Luther Quote of the Day

But note that even though the history of this nation (Israel), if viewed according to appearances, seems similar to the histories of the Gentiles—for now they gain victories, now they are defeated; now they have abundance, now they are in want, and whatever wonders are celebrated—nevertheless God so hides Himself that everything appears to be carried out by human prudence and chance. So it doubtless seemed to all those godless Gentiles. Hence they resisted, and they treated them as though there were no God in Israel. Therefore the history of this nation is to be separated from the history of all the Gentiles as far as heaven is from the earth. In the histories of the Gentiles one can see either the greatness or the insignificance of works. But in this account this one thing is to be viewed with admiration and reverence, namely, the Word of God; by its guidance and nod all is carried out and done. In fact, these are truly called sacred histories, not because those things were done by holy men but because they were accomplished according to the holy Word of God, which hallows everything, and by the holy name of God and in His stead. Therefore even though the deeds of all the Gentiles are themselves sheer wonders and acts of God, yet they do not have the testimony of the Word and the good pleasure of God. Hence their affairs and history are only testimonies of His wrath, very terrible signs of the fearful judgment of God. Therefore when the history of the whole world is taken together, it is incomparably less significant than even one most insignificant story of this nation. This is why the proud and carnal are deceived by the simplicity of things in the Scriptures, for they take no notice of the Word of God and value only the things.

Luther’s works, vol. 9: Lectures on Deuteronomy 1525

p 33


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