Skip to main content

Full text of "Luther's own statements concerning his teaching and its results. Taken exclusively from the earliest and best editions of Luther's German and Latin works"

See other formats


:\<Z -f . 

Luther's Own Statements 


His Teaching and its Results. 




LUTHER'S German and Latin Works. 


" Most strange, but yet most truly will I speak." — 

Shnkespear,\ Measure for i\reasure, Act V. 

Nfav York, Cincinnati, and Chicago: 


Printers to the Holy A/>os/oizc See, 

Ccipyri.icht, 1884, by Benzigek Brothers. 

All rights reserved. [ j 

Price 15 Cents. 


"A marvel of industrious and patient re- 

The Right Rev. Tobias Mullen, 

Bishop of Erie, U. S. 

"Though modest and unpretending in ap- 
pearance this little work may be, it is in reality, 
in matter and value, worth many volumes on 
the same subject. ... a book to be preserved 
for reference, and studied by lovers of truth; 
that is, by men who will welcome and embrace 
the truth wheii shown it." 

■ The R'ght Rev. Thomas HENDHic:;Ei?i, 

Blihop o/ Pravidevce-. 

Luther's Own Statements 


His Teaching and its Results. 




LUTHER'S German and Latin Works. 



Most strange, but yet most truly will I speak." — 

Shakespeare^ Measure for Measure, Act V. 


New York, Cincinnati, and St. Louis : 

Printers to the Holy Apostolic See, 

Copyright, 1S84, by Benziüer Brothers. 
All rights resarved. 



1. His Eminence Cardinal MANNING, Arch- 
bishop of Westminster, August 25th, 1884 : 

'I thank you for your courtesy in sending me your work 
on Luther: and still more for the work itself, which has the 
special value of making Luther bear witness against himself. 
No hand could destroy him so surely as his own. It is 
the best comment I have seen on the Lutheran 
Centenary and it will open many eyes. 

2. His Eminence Cardinal NEWMAN: "I was 

much pleased to receive the gift of your valuable book.^' 

Archbishop of Trebizond : " I have had much satis- 
faction in examining the work. . . .which. . . .will be. . . . 
very useful. .. .through the selections made of the Arch- 
heretic's doctrines and practises, and the critical style in 
which all possibility of throwing doubt upon the authen- 
ticity of the passages adduced in confirmation is removed." 

4. The Right Rev. WILLIAM BERNARD 
ULLATHORNE, O.S.B., Bishop of Birming- 
ham : " My own opinion has always been that the only 
way of rightly exposing that infamous man is by giving his 
own words from his authentic writings. This you have 
done very well." 

5. The Right Rev. BERNARD O'REILLY, 
Bishop of Liverpool: "It is plain that no one can 
question the accuracy of the quotations."' 

6. The Right Rev. JOHN CUTHBERT 
HEDLEY, O.S.B., Bishop of Newport and 
Minevia, and Editor of the Dublin Reviav, June 30th, 
1884: '•'Your book "will always have its value as an excellent 
handbook of Evidence : I think I may say, as the most 
valiuihlc. jnthlication in English ivhich the recent 
comniemoratioii has hrought fortli.'''' 

7. The Right Rev. ROBERT CORN- 
THWAITE, Bishop of Leeds : " It is a most inter- 
esting sul)ject." 

8. The Right Rev. ARTHUR RIDDELL, 
Bishop of Northampton : " I'he evidence adduced 
ought to be accepted by all, even the most prejudiced in 
his favour. " 

9. The Right Rev. EDWARD G. BAG- 
SHAWE, Bishop of Nottingham : "I have received 
your learned woik on Luther, and have already read a great 
part of it with deepi nterest. In the conflict of assertions 
it is just what is wanted, and if it can only get sufficiently 
known, will do the greatest service." 

10. The Right Rev. HERBERT VAUGHAN, 
Bishop of Salford : " It will do much good if people 
will read it candidlv. '' 

11. The Right Rev. EDMUND KNIGHT, 
Bishop of Shrewsbury : " I have been reading your 
' INIartin Luther' with the greatest interest. You have 
certainly made that ' unclean spirit' confess his own iniq- 
uity, and I thmk to all who read it only one conclusion 
can remain He is, in fact, 'twice slain."'' 

12. The Right Rev. ROBERT COFFIN, 
C.SS.R., Bishop of Southwark: "It seems to me 
most conclusive, and calculated to open the eyes of all those 
who arc not blinded by prejudice. '' 


13. His Eminence Cardinal MAC CABE, 
Archbishop of DubHn : "Accept my thanks for your 
brochure on Luther : It is well to have the wicked man 
condemned from his own testimony. Mischief has been 
sometimes done by our zealous accusers. So it is well 
that we should have the Apostle of Revolt giving his own 
character. " 

14. The Right Rev. BARTHOLOMEW 
WOODLOCK, Bishop of Ardagh : " It contains 
'reliable evidence^ of the truly revolutionary and diabolical 
work which the unhappy man .... unfortunately .... 
achieved .... to the ruin of so many souls, and the 
devastation of many fair fields in Christendom." 

15. The Right Rev. THOMAS CARR, 

Bishop of Galway, and formerly Editor of the Irish 
Ecclesiastical Record : " I shall read it more than once, 
as I regard it with great interest, on account of the 
authentic exposition of Luther's doctrines which it con- 

16. The Right Rev. MICHAEL LOGUE, 
Bishop of Raphoe : " It must have cost you much 
labour to have got so much and such rare information, 
bearing on the life of Luther, condensed into such moderate 


17. The Most Rev. CHARLES EYRE, Arch- 
bishop of Glasgow : " With the greatest interest 1 
perused it carefuUy. " 

18. The Right Rev. JOHN MACDONALD, 
Bishop of Aberdeen : " By your care and trouble in 
pubhshing this pamphlet, containing as it does so much 
in so concise a form, you have saved much trouble to, and 
laid under no small obligation, thc^c who would wish to 
know Luther as the great ' doctor' zr\<^. authority he wished 
to be considered, but who might find it inconvenient, or 
rather impossible, to have access to the original sources 
from which you have drawn.'^ 

19. The Right Rev. ANGUS MACDONALD, 
Bishop of Argyll and the Isles : " It must have in- 
volved a great deal of labour. " 

20. The Right Rev. GEORGE RIGG, Bishop 
of Dunkeld : ''I beg to thank you for your kindness in 
sending me your valuable work on the Archheretic, of whom 
so much has been made lately. I am sure it will do great 
good and open the minds of many who wish to see the 


21. The Most Rev. JAMES GIBBONS, Arch- 
bishop of Baltimore. — "The Most. Rev. Archbishop 

directs me to say that what he was able to see of your 

work met his entire approval. (Signed), D. J. 


22. The Most Rev. WILLLAM H. ELDER, 
Archbishop of Cincinnati : " I have looked at it 
enough to see how valuable it will prove. I do bless your 
work most cordially. I will ..... .encourage its circulatioii 

9,s much as I can, " 

23. The Most Rev. CHARLES J. SEGHERS, 
Archbishop of Oregon : " I acknowledge the receipt 
of your work on Luther, and beg to thank you for the in- 
formation I derived from the perusal of it. Well done ! 
The inference one has to draw from a study of the character 
of that Reformer, is that it is a great pity he did not begin 
with reforming his own self ^^ 

24. The Most Rev. PETER RICHARD 
KENRICK, Archbishop of St. Louis : " I have 
carefully read it, and cannot but admire the zeal that 
prompted so laborious an undertaking as the examination 
of the Reformer's voluminous works, and the clear light in 
which you have placed the absence of anything like a 
Divine Commission in his character."'' 

25. The Right Rev. TOBIAS MULLEN, 
Bishop of Erie : " You have rendered a great service to 
the cause of religious and historical truth bj the publication 
of Luther's Own Statements, extracted from his authentic 
writings. Whoever desires to know what the wretched 
heresiarch really taught will consult this work — A marvel 
of industrious and patient research.' 

26. The Right Rev. JOSEPH DWENGER, 
Bishop of Fort Wayne. — "His Lordship thinks the 
book will accomplish a great deal of good. [Signed), Jno. 
F. Lang, S." 

27. The Right Rev. KILIAN FLASCH, 
Bishop of La Crosse. — "Your efficient work displays 
a patient painstaking that is truly admirable. (Signed), 
E. J. FiTZPATRicK, Respectfully, for the Bishop of La 

28. The Right Rev. D. MANUCY, Bishop of 
Mobile: "I congratulate you on the production of so 
useful a work and wish it the extensive circulation it de- 

29. The Right Rev. THOMAS HEN- 
DRICKEN, Bishop of Providence: "Though 
modest and unpretending in appearance this Httle work 
may be, it is in reality in matter and value icorth 
many volumes on the same subject ... .a book to be 
preserved for reference, and studied by lovers of truth_, that 
is, by men wlio will welcome and embrace the truth when 
shown it.^'' 


30. The Right Rev. JAMES RICARDS, 
Bishop of Retimo, and Vicar Apostolic of the Eastern 
Vicariate : "I thank you very much for your able brochure 
on Luther. I consider it unanswerable and will treasure it 
as a safe book of reference, in case I have to sustain any 
more attacks from the followers of the unfortunate rebel. ■'^ 



Preface • i >**•»» » 3— 6 

Introduction .•»»»••, 7 — 8 



I. Luther Rejects the Authority of the Pope , 9 — 13 

II. Luther Admits the Authority of the Devil . 13 — 19 

HI. Luther proclaims His Own Authority and 

Infallibility 19 — 2c 

IV. Luther acts with Authority and Infallibility 21 — 34 

V. Luther's Intolerance against those who re- 
fuse TO submit to his Authority and 

Infallibility ...•%!• 34 — 40 


chapter. PAtiK 

I. Political Results i . . • • • 41--50 

II. Moral Results 50 — 57 

Conclusion ^ i |i • • « t i 5S--6^ 


1. The extraordinary interest taken in everything connected 
with the Lutheran Centenary had entirely subsided before the 
first Edition of this httle pamphlet had been published. It was, 
nevertheless, the opinion of friends, competent to judge, that, 
owing to the almost unique character of the original sources 
from which the information had been derived, and to the most 
scrupulous accuracy in translating and quoting, the book might 
be of some service to the public. Two English Editions ap- 
peared, and later on two American Editions were published by 
Benziger Brothers. The favourable reception accorded to the 
work far surpassed the most sanguine expectations. The issue 
of this third English Edition is due to the encouragement re- 
ceived from so many quarters. 

2. I am glad of the opportunity thus afforded of publicly 
admitting the truth of a remark made to me in a friendly spirit 
by a Protestant author, viz., that in general the style of writing 
was incompara'f .ly coarser at Luther's time than it is at present. 
But while impartially conceding this much, I must distinctly 
assert that the degree of coarseness which we repeatedly come 
across in Luther's works is entirely incompatible with the 
character of a true Reformer. Luther surpasses himself in vul- 
garity in his femous work "against the Popery of Rome, in- 
stituted by the Devil." This exti;avagant and unseemly volume 
was published only one year previous to Luther's death. Some 
passages will be found quoted in the first Chapter of this little 
work. I defy any one to lay his hand on one single unbecoming 
word in the letters and writings of Ignatius of Loyola, the great 
Catholic Reformer of the sixteenth century. 

3. The pamphlet being stereotyped, it is impossibl-e for me to 
arrange the different parts of each Chapter or Section in chrono- 

logical order, as The Dublin Reviezv suggested. I may, how- 
ever, remark that, in the first part of the work, out of about one 
hundred and fifteen quotations from Luther's works, there are 
only three, the date of which cannot be ascertained by a careful 
reader. In some instances a slight knowledge of Latin or 
German would be necessary for the purpose. As to the second 
part, the Political Results of Luther's teaching are given m strict 
chronological order. The last Chapter which deals with the 
Moral Results, is the only one in which, generally speaking, it will 
be found impossible to verify the date of Luther's sayings. It will 
be sufficient to remark that the Reformer's complaints as to the 
sad state of morality among his followers steadily increased, and 
were never as loud as towards the end of his life. 

4. In deference to a second wish expressed by The Dublin 
Review, I herewith give the translation of Luther's celebrated 
Latin letter to Melarichton, only a fragment of which seems to 
be preserved. It covers three pages in De Wette (IL, 34-37). 
The preface which is reprinted from the first and second edition 
of this pamphlet contains some information as to the high 
esteem in which De Wette's collection of Luther's letters is 
deservedly held. 

In the letter just mentioned, Luther, after dealing with the 
question of celibacy, and of Communion under one kind, 
touches on the calamities which are in store for Germany on 
account of its "unbelief, impiety and hatred of the Gospel." He 
then continues : " But this affliction will then be laid down at our 
door, as if we [the believers in the new Gospel] had provoked 
God by being heretics, and we shall be the reproach of men and 
the outcast of the people, but they [those who do not believe in 
the new Gospel] will make ei^cuse for their sins and will 
justify themselves [they will consider themselves to be just on 
account of their good works], so that he [God] will show that 
reprobates are not changed for the better either by goodness or 
by wrath : and many will be scandalized. May, may the will of 
the Lord be done. Amen." 

" If you [Melanchton] are a preacher of grace, do not preach 
fictitious, but real grace. If it is really grace, bear the weight 

of real, not of imaginan^ sin. God does not save imaginary 

" Be a sinner, and sin mightily, but trust and rejoice more 
mightily in Christ, who is the conqueror of sin, of death, and 
of the world. Sins must be committed, as long as we are in this 
state. This life is not the abode of justice, but, as Peter says, 
we await a new heaven and a new earth, in which justice 
dwells. It is sufficient that, through the riches of glory, we have 
acknowledged the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the 
world ; sin will not separate us from it [the Lamb], not even if in 
one single day we were to commit .... murder, a thousand, a 
thousand times over. Do you believe that the price and ran- 
som paid for our sins, in such and so great a Lamb is so 
trifling.? '' 

" Pray powerfully, for you are a most powerful sinner. The 
feast of Peter, the Apostle, in the year 1521." (De Wette 
IL, 36-37.) 

I am of the opinion that, if we merely consider the words 
just quoted, it would be an exaggeration to say that Luther 
ordered his disciple to sin, or that he even positively advised him 
to do so. To my mind the words mean : "As far as the certain- 
ty of our own salvation is concerned, it does not matter one bit 
whether we sin or not, as long as we put our trust in Christ." 
Thus, whereas Christ preaches hatred of every sin, Luther pro- 
claims indifference towards every kind of sin, with the only ex- 
ception of unbelief. 

5. Nine years later Luther's language is considerably bolder. 
In a letter to Jerome Weiler, dated November 6th, 1530, he 
points out the way of overcoming temptations to despondency : 
"We must," he says, "occasionally indulge more freely in drink, 
play, jest, and we must even commit some sin out of hatred and 
contempt of the Devil, in order not to allow him to trouble our 
conscience about very trifling matters, otherwise we shall be 
overcome, if we are too anxiously careful not to sin. ... I wish 
I could lay my hands on some signal kind of sin, just to mock 
the Devil, that he may understand that I neither acknowledge 
nor am conscious of any sin. We must put the whole deca- 

logue out of sight and mind, we, I say, whom the Devil thus 
attacks and annoys." (De Wette IV., i88.) The Reformer re- 
marks in conclusion that he will not be condemned for his sins, 
since Christ has suffered for them. 

In this letter Luther 7tot only allows, hut even wishes his friend 
to sin, when he is subject to the temptation of despondency. 
Now, every sin is contrary to the will of God. Therefore, 
Luther, the self-constituted Lawgiver of the sixteenth century, 
allows and recommends what God, the supreme Lawgiver of all 
ages, past, present, and future, forbids. 

DiTTON Hall, near Widnes, 
August, 1885. 


I. — Works Consulted. 

1. Nearly two-thirds of the matter contained in this 
pamphlet is laken from the original editions of Luther's own 
Works, as published in Wittenberg^ under the very eyes of the 

Reformer of Germany himself Two hundred of such 
original Works of Luther have been kindly lent to me. The] 
were printed between 1513 and 1546, and are bound to- 
gether in chronological order, in 15 volumes. / may 
safely say, that very few such extefisive collections of tiie 
oldest editions of Luther's Works exist in ihe whole oj 
England or America. 

2. The remaining part is, in great measure, taken from 
De Wette's collection of Luther's Letters, in 5 volumes : 
*' Dr. Martin Luthers Briefe, Sendschreiben und Bedenken 

von Dr. Wilhelm Mavtin Leberecht de Wette, Berlin, 

bei G. Reimer." 1825-1828. 

De Wette was a Professor of Protestant Divinity at Basle, 
in Switzerland, and a staunch supporter of Luther. In his 
introductory remarks he assures us, that whenever it was 
in any way possible, he invariably consulted Luther s f?ianu- 
scripts and the first editions that Luther himself had revised. 

Kostlin, a learned Protestant Professor ai the University 
of Halle-Wittenberg, and perhaps the most prominent 
among Luther's scientific supporters in Germany, says : 
" The collection of Luther's ' Letters, Epistles and Consider- 
ations ' by De Wette deserves special mention." 

(Herzog, Real Encyklopädie für protestantische Theologie 
und Kirche. Zweite Auflage, Artikel, Luther). In fact, the 
accuracy and trustworthiness of this most critical work i^ 
fully acknowledged by all writers of history. 

3- A certain amount of information is also taken from 
the complete edition of Luther's German Works. This was 
published at Erlangen in 1826, etc., and comprises no less 
than 67 volumes. A German Protestant periodical says of 
this Erlangen edition : *' TJie most i77conirovertible superi- 
ority of this edition is certainly the restoration of the 

primitive^ correct text, in accordance with the original editions 
printed in Wittenberg itself, under Liither's own eye." 
(Kurze Geschichte und Charakteristik aller Gesammtausgaben 
von Dr. M. Luthers Werken abgedruckt aus der Zeit- 
schrift für Protestantismus und Kirche N. F. Band XIX). 

In the article already quoted Köstlin says : *'// certainly 
deserves the first place " (Herzog, Artikel, Luther). 

4. The Walch edition is referred to in the " Moral 
Results" of Luther's Teaching. This edition was published 
by Gebauer, Halle, in 24 volumes, between 1740 and 1753. 
The work was carried on under the supervision of Professor 
D. Johann Georg Walch, of Jena. The Protestant periodical 
I quoted above says, that with the exception of the Erlangen 

edition, it is "undeniably the most complete and the 

most convenient " edition. 

5. One or two passages are also taken from Aurifaber's 
Latin edition of Luther's Letters. Aurifaber was one of 
Luther's most devoted personal friends. 

6. One of the most important quotations is from " D. 
Martini Lutheri Opera Latina. curavit Dr, Henricus Schmidt, 
Frankofurti ad M. et Erlangi," 1865-1873, 

7. The Latin edition of Jena has also been consulted. 

8. I give only six references which are not taken from 
Luther's own writings ; one of them comes from Karl 
Hagen, a celebrated German Protestant Historian; the 
Dthers are chiefly from Köstlin, Luther's famous German 
:hampion. These passages do not contain any new evidence 
:oncerning Luther; they merely confirm the accuracy of the 
statements made by the Reformer. 1 am, therefore, fully 
entitled to state, that the evidetice concerning Luther is 
" exclusively " derived from his own writings. 

9. I have not taken any of my quotations from the Table 

Talk, which, though published in the two best Protestant 
editions of Luther's Works, was nevertheless not written by 

IL — Accuracy and Trustworthiness. 

1. Not a single second-hand quotation is to be found 
from beginning to end of my little work. 

2. / liave not quoted any one passage, either in this 
preface or in the body of the work, which I have not seen 
with my own eyes in the book referred to. 

3. Not one of my quotations has been taken from a 
Catholic author. Even the editions of Luther's Works or 
Letters which I have consulted are all published by Luther's 
friends and admirers. 

4. I have taken special care not to quote anything, that 
would have a different meaning, if read li'ith the full context. 
In several instances I have studied the work quoted from 
beginning to end; in many other cases I have carefully 
looked over the whole work ; in every case I have at least 
satisfied myself that 1 was quoting in harmony with the 

5. In every single case the translation from the German 
or the Latin is my own. The fact that I have spent seventeen 
years, either in Germany, or in the almost exclusive society 
of Germans, will guarantee a sufficient knowledge of German 
for the task which I have undertaken. The translation 
itself is both literal and accurate. 

6. Exact foot-note references are given for every passage 
quoted. The old Wittenberg editions^ are, however, as a 
rule, not paged. I have, therefore, counted the pages 
myself, the title-page itself being looked upon as the first 
page. I can, of course, only answer for copies of the same 
edition as my own. The same work of Luther was often 
published three or four times during the same year. 

7. The references are interesting from a scientific point of 
view, inasmuch as they are reliable and trustworthy copies 
of the original titles. It is not necessary to remark that in 
the old German Works the titles are printed in German 
characters; moreover the commas arc a \\nQ.({). This does 
not apply to Luther's Latin Works. 


I have also enabled the reader to detect when a new line 
begins in the original title-pages. The signs of a new line 
are : 

a. A considerable distance intervening between two 

/). A hyphen (-), which in the old prints is ( = ). 

c. The mere separation of one word into two parts 
(Lu ther), when the hyphen is left out in the title-pages. 
In the first case the new line begins with a word, in the two 
latter instances it begins with the last syllable or syllables of 
a word. 

8. The proof sheets have been corrected up to the point 
of inability of finding any further inaccuracy, either in the 
quotations, or in the translation, or in the rciexcnces. 

9. It is evident that the statements made in this work 
can be disproved only by showing, that the references are 
falsely given, or that the context does not support the mean- 
ing attributed to the passages quoted. No other manner of 
dealing with the question can be accepted as either scientific 
or conclusive. 


r. This pamphlet does not pretend to be a Life oj 

2. My only and sole purpose is to inquire into the 
question, whether, in any sense of the word, Luther can be 
looked upon as a Reformer commissioned by Almighty God. 

3. Now, God is a Being of Infinite Dignity, Tfui/i, and 

4. Whenever, therefore, we read in the Bible that either 
Prophets or Apostles act as the chosen instruments of 
Heaven, we also find — 

a. That the manner in which they teach is in accordance 
(vith the supreme Dignity of Him who sends them ; 

l>. That the doctrines which they inculcate are worthy of 
the God of all Truth; and, 

c. That the results of their teaching are such as to entitle 
them to be revered as the messengers of a God of Infinite 

5. If, therefore, Luther's character as a Reformer can 
stand this three-fold test, we must look upon him as a vessel 
of election chosen by God to do a great work in His Church. 
[f, however, Luther's teaching is not in accordance with this 
three-fold standard, we cannot reasonably admit his claims. 

6. Now, as to the manner in which Luther taught : 

a. We find him rejecting the authority of the Pope with 
an amount of diplomacy and coarse?tess, utterly inconsistent 
with the sublime Dignity of Him, whose messenger he 
purposes to be. 

b. Luther assures us that Satan argued in favour of some 
of the principal doctrines of his new Creed. Now, it is 
beneath the dignity of God to allow His chosen legate to 
appeal to the testimony of Satan in support of his teaching. 

7. As to the doctrines of the Reformer : 

a. Luther claims an amount of authority, and a degree 
of infallibility, which Protestants are, as a rule, unwilling 
to admit in anybody since the days of the Apostles. 

b. He rejects the Epistle of St. James, the Epistle to 


the Hebrews, and the Book of Revelations, although, ac- 
cording to the Thirty-nine Articles, these are " Canonical 

Books of whose authority was never any doubt in the 

Church." (Art. 6.) 

c. Whatever may be said about matters of minor 
importance, every fair-minded person will agree with me 
that the teaching of a Reformer, who has the sanction of 
Heaven, cannot possibly be in direct opposition to any of the 
most fundamental doctrines of Christian mo)-ality, such as 
the unity of Christian marriage, and the unlawfulness of 

d. Luther condemns, not only all the Jews and Roman 
Catholics, but even all Protestants differing from himself, 
to Hell. Now, scarcely any Christian of the present day 
believes this important article in the full extent as insisted 
on by Luther. 

8.' As to the political results: Neither Christ, nor the 
Prophets, nor the Apostles excited the pjvSsions of the people 
till the outbreak of a rebellion was almost unavoidable. 

9. As to the 7noral results: Luther informs us, in 
numberless passages, that his followers became worse than 
they had been under the Pope. It is idle to say that such 
must necessarily have been the case since the people were 
in the throes of a religious revolution. For the greatest 
religious revolution which the world has ever witnessed was 
that brought forth by the teaching of Christ and His 
Apostles. Now, the followers of Christ and of His Apostles 
did not lead worse lives than before \ on the contrary, the 
innocence, purity and holiness of their Uves made them the 
admiration of the world. 

10. The careful reader will find that I do not condemn 
Luther for anything that is not unjustifiable in the eyes of 
the great bulk of English or American Protestants. 

11. Every fair-minded man will admit that, if I succeed 
in proving the facts mentioned in these introductory re- 
marks, Luther cannot be considered a Reformer sent by 
Almighty God, whatever bright spots his friends may admire, 
either in his character or in his teaching. 

St. Joseph's, Bedford Leigh. 
March, 1884. 



Pope Leo X. was startled at the account he heard of 
Luther's new doctrines. Negotiations began, during which 
Luther wrote to the Pope letters, that are masterpieces of 

1. Luther ends one of these letters to the Pope with the 
following words : " Most Holy Father, prostrate at the feet 
of your Holiness, I offer myself with all that I am and have. 
Vivify, kill, call, rc-calU approve, condemn, as you please ; I 
will acknowledge thy voice as the voice of Christ, who 
presides ?'.d speaks in thee. If I have deserved death, I 
will not refuse to die. For the earth is the Lord's, and the 
fulness thereof; Who is blessed for ever. Amen. May He 
also preserve thee for ever. Amen. Anno. M.D.XVIII."^ 

2. According to De Wette, the letter we have just quoted 
was written May 30, 15 18. On the 1 ith of December of 
the same } ear, therefore only six and a half months later, 
Luther wic .e to his friend, Wenceslaus Link: " 1 will send you 
my playful remarks (nugas), so that you may see, whether 
I am right in guessing, that the true Antichrist, according 
to Paul, reigns in the Roman Court : I think I am able to 
prove thatjie (the Pope) is now worse than the 'J'urks."^ 

3. Let us, however, see in what terms Luther addresses 

1. This is printed in the " IRcsoIutioiics tiispn=tattonum $. /Ißartim 
authcv augustinianl, öe intuUjeiUiai-. vu=tute, ab ipeo ear. 

aucoi'c, a plu=vibu6 mcnbiä rcpuvciata:, Uuittcinticiga:." Knd 

of page : ''Liber Candidum & liberum lectorcni uolo." On last 

page we read: " Lipsiae, apud Melchiorem Louhcrum. Anno doaiinJ 

Millesimo Quingentesimo decimonono." p 6. 

