spirit of God. It is a matter of birth, not of exertion.
  • That which the sober man keeps in his breast, the drunken man lets out at the lips. Astute people, when they want to ascertain a man’s true character, make him drunk.
  • If he have faith, the believer cannot be restrained. He betrays himself. He breaks out. He confesses and teaches this gospel to the people at the risk of life itself.
  • Nothing on earth is so well-suited to make the sad merry, the merry sad, to give courage to the despairing, to make the proud humble, to lessen envy and hate, as music.
  • Temptations, of course, cannot be avoided, but because we cannot prevent the birds from flying over our heads, there is no need that we should let them nest in our hair.
  • No one may forsake their neighbors when they are in trouble. Everybody is under obligation to help and support their neighbors as they would themselves like to be helped.
  • What is it to serve God and to do His will? Nothing else than to show mercy to our neighbor. For it is our own neighbor who needs our service; God in heaven needs it not.
  • When we hear that Christ was made a curse for us, let us believe it with joy and assurance. By faith Christ changes places with us. He gets our sins, we get His holiness.
  • To comfort a sorrowful conscience is much better than to possess many kngdoms; yet the world regards it not; nay, condemns it, calling us rebels, dissturbers of the peace.
  • I am afraid that the schools will prove the very gates of hell, unless they diligently labor in explaining the Holy Scriptures and engraving them in the heart of the youth.
  • It seems to me that the most delightful walk of life is to be found in a household of moderate means, to live there with an obliging spouse and to be satisfied with little.
  • If I had to baptise a Jew, I would take him to the bridge of the Elbe, hang a stone around his neck and push him over with the words ‘I baptise thee in the name of Abraham’.
  • You should be certain that angels are protecting you when you go to sleep. Yea, that they are protecting you also in all your business, whether you enter or leave your home.
  • When I am angry I can write, pray, and preach well, for then my whole temperament is quickened, my understanding sharpened, and all mundane vexations and temptations depart.
  • Those who love music are gentle and honest in their tempers. I always loved music, and would not, for a great matter, be without the little skill which I possess in the art.
  • It is impossible for one man both to labor day and night to get a living, and at the same time give himself to the study of sacred learning as the preaching office requires.
  • The Mass is the greatest blasphemy of God, and the highest idolatry upon earth, an abomination the like of which has never been in Christendom since the time of the Apostles.
  • The Pope is a mere tormentor of conscience. The assembly of his greased and religious crew in praying was altogether like the croaking of frogs, which edified nothing at all.
  • Oh, what thoughts man might have had about the fact that God is in all creatures, and so might have reflected on the power and the wisdom of God in even the smallest flowers!
  • Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved; and to be steady on all the battlefield besides, is mere flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point.
  • Even like as St. Paul was converted, just so are all others converted; for we all resist God, but the Holy Ghost draws the will of mankind, when he pleases, through preaching.
  • The state of matrimony is the chief in the world after religion; but people shun it because of its inconveniences, like one who, running out of the rain, falls into the river.
  • The true despisers of the world are the people who accept what God sends them, gratefully use all things when they have them, and gladly do without them if God takes them away
  • Antichrist is the pope and the Turk [Muslim] together. A beast full of life must have a body and soul. The spirit or soul of Antichrist is the pope, his flesh or body the Turk.
  • Christ sayeth not, Abstain from the flesh, from marrying, from housekeeping, etc., as the Papists teach, for that were even to invite the devil and all his fellows to a feast.
  • Christ ought to be preached with this goal in mind–that we might be moved to faith in him so that he is not just a distant historical figure but actually Christ for you and me.
  • The truth of the matter is rather as Christ says, “He who is not with me is against me.” … He does not say “He who is not with me is not against me either, but merely neutral.
  • The most damnable and pernicious heresy that has ever plagued the mind of man was the idea that somehow he could make himself good enough to deserve to live with an all-holy God.
  • Poverty hath slain a thousand, but riches have slain ten thousand. They are very uncertain, they promise that which they cannot perform, neither can they afford a contented mind.
  • I frankly confess that even if it were possible I should not wish to have free choice given to me, or to have anything left in my own hands by which I might strive for salvation.
  • The secret of contentment is the realization that life is a gift, not a right. Next to faith this is the highest art – to be content with the calling in which God has placed you.
  • The Devil, too, sometimes steals human children; it is not infrequent for him to carry away infants within the first six weeks after birth, and to substitute in their place imps.
  • Lord Jesus, You are my righteousness, I am your sin. You took on you what was mine; yet set on me what was yours. You became what you were not, that I might become what I was not.
  • Even though they (women) grow weary and wear themselves out with child-bearing, it does not matter; let them go on bearing children till they die, that is what they are there for.
  • Christ and his word can hardly be recognized because of the great vermin of human ordinances. However, let this suffice for the time being on their lies against doctrine or faith.
  • No man should be alone when he opposes Satan. The Church and the ministry of the Word were instituted for this purpose, that hands may be joined together and one may help another.
  • How great, therefore, the wickedness of human nature is! How many girls there are who prevent conception and kill and expel tender fetuses, although procreation is the work of God.
  • First I shake the whole Apple tree, that the ripest might fall. Then I climb the tree and shake each limb, and then each branch and then each twig, and then I look under each leaf.
  • Sheep, cattle, men-servants were all possessions to be sold as it pleased their masters. It were a good thing were it still so. For else no man may compel nor tame the servile folk.
  • In Switzerland, on a high mountain, not far from Lucerne, there is a lake they call Pilate’s Pond, which the Devil has fixed upon as one of the chief residences of his evil spirits.
  • If I fail to spend two hours in prayer each morning, the devil gets the victory through the day. I have so much business I cannot get on without spending three hours daily in prayer.
  • Even if all the world were to combine forces, they could not bring about the conception of a single child in any woman’s womb nor cause it to be born; that is wholly the work of God.
  • This is the mystery of the riches of divine grace for sinners; for by a wonderful exchange our sins are now not ours but Christ’s, and Christ’s righteousness is not Christ’s but ours.
  • God wants our conscience to be certain and sure that it is pleasing to Him. This cannot be done if the conscience is led by its own feelings, but only if it relies on the Word of God.
  • Music is one of the fairest and most glorious gifts of God, to which Satan is a bitter enemy; for it removes from the heart the weight of sorrow, and the fascination of evil thoughts.
  • Those who turn proud when their praise is sounded, who seek their own glory, not Christ’s, or those who are moved by slanders and by infamy, had better leave the ministry of the Word.
  • Cujus region, ejus rligio (Whoever’s reign, his religion) … He who owns the country owns the Church, and he that makes your laws for you has the right to make your religion for you.
  • Heaven and earth, all the emperors, kings, and princes of the world, could not raise a fit dwelling-place for God; yet, in a weak human soul, that keeps His Word, He willingly resides.
  • Let whatsoever will or can befall me, I will surely cleave by my sweet Savior Christ Jesus, for in Him am I baptized; I can neither do nor know anything but only what He has taught me.
  • God does not work salvation for fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin vigorously… Do not for a moment imagine that this life is the abiding place of justice; sin must be committed.
  • This is the most dangerous trial of all, when there is no trial and every thing goes well; for then a man is tempted to forget God, to become too bold and to misuse times of prosperity.
  • O, when it comes to faith, what a living, creative, active, powerful thing it is. It cannot do other than good at all times. It never waits to ask whether there is some good work to do.
  • The highest and most precious treasure we receive of God is, that we can speak, hear, see, etc.; but how few acknowledge these as God’s special gifts, much less give God thanks for them.
  • For the devil is better pleased with coarse blockheads and with folks who are useful to nobody; because where such characters abound, then things do not go on prosperously here on earth.
  • For God is wholly present in all creation, in every corner, he is behind you and before you. Do you think he is sleeping on a pillow in heaven? He is watching over you and protecting you.
  • I am bound by the texts of the Bible, my conscience is captive to the Word of God, I neither can nor will recant anything, since it is neither right nor safe to act against my conscience.
  • Men are not made religious by performing certain actions which are externally good, but they must first have righteous principles, and then they will not fail to perform virtuous actions.
  • Our faith is an astounding thing-astounding that I should believe him to be the Son of God who is suspended on the cross, whom I have never seen, with whom I have never become acquainted.
  • I know that a Christian should be humble, but against the Pope I am going to be proud and say to him: “You, Pope, I will not have you for my boss, for I am sure that my doctrine is divine.
  • Our office…subjects us to great burdens and labors, dangers and temptations, with little reward or gratitude from the world. But Christ himself will be our reward if we labor faithfully.
  • [Our] plan is to follow the example of the prophets and the ancient fathers of the church, and to compose psalms…so that the Word of God may be among the people also in the form of music.
  • The mad mob does not ask how it could be better, only that it be different. And when it then becomes worse, it must change again. Thus they get bees for flies, and at last hornets for bees.
  • Whatever man loves, that is his god. For he carries it in his heart; he goes about with it night and day; he sleeps and wakes with it, be it what it may – wealth or self, pleasure or renown.
  • Like the early Christians, we must move into a sometime hostile world armed with the revolutionary gospel of Jesus Christ. With this powerful gospel we shall boldly challenge the status quo.
  • What shall we do with…the Jews?…set fire to their synagogues or schools and bury and cover with dirt whatever will not burn, so that no man will ever again see a stone or cinder of them.
  • My counsel is, that we draw water from the true source and fountain, that is, that we diligently search the Scriptures. He who wholly possesses the text of the Bible, is a consummate divine.
  • I admit that I deserve death and hell, what of it? For I know One who suffered and made satisfaction on my behalf. His name is Jesus Christ, Son of God, and where He is there I shall be also!
  • God is not a God of sadness, death, etc., but the devil is. Christ is a God of joy, and so the Scriptures often say that we should rejoice … A Christian should and must be a cheerful person.
  • All these things He must be in me, abiding, living, speaking in me; that I may be the righteousness of God in Him (2 Cor. v. 21); not in love, nor in gifts and graces which follow; but in Him.
