THE SUFFERING AND DEATH OF OUR DEAR LORD JESUS CHRIST
23. We need to study the passion of Christ, in order that we might remember that it happened for our good and for our eternal benefit. I must have regard this bloody sweat, his agony, and his crucifixion, and say, That is my help, my strength, my life, my joy. All this happened for our sakes and for our benefit. We must believe this and thank him from the bottom of our hearts. Whoever does that and views the suffering of Christ in this way is a Christian.
24. He has shown us great kindness and we should never forget it, but always thank him and find comfort for ourselves, confessing, His pain is my comfort; his wounds, my healing; his punishment, my redemption; his death, my life. No one can preach it sufficiently; no one can be sufficiently amazed that so great a person came from heaven, stepped into our place, and suffered death for us. We have been visited graciously and redeemed with a great price. When in this life we experience harsh mistreatment and evil, we can usually trace it to our unthankful living. It serves H.G. and M.J.* and all the other papists right when God abandons them. For when people despise God’s wonderful and eternal comfort, love, and help, as they indulge their wantonness, they get what they deserve as they go headlong on their way. Therefore, we should hold firmly to our Saviour and sacred Head, Jesus Christ, who for our sins was crucified and died. To this end may the gracious God help us. Amen.
Luther’s House Postils
Preached at home in the Lutherhalle, Good Friday, 1533
*The reference is to Duke George of ducal Saxony and Margrave Joachim of Brandenburg, both opponents of the Reformation.