“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.” That is what Luther said a long time ago.
The world fights the Gospel at every turn. Even Christians fight the Gospel with self justification and reason. Every time I try and justify myself I fight the Gospel. Strangely enough we can fight the Gospel when we try and explain it rather than preach it. Some believe that we fight against the Gospel when we try and defend it.
Siebert W. Becker wrote an article in the Concordia Theological Monthly in 1958 about Luther’s view of “apologetics” or the defense of the faith. The WA’s are the citations from Luther’s Works.
“We are zealously to guard against all attempts to explain the way of God. If the Lord has not Himself revealed it to us in His Word, we must take off our hat and stand in awe of His majestic excellence. And if men murmur, let them murmur. God will not be changed to suit their ideas. If many are offended and leave, the elect, at least, will remain. If men ask us, for example, why God created Adam in such a way that He could sin, we can only reply that He is God and His will has no rules and regulations according to which it must act (WA 18, 712). The writings of Luther abound in warnings against this why, this effort to find a rational explanation for the ways of God, which are past understanding (WA 16, 143f.; 43, 76f.; 47, 540). He even invented a name for those who ask this question. He called them “Whyers” and “Whatforers” (WA 43, 77: Curistas et Quaristas). God’s acts or words do not require explanation or justification. They are right and good simply because they are the words and acts of God. To demand that God should conform to human patterns of thought and earthly standards of conduct is to shut God up in a glass where I can observe Him (WA 16, 141). Before such arrogance, Luther recoiled in horror.”Share this on: