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john r


the late writings of luther are credited for playing a defing role in german anti semetism. in spite of knowing the numerous inquisitions against them, the vatican ghetto containment, and genecidal slaughter by the crusades he wrote "in the treatment of the jews there is nothing that is too severe". hitler used his writings to validate his instituted genecide against them.

Robert

If anything Luther said or wrote conflicts with the Bible, the Bible
trumps it. Unlike the ELCA, where mankind's latest fads, philosophies and perversions trump the Bible and become official church teaching.

cynthia curran

Well, Hitler and company were influence more by sort of neo-paganism. The third reich talk about the old gods of the german tribes such as Woden. Luther in his old age was wrong on the jewish situation but didn't want a mass destruction of Jews. More people were killed in Eastern Europe during the communists period than other Hitler. Granted, Hitler invasion killed a lot of Eastern Europeans but so did the communists.

Steve Newell

John,

Thomas Jefferson owned slaves so should we invalidate the Declaration of Independence since he was a hypocrite on writing that "all men are created equal"?

On Luther's writing about the Jews, Confessional Lutherans reject those writing of Luther which are against Holy Scripture but we afirm those writing which are consistant with Holy Scripture. Luther as a sinful man just like the rest of us, both Saint and Sinner. The Lutheran Church is not defined by Luther's work but by the Lutheran Confessions of which many of Luther's works are part of.

Please look at the role of the Confessional Lutherans during the time of Hitler and the role of the liberal Union Church during the same time. You will see that the liberal Union Church gave into Hitler while the Confessional Church resisted Hitler's "Nazificaiton" of the Union Church.

Rick Frueh

Who cares what Luther thought; what sayith the Scriptures. If people give Luther's opinion weight in one area, they could give his hatred of Jews weight as well. Naming a denomination after a man is idolatry. Would anyone object to MacArthurites, or Bellites, or Sproulites as a new denomination?

Let's hope so.

Martin Chemnitz

And your point is, John R? If you are right in your feelings over against Luther, John R, then the question is why would ELCA even want to keep "Luther" in its name if their founder was an antisemitic and homophobe? The real point here, johnny boy, is that decision shows how far ELCA ha moved into protestant mainline irrelevance and is belied by it name in that it is not evangelical, lutheran, church, nor american (the vote was a tyranny of the minority.)

Steve

John R,
Like most people who wrongly blame Luther for the holocaust you appear to have no understanding of the context in which Luther wrote about the Jews. He wrote some regretteable things to be certain, but if you knew anything about Luther you would know "On the Jews and their lies" was directed primarily at a specific group of Jews, and not Jews in general. Do a little research. Maybe start with "The Fabricated Luther" by Uwe Sumien Nieto. Stop beleieving whatever rhetoric you hear from whatever anti-Luther propaganda outlet you are getting your misinformation from.

Aaron

John,

First, your accusations of Luther's writings playing a defining role in the "genecidal [sic] slaughter by the crusades" comes up only by those who can't count, Luther lived 300+ years after the crusades ended. It is impossible for him to have played a defining role in anything associated with the crusades.

Second, Luther wrote about his frustration with the Jews in regard to them rejecting the gospel. Cite your sources and establish where you think his writings recommend genocide. As for Hitler, see the first comment and note how many years separate Luther's death from Hitlers (again cite your reference) use of the Reformers text(s).

Third, whether you agree or not with the application of the theological argument in relation to the sexual statement; the Crusades, genocide and Hitler have nothing to do with the theological claim made in the post. Read and cite, don't incite.

Walt Y

It's a weak rhetorical tactic to accuse (without citation) the messenger of an offense rather than arguing the merits or veracity of the message. Please cite some examples from Hitlers writings or speeches in which he used statements by Luther to justify persecution of the Jews. It would seem odd to me that a man raised a Roman Catholic would quote an excommunicated theologian who started the reformation against the corruption of the medieval Roman Catholic church.

Rick Frueh

No one can prove a direct link to Luther from Hitler, however just a cursory reading of Luther's "The Jews and Their Lies" will provide a mountain of evidence of his pathological hatred for the Jews. Luther did indeed call for them to be driven out of Germany, and insisted it was sin to show them any kindness. I am German, my brother lives in Munich, and I was raised Lutheran.

No one can deny Luther was rabidly anti-semetic, regardless of any direct link to Hitler. Hitler made strikingly similar statements to Luther, and perhaps he did not openly mention him can be attributed to his Roman Catholic ties.

