Sunday, January 13, 2013

Luther: faith not an illusion

Sunday, January 13, 2013
    Feast of Hilary, Bishop of Poitiers, Teacher, 367
    Commemoration of Kentigern (Mungo), Missionary Bishop in Strathclyde & Cumbria, 603
    And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.
    —Romans 8:11 (NIV)
    Faith is not that human illusion and dream that some people think it is. When they hear and talk a lot about faith and yet see that no moral improvement and no good works result from it, they fall into error and say, “Faith is not enough. You must do works if you want to be virtuous and get to heaven.” The result is that, when they hear the Gospel, they stumble and make for themselves with their own powers a concept in their hearts which says, “I believe.” This concept they hold to be true faith. But since it is a human fabrication and thought and not an experience of the heart, it accomplishes nothing, and there follows no improvement.
    ... Martin Luther (1483-1546), “Preface to the Letter of St. Paul to the Romans”, par. 13 (see the book)
    See also Matt. 7:21-23; Rom. 7:18-23; 8:6-11; 1 Cor. 13:2; Gal. 3:14; Eph. 2:8-10; 1 Tim. 1:3-11; 1 John 5:3-5
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, Your Spirit alone gives true life.
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