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Martin Luther
(1475-1564) deutscher protestantischer Reformator

 

Martin Luther, 1533
Lucas Cranach der Ältere
(1472-1553) deutscher Maler


 

Luthers Lebensthema und Prüfungen – Göttliche Gnade

Der protestantische Reformator Martin Luther wurde am 3. Januar 1521 mit der päpstlichen Bannbulle Decet Romanum Pontificem von der Katholischen Kirche exkommuniziert. Seine reformatorischen Schriften wurden anschließend in großem Maß im ganzen Land bekannt und stellten ein Politikum dar an der Scheide zwischen kirchlicher und weltlicher Macht.

 


Lutherzelle, Augustinerkloster in Erfurt

Angeblich schloss Luther seine Verteidigungsrede vor dem Reichstag in Worms am 17. April 1521 mit den Worten:  

Hier stehe ich und kann nicht anders. Gott helfe mir! Amen.

 

Sich auf Gottes Hilfe, Gnade und Gerechtigkeit zu berufen, entsprach Luthers Gesinnung, statt sein physisches Überleben in den Vordergrund zu stellen. Nach einem Tag Bedenkzeit hatte er sich – so wie auch der gerichtlich angeklagte Sokrates – entschieden, auf sein Gewissen zu hören und nicht zu widerrufen. Seine Begründung lautete folgendermaßen:

[Da ...] mein Gewissen in den Worten Gottes gefangen ist, ich kann und will nichts widerrufen, weil es gefährlich und unmöglich ist, etwas gegen das Gewissen zu tun.

Das Wormser Edikt belegte ihn daraufhin mit der Reichsacht, wodurch sein Leben als Vogelfreier auf dem Spiel stand.

 

Luthers bewegendes Lebensthema war, Gerechtigkeit durch Gottes Gnade zu finden. Seine zentrale Frage lautete:

Wie kriege ich einen gnädigen Gott?

Nach zähem inneren Ringen gelangte er zu dieser Aussage von sola gratia in seiner Theologie:

Allein durch Gnade ohne jedes eigene Zutun wird der Mensch von Gott gerechtfertigt.

Die katholische Kirche lehrte hingegen, dass man Heil und Erlösung durch gutes Verhalten und gute Werke (die so genannte Werksgerechtigkeit) finde.
Dem setzte Luther die Aussage von sola fide entgegen:

Allein der Glaube, die Annahme des Wortes Gottes in Christus, was ein Gnadengeschenk ist, erlangt das Heil, nicht die menschenmögliche Leistung.

 

Referenz: de.Wikiquote-Eintrag Martin Luther
Referenz: Martin Luther: Bleibende Zitate aus der Zeit der Reformation

Zitate zum Thema Martin Luther

Zitate von Martin Luther

Persönliche Bekenntnisse

  • Ich kann und will nichts widerrufen, weil es gefährlich und unmöglich ist, etwas gegen das Gewissen zu tun. Gott helfe mir! Amen. Martin Luther (1483-1546) deutscher Professor der Theologie, protestantischer Reformator, Bibelübersetzer, Reichsgericht zu Worms, 17. April 1521

 

Frühester Beleg dieses Satzes: Rundbrief der hessischen Kirche, Oktober 1944; Referenz: Welt am Sonntag, 20. April 2003

 

Empfehlungen

  • Tritt frisch auf! Tu's Maul auf! Hör bald auf! Martin Luther (1483-1546) deutscher Professor der Theologie, protestantischer Reformator, Bibelübersetzer, Aphorismus

 

Einsichten

  • Unser Herrgott hat des öfteren seine schönsten und größten Gaben dem gemeinsten Tier gegeben. Nur die Menschen suchen sie dort nicht. Martin Luther (1483-1546) deutscher Professor der Theologie, protestantischer Reformator, Bibelübersetzer, Aphorismus
  • Je tiefer man die Schöpfung erkennt, um so größere Wunder entdeckt man in ihr. Martin Luther (1483-1546) deutscher Professor der Theologie, protestantischer Reformator, Bibelübersetzer, Quelle unbekannt

 

  • Der Wein ist stark, der König ist stärker, die Weiber sind noch stärker, aber die Wahrheit ist am allerstärksten. Martin Luther (1483-1546) deutscher Professor der Theologie, protestantischer Reformator, Dr. Johannes Aurifaber [Vimariensis] (1519-1575) deutscher Mathematiker lutherischer Theologe, Reformator, Tischreden, Frankfurt a.M., Erstausgabe, 1566, Suhrkamp Verlag, 12. September 2016

Zitate von anderen Quellen

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Ein kurfürstlicher Traum verhinderte Luthers Auslieferung nach und den Flammentod.