Rick Frueh

Luther - "First, that their synagogues be burned down, and that all who are able toss in sulphur and pitch; it would be good if someone could also throw in some hellfire. That would demonstrate to God our serious resolve and be evidence to all the world that it was in ignorance that we tolerated such houses, in which the Jews have reviled God, our dear Creator and Father, and his Son most shamefully up till now but that we have now given them their due reward."

One minor example amidst a literal cacophony of unchristian and horrific verbalizations of utter hatred. I am not saying Luther was not used of God or was not a Christian, but let us not whitewash his incredible and vicious hatred for all Jews.

John C

Steve,

Since you still insist on holding to this duality believing both the seen (which Christ warned us against) and the unseen realms to be the truth, let me ask you this (alarming) question...is/was Christ BOTH saint and sinner? The answer of course is a resounding NO. We are IN Christ and thus, our old man and nature having been nailed to His cross is no more (you died and now your life is hidden w/Christ in God, Col 3.3) it is finished.

We are everything in Jesus now that we were in Adam then.

Since a man will always behave like the person he thinks he is, holding to this erroneous position will keep one on the perpetual wheel of failure, repentance, repeat ad nauseum. Given this mindset (both saint & sinner) how could one EVER "go on to perfection", attain to a sinless state? Where is the victory in that, is the precious blood of Christ not enough?

Scripture is progressive, revelatory as we go from "glory to glory", from one level to another in Christ. We are to "grow up in all things unto Him" and that remains an impossibility as long as we "think" we have two natures, are living from the tree of the knowledge of (both) good & evil as opposed to singleness of heart.

The high truth of the gospel is so beautiful, so glorious that we can hardly believe it and so most of us dont...but if we did. Peter says that we have been (already, past tense) given ALL THINGS that pertain to life and godliness. This (one nature) truth has set me so free from my former life, the truth that is known and lived, that is the truth that sets us free. He didnt set us halfway free or split-way free, but completely free. The Lord is One (not two) and we are IN Him.

We must know the things that have been "freely given us". This includes what we are not anyomore, which is a sinner. All the best.

Conservative Mark

After reading some of the above, I feel I must add:

Luther held defined marriage as one man and one woman.

Luther never wanted his name on the church and it isn't in Europe.

Homophobia is a made up word by the homosexual community adopted by Webster in 1980 and should not be used. In this country, it is never proper for a minority to tag a majority with a made up name. Black people used to call white people honky and it never took off even though they had better justification than homosexuals calling heterosexuals homophobes.

It is as improper to call homoseuxals gays as it is to call them fags. The term "gay" implies they are happy and well adjusted when studies prove they are not. The term "fag" was used 400 years ago when they were burned at the stake.

Peter H

You want proof Luther was used by the Nazis to exterminate the Jews...here you go!
One leading Protestant churchman, Bishop Martin Sasse published a compendium of Martin Luther's antisemitic vitriol shortly after Kristallnacht's orgy of anti-Jewish violence. In the foreword to the volume, he applauded the burning of the synagogues and the coincidence of the day: 'On November 10, 1938, on Luther's birthday, the synagogues are burning in Germany.' The German people, he urged, ought to heed these words 'of the greatest antisemite of his time, the warner of his people against the Jews.' or if you need more:
Walter Buch, the head of the Nazi Party court, admitted Luther's influence on Nazi Germany:


When Luther turned his attention to the Jews, after he completed his translation of the Bible, he left behind "on the Jews and their Lies" for posterity.
Many people confess their amazement that Hitler preaches ideas which they have always held.... From the Middle Ages we can look to the same example in Martin Luther. What stirred in the soul and spirit of the German people of that time, finally found expression in his person, in his words and deeds.
-"Geist und Kampf" (speech), Bundesarchiv Berlin-Zehlendor

I am a huge fan of Luther and believe he did get the message of the christian faith right, GRACE; so right that his followers would rarely comprehend the extent to which the Gospel would reach, and by evidence of his writings against certain people, so did he. The church, even the Missouri Synod, has managed to get around one of the most direct commandments of Christ, divorce. To not set other things to the same standard of grace, would be hypocritical at best.

Conservative Mark

It is wrong to credit Luther for what happened in the Holocaust. I once had a survivor explain to me that during the Great Depression the Jewish community held nearly 80% of the wealth of Germany with only 20% of the population. They hired and looked out for their own. This lady, who happened to be my German teacher, also explained a picture in Britanica showing a German man going to try to buy a loaf of bread with a wheelbarrow of German Marks. She told me the Jews owned much of the banks, Jewelery stores and food sources. She told us this to explain how a nation of people could turn a blind eye on mass extermination to a bunch of 12 year olds. There is always two sides to every story. If I had to watch my wife and kids starve to death, I would be ready to blame and kill somebody, too.

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