J. De Wette 1. 193. 

the "Roman Antichrist," less than three months afterwards. 
He writes, March 3, 15 19 : " Noiv, most Holy Father, before 
God and every creat^ire of His, I declare that J have not 
intended, and that to-day also I do not intend in any ivay to 
touch, or by any artifice (versutia) to destroy the power oj 
the Roman Church and of your Holiness ; on the contrary, 
I most fully confess, that the power of this Church is above 
all, and that nothing, either in heaven or on earth, is to be 
preferred to it, except only Jesus Christ the Lord of all."^ 
4. Before this last letter of Luther could well have reached 
the Pope, in those days, when there were no railways, only 
ten days later, March 13, 15 19, Luther wrote to Spalatin : 
"I am also looking over the decrees of the Popes for my 
disputation, and (I say it into your ear) I do not know, 
whether the Pope is Antichrist himself, or his Apostle: so 
miserably is Christ (that is, truth) corrupted and crucified 

by him in the decrees Wittembergae, Dominica Invocavit, 

anno MDXIX. l'\ Martinus Lulherus, August." (August- 
inian). * 

Luther had thus already, on March 13, 1519, studied the 
decrees of the Popes sufficiently to find out, that the Pope 
is either Antichrist, or the Apostle of Antichrist. He had, 
we may be pretty certain, been at this work more than ten 
days before acquainting Spalatin with this wonderful result 
of his studies. If so, Luther wrote to the Pope on March 

3, 15 19, telling him, that he did not intend attacking the 
fotver of the Roman Church and of his Holiness, at the very 
time, when he was studying the decrees of the Popes with the 
express purpose of assailing the Pope in the disputation with 
Dr. Eck, which was soon to take place. If this is not 
downright hypocrisy, I do not know what is. In one single 
chapter of the Bible Our Lord repeats no less than seven 
times the dreadful words: "Woe to you scribes and Pharisees, 
hypocrites." (Matth, XXI 11), 

5. On Dec. loth, 1520, Luther openly, publicly and 
solemnly trampled the authority of the Pope under foot by 
burning the Papal Bull of excommunication just outside the 
gates of Wittenberg. In the same year he published a httle 

3 De Weite 1 _4. 

4. De Wette 1. 23^—2^0. 

book, in which he gives some very amusing reasons for this 
extraordinary act. ^ 

6. Only one year before his death, Luther published a 
famous work against the Fope. This work is so satanical 
in its title, so satanical in its beginmng, so satanical in its 
almost every page, so super-satanical in its conclusion, that 
il could have oniy been written by a man with a thoroughly 
satanical spirit. It is marvellous how anyone should have 
been able to fill 07te himdred atid fifty-seven printed pages with 
such a number o; satanical expressions tnat must have been 
borrowed from the very depths of Kei'. 

In proof Oi my assertions I suojoin the following 
quotations : 

a. The title of the book is: "Against the Popery of 
Rome, instituted by the Devil." ^ 

-'. The work itself begins as follows : ''■The most devilish 
Fainer, St. Faul the T/iird."' 

Paul the Third was Pope at that time. 

c. As to the general character of the book, space 
allows my giving only a few specimens, selected from about 
two hund?-ed similar passages, which I have myself counted 
in this most monstrous wor.c. 

Speaking of the Pope, Luther says that he will " try to 
comb the long, uncombed ears of the great coarse donkey."^ 

Again, he writes : " Well, if I was Emperor, I know 
well what I would do. 1 would tie and bind all the blas- 
phemous rascals, the Pope, the Cardinals, and every member 
of the Pope's household together I would lead them not 
more than three (German) miles from Rome towards 

Ostia A water there, called in Latin Mare Tyrrhenum, 

is a precious curative for all diseases, injuries, and in- 
firmities of his Papal Holiness, of all the Cardinals, and 
of all his followers (literally, "of all his Chair," that is to say, 
of all who believe in the Chair of St. Peter). I would put 
them in there nicely, and would give them a bath. And 

5. Wanimb des Bapsts vnd sey-ner Jüngern bucher von Doct. 

-■■■artmo Lu liier vorbräi s.ynn. Lass auch antzeygea 

wer do wil. warumb sie D. Lu'iers bucher vor-prennet ha-bea. 

Wittemberg.:. SJ.CIÜ. X'i- 

ö- 'Voider das Bab stum zu Kom vom Teiifei ge-stifft. 

Aian. Luth. i>. flD.B.JXv, 

7. Ibidem, 3. 

8. Ibidem, 37. 


should they be afraid of the water, as people who are 
possessed (viz., by the Devil) and are mad, generally speak- 
ing, are afraid of water, I would give them, as their security, 
the rock on which they and their Church are built, the keys 
too, in order that they might be able to bind and to loose 
all that is in heaven and on earth, so that they might be 
able to command the water as they hked. Moreover, they 
should also have the shepherd's crook and staff, in order that 
they might be able to deal blows into the face of the water, 

so that its (the water's) mouth and nose might bleed 

What will you bet ? if they had bathed in that healing bath 
for half an hour, all their diseases, injuries and infirmities 

would cease and come to an end .1 could give Christ 

my Lord as a pledge for that."® 

Luther says : " The Pope^s Christ is the mother of the 
Devil." That is to say, the Christ, in whom the Pope and 
the Catholics believe, is the mother of the Devil. Again : 
" The Tope, the Cardinals, and the whole Romish Court and 
mob, are nothing else but a stable full of big, coarse, strip id, dis- 
graceful donkeys " There is no mistaking the meaning of the 
following passage: " You are indeed a coarse donkey, and yoti 
remain a donkey, you donkey of a Pope." Luther wrote only 
a year before the Council of Trent. Addressing himself to 
the " Emperor, the King, the Princes and Lords, and who- 
ever is able to attack " the supreme rulers of the Catholic 

Church, he says : "The Pope, the Cardinals ought to be 

taken and (as they are blasphemers) their tongue ought to be 
torn out through the back of their neck and nailed to the 

gallows After that let them hold one Council, or as 

many as they like, on the gallows, or in Hell among all the 
Devils." In fact this long work of one hundred and fifty- 
seven pages is overflowing with these and similar expressions: 
" Devil, all the Devils, thousand Devils, the Devil and his 
mother, devilish, hellish. Antichrist, rascal, archrascal, 
murderer, donkey, fool, stupid fool," etc., etc. ^° 

d. Luther concludes his famous work with the 
following Vi^ords : " Now, listen. Donkey of a Pope, 
with your long donkey ears and your damned lyin^ 

}. Ibidem, 127-128. 

ao. Ibidem, X30, 132. 30, 00. 


moutn But here I must stop ; if it is the will of God, I 

will do it still better in anotner book. If I die in tne 
meantime, 7nay it please God that some one else s/'wuld do 
it a thousand times stronger. For the devilish Popery is the 
last misfortune on eartli, and the first thing that all the 
Devils proclaim with all their might. May God help ua 
Amen." 11 

I have come across several such utterly vulgar, coarse, 
and disreputable expressions in this work of Luther, that I 
would not venture to give them, even in the original German. 

I can only say in conclusion, that I believe this is one of 
the most monstrous books that has ever been written. In 
satanical expressions it will never be surpassed, except, 
perhaps, by Antichrist himself. If this book were accurately 
translated into English, extensively published, and carefully 
read by every Protestant Englishman, the whole nation 
would turn away with horror and disgust from the monster, 
who was capable of writing such a scandalous work 


1. The long passage, which I am about to quote, is 
taken from the original Wittenberg edition of Luther's work 
against Private Mass and the Ordination of Priests. I'he 
copy lying before me while I write was printed in 1533. ■'"^ 

2. In the introduction, Luther tells us, how wonderfully he 
had succeeded in doing away with Indulgences, and he then 
expresses the wish, that God would also do away with Mass 
and Ordination, so that there would be neither Popes nor 

3. After this, Luther commences as follows : "I will begin 
with myself, and make a little confession to you, holy 
Fathers ; give me a good absolution, that will also do you 

II, Ibidem, 157. 

13, Von der win-ckelmesse vnd Pfaffen Weihe. D. Mart. Luthrr. 

Wittemberg DMXXXIII. This is the 

title page. On the last page we read; " Gedruckt zu Wittemberg 

durch Nickel Schir-lentz. .fKH)XXXIII." 