  • [Der sächsische] Kurfürst Friedrich der Weise habe in der Nacht vor Luthers Thesenanschlag [an der Schlosskirche zu Wittenberg] dreimal hintereinander geträumt, dass Gott ihm einen Mönch geschickt habe, der des Apostels Paulus natürlicher Sohn sei. Dieser Gottesbote bat um die Erlaubnis, etwas an die Wittenberger Schloßkirche zu schreiben. Als der Kurfürst zustimmte, zückte der Mönch eine lange Feder, die bis nach Rom reichte, einem Löwen (gemeint ist Papst Leo X.) durch den Kopf stach und mit ihrem Ende die Krone vom Kopf des Papstes stieß. Der Löwe brüllte laut, dass ganz Rom und alle Stände des Reiches zusammenliefen und vom Papst aufgefordert wurden, sich zu wehren. Daraufhin wollte der Kurfürst die Feder zerbrechen, was ihm aber nicht gelang. Gefragt, wieso die Feder so zäh sei, antwortete der Mönch, sie wäre von einer alten, hundertjährigen böhmischen Gans. Dissertation von Henrike Holsing, Luther – Gottesmann und Nationalheld. Sein Image in der deutschen Historienmalerei des 19. Jahrhunderts, Universität zu Köln, Dekanat der Philosophischen Fakultät, S. 59, 2004, zitiert in: Katalog zur Ausstellung in der Lutherhalle Wittenberg anläßlich des 450. Todestags von Martin Luther vom 21. Februar bis 10. November 1996, S. 128, Berlin 1996

Quotes by Martin Luther

Personal avowals

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Abbreviated version:

"Here I stand and cannot but. God help me! Amen."

  • I cannot and will not retract anything, since it is neither safe nor right to go against conscience. Here I stand, I can do no other, so help me God. Amen. Defence speech by Martin Luther (1483-1546) (1483-1546) German professor of theology, Protestant reformer, translator of the Bible, Reichstag, Worms, Germany, 17. April 1521

 

  • I never work better than when I am inspired by anger for 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer, aphorism

 

  1. First I shake the whole Apple tree, that the ripest might fall.
  2. Then I climb the tree and shake each limb,
  3. and then each branch and then each twig, and then I look under each leaf.
    Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • My heart, which is so full to overflowing, has often been solaced and refreshed by music when sick and weary. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Grant that I may not pray alone with the mouth; help me that I may pray from the depths of my heart. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
    • When schools flourish, all flourishes. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • I feel much freer now that I am certain the pope is the Antichrist. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • I am more afraid of my own heart than of the pope and all his cardinals. I have within me the great pope, Self. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • I more fear what is within me than what comes from without. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • If I am not allowed to laugh in heaven, I don't want to go there. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

The earliest evidence of the quote is found in a circular of the Hessian Church in October of 1944. Source: Welt am Sonntag, 20. April 2003

  • Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree. Falsely attributed to Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

Recommendations

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Be a sinner and sin strongly, but more strongly have faith and rejoice in Christ. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • You are not only responsible for what you say, but also for what you do not say. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

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Marriage

  • Let the wife make the husband glad to come home,
    and let him make her sorry to see him leave.
    Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • There is no more lovely, friendly, and charming relationship, communion, or company than a good marriage. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German professor of theology, Protestant reformer, translator of the Bible, Collection of sayings Table Talk [Tischreden], compiled by Johannes Mathesius, Eisleben, 1566

 

