Luther Quote of the Day

These words of Paul: “All have turned aside, the whole world is guilty, there is none righteous,” are mighty rolls of thunder and piercing lightning flashes, and in truth the very “hammer that breaks the rocks in pieces,” as Jeremiah calls it [Jer. 23:29], by which everything that exists is shattered, not only in one man or some men or some part of them, but in the whole world and all men without a single exception, so that at these words the whole world ought to tremble, fear, and take to flight. What stronger or graver terms could have been used than that the whole world is guilty, all the children of men are turned aside and worthless, no one fears God, no one is not wicked, no one understands, no one seeks for God? Nevertheless, such was and is the hardness and insensate obstinacy of our hearts that we have neither heard nor felt these thunderings and lightnings, but have set up and extolled free choice and its powers in spite of them all, so that we have truly fulfilled the saying in Malachi 1[:4]: “They build, but I will tear down.”

The Bondage of the Will
Luther’s Works Vol. 33
p 256-257


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