  • A large number of deaf, crippled and blind people are afflicted solely through the malice of the demon. And one must in no wise doubt that plagues, fevers and every sort of evil come from him.
  • A Christian has no need of any law in order to be saved, since through faith we are free from every law. Thus all the acts of a Christian are done spontaneously, out of a sense of pure liberty.
  • A man who has no part in the grace of God, cannot keep the commandments of God, or prepare himself, either wholly or in part, to receive grace; but he rests of necessity under the power of sin.
  • The fruit does not make the tree good or bad but the tree itself is what determines the nature of the fruit. In the same way, a person first must be good or bad before doing a good or bad work.
  • The reproduction of mankind is a great marvel and mystery. Had God consulted me in the matter, I should have advised him to continue the generation of the species by fashioning them out of clay.
  • The great unthankfulness, contempt of God’s word, and wilfulness of the world, make me fear that the divine light will soon cease to shine on man, for God’s word has ever had its certain course.
  • The offering of [the body] is called a spiritual sacrifice because it is freely sacrificed through the Spirit, the Christian being uninfluenced by the constrainst of the Low or the fear of hell.
  • The Holy Spirit is no skeptic. He has written neither doubt nor mere opinion into our hearts, but rather solid assurances, which are more sure and solid than all experience and even life itself.
  • Lord, grant that anger or other bitterness does not reign over us, but that your grace, genuine kindness, loyalty, and every kind of friendliness, generosity, and gentleness may reign in us. Amen
  • … we must drive them [Jews] out like mad dogs, so that we do not become partakers of their abominable blasphemy and all the their other vices and thus merit God’s wrath and be damned with them.
  • As when my little son John offendeth: if then I should not whip him, but call him to the table unto me, and give him sugar and plums, thereby, I should make him worse, yea should quite spoil him.
  • I have no pleasure in any man who despises music. It is no invention of ours: it is a gift of God. I place it next to theology. Satan hates music: he knows how it drives the evil spirit out of us.
  • I hate myself, that I cannot believe it so constantly and surely as I should; but no human creature can rightly know how mercifully God is inclined toward those that steadfastly believe in Christ.
  • The confidence that God is mindful of the individual is of tremendous value in dealing with the disease of fear, for it gives us a sense of worth, of belonging, and of at homeness in the universe.
  • We should consider the histories of Christ three manner of ways; first, as a history of acts or legends; second, as a gift or a present; thirdly, as an example, which we should believe and follow.
  • In his life Christ is an example showing us how to live in his death he is a sacrifice satisfying our sins in his resurrection a conqueror in his ascension a king in his intercession a high priest.
  • The best way to get rid of the Devil, if you cannot kill it with the words of Holy Scripture, is to rail at and mock him. Music, too, is very good; music is hateful to him, and drives him far away.
  • This doctrine (justification) is the head and the cornerstone. It alone begets, nourishes, builds, preserves, and defends the church of God and without it the church of God cannot exist for one hour.
  • The Devil, it is true, is not exactly a doctor who has taken degrees, but he is very learned, very expert for all that. He has not been carrying on his business during thousands of years for nothing.
  • At the last, when we die, we have the dear angels for our escort on the way. They who can grasp the whole world in their hands can surely also guard our souls, that they make that last journey safely.
  • God scorns and mocks the devil, in setting under his very nose a poor, weak, human creature, mere dust and ashes, yet endowed with the firstfruits of the Spirit, against whom the devil can do nothing.
  • One is not righteous who does much, but the one who, without work, believes much in Christ. The law says, ‘Do this,’ and it is never done. Grace says, ‘Believe in this,’ and everything is already done.
  • In the bonds of Death He lay Who for our offence was slain; But the Lord is risen to-day, Christ hath brought us life again, Wherefore let us all rejoice, Singing loud, with cheerful voice, Hallelujah!
  • Christ will remain a priest and king; though He was never consecrated by any papist bishop or greased by any of those shavelings; but he was ordained and consecrated by God Himself, and by Him anointed.
  • Albert Durer, the famous painter, used to say he had no pleasure in pictures that were painted with many colors, but in those which were painted with a choice simplicity. So it is with me as to sermons.
  • Reason must be deluded, blinded, and destroyed. Faith must trample underfoot all reason, sense, and understanding, and whatever it sees must be put out of sight and … know nothing but the word of God.
  • I myself saw and touched at Dessay, a child of this sort, which had no human parents, but had proceeded from the Devil. He was twelve years old, and, in outward form, exactly resembled ordinary children.
  • If God had not permitted the people of Jerusalem to be torn asunder and driven them from the land, but had let them keep it after before, no one could convince them that they are not God`s chosen people.
  • God created Adam master and lord of living creatures, but Eve spoilt all, when she persuaded him to set himself above God’s will. ‘Tis you women, with your tricks and artifices, that lead men into error.
  • Heretics cannot themselves appear good unless they depict the Church as evil, false, and mendacious. They alone wish to be esteemed as the good, but the Church must be made to appear evil in every respect.
  • Reason is the greatest enemy that faith has; it never comes to the aid of spiritual things, but more frequently than not struggles against the divine Word, treating with contempt all that emanates from God.
  • The will is a beast of burden. If God mounts it, it wishes and goes as God wills; if Satan mounts it, it wishes and goes as Satan wills; Nor can it choose its rider… the riders contend for its possession.
  • The gospel cannot be preached and heard enough, for it cannot be grasped well enough … Moreover, our greatest task is to keep you faithful to this article and to bequeath this treasure to you when we die.
  • Believest thou? then thou wilt speak boldly. Speakest thou boldy? then thou must suffer. Sufferest thou? then thou shalt be comforted. For faith, the confession thereof, and the cross do follow one another.
  • Also when it is a case of only upholding some spiritual tenet, such as infant baptism, original sin, and unnecessary separation, then . . . we conclude that . . . the stubborn sectaries must be put to death.
  • When one is possessed with doubt, that though he call upon the Lord he cannot be heard, and that God has turned him heart from him, and is angry … he must arm himself with God’s Word, promising to hear him.
  • Look to it that you do not try to do all of it, do not try to do too much, lest your spirit grow weary. Besides, a good prayer mustn’t be too long. Do not draw it out. Prayer ought to be frequent and fervent.
  • Unto him who is able to keep us from falling, and lift us from the dark to the bright mountain of hope, from the midnight of desperation to the daybreak of joy, to him be power and authority for ever and ever.
  • The multitude of books is a great evil. There is no limit to this fever for writing; every one must be an author; some out of vanity, to acquire celebrity and raise up a name, others for the sake of mere gain.
  • Great people and champions are special gifts of God, whom He gives and preserves; they do their work, and achieve great actions, not with vain imaginations, or cold and sleepy cogitations, but by motion of God.
  • At Poltersberg, there is a lake similarly cursed. If you throw a stone into it, a dreadful storm immediately arises, and the whole neighboring district quakes to its centre. ‘Tis the devils kept prisoner there.
  • We may search long to find where God is, but we shall find Him in those who keep the words of Christ. For the Lord Christ saith, ” If any man love me, he will keep my words; and we will make our abode with him.
  • It is false that the will, left to itself, can do good as well as evil, for it is not free, but in bondage…On the side of man there is nothing that goes before grace, unless it be impotency and even rebellion.
  • Women should remain at home, sit still, keep house, and bear and bring up children…If a woman grows weary and, at last, dies from childbearing, it matters not. Let her die from bearing – she is there to do it.
  • For God does not want to save us by our own but by an extraneous righteousness, one that does not originate in ourselves but comes to us from beyond ourselves, which does not arise on earth but comes from heaven.
  • I believe that the devil has destroyed many good books of the church, as, aforetime, he killed and crushed many holy persons, the memory of whom has now passed away; but the Bible he was fain to leave subsisting.
  • If the gospel was of a nature to be propagated or maintained by the power of the world, God would not have intrusted it to fishermen. To defend the gospel appertains not to the princes and pontiffs of this world.
  • Not only the adoration of images is idolatry, but also trust in one’s own righteousness, works and merits, and putting confidence in riches and power. As the latter is the commonest, so it also is the most noxious.
  • Christ took our sins and the sins of the whole world as well as the Father’s wrath on his shoulders, and he has drowned them both in himself so that we are thereby reconciled to God and become completely righteous.
  • Christians are to be taught that the pope would and should wish to give of his own money, even though he had to sell the basilica of St. Peter, to many of those from whom certain hawkers of indulgences cajole money.
  • The human heart is like a millstone in a mill: when you put wheat under it, it turns and grinds and bruises the wheat to flour; if you put no wheat, it still grinds on, but then ’tis itself it grinds and wears away.
  • Thus my learning is not my own; it belongs to the unlearned and is the debt I owe themMy wisdom belongs to the foolish, my power to the oppressed. Thus my wealth belongs to the poor, my righteousness to the sinners.
  • What are the things we should pray for? First, our personal troubles…The greatest trouble we can ever know is thinking that we have no trouble for we can become hard-hearted and insensible to what is inside of us.
  • Idiots, the lame, the blind, the dumb, are men in whom the devils have established themselves: and all the physicians who heal these infirmities, as though they proceeded from natural causes, are ignorant blockheads.
  • No man ought to lay a cross upon himself, or to adopt tribulation, as is done in popedom; but if a cross or tribulation come upon him, then let him suffer it patiently, and know that it is good and profitable for him.
  • All the passages in the Holy Scriptures that mention assistance are they that do away with “free-will”, and these are countless…For grace is needed, and the help of grace is given, because “free-will” can do nothing.
  • No one would be happier than Luther to be commended by the testimony of the time that he had been neither slack nor deceitful in maintaining the course of truth, but had shown quite enough and even too much vehemence.
  • Your work is a very sacred matter. God delights in it, and through it, He wants to best His blessings on you. This praise of work should be inscribed on all tools, on the forehead and the faces that sweat from toiling.