I do not find any English word that fully expresses the contempt against Mass that 

the German word does. 1 translate " winckelmesse " simply by Private Mass; 

literally it is " Corner Mass" ^Mass said in a Cnrnerl 


no harm. I once awoke at midnight, when the Devil began 
to dispute with me in my heart after the following manner (as 
he is able to make many a night of mine bitter and miserable 
enough) : ' Listen [it is the Devil who speaks to Luther], 
listen, you learned man, do you know that for fifteen years 
you have almost daily said Mass privately ? How will it be 
if, in such Masses, you have merely been practising idolatry, 
and have adored, and held up for tne adoration of others, not 
the Body and Blood of Christ, but merely bread and wine?' 
1 (Luther) answered : ' I am a consecrated Priest, have 
received chrism and ordination from the Bishop, moreover, 
I did all that according to order and obedience, why then 
should I not have consecrated, since I repeated the words 
seriously, and said Mass with all possible devotion ? You (the 
Devil) certainly know that.' — ' Yes,' he replied, ' it is true. 
But Turks and heathens also do everything in their churches 
according to order and earnest obedience. The Priests of 
Jeroboam at Dan and Bethel did everything with perhaps 
greater devotion than the true Priests in Jerusalem. What, 
if your ordination, chrism and consecration were also un- 
christian and false, like that of the Turks aud of the 
Samaritans ?' "i^* 

4. "Here indeed the sweat broke forth and my heart began 
to tremble and to beat. The Devil knows well how to put 
his argument, and to push it further, and he has a 
deep, powerful voice. In suchlike disputations there are 
no frequent nor long pauses ; but in the twinkling 
of an eye answer follows answer. And from my own 
experience I can well understand how it is, that in the 
morning people may be found dead in bed. He (the Devil) 
can strangle the body. That is one way. But he can like- 
wise so frighten the soul in disputing with it, that in 
an instant it is forced to depart, as many a time almost 
happened to me. Well, he (the Devil) had attacked me in this 
disputation. And, in the sight of God, I did not wish to leave 
such an endless Hst of abominations lying on myself, but 
to defend my innocence." Immediately after this Luther 
continues ; '■'■Listen to the reasons which he (the Devil) 
alleged against my ordination and consecration.'"''-^ 

13, Ibidem, 7-8. 

14, Ibidem. 8. 

5. *' • For the first,' he (the Devil) said : ' You know that 
you did not believe properly in Christ, and that concerning faith 
you have been as good as a Turk. For tlie Turk, yes, 
even I, with all the Devils, also believe all that is written 
about Christ (James II), that is, how He was born, died, 
ascetided into heaven. Yet none of us rejoice or trust in Him 
as in a Saviour. But we fear Him as a severe Judge. Such a 
faith you also had, and ?lo other, when you were ordained 
and said Mass; and all the others, both the ordaining Bishop, 
and those whom he ordained, also believed the same. There- 
fore, you also all went over from Christ to Mary and to the 
Saints ; they had to be your consolation and your helpers 
against Christ. This neither you, nor any other Papist, can 
deny. Therefore, you were ordained and have said Mass 
as heathens, and not as Christians. How, then, have you 
been able to consecrate ('to change bread and wine into the 
Body and Blood of Christ) ? For you have not been the 
persons who should consecrate.'" ^^ 

6. The Devil then gives several further reasons against 
Private Mass. At the end of the second reason he 
exclaims, " What an ordination and consecration is that ! 

Christ knows nothing of such an ordination. That 

is certain. "■'•^ 

7. The Devil sums up his reasons against Private Mass 
with the following words : " Here you see that in your 
Mass, there is, first of all, not the person who ought to con- 
secrate, and is able to do so, namely, a man of Christian faith. 
Secondly, you have not the person before you, for whom 
you ought to consecrate and to whom you ought to give it 
(the Sacrament), namely, the Christian congregation or 
people. But you, impious, unbelieving Priest, stand there 
alone, and you think that Christ has ordained it for your 

sake Thirdly, the final intention (die endhch meinung), 

and the fruit or use desired by Christ are wanting. For it 
(the Sacrament) is instituted in order to feed and 
strengthen the Christian people (gemeine), and to preach 
and prai-se Christ. Now, the Christian congregation 
knows nothing about your Maes, hears nothing from you, 

15. Ibidem, 8-9. 
to. Ibidem, 10. 


feceives nothing from you. But you are silent there ..i the 
corner, and you swallow it alone, although you are an unbe- 
liever and unworthy, and you feed nobody with it, but you sell 
it, as you do your other good works Therefore your ordina- 
tion and also your consecration are nothing but blasphemy, 
and a tempting of God, and neither are you a Priest, nor is 
the bread in your Mass the Body of Christ."^" 

8. Luther endeavours to defend himself. He says : " In 
this fear and danger I tried to drive the Devil away. I took 
hold of the old harness, which I had learnt to put on and to 
wear in Popery, scilicet intentionem et fidem Ecclesiae 
(namely, the intention and the faith of the Church), that is 
to say, I said those Masses according to the faith and to the 
intention of the Church. For even if I had not the proper 
faith and intention, nevertheless, the Church has the proper 
faith and intention. Therefore, my Mass and ordination must 
have been valid. Thereupon he (the Devil), attacked me 
th I « : ' Friend, tell me, where is it written that an 
impious, unbelieving person can step forward and consecrate 
according to the faith and intention of the Church ? '"i^ 

The Devil is evidently not satisfied with the teaching 
of Catholic Theology. 

9. Luther ends by saying: " This is pretty exactly the sum 
and substatice of the disputation."'^'^ 

10. The discussion with the Devil covers exactly eleven 
pages of the Wittenberg edition. As soon as Luther has 
finished his account of it, he says : " Here the Holy Papists 
will make fun of me, and will say, ' Are you the great 
Doctor, and don't know how to answer the Devil ? Do 
you not know that he is a liar ? ' " 

Luther's reply to this question shows how fully convinced 
he felt, that it was really his Satanic Majesty, who had been 
contending against Private Mass. Luther begins with 
abusing the Papists, he then tells us, that David and the 
Prophets complained about such disputations with the 
Devil, that even Christ suffered from his assaults, and that 
Emser and Oecolompad most likely died so suddenly 
through the force of his fiery onslaughts. Luther then 

17, Ibidem, 12-13. 

li. Ibidem, 16. 
1^ Ibidem, 18. 


Continues : " He is a liar, that is true. But he can tcl) 

lies better than a bad liar can For he ouotes a truth in 

his own favour, which you cannot deny, and supports his lies 
with it, so that you cannot defend yourself. It was the 
simple truth, when he forced the conviction on the heart of 
Judas, that he had betrayed innocent blood; Judas could not 
deny that ; for it was a fact. But it was a lie, tv/'ien he fold him to 

despair of God. No, dear brother, the Devil tells no lies, 

7tihen he accuses us of our public evil works and life. There 
he has two witnesses, that nobody can drive out of court, 
namely, the commandment of God, and our conscience."-" 

11. Luther's idea therefore is this: The devil told me the 
perfect truth about my wickedness in saying Mass privately 
during fifteen years, but he sought to force a lie upon me, 
when he tried to drive me to despair. 

12. I will now make a few remarks about this famous 

a. The Devil did not appear to Luther in a visible form on 
this occasion, as is evident from the words : " In my 

b. Luther's conversation with the Devil about justification 
by faith alone, was, however, not a dream ; for Luther 
writes : " I once aiuoke at midnight, when the Devil 
began "-''' 

t, Luther's conference with the Devil was also not a piece 
of viere imagination. \Vhen Satan tempts us, he does 
not indeed manifest himself in any visible form, yet the 
temptation is not an effect of simple imagination. On the 
contrary, his temptation is a very serious reality, and so 
powerful, that it often leads people into sin, and through sin 
to everlasting ruin. Now, such a temptation is a work of the 
Evil Spirit on the heart of a person. The Devil suggests 
reasons and motives why we should sin. And there is 
sometimes a disputation in the heart of man with the Devil, 
man's reason arguing against the suggestions of Satan. Now, 
it is in this sense, that I look upon Luther's celebrated dis- 
cussion with the Devil. 

d. But was it really the Devil? There cannot be the 

»o. Ibidem, 18-19, 
21, Ibidem, 7. 
«z. Ibidem. 7. 

slightest doubt. Listen to Luther's words : " T once awoke 
at midnight, when the Devil began to dispute with me." This 
disputation with the Devil was so real that " the sweat brokt 
forth^' from the noble brow of Dr. Martin Luther, who there- 
upon continues : " The Devil knows well how to put his 
argument, and to push it further." Luther is so thoroughly 
convinced of the presence of the Devil, that he mentions his 
"deep, powerful voice." Luther says: "Listen to the 
'reasons which he (the Devil) alleged against my ordination and 
consecration." Then the Devil begins to speak : " 'For the 
first,' he (the Devil) said: 'You know that you did not believe 

properly in Christ For even I, with all the devils, also 

believe all that is written about Christ Yet none of us in Him as in a Saviour. But we fear Him as a severe 
Judge. Such a faith you also had, and no other, when you 

were ordained (Priest) and said Mass; and all the others 

also believed the same. Therefore, you also all went 

over from Christ to Mary and to the Samts This neither 

you, nor any other Papist, can deny.'"^^ 

In 1534 Luther wrote a letter of twenty pages about his 
work on the Mass. In this letter he says, that he believes in 
the Real Presence of our Lord and hates Mass, but he does 
not retract one 7vord which he said about the Devil. ^ * 

e. Now, I do not, say that Luther here for the first 
time learnt the doctrine of justification by faith alone, or 
that he was taught for the first time on this occasion to do 
away with Mass, with Mary and the Samts. It is quite 
possible that some, or all of these doctrines, were preached by 
Luther before this celebrated disputation. But this I do say, 
and I say it most distinctly and most emphatically : Luther 
received the full and unqualified approval of the Devil for 
these new doctrines. It was the Devil who spoke in favour 
of the doctrine of justification by faith alone, and against 
Mass, Mary, and the S"ints. 

fi Did Luther till a deliberate falsehood in a question 
of such immense importance? If so, are we to believe the 
rest of his teaching? Or, was Luther perhaps miserably 

23, Ibidem, 7-9. 