  • You should not believe your conscience and your feelings more than the word which the Lord who receives sinners preaches to you. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Whatever your heart clings to and confides in, that is really your God. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Faith is a living, daring confidence in God's grace, so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times. Pray, and let God worry. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Be thou comforted, little dog, Thou too in Resurrection shall have a little golden tail. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

Insights

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • People must have righteous principles [principals?] in the first, and then they will not fail to perform virtuous actions. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Every man must do two things alone; he must do his own believing and his own dying. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Our Lord has written the promise of resurrection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in springtime. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
  • 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? Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Blood alone moves the wheels of history. Possibly misattributed to Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer; Benito Mussolini ['Il Duce'] (1883-1945) Italian key figure in the creation of fascism, leader of the National Fascist Party, 40th prime minister of Italy (1922-1943), speech in Parma, 13. December 1914, cited in: Derek Swannson, Crash Gordon and the Mysteries of Kingsburg, S. 507, 2007

 

  • Everything that is done in the world is done by hope. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Faith is a living and unshakable confidence, a belief in the grace of God so assured that a man would die a thousand deaths for its sake.
    • Faith is a living, daring confidence in God's grace, so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
      • Faith is permitting ourselves to be seized by the things we do not see. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
    • Faith must trample under foot all reason, sense, and understanding. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
  • If he has 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • For where God built a church, there the Devil would also build a chapel. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

 

  • God writes the Gospel not in the Bible alone, but also on trees, and in the flowers and clouds and stars. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Justice is a temporary thing that must at last come to an end; but the conscience is eternal and will never die. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
    • Next to the Word of God, the noble art of music is the greatest treasure in the world. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

 

  • Peace if possible, truth at all costs. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
    • Peace is more important than all justice; and peace was not made for the sake of justice, but justice for the sake of peace. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • The fewer the words, the better the prayer. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
    • To gather with God's people in united adoration of the Father is as necessary to the Christian life as prayer. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
  • Prayer is a strong wall and fortress of the church; it is a goodly Christian weapon. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Reason is a whore, the greatest enemy that faith has. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • The Bible is the cradle wherein Christ is laid. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • The god of this world is riches, pleasure and pride. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer
    • The Lord commonly gives riches to foolish people, to whom he gives nothing else. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • The man who has the will to undergo all labor may win to any good. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • War is the greatest plague that can afflict humanity, it destroys religion, it destroys states, it destroys families. Any scourge is preferable to it. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer

 

  • Faith is a living, daring confidence in God's grace, so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times. Pray, and let God worry. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German professor of theology, Protestant reformer, translator of the Bible, J. Theodore Muller, translator, Luther's Preface to the Epistle to the Romans, 1552

 

  • 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. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer, The Table Talk of Martin Luther, 1566
    • Great thieves go Scott-free, as the Pope and his crew. Martin Luther (1483-1546) German Protestant reformer, The Table Talk of Martin Luther, 1566
      • The Church of Rome [...] has become the most lawless den of thieves, the most shameless of all brothels, the very kingdom of sin, death and hell; so that not even antichrist, if he were to come, could devise any addition to its wickedness. On the Freedom of a Christian, November 1520

Critical quotes by various other sources

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Luther unconsciously set the stage for the future of German nationalistic fanaticism.

  • Through his sermons and his magnificent translations of the Bible, Luther created the modern German language, aroused in the people not only a new Protestant vision of Christianity by a fervent German nationalism and taught them, at least in religion, the supremacy of the individual conscience. But tragically for them, Luther's siding with the princes in the peasant rising, which he had largely inspired, and his passion for political autocracy ensured a mindless and provincial political absolutism which reduced the vast majority of the German people to poverty, to a horrible torpor and a demeaning subservience. Even worse perhaps, it helped to perpetuate and indeed to sharpen the hopeless divisions not only between classes but also between the various dynastic and political groupings of the German people. It doomed for centuries the possibility of the unification of Germany. William L. Shirer (1904-1993) US American war correspondent, journalist, author, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, Simon & Schuster, 1960, Ballantine Books, reissue edition 1. December 1991

 

 