  • He who wholly renounces himself, and relies not on mere human reason, will make good progress in the Scriptures; but the world comprehends them not, from ignorance of that mortification which is the gift of God’s word.
  • Truly speech has wonderful strength and power, that through a mere word, proceeding out of the mouth of a poor human creature, the devil, that so proud and powerful spirit, should be driven away, shamed and confounded.
  • A man would have to be an idiot to write a book of laws for an apple tree telling it to bear apples and not thorns, seeing that the apple-tree will do it naturally and far better than any laws or teaching can prescribe.
  • We believe that the very beginning and end of salvation, and the sum of Christianity, consists of faith in Christ, who by His blood alone, and not by any works of ours, has put away sin, and destroyed the power of death.
  • If I had to refute all the other articles of the Jewish faith, I should be obliged to write against them as much and for as long a time as they have used for inventing their lies – that is, longer than two thousand years.
  • How rich a God our God is! He gives enough, but we don’t notice it. He gave the whole world to Adam, but this was nothing in Adam’s eyes; he was concerned about one tree and had to ask why God had forbidden him to eat it.
  • Every man must decide whether he will walk in the creative light of altruism or the darkness of destructive selfishness. This is the judgment. Life’s persistent and most urgent question is ‘What are you doing for others?’
  • If Church history teaches us anything, it is that we cannot afford to be a vacillating Church. We minister to a people who are in great need of hearing truth, we dare not make any attempt to soft pedal that glorious truth.
  • If obedience is not rendered in the homes, we shall never have a whole city, country, principality, or kingdom well governed. For this order in the homes is the first rule; it is the source of all other rule and government.
  • No greater mischief can happen to a Christian people, than to have God’s word taken from them, or falsified, so that they no longer have it pure and clear. God grant we and our descendants be not witness to such a calamity.
  • I have lived to see the greatest plague on earth — the condemning of God’s word, a fearful thing, surpassing all other plagues in the world; for thereupon most surely follow all manner of punishments, eternal and corporal.
  • What harm would it do, if a man told a good strong lie for the sake of the good and for the Christian church … a lie out of necessity, a useful lie, a helpful lie, such lies would not be against God, he would accept them.
  • The God whom we worship is not a weak and incompetent God. He is able to beat back gigantic waves of opposition and to bring low prodigious mountains of evil. The ringing testimony of the Christian faith is that God is able.
  • If we Christians would join the Wise Men, we must close our eyes to all that glitters before the world and look rather on the despised and foolish things, help the poor, comfort the despised, and aid the neighbor in his need.
  • I think that we’ve got to see that a riot is the language of the unheard. And, what is it that America has failed to hear? It has failed to hear that the economic plight of the Negro poor has worsened over the last few years.
  • You see then, that Diatribe truly possesses a free choice in her handling of Scriptures, so that words of one and the same type are for her obliged to prove endeavor in one place and freedom in another, exactly as she pleases.
  • Many sweat to reconcile St Paul and St James, but in vain. ‘Faith justifies’ and ‘faith does not justify’ contradict each other flatly. If any one can harmonize them I will give him my doctor’s hood and let him call me a fool.
  • All which happens through the whole world happens through hope. No husbandman would sow a grain of corn if he did not hope it would spring up and bring forth the ear; how much more we are helped on by hope in the eternal life.
  • The universities only ought to turn out men who are experts in the Holy Scriptures, men who can become bishops and priests, and stand in the front line against heretics, the devil, and all the world. But where do you find that?
  • Many have been deceived by outward appearances and have proceeded to write and teach about good works and how they justify without even mentioning faith…. Wearying themselves with many works, they never come to righteousness.
  • Cannons and fire-arms are cruel and damnable machines; I believe them to have been the direct suggestion of the Devil. If Adam had seen in a vision the horrible instruments his children were to invent, he would have died of grief.
  • I am not of the opinion that all the arts shall be crushed to earth and perish through the Gospel, as some bigoted persons pretend, but would willingly see them all, and especially music, servants of Him who gave and created them.
  • It is as if a wolf devoured a sheep and the sheep were so powerful that it transformed the wolf and turned him into a sheep. So, when we eat Christ’s flesh physically and spiritually, the food is so powerful that it transforms us.
  • The Holy Scriptures surpass in efficaciousness all the arts and all the sciences of the philosophers and jurists; these, though good and necessary to life here below, are vain and of no effect as to what concerns the life eternal.
  • God foreknows nothing by contingency, but that He foresees, purposes, and does all things according to His immutable, eternal, and infallible will. By this thunderbolt, “Free-will” is thrown prostrate, and utterly dashed to pieces.
  • A person whodoes not regard music as a marvelous creation of God, must be a clodhopper indeed and does not deserve to be called a human being; he should be permitted to hear nothing but the braying of asses and the grunting of hogs.
  • The spiritual rest, which God particularly intends in this Commandment, is this: that we not only cease from our labor and trade, but much more, that we let God alone work in us and that we do nothing of our own with all our powers.
  • Why do you rant and brag with such a spate of words, as if you wanted to overwhelm me with a sort of tempest and deluge of oratory-which nevertheless falls with the greater force on your own head, while my ark rides aloft in safety?
  • Either sin is with you, lying on your shoulders, or it is lying on Christ, the Lamb of God. Now if it is lying on your back, you are lost; but if it is resting on Christ, you are free, and you will be saved. Now choose what you want.
  • Our suffering is not worthy the name of suffering. When I consider my crosses, tribulations, and temptations, I shame myself almost to death, thinking what are they in comparison of the sufferings of my blessed Savior Christ Jesus.
  • Farewell unhappy, hopeless, blasphemous Rome! The Wrath of God has come upon you, as you deserve. We cared for Babylon, and she is not healed; let us then leave her, that she may become the habitation of dragons, spectres, and witches.
  • World, death, devil, hell, away and leave me in peace! You have no hold on me. If you will not let me live, then I will die. But you won’t succeed in that. Chop my head off, and it won’t harm me. I have a God who will give me a new one.
  • I think these things [firearms] were invented by Satan himself, for they can’t be defended against with (ordinary) weapons and fists. All human strength vanishes when confronted with firearms. A man is dead before he sees what’s coming.
  • The first care of every Christian ought to be to lay aside all reliance on works, and strengthen his faith alone more and more, and by it grow in the knowledge, not of works, but of Christ Jesus, who has suffered and risen again for him.
  • My dear pope, I will kiss your feet and acknowledge you as supreme bishop if you will worship my Christ and grant that through His death and resurrection, not through keeping your traditions, we have forgiveness of sins and life eternal.
  • But the power of God cannot be so determined and measured, for it is uncircumscribed and immeasurable, beyond and above all that is or may be. On the other hand, it must be essentially present at all places, even in the tiniest tree leaf.
  • The priest is not made. He must be born a priest; must inherit his office. I refer to the new birth-the birth of water and the Spirit. Thus all Christians must became priests, children of God and co-heirs with Christ the Most High Priest.
  • Men have broad and large chests, and small narrow hips, and more understanding than women, who have but small and narrow breasts, and broad hips, to the end they should remain at home, sit still, keep house, and bear and bring up children.
  • Through faith we are restored to paradise and created anew. We have no need of works in order to be righteous; however, in order to avoid idleness and so that the body might be cared for an disciplined, works are done freely to please God.
  • That little bird has chosen his shelter. Above it are the stars and the deep heaven of worlds.  Yet he is rocking himself to sleep without caring for tomorrow’s lodging, calmly clinging to his little twig, and leaving God to think for him.
  • Oh! how great and glorious a thing it is to have before one the Word of God! With that we may at all times feel joyous and secure; we need never be in want of consolation, for we see before us, in all its brightness, the pure and right way.
  • For some years now I have read through the Bible twice every year. If you picture the Bible to be a mighty tree and every word a little branch, I have shaken every one of these branches because I wanted to know what it was and what it meant.
  • For who in fact seeks the salvation of souls through indulgences, and not instead money for his coffers? This is evident from the way indulgences are preached . For the commissioners and preachers do nothing but extol indulgences and incite.
  • However, they have not acquired a perfect mastery of the art of lying; they lie so clumsily and ineptly that anyone who is just a little observant can easily detect it. But for us Christians they stand as a terrifying example of God’s wrath.
  • Know that no one can have indulged in the Holy Writers sufficiently, unless he has governed churches for a hundred years with the prophets, such as Elijah and Elisha, John the Baptist, Christ and the apostles… We are beggars: this is true.
  • Let all the ‘free-will’ in the world do all it can with all its strength; it will never give rise to a single instance of ability to avoid being hardened if God does not give the Spirit, or of meriting mercy if it is left to its own strength.
  • Many demons are in woods, in waters, in wildernesses, and in dark poolly places ready to hurt and prejudice people; some are also in the thick black clouds, which cause hail, lightning and thunder, and poison the air, the pastures and grounds.
  • In the midst of the affliction He counsels, strengthens confirms, nourishes, and favors us…. More over, when we have repented, He instantly remits the sins as well as the punishments. In the same manner parents ought to handle their children.
  • There is no wisdom save in truth. Truth is everlasting, but our ideas about truth are changeable. Only a little of the first fruits of wisdom, only a few fragments of the boundless heights, breadths and depths of truth, have I been able to gather.
  • Ultimately, however, conflict lies not in objective reality, but in people’s heads. Truth is simple one argument – perhaps a good one, perhaps not – for dealing with the difference. The difference itself exists because it exists in their thinking.
  • The kingdom of God does not consist in talk, but in power, that is, in works and practice. God loves the ‘doers of the word’ in faith and love, and not the ‘mere hearers,’ who, like parrots, have learned to utter certain expressions with readiness.
  • When the devil wants to cause offense against the true doctrine and faith, he does not do so through insignificant people, who do not rate highly with the world, but through those who are the very best, the wisest, the holiest, and the most learned.
  • I am of a different mind ten times in the course of a day. But I resist the devil, and often it is with a fart that I chase him away. When he tempts me with silly sins I say, ‘Devil, yesterday I broke wind too. Have you written it down on your list?
  • If any earthly institution or custom conflicts with God’s will, it is your Christian duty to oppose it. You must never allow the transitory, evanescent demands of man-made institutions to take precedence over the eternal demands of the Almighty God.
  • No one can believe how powerful prayer is and what it can effect, except those who have learned it by experience. Whenever I have prayed earnestly, I have been heard and have obtained more than I prayed for. God sometimes delays, but He always comes.
  • You must learn that if you are a Christian, you will without a doubt experience all kinds of opposition and evil inclinations in the flesh. For when you have faith, there will be a hundred more evil thoughts and a hundred more temptations than before.
  • If there is anything in us, it is not our own; it is a gift of God. But if it is a gift of God, then it is entirely a debt one owes to love, that is, to the law of Christ. And if it is a debt owed to love, then I must serve others with it, not myself.
  • As concerning faith we ought to be invincible, and more hard, if it might be, than the adamant stone; but as touching charity, we ought to be soft, and more flexible than the reed or leaf that is shaken with the wind, and ready to yield to everything.
  • I only ask in all kindness that the man who wishes at this time to have my books will by no means let them be a hindrance to his own study of the Scriptures, but read them as I read the orders and the ordures of the pope and the books of the sophists.
  • The Christian gospel is a two-way road. On the one hand, it seeks to change the souls of men, and thereby unite them with God; on the other hand, it seeks to change the environmental conditions of men so the soul will have a chance after it is changed.
  • But then eject them forever from this country. For, as we have heard, God’s anger with them is so intense that gentle mercy will only tend to make them worse and worse, while sharp mercy will reform them but little. Therefore, in any case, away with them!

 

  • Every occupation has its own honor before God. Ordinary work is a divine vocation or calling. In our daily work no matter how important or mundane we serve God by serving the neighbor and we also participate in God’s on-going providence for the human race.
  • Those speak foolishly who ascribe their anger or their impatience to such as offend them or to tribulation. Tribulation does not make people impatient, but proves that they are impatient. So everyone may learn from tribulation how his heart is constituted.
  • Each day of the holidays comes bringing its own gifts. Open your heart, Untie the ribbons, and enjoy the contents! Were earth a thousand times as fair Beset with gold and jewels rare She yet were far too poor to be A narrow cradle, Lord, for Thee.
  • This grace of God is a very great, strong, mighty and active thing. It does not lie asleep in the soul. Grace hears, leads, drives, draws, changes, works all in man, and lets itself be distinctly felt and experienced. It is hidden, but its works are evident.
  • Heretics are not to be disputed with, but to be condemned unheard, and whilst they perish by fire, the faithful ought to pursue the evil to its source, and bathe their heads in the blood of the Catholic bishops, and of the Pope, who is the devil in disguise.
  • Take this to heart and doubt not that you are the one who killed Christ. Your sins certainly did, and when you see the nails driven through his hands, be sure that you are pondering, and when the thorns pierce his brow, know that they are your evil thoughts.
  • Over against the devil and his missionaries, the authors of false doctrines and sects, we ought to be like the Apostle, impatient, and rigorously condemnatory, as parents are with the dog that bites their little one, but the weeping child itself they soothe.
  • Original sin is in us like our beard. We are shaved today and look clean; tomorrow our beard has grown again, nor does it cease growing while we remain on earth. In like manner original sin cannot be extirpated from us; it springs up in us as long as we live.
  • Once sure that the doctrine we teach is God’s Word, once certain of this, we may build thereupon, and know that this cause shall and must remain; the devil shall not be able to overthrow it, much less the world be able to uproot it, how fiercely soever it rage.
  • A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing; Our helper He, amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing:   For still our ancient foe doth seek to work us woe;  His craft and power are great, and, armed with cruel hate,  On earth is not his equal.
  • When God’s righteousness is mentioned in the gospel, it is God’s action of declaring righteous the unrighteous sinner who has faith in Jesus Christ. The righteousness by which a person is justified (declared righteous) is not his own but that of another, Christ.
  • In truth you cannot read too much in Scripture; and what you read you cannot read too carefully, and what you read carefully you cannot understand too well, and what you understand well you cannot teach too well, and what you teach well you cannot live too well.
  • The devil and temptations also do give occasion unto us somewhat to learn and understand the Scriptures, by experience and practice. Without trials and temptations we should never understand anything thereof; no, not although we diligently read and heard the same.
  • We are beginning to regain a knowledge of Creation, a knowledge forfeited by the fall of Adam. By God’s mercy we can begin to recognize His Wonderful works and wonders also in flowers when we ponder his might and goodness. Therefore we laud, magnify and thank Him.
  • When I was abandoned by everybody, in my greatest weakness, trembling and afraid of death, when I was persecuted by this wicked world, then I often felt most surely the divine power in this name, Jesus Christ… So, by God’s grace, I will live and die for that name.
  • If anywhere the day is made holy for the mere day’s sake – if anyone set up its observance on a Jewish foundation, then I order you to work on it, to ride on it, to dance on it, to feast on it, to do anything that shall remove this encroachment on Christian liberty.
  • Music is to be praised as second only to the Word of God because by her all the emotions are swayed. That is why there are so many songs and psalms. This precious gift has been bestowed on men alone to remind them that they are created to praise and magnify the Lord.
  • We know that death never skips or spares anybody and that no one ever returns. And yet we go on like the blind, who see as little at midday as in the pitch-dark night. We do not take these examples to heart; we do not realize that today or tomorrow our turn will come.
  • [It is] essentially wholesome and necessary, for a Christian to know, whether or not the will does any thing in those things which pertain unto Salvation. Nay, let me tell you, this is the very hinge upon which our discussion turns. It is the very heart of the subject
  • I cannot choose but adhere to the word of God, which has possession of my conscience; nor can I possibly, nor will I even make any recantation, since it is neither safe nor honest to act contrary to conscience! Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God! Amen.
  • A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of Saint Thomas Aquinas, an unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal and natural law.
  • It is necessary to understand that Black Power is a cry of disappointment. The Black Power slogan did not spring full grown from the head of some philosophical Zeus. It was born from the wounds of despair and disappointment. It is a cry of daily hurt and persistent pain.
  • I have no use for cranks who despise music, because it is a gift of God. Music drives away the Devil and makes people joyful; they forget thereby all wrath, unchastity, arrogance, and the like. Next after theology, I give to music the highest place and the greatest honor.
  • The prosperity of a country depends, not on the abundance of its revenues, nor on the strength of its fortifications, nor on the beauty of its public buildings; but it consists in the number of its cultivated citizens, in its men of education, enlightenment and character.
  • In ourselves, we are sinners, and yet through faith we are righteous by the imputation of God. For we trust him who promises to deliver us, and in the meantime struggle so that sin may not overwhelm us, but that we may stand up to it until he finally take it away from us.
  • Therefore be on your guard against the Jews, knowing that wherever they have their synagogues, nothing is found but a den of devils in which sheer self-glory, conceit, lies, blasphemy, and defaming of God and men are practiced most maliciously and veheming his eyes on them.
  • The heart overflows with gladness, and leaps and dances for the joy it has found in God. In this experience the Holy Spirit is active, and has taught us in the flash of a moment the deep secret of joy. You will have as much joy and laughter in life as you have faith in God.
  • Let us not lose the Bible, but with diligence, in fear and invocation of God, read and preach it. While that remains and flourishes, all prospers with the state; ’tis head and empress of all arts and faculties. Let but divinity fall, and I would not give a straw for the rest.
  • Being by his faith replaced afresh in paradise and created anew, he (the believer)does not need works for his justification, but that he may not be idle, but that he may exercise his own body and preserve it. His works are to be done freely, with the sole object of pleasing God.
  • I would advise no one to send his child where the Holy Scriptures are not supreme. Every institution that does not unceasingly pursue the study of God’s word becomes corrupt. Because of this we can see what kind of people they become in the universities and what they are like now.
  • Lord God, I thank Thee that Thou hast been pleased to make me a poor and indigent man upon earth. I have neither house nor land nor money, to leave behind me. Thou hast given me wife and children, whom I now restore to Thee. Lord, nourish, teach, and preserve them as Thou hast me.
  • Here is the truly Christian life, here is faith really working by love, when a man applies himself with joy and love to the works of that freest servitude in which he serves others voluntarily and for nought, himself abundantly satisfied in the fulness and riches of his own faith.
  • A man must be able to affirm, I know for certain, that what I teach is the only Word of the high Majesty of God in heaven, his final conclusion and everlasting, unchangeable truth, and whatsoever concurs and agrees not with this doctrine, is altogether false, and spun by the devil.
  • Hereby we may understand that God, of His special grace, maketh the teachers of the gospel subject to the Cross, and to all kinds of afflicitons, for the salvation of themselves and of the people; for otherwise they could by no means beat down this beast which is called vain-glory.
  • For all works and things, which are either commanded or forbidden by God and thus have been instituted by the supreme Majesty, are ‘musts.’ Nevertheless, no one should be dragged to them or away from them by the hair, for I can drive no man to heaven or beat him into it with a club.
  • The faith towards God in Christ must be sure and steadfast, that it may solace and make glad the conscience, and put it to rest. When a man has this certainty, he has overcome the serpent; but if he be doubtful of the doctrine, it is for him very dangerous to dispute with the devil.
  • It is an unsufferable blasphemy to reject the public ministry or to say that people can become holy without sermons and Church. This involves a destruction of the Church and rebellion against ecclesiastical order; such upheavals must be warded off and punished like all other revolts.
  • God’s love gives in such a way that it flows from a Father’s heart, the well-spring of all good. The heart of the giver makes the gift dear and precious; as among ourselves we say of even a trifling gift, “It comes from a hand we love,” and look not so much at the gift as at the heart.
  • Amen meaneth assuredly, namely, that I am sure that petitions of this kind are accepted by my Heavenly Father, and heard by him, because he hath commanded us, that we should pray after this manner, and hath promised that he will hear us. Amen, Amen: that is, truly, certainly, so be it.
  • Daily there have to be many troubles and trials in every house, city, and country. No station in life is free of suffering and pain, both from your own, like your wife or children or household help or subjects, and from the outside, from your neighbors and all sorts of accidental trouble.
  • Sleep is a most useful and most salutary operation of nature. Scarcely any minor annoyance angers me more than the being suddenly awakened out of a pleasant slumber. I understand that in Italy they torture poor people by depriving them of sleep. `Tis a torture that cannot long be endured.
  • What shall we Christians do now with this depraved and damned people of the Jews? … I will give my faithful advice: First, that one should set fire to their synagogues. . . . Then that one should also break down and destroy their houses. . . . That one should drive them out the country.
  • We need to pledge ourselves anew to the cause of Christ. We must capture the spirit of the early church. Wherever the early Christians went, they made a triumphant witness for Christ. Whether on the village streets or in the city jails, they daringly proclaimed the good news of the gospel.
  • I have many times essayed thoroughly to investigate the ten commandments, but at the very outset, “I am the Lord thy God,” I stuck fast; that very one word, I, put me to a non-plus. He that has but one word of God before him, and out of that word cannot make a sermon, can never be a preacher.
  • In the treatment of poverty nationally, one fact stands out: there are twice as many white poor as Negro poor in the United States. Therefore I will not dwell on the experiences of poverty that derive from racial discrimination, but will discuss the poverty that affects white and Negro alike.
  • The great event on Calvary . . . is an eternal reminder to a power drunk generation that love is the most durable power in the world, and that it is at bottom the heartbeat of the moral cosmos. Only through achieving this love can you expect to matriculate into the university of eternal life.
  • There are some of us who think to ourselves, ‘If I had only been there! How quick I would have been to help the Baby. I would have washed His linen. How happy I would have been to go with the shepherds to see the Lord lying in the manger!’ Why don’t we do it now? We have Christ in our neighbor.
  • Christian living does not mean to be good but to become good; not to be well, but to get well; not being but becoming; nor rest but training. We are not yet, but we shall be. It has not yet happened, but it is the way. Not everything shines and sparkles as yet, but everything is getting better.
  • I was born to fight devils and factions. It is my business to remove obstacles, to cut down thorns, to fill up quagmires and to open and make straight paths.  If I must have some failing let me rather speak the truth with too great sincerity than once to act the hypocrite and conceal the truth.
  • The purpose of marriage is not to have pleasure and to be idle but to procreate and bring up children, to support a household. This, of course, is a huge burden full of great cares and toils. But you have been created by God to be a husband or a wife and that you may learn to bear these troubles.
  • We conclude, therefore, that a Christian lives not in himself, but in Christ and in his neighbor. Otherwise he is not a Christian. He lives in Christ through faith, in his neighbor through love. By faith he is caught up beyond himself into God. By love he descends beneath himself into his neighbor.
  • We must make a great difference between God’s Word and the word of man. A man’s word is a little sound, that flies into the air, and soon vanishes; but the Word of God is greater than heaven and earth, yea, greater than death and hell, for it forms part of the power of God, and endures everlastingly.
  • When some say that good works are forbidden when we preach faith alone, it is as if I said to a sick man: “If you had health, you would have the use of all your limbs; but without health, the works of all your limbs are nothing”; and he wanted to infer that I had forbidden the works of all his limbs.
  • If the peasants are in open rebellion, then they are outside the law of God. Therefore let all who are able slash, strike down, and kill (those who rebel) openly and secretly, remembering that there can be nothing more venomous, harmful, or devilish than a rebel. It is exactly like killing a mad dog.
  • From the beginning of my Reformation I have asked God to send me neither dreams, nor visions, nor angels, but to give me the right understanding of His Word, the Holy Scriptures; for as long as I have God’s Word, I know that I am walking in His way and that I shall not fall into any error or delusion.
  • I have always loved music; whoso has skill in this art, is of a good temperament, fitted for all things. We must teach music in schools; a schoolmaster ought to have skill in music, or I would not regard him; neither should we ordain young men as preachers, unless they have been well exercised in music
  • For it is a horrible blasphemy to imagine that there is any work by which you should presume to pacify God, since you see that there is nothing which is able to pacify Him but this inestimable price, even the death and the blood of the Son of God, one drop of which is more precious than the whole world.
  • Man is man because he is free to operate within a framework of his destiny. He is free to deliberate, to make decisions, and to choose between alternatives. He is distinguished from animals by his freedom to do evil or to do good and to walk the high road of beauty or tread the low road of ugly degeneracy.
  • Faith is a living, daring confidence in God’s grace, so sure and certain that a man would stake his life on it one thousand times. This confidence in God’s grace and knowledge of it makes men glad and bold and happy in dealing with God and with all creatures; and this is the work of the Holy Ghost in faith.
  • What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and work flow.
  • In human affairs we accomplish everything through prayer. What has been properly arranged we keep in order, what has gone amiss we change and improve, what cannot be changed and improved we bear, overcoming all the trouble and sustaining all the good by prayer. Against force there is no help but prayer alone.
  • He who believes in God is not careful for the morrow, but labors joyfully and with a great heart. “For He giveth His beloved, as in sleep.” They must work and watch, yet never be careful or anxious, but commit all to Him, and live in serene tranquility; with a quiet heart, as one who sleeps safely and quietly.
  • People gave ear to an upstart astrologer who strove to show that the earth revolves, not the heavens or the firmament, the sun and the moon….This fool wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy; but sacred scripture tells us [Joshua 10:13]that Joshua commanded the sun to stand still, and not the earth.
  • Anyone who can be proved to be a seditious person is an outlaw before God and the emperor; and whoever is the first to put him to death does right and well. Therefore let everyone who can, smite, slay and stab, secretly or openly, remembering that nothing can be more poisonous, hurtful, or devilish than a rebel.
  • It is certainly true that reason is the most important and the highest rank among all things and, in comparison with other things of this life, the best and something divine. It is the inventor and mentor of all the arts, medicines, laws, and of whatever wisdom, power, virtue, and glory men possess in this life.
  • At night always carry in your heart something from Holy Scriptures to bed with you, meditate upon it like a ruminant animal, and go softly to sleep; but this must not be too much, rather a little that may be well pondered and understood, that you may find a remnant of it in your mind when you rise in the morning.
  • What is our death but a night’s sleep? For as through sleep all weariness and faintness pass away and cease, and the powers of the spirit come back again, so that in the morning we arise fresh and strong and joyous; so at the Last Day we shall rise again as if we had only slept a night, and shall be fresh and strong.
  • Indeed, to spur your Baal to action, I will taunt and challenge you … to create as much as a single frog in the name and by the power of free choice, though the heathen and ungodly magicians in Egypt were able to create many…. I will not set you the heavy task of creating lice, which they could not produce either
  • It is the duty of a prudent minister of God to hold his ministry in honor and to see to it that it is respected by those who are in his charge. Moreoever, it is the duty of a faithful minister not to exceed his powers and not to abuse his office in pride, but, rather, to administer it for the benefit of his subjects.
  • The devil, the originator of sorrowful anxieties and restless troubles, flees before the sound of music almost as much as before the Word of God….Music is a gift and grace of God, not an invention of men. Thus it drives out the devil and makes people cheerful. Then one forgets all wrath, impurity, and other devices.
  • So tenaciously should we cling to the world revealed by the Gospel, that were I to see all the Angels of Heaven coming down to me to tell me something different, not only would I not be tempted to doubt a single syllable, but I would shut my eyes and stop my ears, for they would not deserve to be either seen or heard.
  • And I’ll tell you, I’ve seen the lightning flash. I’ve heard the thunder roll. I felt sin-breakers dashing, trying to conquer my soul. But I heard the voice of Jesus saying still to fight on. He promised never to leave me, never to leave me alone. No, never alone. He promised never to leave me, never to leave me alone.
  • Although the Christian is thus free from all works, he ought in this liberty to empty himself, take upon himself the form of a servant, be made in the likeness of men, be found in human form, and to serve, help and in every way deal with his neighbor as he sees that God through Christ has dealt and still deals with him.
  • As long as a man is persuaded that he can make even the smallest contribution to his salvation, he remains self-confident and does not utterly despair of himself, and so is not humbled before God. Such a man plans out for himself a position, an occasion, a work, which shall bring him final salvation, but which will not.
  • The believing man hath the Holy Ghost; and where the Holy Ghost dwelleth, He will not suffer a man to be idle, butstirreth him up to all exercises of piety and godliness, and of true religion, to the love of God, to the patient suffering of afflictions, to prayer, to thanksgiving, and the exercise of charity towards all men.
  • The first thing I ask is that people should not make use of my name, and should not call themselves Lutherans but Christians. What is Luther? The teaching is not mine. Nor was I crucified for anyone…How did I, poor stinking bag of maggots that I am, come to the point where people call the children of Christ by my evil name?
  • While we contemplate in all creatures, as in a mirror, those immense riches of His wisdom, justice, goodness and power, we should not meerly run them over cursorily, and, so to speak, with a fleeting glance, but we should ponder them at length, turn them over in our mind seriously and faithfully and recollect them repeatedly.
  • God is ready to give more quickly, and to give more than you ask; yea, he offers his treasures if we only take them. It is truly a great shame and a severe chastisement for us Christians that God should still upbraid us for our slothfulness in prayer, and that we fail to let such a rich and excellent promise incite us to pray.
  • There is on earth among all dangers, no more dangerous thing than a richly endowed and adroid reason, especially if she enters into spiritual matters which concern the soul and God. For it is more possible to teach an ass to read than to blind such a reason and lead it right; for reason must be deluded, blinded, and destroyed.
