Luther Quote of the Day

Isaiah 4:6 “There will be a booth for shade by day from the heat, and for a refuge and a shelter from the storm and rain.”

The incarnation of Christ powerfully calls us away from speculating about the divinity. I learned from Staupitz that I had been carried away to the devil by my speculations, for human weakness could not bear these if it did not gain access to God somewhere. This they know by the mercy of God, etc.: The flesh of Christ, like ours, does not strike him down who beholds it. And the man in temptation either will not know God, who created heaven and earth and did other wonderful works, or his knowledge will not give him hope and deliverance from temptation. But Christ (as this text shows in a marvelous way) is useful to us for all things and in all things, and through this very Man we are to come to God. To Him Paul and other disciples of Christ come down; they do not climb up to an observation of the majesty, or Paul was not learned because he was not a sophist. When man looks at Christ, Satan is put to flight, and the conscience of a man in temptation is made happy and free from care. God clearly demands honest and pure righteousness of us, and since no one produces it, He permits no one to approach Him by his own strength. Christ has fulfilled this for us, therefore through Christ alone we have access to the Father. To be sure, it is true that one who has never felt his sin can contemplate God, or better, weave his phantasies about God; he can for a while reach out for the godhead he has invented for himself. But one who feels his sin and becomes fainthearted from fear of God will soon withdraw his foot from his speculations and turn to Christ, and he will be better off. He will have coolness in the shade, protection in the pavilion, banishment of Satan and of evil thoughts, also strength against all the gates of hell (Matt. 16:18), etc. The names applied to Christ in this text should, however, be carefully studied, so that we may know what has been given to us in Christ and that in Him there is victory and light, etc.

Luther’s Works Vol. 16
Lecture’s on Isaiah ch. 1-39
p. 55-56


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