  • Luther's language was often coarse, explosive, inflammatory, vehement, intemperate, and even morally subversive, such as the famous "Pecca fortiter" (Sin bravely). He called the Pope's supporters "papal asses" and said the common people lived like senseless swine. When he had overindulged at social gatherings, he often used four-letter words referring to bodily functions. His rhetoric was intemperate when he suggested suffocating a teenaged boy with such a gargantuan appetite that all he did was eat and defecate.
    Women to him were brood mares, who were created with large hips just to stay at home and sit on them. His opinions, frankly stated, were frequently shockingly outrageous, even for his time. For instance, he suggested that witches be burned and that objectors not believing in infant baptism should be put to death!
    […]  He wondered whether Heaven might be boring with nothing to do – no work, no eating, no drinking, nothing that we feel makes life interesting.
    Luther did attack celibacy, saying that not every clergyman can refrain from sexual intercourse. He believed that if one is not "gifted with chastity," he must find gratification. Of himself he said that "to be a man" was more necessary than eating, drinking, or sleeping. One of his favorite quotes was "Who loves not wine, woman, and song remains a fool his whole life long." Article by Norma E. Cunningham, What They Never Told Us About Martin Luther, presented by North American magazine Freethought Today, January/February 1998

Englische Texte – English section on Martin Luther

Luther's moral attitudes

Hope ⇔ apocalyptic fears

"Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree."

 

Table manners

Luther purported burping and farting after a good meal to honor the cook. Knigge, a European expert on good mannerism, would not be amused.

 

Encounters with the devil

Luther had a peculiar relationship with the devil. When he once appeared in his study room he threw an inkpot across the room to smash "the father of the lie".

Luther on sexuality and marriage

Martin Luther, a philosopher and passionate theologian, was not a friend of celibacy, nor does protestantism promote it. Luther said:


Wartburg, near Eisenach, Thuringia, Germany
Luther's study (1890-1900)
"Who loves not women, wine and song remains a fool his whole life long."

 

Indeed, he married a runaway former Cistercian nun named Katharina von Bora. Together they had six children. Luther's concept of sexuality was:

"It's suitable to have sex with your spouse twice per week."
[In der Woche zwier, schadet weder ihm noch ihr.]

 

Luther's vision on marriage was:

"There is no more lovely, friendly, and charming relationship, communion, or company than a good marriage."
"Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave."

 

Rather pragmatic, he deemed sex as a healing means for men. He suggested to men:

If a wife denies sexual intercourse – twice a week on average – to her husband his immediate choice could fairly well be the maid working in the house.
Source (German): ► Artikel Ein Interview mit Martin Luther, präsentiert von Der Humanist, Heike Jackler, Oktober 2000

 

Note: At any rate, Luther was a child of his time and reflected the mindset of his contemporaries.
Husbands in the 21st century could get in trouble for a secondary choice of the maid which is
technically defined as 'dual relationships' and as outspoken sexism.

 

Links zum Thema Martin Luther

Literatur

  • Paul Althaus, Die Theologie Martin Luthers, Gütersloher Verlagshaus Gerd Mohn, Gütersloh 1962
  • Oswald Bayer, Martin Luthers Theologie. Eine Vergegenwärtigung, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 2003

Literature (engl.)

  • 65,000-word antisemitic treatise by Martin Luther, Martin H. Bertram, translator, On the Jews and Their Lies, Wittenberg, 1543, Fortress Press, 1955

Externe Weblinks



External web links (engl.)



Critical articles


Audio- und Videolinks

Reformation von Martin Luther

Audio and video links (engl.)

 

Interne Links

Hawkins

 

 

 

Anhand der Skala des Bewusstseins (Gradeinteilung von 1-1000), erarbeitet von Dr. David R. Hawkins, hat der Lehrer Martin Luther einen Bewusstseinswert von 580. Dies kategorisiert ihn innerhalb von Hawkins' System als bedeutsamen Mystiker und bedingungslos Liebenden im Bereich der nichtlinearen Schöpfungsebene.
Quelle: Truth vs. Falsehood. How to Tell the Difference, S. 376, 2005
Letzte Bearbeitung:
05.09.2017 um 22:01 Uhr

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