  • It is with all these qualities that we must stand before God and intervene on behalf of those who do not have them, as though clothed with someone else’s garmentBut even before men we must, with the same love, render them service against their detractors and those who are violent toward them; for this is what Christ did for us.
  • For that purpose Christ instituted holy baptism, thereby to clothe you with his righteousness. It is tantamount to his saying, My righteousness shall be your righteousness; my innocence, your innocence. Your sins indeed are great, but by baptism I bestow on you my righteousness; I strip death from you and clothe you with my life.
  • Every country must have its own devil. Welshland its own, and France its own. Our German devil will be a good wind-pipe, and must be called drinking, being so thirsty and hell-like that no guzzling of wine and beer, however large, will cool it off, and I fear that such will ever remain Germany’s plague, until the day of judgment.
  • I refuse to accept the idea that man is mere flotsam and jetsam in the river of life, unable to influence the unfolding events which surround him. I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality.
  • The Bible is the proper book for men. There the truth is distinguished from error far more clearly than anywhere else, and one finds something new in it every day. For twenty-eight years, since I became a doctor, I have now constantly read and preached the Bible; and yet I have not exhausted it but find something new in it every day.
  • Take a look at your own heart, and you will soon find out what has stuck to it and where your treasure is. It is easy to determine whether hearing the Word of God, living according to it, and achieving such a life gives you as much enjoyment and calls forth as much diligence from you as does accumulating and saving money and property.
  • It was with good reason that God commanded through Moses that the vineyard and harvest were not to be gleaned to the last grape or grain; but something to be left for the poor. For covetousness is never to be satisfied; the more it has, the more it wants. Such insatiable ones injure themselves, and transform God’s blessings into evil.
  • All our work in the field, in the garden, in the city, in the home, in struggle, in government-to what does it all amount before God except child’s play, by means of which God is pleased to give his gifts in the field, at home, and everywhere? These are the masks of our Lord God, behind which he wants to be hidden and to do all things.
  • Where faith is not continually kept in motion and exercised, it weakens and decreases, so that it must indeed vanish; and yet we do not see nor feel this weakness ourselves, except in times of need and temptation, when unbelief rages too strongly; and yet for that very reason faith must have temptations in which it may battle and grow.
  • Unless I am convicted by Scripture and plain reason-I do not accept the authority of popes and councils, for they have contradicted each other-my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I cannot do otherwise. God help me. Amen.
  • But the Jews are so hardened that they listen to nothing; though overcome by testimonies they yield not an inch. It is a pernicious race, oppressing all men by their usury and rapine. If they give a prince or magistrate a thousand florins, they extort twenty thousand from the subjects in payment. We must ever keep on guard against them.
  • If then, Moses so distinctly announces that there is in us not only a faculty, but also a facility for keeping all commandments, why are we sweating so much? … What need is there now of Christ or of Spirit? We have found a passage that asserts freedom of choice, but also distinctly teaches that the keeping of the commandments is easy.
  • This is the good and happy news, that Christ has paid for our sin, and through His suffering has redeemed us from eternal death. It is His kingdom and His ministry, to preach the Gospel to the poor; that is His purpose. For to the great and holy He cannot come. They do not wish to be counted sinners, and therefore do not need His Gospel.
  • May a merciful God preserve me from a Christian Church in which everyone is a saint! I want to be and remain in the church and little flock of the fainthearted, the feeble and the ailing, who feel and recognize the wretchedness of their sins, who sigh and cry to God incessantly for comfort and help, who believe in the forgiveness of sins.
  • When Eve was brought unto Adam, he became filled with the Holy Spirit, and gave her the most sanctified, the most glorious of appellations. He called, her Eva–that is to say, the Mother of All. He did not style her wife, but simply mother–mother of all living creatures. In this consists the glory and the most precious ornament of woman.
  • When we are inclined to boast of our position [as Christians] we should remember that we are but Gentiles, while the Jews are of the lineage of Christ. We are aliens and in-laws; they are blood relatives, cousins, and brothers of our Lord. Therefore, if one is to boast of flesh and blood the Jews are actually nearer to Christ than we are.
  • God has surely promised His grace to the humbled: that is, to those who mourn over and despair of themselves. But a man cannot be thoroughly humbled till he realizes that his salvation is utterly beyond his own powers, counsels, efforts, will and works, and depends absolutely on the will, counsel, pleasure and work of Another — God alone.
  • The Son of God did not want to be seen and found in heaven. Therefore he descended from heaven into this humility and came to us in our flesh, laid himself into the womb of his mother and into the manger and went on to the cross. This was the ladder that he placed on earth so that we might ascend to God on it. This is the way you must take.
  • The Jews are the most miserable people on earth. They are plagued everywhere, and scattered about all countries, having no certain resting place. They sit as on a wheelbarrow, without a country, people or government… but they are rightly served, for seeing they refused have Christ and his gospel, instead of freedom they must have servitude.
  • If the devil were wise enough and would stand by in silence and let the gospel be preached, he would suffer less harm. For when there is no battle for the gospel it rusts and it finds no cause and no occasion to show its vigor and power. Therefore, nothing better can befall the gospel than that the world should fight it with force and cunning.
  • I am not permitted to let my love be so merciful as to tolerate and endure false doctrine. When faith and doctrine are concerned and endangered, neither love nor patience are in order….when these are concerned, neither toleration nor mercy are in order, but only anger, dispute, and destruction – to be sure, only with the Word of God as our weapon.
  • The Kingdom is to be in the midst of your enemies. And he who will not suffer this does not want to be of the Kingdom of Christ; he wants to be among friends, to sit among roses and lilies, not with the bad people but the devout people. O you blasphemers and betrayers of Christ! If Christ had done what you are doing, who would ever have been spared?
  • It is not necessary for a preacher to express all his thoughts in one sermon. A preacher should have three principles: first, to make a good beginning, and not spend time with many words before coming to the point; secondly, to say that which belongs to the subject in chief, and avoid strange and foreign thoughts; thirdly, to stop at the proper time.
  • He who knoweth and understandeth Christ’s life, knoweth and understandeth Christ Himself; and in like manner, he who understandeth not His life, doth not understand Christ Himself. And he who believeth on Christ, believeth that His life is the best and noblest life that can be, and if a man believe not this, neither doth he believe on Christ Himself.
  • Riches are the pettiest and least worthy gifts which God can give a man. What are they to God’s Word, to bodily gifts, such as beauty and health; or to the gifts of the mind, such as understanding, skill, wisdom! Yet men toil for them day and night, and take no rest. Therefore God commonly gives riches to foolish people to whom he gives nothing else.
  • A fiery shield is God’s Word; of more substance and purer than gold, which, tried in the fire, loses nought of its substance, but resists and overcomes all the fury of the fiery heat; even so, he that believes God’s Word overcomes all, and remains secure everlastingly, against all misfortunes; for this shield fears nothing, neither hell nor the devil.
  • The confidence and faith of the heart alone make both God and an idol. If your faith and trust be right, then is your god also true; and, on the other hand, if your trust be false and wrong, then you have not the true God; for these two belong together faith and God. That now, I say, upon which you set your heart and put your trust is properly your god.
  • I am much afraid that the schools will prove the very gates of hell, unless they diligently labour in explaining the Holy Scriptures, and engraving them in the hearts of youth. I advise no one to place his child where the scriptures do not reign paramount. Every institution in which means are not unceasingly occupied with the Word of God must be corrupt.
  • Night and day I pondered until I saw the connection between the justice of God and the statement that ‘the just shall live by his faith.’ Then I grasped that the justice of God is that righteousness by which through grace and sheer mercy God justifies us through faith. Thereupon I felt myself to be reborn and to have gone through open doors into paradise.
  • This life therefore is not righteousness, but growth in righteousness, not health, but healing, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not yet what we shall be, but we are growing toward it, the process is not yet finished, but it is going on, this is not the end, but it is the road. All does not yet gleam in glory, but all is being purified.
  • But know that to serve God is nothing else than to serve your neighbor and do good to him in love, be it a child, wife, servant, enemy, friend….If you do not find yourself among the needy and the poor, where the Gospel shows us Christ, then you may know that your faith is not right, and that you have not yet tasted of Christ’s benevolence and work for you.
  • I did not learn my theology all at once, but had to search constantly deeper and deeper for it. My temptations did that for me, for no one can understand Holy Scripture without practice and temptations…I t is not by reading, writing, or speculation that one becomes a theologian. Nay, rather, it is living, dying, and being damned that makes one a theologian.
  • The world doesn’t want to be punished. It wants to remain in darkness. It doesn’t want to be told that what it believes is false. If you also don’t want to be corrected, then you might as well leave the church and spend your time at the bar and brothel. But if you want to be saved-and remember that there’s another life after this one-you must accept correction.
  • Christ is the Master; the Scriptures are only the servant. The true way to test all the Books is to see whether they work the will of Christ or not. No Book which does not preach Christ can be apostolic, though Peter or Paul were its author. And no Book which does preach Christ can fail to be apostolic, although Judas, Ananias, Pilate, or Herod were its author.
  • But Satan, the god of all dissension, stirreth up daily new sects, and last of all (which of all other I should never have foreseen or once suspected) he hath raised up a sect of such as teach that the Ten Commandments ought to be taken out of the church, and that men should not be terrified with the law, but gently exerted by the preaching of the grace of Christ.
  • We are not to look upon our sins as insignificant trifles. On the other hand, we are not to regard them as so terrible that we must despair. Learn to believe that Christ was given, not for picayune and imaginary transgressions, but for mountainous sins; not for one or two, but for all; not for sins that can be discarded, but for sins that are stubbornly ingrained.
  • [The papists] ought to have sympathy with us weak, poor Christians, and not condemn us or make fun of us because we are learning so childishly to toddle along the benches, nay, to creep in the mire, and cannot skip and dance, on such light feet and legs, over and outside of God’s commandments, as they do, the strong heroes and giants … God forbid that we should!