(4, E\n brieff D. Mart. Luth. Von seinem Euch der 

Winckel messen, an einen guten freund. Wittemberg. 

M.D.XXXIIII. Last page: '■ Gedruck zu Wittemberg, 
durch Hans Luflft. Ä.S.XXXUU." 


deceived ? Was it possibly, after all, only the outcome of 
his over-e-:cited brain ? If so, at any rate, Luther himself 
believed ihat it was the Devil, and the Great Reformer of 
Germany continued preaching, although he firmly believed 
that the Devil had spoken in favour of the principal articles 
of his new Creed. Or, did L.uther perhaps tell us the plain, 
honest truth ? Ii so, his teaching really has the approval 
and sanction of Satan. For, can any man of ordinary 
common-sense believe, that in a disputation covering eleven 
pages, every word of the Devil from beginning to end was 
the pure Word of God , and that Satan kept so strictly to 
the truth, in order to drive Luther to despair ? Moreover, 
I have read the eleven pages, and the Devil does not say 
one word about despair. 

g: Be that as it may, T simply say : What are straight- 
forward Englishmen, what, I say, are they to think of a man, 
who in his own hand vriting, openly and publicly confesses 
that Satan speaks in fa\ our of his teaching ? 

13. Luther's book against Private Mass may be divided 
into two parts ; in the first, Luther gives the DeviTs 
reasons ; in the second he gives /n's oian. This extraordinary 
arrangement of a work containing about one hundred pages, 
shows us how fully Luther agrees with the Devil's teaching 
concerning Mass, It is, therefore, not unfair to say that 
this lengthy book may be thus divided : — 

Part I. The reasons of the Devil against Private Mass. 

Part XL The reasons ot the Disciple of the Devil against 
Private Mass. 


I. Let us see what Luther says about his Authority 
and Infallibility, in the book which he published against the 
King of England, in 1522 : — 

1. "I am certain that I have my teaching from 

2. " My doctrines will stand, and the Pope will fall, 



1522. p. 7. 

notwithstanding all the gates of hell, and all the powers of 
the air, the land and the sea."-^ 

3. Luther enumerates nineteen different articles of his 
creed, " the Sacrament of the Altar " being one of these. 
For let it be remembered, that Luther firmly believed in the 
Real Presence. He then says : " I will for ever stick to 
such points as I have taught, and will say, 'Whoever teaches 
differently from what I have taught herein, or condemns 
me for it, he condemns God, ajid jiiust be achild of Jlell'"'^'^ 

II. We select two quotations from Luther's work agamst 
the Pope and the Bishops. He writes : 

1. " If I were to call myselt an Evangelist by the grace 
of God, I thmk I could prove it easier than one of you 
(Catholic Bishops) could prove your episcopal title or name. 
I am certain that Christ Himself calls me thus, and looks 
upon me as such, for He is the Master of my doctrme, and 
on the last day He will also be a witness, that it is not mine, 
but His own pure Gospel ""^ 

2, "I herewith let you know that in future, I will no 
longer do you the honour of allowing you, or even an Angel 

from Heaven, to judge my doctrine There has 

been enough of this stupid humility now for the third time at 
Worms, and, nevertheless, it was of no use ; but I will 
make myself heard, and, as St. Peter teaches, I will prove the 
motives and reasons for my teaching before the whole world, 
and / will not allow it to be Judged by anybody, not even by any 
of the Afigels. For, since I am certain of it, I intend, by means 
of it, to be your judge and also (as St. Paul says), that of the 
Angels / so that tvhoever does not accept my teaching, can- 
not be saved. For it is God's and not mine. Therefore, my 
judgment is at the same time God's and not mine."^® 

Did any Pope ever proclaim his Authority and Infalli- 
bility in r. iuore unmistakeable manner ? 

26. Ibidem, 7. 

27, Antwortt deutsch Mart. Lu-thers auff _ Köni^ 

Henrichs von Engelland buch. Lügen thun myr nicht, 

Warheyt schew ich nicht, 1522. On the last page 

we read : "Gedruckt tzu Wittemberg, durch Nickeil Schyrlentz, 

nß.HJ.ff Ü." p. +-S. 
38. Wider den falsch genantte geystlichen stand des Babst 

vn der bisch-oflen. ü. Mart. Luther 

Ecclesiasten tzu Wittemberg. 1522. On the 

last page wc read : " Gedruckt tzü Wittemberg durch NickcJ 

Schyrlentz. my tzwey vn tzwentzigste Jar." p. a. 

aQ. Ibidem, p. 3. 



§ I. Luther's Authoritative and Infatxible Decrees 
Concerning the Bible. 

I. Luther's Decrees Concerning Whole Books 
OF the Bible. 

The five passages which follow are taken from Luther's 
New Testament. / have a copy of the very first edition of 
Luther's version of the Neiv Tesfa)?ient before me, whilt 
writi7i^ these words. It was published in Wittenberg 
in 1522.^° 

1. Luther says: "Because John writes very little about the 
works of Christ, but very much about his sermons ; whereas 
the other three Evangelists write much about his works, and 
little about his words, the Gospel of John is the one choice 
(zart) really principal Gospel, and is to be very much pre- 
ferred to, and to be esteemed higher, than the other three. 
As also the Epistles of SS. Paul and Peter far surpass the 
three Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke."^^ 

2. " The Epistle of St. James is really a straw Epistle in 
comparison to them;" {i.e., to "St. John's Gospel and his 

First Epistle, to St. Paul's Epistles and to St. Peter's 

First Epistle.")"^- 

3. In his introduction to the Epistles of SS. James and 
Jude, Luther says of the Epistle ej St. James " I do not 
look upon It as the writing ot any Apostle, and this is my 
reason. First of all, because in direct opposition to St. Faul, 
and to all the other Scriptures, it (the Epistle of St. James) 
attributes justification to the works, and says, Abraham was 
justified by his works when he sacrificed his son. Whereas 

30. Das Newe Testa-meiit Deutzsch. Vuittemberg. 

31, Das Newe Testa-ment Deutzsch, Vuittemberg. Last page : "Gedruckt 

zu 2Vittenberg durch Mel-chior Lotther yhm tausent funff-hundert Z2vey 

vnnd Z2ventzigsten Jar." 

The passage quoted occurs after the Introduction, in an article headed: "avilclis 

die rechten vnd Edlisten bucher des ne2ven tcsta-ments sind." 

r and v printed close to each other form a w; thus, 2v is the same as to ; at any rate 

the sign is very much like a 2, and together with the following f it »s mean? 

for tu. 
!ß. Ibide». 


St. Paul, Rom. 4, on the contrary, teaches that Abraham 

was justified without works, through his faith alone 

Secondly (I reject the Epistle), because it professes to instruct 
Christians, and in such a long treatise (lere), it does not 
even mention the Passion, the Resurrection, the Spirit of 

Christ Whatever does not teach Christ, that is not 

apostolic, even if Peter or Paul were to teach it. Whereas, 
whatever teaches Christ, that is apostolic, even if Judas, 
Annas, Pilate and Herod were to do it. But this James does 
nothing else but drive on to the law and to its works, and 
he mixes up things in such disorder, that I should say he 
was some good, pious man, who had heard certain sayings 
from the disciples of the Apostles, and then committed them 
to paper; or perhaps it (the Epistle) has been taken from 

his own discourse by some one else Therefore, I will not 

have him in my Bible in the number of the truly principal 
books : but I will not forbid any one to place him and to 
keep him as he pleases."^ ^ 

4. " That this Epistle to the Hebrews is neither St. Paul's, 
nor that of any other Apostle, can be proved, because we read 
in the second chapter : ' This teaching has come down to us 

from those who have heard it from the Lord.' But it is 

not known who wrote it, and it will also remain unknown for 
some time, but this does not matter "^'^ 

5. Luther also rejects the Apocalypse or Book of Revela- 
tions. He writes in his introduction to it, in the same New 
Testament, published at Wittenberg, 1522: "As to this 
book of the Revelations of John, I will let everybody please 
himself. I will not bind anyone to my opinion or judg- 
ment. I say what I feel. I find many things defective in 
this book, so that I look upon it as neither apostolic nor 
prophetic. My first and principal reason is, that the Apostles 
did not concern themselves with visions, but they prophesied 

in clear and simple words This is reason enough for me 

not to think much of it, because Christ is neither taught nor 
known in it."^® 

IL Luther's Decree Concerning Rom. IIL 28. 
I. The English Protestant Bible thus translates Rom. Ill, 

33. Ibidem, II. fol. LXVI. ~ ~ ~^' '" '" " " 

34. Ibidem, II. fol. LIX. 
35- Ibidem, II. fol. LXXFT 


2^ : "Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith 
without the deeds of the law." Luther's translation, taken 
from one of the copies of the original Wittenberg edition 
of 1522, is as follows : "So halten wyrs nu, das der mensch 
gerechtfertiget werde, on zu thun der werck des gesetzs, alleyn 
durch den glawben." ^ ' 

The literal translation of this into English is : " So 
we now hold it, that man is justified, without doitig the 
works of the law, alone through faith." 