  • Peter erred in life and in doctrine. Paul might have dismissed Peter’s error as a matter of no consequence. But Paul saw that Peter’s error would lead to the damage of the whole Church unless it were corrected. Therefore he withstood Peter to his face. The Church, Peter, the apostles, angels from heaven, are not to be heard unless they teach the genuine Word of God.
  • This is that mystery which is rich in divine grace unto sinners: wherein by a wonderful exchange, our sins are no longer ours but Christ’s; and the righteousness of Christ is not Christ’s but ours. He has emptied himself of his righteousness that he might clothe us in it, and fill us with it: and he has taken our evils upon himself that he might deliver us from them.
  • The heavenly blessing is to be delivered from the law, sin and death; to be justified and quickened to life: to have peace with God; to have a faithful heart, a joyful conscience, a spiritual consolation; to have the knowledge of Jesus Christ; to have the gift of prophecy, and the revelation of the Scriptures; to have the gift of the Holy Ghost, and to rejoice in God.
  • Now if I believe in God’s Son and remember that He became man, all creatures will appear a hundred times more beautiful to me than before. Then I will properly appreciate the sun, the moon, the stars, trees, apples, as I reflect that he is Lord over all things. …God writes the Gospel, not in the Bible alone, but also on trees, and in the flowers and clouds and stars.
  • It is cheering to note that [Martin] Luther (1524) did not see why schools should not be fun as well: “Now since the young must leap and jump, or have something to do, because they have a natural desire for it which should not be restrained (for it is not well to check them in everything) why should we not provide for them such schools, and lay before them such studies?
  • Merit is a work for the sake of which Christ gives rewards. But no such work is to be found, for Christ gives by promise. Just as if a prince should say to me, “Come to me in my castle, and I will give you a hundred florins.” I do a work, certainly, in going to the castle, but the gift is not given me as the reward of my work in going, but because the prince promised it to me.
  • If I did not see that the Lord kept watch over the ship, I should long since have abandoned the helm. But I see Him! – through the storm, strengthening the tackling, handling the yards, spreading the sails – yes more, commanding the very winds! Should I not be a coward if I abandoned my post? Let Him govern, let Him carry us forward, let Him hasten or delay; we will fear nothing!
  • Feelings come and feelings go, And feelings are deceiving; My warrant is the Word of God– Naught else is worth believing. Though all my heart should feel condemned For want of some sweet token, There is One greater than my heart Whose Word cannot be broken. I’ll trust in God’s unchanging Word Till soul and body sever, For, though all things shall pass away, HIS WORD SHALL STAND FOREVER!
  • The Deceiver can magnify a little sin for the purpose of causing one to worry, torture, and kill oneself with it. This is why a Christian should learn not to let anyone easily create an evil conscience in him. Rather let him say, “This error and this failing pass away with my other imperfections and sins, which I must include in the article of faith: I believe in the forgiveness of sins.
  • I [i.e., God] have given you baptism as a gift for the forgiveness of sins, and preach to you unceasingly by word of mouth concerning this treasure, sealing it with the Sacrament of my body and blood, so that you need never doubt. True, it seems little and insignificant that by the washing of water, the Word, and the Sacrament this should all be effected. But don’t let your eyes deceive you.
  • They [rulers] must act like a good physician who, when gangrene has set in proceeds without mercy to cut, saw, and burn flesh, veins, bone, and marrow. Such a procedure must also be followed in this instance. Burn down their synagogues, forbid all that I enumerated earlier, force them to work, and deal harshly with them, as Moses did… If this does not help we must drive them out like mad dogs.
  • It is a good thing to let prayer be the first business in the morning and the last in the evening. Guard yourself against such false and deceitful thoughts that keep whispering, “Wait a while. In an hour or so I will pray. I must first finish this or that.” Thinking such thoughts we get away from prayer into other things that will hold us and involve us till the prayer of the day comes to naught.
  • A theologian should be thoroughly in possession of the basis and source of faith–that is to say, the Holy Scriptures. Armed with this knowledge it was that I confounded and silenced all my adversaries; for they seek not to fathom and understand the Scriptures; they run them over negligently and drowsily; they speak, they write, they teach, according to the suggestion of their heedless imaginations.
  • God indeed tempteth no man; but yet we ask, in this petition, that he would keep and preserve us, lest the devil, the world, and our own flesh delude and draw us away from the true faith, and throw us into superstition, distrust, despair, and other grievous sins and wickedness; and that, if we should be tempted therewith even to the highest degree, we still may conquer, and at last triumph over them.
  • It is the part of a Christian to take care of his own body for the very purpose that, by its soundness and wellbeing, he may be enabled to labour, and to acquire and preserve property, for the aid of those who are in want, that thus the stronger member may serve the weaker member, and we may be children of God, and busy for one another, bearing one another’s burdens, and so fulfiling the law of Christ.
  • When my heart is cold and I cannot pray as I should I scourge myself with the thought of the impiety and ingratitude of my enemies, the Pope and his accomplices and vermin, and Zwingli, so that my heart swells with the righteous indignation and hatred and I can say with warmth and vehemence: ‘Holy be Thy Name, Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done!’ And the hotter I grow the more ardent do my prayers become.
  • God does not save those who are only imaginary sinners. Be a sinner, and let your sins be strong (sin boldly), but let your trust in Christ be stronger, and rejoice in Christ who is the victor over sin, death, and the world. We will commit sins while we are here, for this life is not a place where justice resides. We, however, … are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth where justice will reign.
  • We can mention only one point (which experience confirms), namely, that next to the Word of God, music deserves the highest praise. No greater commendation than this can be found, at least not by us. After all, the gift of language combined with the gift of song was only given to man to let him know that he should praise God with both word and music, namely, by proclaiming [the Word of God] through music.
  • The proverb has it that Hunger is the best cook. The Law makes afflicted consciences hungry for Christ. Christ tastes good to them. Hungry hearts appreciate Christ. Thirsty souls are what Christ wants. He invites them: Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Christ’s benefits are so precious that He will dispense them only to those who need them and really desire them.
  • The Devil can so completely assume the human form, when he wants to deceive us, that we may well lie with what seems to be a woman, of real flesh and blood, and yet all the while ’tis only the Devil in the shape of a woman. ‘Tis the same with women, who may think that a man is in bed with them, yet ’tis only the Devil; and…the result of this connection is oftentimes an imp of darkness, half mortal, half devil.
  • If I profess with loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except that little point which the world and the Devil are at that moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved, and to be steady on all the battlefield besides, is mere flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point.
  • For God is not gracious and merciful to sinners to the end that they might not keep his Law, nor that they should remain as they were before they received grace and mercy; but he condones and forgives both sin and death for the sake of Christ, who has fulfilled the whole Law in order thereby to make the heart sweet and through the Holy Spirit to kindle and move the heart to begin to love from day to day more and more.
  • This letter [to the Romans] is truly the most important piece in the New Testament. It is purest Gospel. It is well worth a Christian’s while not only to memorize it word for word but also to occupy himself with it daily, as though it were the daily bread of the soul. It is impossible to read or to meditate on this letter too much or too well. The more one deals with it, the more precious it becomes, and the better it tastes.
  • Is it not a thing most abominable, that God who feeds so many mouths, should be held in such low esteem by me, that I will not trust him to feed me? Yea, that a guilder, thirty-eight cents, should be valued more highly than God, who pours out his treasures everywhere in rich profusion. For the world is full of God and his works. He is everywhere present with his gifts, and yet we will not trust in him, nor accept his visitation.
  • In a word, the Holy Scripture is the highest and best of books, abounding in comfort under all afflictions and trials. It teaches us to see, to feel, to grasp, and to comprehend faith, hope, and charity, far otherwise than mere human reason can; and while evil oppresses us, it teaches how these virtues throw light upon the darkness, and how, after this poor, miserable existence of ours on earth, there is another and an eternal life.
  • Therefore, is thy brother a sinner? Then cover his sin and pray for him. Dost thou publish his sins, then truly thou art not a child of your merciful Father; for otherwise thou wouldst be also as he, merciful. It is certainly true that we cannot show as great mercy to our neighbor, as God has to us; but it is the true work of the devil that we do the very opposite of mercy, which is a sure sign that there is not a grain of mercy in us.
  • Accordingly if the devil should say, ‘Do not drink,’ you should reply to him, ‘On this very account, because you forbid it, I shall drink, and what is more, I shall drink a generous amount. Thus one must always do the opposite of that which Satan prohibits. What do you think is my reason for drinking wine undiluted, talking freely, and eating more often, if it is not to torment and vex the devil who made up his mind to torment and vex me.
  • I am persuaded that without knowledge of literature pure theology cannot at all endure. . . . When letters have declined and lain prostrate, theology, too, has wretchedly fallen and lain prostrate. . . . It is my desire that there shall be as many poets and rhetoricians as possible, because I see that by these studies as by no other means, people are wonderfully fitted for the grasping of sacred truth and for handling it skillfully and happily.
  • Whenever the true message of the cross is abolished, the anger of hypocrites and heretics ceases.. and all things are in peace. This is a sure token that the devil is guarding the entry to the house, and that the PURE doctrine of God’s Word has been taken away. The Church then, is in the BEST state when Satan assaileth it on every sideboth with subtle sleights, and outright violence. And likewise, it is in the WORST state when it is most at peace!
  • But what will happen even if we do burn down the Jews synagogues and forbid them publicly to praise God, to pray, to teach, to utter God’s name? They will still keep doing it in secret. If we know that they are doing this in secret, it is the same as if they were doing it publicly. for our knowledge of their secret doings and our toleration of them implies that they are not secret after all and thus our conscience is encumbered with it before God.
  • On coming to the house, they (the Magi), saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. (Matthew 2:11) [This] adoration, too, was not the same as the worship of God. In my opinion they did not yet recognize him as God, but they acted in keeping with the custom mentioned in Scripture, according to which Kings and important people were worshiped; this did not mean more than falling down before them at their feet and honoring them.
  • Let all your preaching be in the most simple and plainest manner; look not to the prince, but to the plain, simple, gross, unlearned people, of which cloth the prince also himself is made. If I, in my preaching, should have regard to Philip Melancthon and other learned doctors, then should I do but little good. I preach in the simplest manner to the unskillful, and that giveth content to all. Hebrew, Greek and Latin I spare until we learned ones come together.
  • Our preaching does not stop with the law. That would lead to wounding without binding up, striking down and not healing, killing and not making alive, driving down to hell and not bringing back up, humbling and not exalting. Therefore, we must also preach grace and the promise of forgiveness – this is the means by which faith is awakened and properly taught. Without this word of grace, the law, contrition, penitence, and everything else are done and taught in vain.
  • Then they began to say: ‘Yes, but how can we know what is God’s Word, and what is right or wrong? We must learn this from the Pope and the councils.’ Very well then, let them conclude and say what they please, yet I will reply, you cannot put your confidence in that nor thus satisfy your conscience, for you must determine this matter yourself, for your very life depends upon it. Therefore God must speak to your heart: This is God’s Word; otherwise you are undecided.
  • Faith is a living, bold trust in God’s grace, so certain of God’s favour 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.
  • We come to the New Testament, where again a host of imperative verbs is mustered in support of that miserable bondage of free-choice, and the aid of carnal Reason with her inferences and similes is called in, just as in a picture or a dream you might see the King of the flies with his lances of straw and shields of hay arrayed against a real and regular army of seasoned human troops. That is how the human dreams of Diatribe go to war with the battalions of divine words.
  • Our most merciful Father, seeing us to be oppressed and overwhelmed with the curse of the law . . . sent his only Son into the world and laid upon him all the sins of all men, saying, ‘You be Peter that denier, Paul that persecutor, blasphemer and cruel oppressor, David that adulterer, that sinner who ate the apple in Paradise, that thief who hung upon the cross, and briefly, you be the person who has committed the sins of all men. See therefore that you pay and satisfy for them.’
  • Whenever the devil harasses you, seek the company of men or drink more, or joke and talk nonsense, or do some other merry thing. Sometimes we must drink more, sport, recreate ourselves, and even sin a little to spite the devil, so that we leave him no place for troubling our consciences with trifles. We are conquered if we try too conscientiously not to sin at all. So when the devil says to you: do not drink, answer him: I will drink, and right freely, just because you tell me not to.
  • At the center of the Christian faith is the affirmation that there is a God in the universe who is the ground and essence of all reality. A Being of infinite love and boundless power, God is the creator, sustainer, and conserver of values….In contrast to the ethical relativism of [totalitarianism], Christianity sets forth a system of absolute moral values and affirms that God has placed within the very structure of this universe certain moral principles that are fixed and immutable.
  • In Romans 7, St. Paul says, “The law is spiritual.” What does that mean? If the law were physical, then it could be satisfied by works, but since it is spiritual, no one can satisfy it unless everything he does springs from the depths of the heart. But no one can give such a heart except the Spirit of God, who makes the person be like the law, so that he actually conceives a heartfelt longing for the law and henceforward does everything, not through fear or coercion, but from a free heart.
  • Yes, would to God that I could persuade the rich and the mighty that they would permit the whole Bible to be painted on houses, on the inside and the outside, so that all can see it. That would be a Christian work… If it is not a sin but good to have the image of Christ in my heart, why should it be a sin to have it in my eyes? This is especially true since the heart is more important than the eyes, and should be less stained by sin because it is the true abode and dwelling place of God.
  • There can be no be no better instruction… than that every man who is to deal with his neighbor to follow these commandments. ‘Whatsoever ye would that others should do unto you, do ye also unto them,’ and ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself.’ If these were always followed, then everything would instruct and arrange itself; then no law books nor courts nor judicial actions would be required. All things would quietly and simply be set to rights, for everyone’s heart and conscience would guide them.
  • The devil is not only a liar, but also a murderer, he constantly seeks our life, and wreaks his anger whenever he can afflict our bodies with misfortune and harm. Hence it comes that he often breaks men’s necks or drives them to insanity, drowns some, and incites many to commit suicide, and to many other terrible calamities. Therefore there is nothing for us to do upon earth but to pray against this arch enemy without ceasing. For unless God preserved us, we would not be safe from him even for an hour.
  • [Christ’s] mission and work it is to help against sin and death, to justify and bring life. He has placed his help in baptism and the Sacrament [i.e., communion/Eucharist/Lord’s supper], and incorporated it in the Word and preaching. To our eyes Baptism [capitalized in original] appears to be nothing more than ordinary water, and the Sacrament of Christ’s body and blood simple bread and wine, like other bread and wine, and the sermon, hot air from a man’s mouth. But we must not trust what our eyes see.
  • Whilst a man is persuaded that he has it in his power to contribute anything, be it ever so little, to his salvation, he remains in carnal self-confidence; he is not a self-despairer, and therefore is not duly humbled before God, he believes he may lend a helping hand in his salvation, but on the contrary, whoever is truly convinced that the whole work depends singly on the will of God, such a person renounces his own will and strength; he waits and prays for the operation of God, nor waits and prays in vain
  • O, this faith is a living, busy, active, powerful thing! It is impossible that it should not be ceaselessly doing that which is good. It does not even ask whether good works should be done; but before the question can be asked, it has done them, and it is constantly engaged in doing them. But he who does not do such works, is a man without faith. He gropes and casts about him to find faith and good works, not knowing what either of them is, and yet prattles and idly multiplies words about faith and good works.
  • Dear rulers … I maintain that the civil authorities are under obligation to compel the people to send their children to school. … If the government can compel such citizens as are fit for military service to bear spear and rifle, to mount ramparts, and perform other martial duties in time of war, how much more has it a right to compel the people to send their children to school, because in this case we are warring with the devil, whose object it is secretly to exhaust our cities and principalities of their strong men.
  • In short, I will preach it [the Word], teach it, write it, but I will constrain no man by force, for faith must come freely without compulsion. Take myself as an example. I opposed indulgences and all the papists, but never with force. I simply taught, preached, and wrote God’s Word; otherwise I did nothing. And while I slept, or drank Wittenberg beer with my friends Philip and Amsdorf, the Word so greatly weakened the papacy that no prince or emperor ever inflicted such losses upon it. I did nothing; the Word did everything.
  • I do not deny that medicine is a gift of God, nor do I refuse to acknowledge science in the skill of many physicians; but, take the best of them, how far are they from perfection? A sound regimen produces excellent effects. When I feel indisposed, by observing a strict diet and going to bed early, I generally manage to get round again, that is, if I can keep my mind tolerably at rest. I have no objection to the doctors acting upon certain theories, but, at the same time, they must not expect us to be the slaves of their fancies.
  • We cannot attain to the understanding of Scripture either by study or by the intellect. Your first duty is to begin by prayer. Entreat the Lord to grant you, of His great mercy, the true understanding of His Word. There is no other interpreter of the Word of God than the Author of this Word, as He Himself has said, “They shall be all taught of God” (John 6:45). Hope for nothing from your own labors, from your own understanding: trust solely in God, and in the influence of His Spirit. Believe this on the word of a man who has experience.
  • When I am assailed with heavy tribulations, I rush out among my pigs rather than remain alone by myself. The human heart is like a millstone in a mill: when you put wheat under it, it turns and grinds and bruises the wheat to flour; if you put no wheat, it still grinds on, but then ’tis itself it grinds and wears away. So the human heart, unless it be occupied with some employment, leaves space for the devil, who wriggles himself in and brings with him a whole host of evil thoughts, temptations, and tribulations, which grind out the heart.
  • Do not suppose that abuses are eliminated by destroying the object which is abused. Men can go wrong with wine and women. Shall we then prohibit and abolish women? The sun, the moon, and the stars have been worshiped. Shall we then pluck them out of the sky? …see how much he [God] has been able to accomplish through me, though I did no more than pray and preach. The Word did it all. Had I wished I might have started a conflagration at Worms. But while I sat still and drank beer with Philip and Amsdorf, God dealt the papacy a mighty blow.
  • It hath been said, that there is of nothing so much in hell as of self-will. The which is true, for there is nothing else there than self-will, and if there were no self-will, there would be no Devil and no hell. When it is said that Lucifer fell from Heaven, and turned away from God and the like, it meaneth nothing else than that he would have his own will, and would not be at one with the Eternal Will. So was it likewise with Adam in Paradise. And when we say Self-will, we mean, to will otherwise than as the One and Eternal Will of God willeth.
  • Does it follow from: ‘turn ye’ that therefore you can turn? Does it follow from “‘Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart’ (Deut 6.5) that therefore you can love with all your heart? What do arguments of this kind prove, but the ‘free-will’ does not need the grace of God, but can do all things by its own power….But it does not follow from this that man is converted by his own power, nor do the words say so; they simply say: “if thou wilt turn,telling man what he should do. When he knows it, and sees that he cannot do it, he will ask whence he may find ability to do it…” 164
  • The fatuous idea that a person can be holy by himself denies God the pleasure of saving sinners. God must therefore first take the sledge-hammer of the Law in His fists and smash the beast of self-righteousness and its brood of self-confidence, self wisdom, and self-help. When the conscience has been thoroughly frightened by the Law it welcomes the Gospel of grace with its message of a Savior Who came-not to break the bruised reed nor to quench the smoking flax-but to preach glad tidings to the poor, to heal the broken-hearted, and to grant forgiveness of sins to all the captives.
  • Whoever would like to cherish such adders and puny devils – who are the worst enemies of Christ and us all – to befriend them and to do them honour simply in order to be cheated, plundered, robbed, disgraced, and forced to howl and curse and suffer every kind of evil, to him I would commend the Jews. And if this is not enough, let him tell the Jews to use his mouth as a privy, or else crawl into the Jew’s hind parts, and there worship the holy thing, so as afterwards to be able to boast of having been merciful, and of having helped the Devil and his progeny to blaspheme our dear Lord.