2. The German word ("alleyn") used by Luther, some- 
times means ^^ but" sometimes "alone." The question is, 
does not the Avord, as used by Luther, mean "but?" Or, 
to express it difterently, ought not our translation of Luther's 
text to be : " So we now hold it, that man is justified with- 
out doing the works of the law, btit by faith." ? My answer 
is : I am as certain that Luther's "alleyn" (Rom. III. 28) 
means " alone," and does not mean " but" as I am of my 
own existence. Seventeen years spent in Germany, or among 
educated Germans, enable me to speak with authority on a 
question of this kind. 

3. It has been said that Luther's " alleyn " must mean 
"but" because it precedes the substantive ("glawben "). This 
is an argument that would never have been used by a German, 
or by a man thoroughly acquainted with German. Every 
German knows that the following sentence is thoroughly in 
accordance with the idiom of the German language : " So 
halten wir es nun, dass der Mensch nicht gerechtfertigt 
wird durch die "Werke des Gesetzes, sondern allein durch 
den Glauben." Now the only possible way of translating 
these words is : " So Ave now hold it, that man is not justified 
by the works of the law, but alone through faith." Never- 
theless, "allein" has here exactly the same position with 
regard to the substantive " Glauben," as in Luther's text 

4. INIodern German Dictionaries and Grammars are 
not of much authority in this question, because Luther 
■wrote German, as it used to be in the sixteenth century, and 
not as it is at present in the nineteenth. But independent 
of this, it is very dangerous for Luther's English advocates to 
quote German Grammars or Dictionaries. If they are 

3O. Das Newe Testa-ment Deutzsch, Vuittemberg. 


not very careful, they may be surprised to find that the 
real meaning of a rule quoted by them is quite different 
from what tliey understand it to be. " AUeyn " does not 
immediately precede the substantive " glawben " (faith), but 
is separated from it by the preposition "durch" (through), 
which comes between them : " alleyji dtnxh deiz glawbs?!.'" 
Now even according to the Winchester Tracts in such a 
case "alleyn " may mean " alcne.'" How ridiculous it is for 
the author to quote this rule on page 7, and on page 8 to 
forget all about it, and to come to the "irresistible con- 
clusion "(! !) that according to German Dictionaries "alleyn" 
(Rom. III. 28) must mean "but."^^ 

We can only attribute this to downright ignorance or 

5. But I have a far stronger proof, a proof which can only be 
disregarded by a man, who is willing to deny that the sun 
is shining in the skies on a bright summer-aa)'. Nobody 
is so good a judge of the meaning of "alleyn " (Rom. HI. 28), 
as Luther himself, who is the author of the translation. For 
^n Englishman to expect me to accept his interpretation of 
Luther's words, and to reject Lut'ner's own authoritative 
explanation of his own translation, betokens something 
very much like literary insanity. 

6. Now, Luther wrote to Wenceslaus Link on this very 
subject. That part of the letter, which deals with the word 
"alleyn," covers exactly nineteen pages, Luther wrote for the 
express purpose of explaining why he used the word "allej'n" 
(Rom. III. 28). I have read the letter in the old Witten- 
berg edition of 1530 from beginning to end most carefull}', 
and will now give the principal passages along with exact 
references to the whole context. 

A. The Introduction. 
Luther says: " I have received your letter with the tvro 

questions or inquiries first, why in the third chapter 

to the Romans, the words of St. Paul: 'Arbitramur hominem 
j.ustilicari ex fide absque operibus legis,' were translated 

37. Winchester Tracts VII. Anno 1859. B}' Charles Hastings Collette. 

I'he etact words, (p. 7) are : "One may perceive hereby that allein, like many other 
idverbs, can stand also with substantives : the reaon of this is shown in the 
note. It stands then after the substantive, except ivlien a preposition /cnoivs 
it, or just precedes, as it can also stand be/ore it." (These latter itali ;s ar« 
my own). 


by me into German in the following manner: 'We hold 

that man is justified without the works of the law, (allein) 

through faith.' And at the same time you tell me what 
great fuss the Papists make, because the word Sola ("alone") 
is not in the text of Paul."^® 

B. Luther's Answer to the Papists. 

1. You Papists do not know how to translate. I have 
taken great pains to translate correctly, nevertheless, you 
must find fault with me, although one of you has published 
my translation with only some slight changes. — Such is the 
substance of his first answer to the Papists. ^^ 

2. Luther continues : "And in order to return to the 
point. If your Papist makes much unnecessary fuss about 
the word (Sola, alone), say straight out to him, Doctor 
Martinus Luther will have it so, and says, Papists a7id 
donkeys are one and the same thing. Sic volo, sic jubeo, sit pro 
ratione voluntas (thus I will have it, thus I order it, my will 
is reason enough). For we will not be the scholars or the 
disciples of the Papists, but their masters and judges. We 
must once in a way act a little haughtily and noisily ivith 
these jack-asses. " * ° 

3. Luther then tells us that he is more learned than the 
Papists, and continues: "This is my answer to your first 
question ; and as to their unnecessary noise about the word 
Sola, 1 beg of you not to give those donkeys any other or 
further answer, but simply this much : D. Luther will have 
it so, and says he is a Doctor above all Doctors in the whole oj 
Popery." ^^ 

C. Luther s Answer to his Protestant Friends. 

I. "But as to you and our friends (den vnsern), I ivill 
give you my reasons for using the word (Sola). Although 
Rom. III. I did not use Sola, but Solum or Tatitunu So 
carefully (fein) do the donkeys look at my text But, 

38. Ein Send-brieff, von Dolmet-schen, vnd Ffirbit-te der Hei-Iigen. 

D. Mart. Luther. Wittemberg. M.D XXX. Last v^Z^: 

" Gedrückt zu Wit temberg durch Georgen Ehaw." p, 5. " 

Luther does not give the exact words of the Wittenberg New Testament ol 1523; 
He also writes " allein " in this letter, and " alleyn " in h"' Mew Testament. 

39. Ibidem, 59. 

40. Ibidem, 9. / 

41. Ibidem, g-iQ, •' 


nevertheless, elsewhere I have said Sola fide 2in6. 1 will have 
both Solujn and Sola"*'''^ 

2. Luther then assures his friends that he took very great 
pains to translate the Bible into good German, and adds : 
*' / kneTJ very well that here, Rom. III., the word (Sola) is not 
in the Latin and Greek text, and it was not necessary for 
the Papists to teach me that. It is true, these four 
letters, SOLA, are not in it, which letters the jack-asses 
look at as a cow looks at a new gate ; but they do not 
see that, nevertheless, it expresses the meaning of the text ; 
and if our German translation is to be clear and poiverfid, 

it ought to be put in But this is the idiom of our 

German language, if mention is made of two things, of which 
one is asserted and the other excluded, we use the word 
Solum (alone) with the word (not or no), as when we say : 
* The peasant brings only corn (allein korn) and no money.' 
So also: 'I have really no money now, but only corn.' *I have 
only eaten, and not yet drunk.' 'Have you only written, 
and not read it over ? ' and so on in innumerable expressions 
of daily life. Although in all these sentences the Latin or 
Greek language does not do so, nevertheless, the German 
does (use Solum), and it is customary (in German) to add 
the word {alone), in order that the word (not or no) may be 
more poiverf III and clear. For although I also say: 'The 
peasant brings corn and no money,' nevertheless, the word 
(no money) is not as powerful and clear, as when I say 
'The peasant brings only corn, and no money.' "*^ 

These examples selected by Luther show most clearly and 
most strikingly, how manifestly wrong and incorrect it was on 
the part of one of Luther's lawyers, to say that the German word 
"alleyn" must necessarily mean '■'■buf^ (Rom. IIL 28), because 
'\\.precedes the substantive Glawben (faith), instead oifolloiving 
it. One of the sentences used by Luther is : ' Ich 
hab warlich itzt nicht gelt, sondern allein korn.' Now, 
in this sentence ''allein " precedes the substantive. 
Nevertheless, it is absolutely impossible to translate " alleiii " 
with^^bt/t." Let us try t(> do so. Our translation would then 

42, Ibidem, ii, "Soluni"and "Tanlnm" mean "a^one," and never can mean anything 

else. The Latin word ior but ''Sed" does not occur even once in the whole 
letter, which is written by I.nther for the express purpose of giving his reasons 
for using the word " allein." (. om. III. 28.) 

43. Ibidem, 11-13. 


be : " I have really no money now, but hut corn ; " which is 
perfectly ridiculous, whereas, if I translate " allein " with 
" alone" I have perfect sense : " I have really no money now, 
but only corn." Now, Luther tells us that he used the word 
"allein" in Rom. III. 28, in the same sense in which he 
uses it in this sentence. It would, therefore, be a monstroiis 
mistranslation, if Luther's German text was given in English : 
" Man is justified without the works of the law, hit through 

3. Luther then explains in the following pages, how 
necessary it is to consider the idiom of the German language 
when translating, and again tells us what great pains he 
himself took.** 

Now, we are quite willing to admit that Luther's render- 
ing of Rom. III. 28 is thorougJily good German^ there 
cannot be the slightest doubt about that, hut, as a translation, 
it is outrageous. The perfectly literal translation : " So 
halten wir es nun, dass der Mensch gerechtfertigt wird 
durch den Glauben ohne die Werke des Gesetzes," would be 
quite as good German, as the translation given in the English 
Protestant Bible: "Therefore we conclude that a man is justi- 
fied by faith without the deeds of the law," is good English. 

4. He then argues that his translation fully expresses the 
meaning of St. Paul, and tries to prove the doctrine of 
justification by faith alone.* ^ 

5. He concludes his work by stating : " It is not only 
correct, but also most necessary to say it straight out in the 
clearest and most powerful manner : ' Faith alone, without 
the works, makes us pious.' And I am sorry that I did not 
also add ^ all' and ^ of all,' thus: 'without all works of all 
laws,' so that it might come out full and clear (rund). 
Therefore it shall remain in my New Testament, and if all 
the Popish donkeys were to get mad and crazy, they will not 
get it out But this is enough for the present. I will 
(if God gives His grace) say more about it in the book : 
De Justificatione."*'' 

6. It is therefore absolutely certain that Luther really 
added the word alone (Solum or Tantum) to Rom. III. 2S 

44. Ibidem, 13-19. 

45. Ibidem, 19-23, 
%ö. Ibidem, 33. 


We have it on the infallible authority of Dr. Marnn 
Luther himself, that such is indeed the case. For in the 
nineteen pages, which Luther wrote for the express purpose 
of explaining why he used the word " allein," he never once 
tells us, that this word may mean " hut" On the other 
hand, he constantly reminds us, that his "allein," Rom. IIL 
28, means '■'■ Solnm'" ox '■'• Taiihim.'" Now '■''Solum" or 
" Taiduni " are never used in the sense of the conjunction 
"but" (sondern, aber) j on the contrary, both "Solum" and 
"Tantum " necessarily mean "alone." We certainly do not 
agree with Luther, but after all, we prefer the bold straight- 
forward7iess ot the German Reformer, to the petty disJiontsty 
of his English lawyer. 

7. But Luther is determined to express his doctrme oj 
jiistification by faith alo?ie, in a " clear and powerful manner. 
The words of St. Paul: "Without the works of the law," are 
not " clear and poiuerful" enough for him. Luther must trans- 
late them: "Without doin^^ the works of the law." Again, St 
Paul's words : "A man is justified by faith," are Jiot sufficiently 
"clear and powerful." Luther must translate them : "A man 
is justified alone through faith" (Solum or Tantum), whence 
his text would be: "A man is justified alone through 
faith without doing the works of the law," But even that 
can be made still m.ore " clear and powerful." Therefore 
the sentence is turned round, so that the opposition between 
faith and good works may come out still more pointedly and 
strikingly. For, whereas the English Protestant Bible, in 
strict conformity with the Greek text, simply says : " A man 
is justified by faith without the deeds of the law," Luther 
boldly translates the passage : " A man is justified without 
doing the works of the law, alone through faith,"*' 

This position of " faith" at the end of the whole sentence 
adds more power and emphasis to the expression, 

8. Yet even this is scarcely enough, for Luther is sorry, that 
he did not make the text still 7no7'e " clear and powerful," 
and translate it : " Man is justified without all works of all 
laws, alone through faith."* ^ 

47. Dab News Testa-ment Deutzscli. ..^.iucr» 

<8. Ein Send-brieff, von Dolmet-schen, vnd Fürbii-tc der Hei-lieen. 

D. Mart. Luther. Witftmberg. M.D.XXX. Last paga | 

" Gedrückt zu Wit temberg durch Georgen Ehaw." d. 21. 


If this is not reckless tam]:2ring with scripture, I do nof 
know what is. 

9, As to the text itself, it is sufficient to say, that St. Paul 
IS not speaking at all about good works in general, but only 
about " the works of the latv." We Catholics also believe 
that we are justified by faith, as opposed to the works of the 
Jewish law ; but we do not believe, that we are justified by 
faith, as opposed to good works. An act of faith is in 
itself a good work ; whoever, therefore, believes that he is 
justified by faith, also believes that he is justified by a good work. 
But according to St. Paul, faith without charity \s of no use 
(I Cor., xiii.). We Catholics also believe, with St. Paul, that 
faith, including charity, is an unfailing pledge of eternal 

§ II. Luther's Authoritative and Infallible Decrees 
Concerning Marriage. 

r. In a letter to Chancellor Brück, January, 1524, Luther 
gives his opinion concerning the intention of a man to marry 
a second wife. He writes : " / confess that I ca?mot forbid 
a person to marry several tuives, 7ior is it contrary to the 
Holy Scriptures •' but I should not like to see this kind of 
thing now for the first time introduced among Christians,"*® 

2. In the year 1539, Luthe»- positively allowed Prince 
Philip of Hesse to have two wives at the same time. I quote 
from de Wette, who gives the whole document both in Latin 
and in German. According to de Wette, the German seems to 
be only a translation , the original copy written by Melanchthon 
is then the original. De Wette was a Protestant Professor 
ot theology at Basle, in the early part of this century. In a 
few introductory remarks to this important document, which 
is signed by Luther and other theologians, de Wette says : 
" It (the letter) concerns the double marriage of this Prince 

(Philip of Hesse) In the document written out by 

Melanchthon's own hand (literally, "Through Melanchthon's 
pen") the theologians granted the dispensation, accompanied 
with a representation of the difficulties of the case, and 
under condition of its being kept secret."^'* 

49, " Ego sane fateor, me non po";^e prohibere, si qurs pl'ires velit uxores ducere, ne; 

repugnat sacris literis." De Wette 11. 459. The letter was written lo 
January, 1524. 

50. D? Wette V 236; 


3- De Wette also informs us that this document is found 
in the Altenburg (viii. 977), the Leipsic (xxii. 469), and the 
VValch (x. 886) editions of Luther's works, but that these 
three editions suppressed the passage which grants the dis- 
fejisation for the second marriage. Is this honest?^'- 

4. I do not quote from the document, without having 
read every word of it most carefully, from beginning to end, 
in the original Latin text. The letter is addressed " To the 
most Serene Prince and Lord, Philip. Landgrave of Hesse, 
Count in Catzenelnbogen, Diez, Ziegenhayn, Nidda and 
Schauenburg, our most gracious Lord."^^ 

5. I will now give a summary of the whole document, 
which covers about five pages of de AVette. It will then be 
impossible to tell me that I am quoting without the context. 
The more minortant passages will be given in full. 

After the introduction, the principal thoughts occur in 
the following order : 

6. Luther and the seven other theologians inform the 
Prince, that they could not sanction the universal introduc- 
tion of polygamy. " Your Highness will yourself sec clearly 
enough, what a difference there is between making a universal 
law, and making use of a dispensation in a certain case for 
grave reasons, by virtue of a divine concession. But no 
dispensation, granted in opposition to God, can be valid."^^ 

7. The theologians then answer the objection which they 
themselves raise : " What is right before God, certainly ought 
to be allowed." That is to say, God does not forbid polygamy; 
why then do you not allow any one who chooses, to have 
several wives? In answer to this Luther remarks, that 
"other circumstances must be taken into consideration."^* 

8. Luther and the rest then "approach nearer to the 
question" of the double marriage. First of all they remind 
his Highness, that in the beginning of the world only one 
husband and one wife were allowed by God. After that 
these theologians continue : " It is certain that later on, in 
the law of Moses, men were allowe "1 to have two wives, as the 
Scriptuie, Deut. XXL, testifies." "J his is oerfcctly true. 

5T, Ibidem, 236. 

52. Ibidem, 237. 

53. Ibidem, 237-238. * 

54. Ibidem, 238. 

Luther and the others, however, declare that on account of 
the first institution of marriage by God, and also on account 
of the words of Christ : " Ther^ will be two in one flesh," a 
law allowing two wives must rot be made in the Church. 
Nevertheless they add the foUowi ig important words : '■'■Never- 
theless, iti certain cases there is room for dispe7isation. If 
a person were a prisoner among foreign nations, and were to 
take another wife, for the welfan: and health of his body, or 
if a person had a wife suffering from leprosy, we do not 
know on what ground it would be justifiable to condemn 
such a man, were he, in these cases, to marry another woman, 
with the advice of his pastor, having no intention to introduce 
a new law, but (only) seeking a remedy for his necessity." ^^ 

9. Luther then gives powerful motives, why it would be 
better or safer if the Prince were to give up the thought of 
a second marriage ; he also advises him to abandon his 
impure life. ^ ^ 

10. The document continues: "Finally, if your Highness 
has altogether made up your mind to marry another wife, 

we declare tmder an oath that it ought to be done secretly No 

contradictions or scandals of any importance will be the 
consequence of this (of keeping the marriage secret), for it is 
nothing unusual for princes to have concubines ; and 
although the reason could not be understood by ordinary 
people, nevertheless, more prudent persons would under- 
stand it, and this modest way of living (HI) would please 

more than odultciy nor are the sayings of others to be 

cared for, if our conscience is in order. I'hus a fid thus 
far only do we approve of it.""'' 

" JFor what was allowed in the law of Moses concerfting 

marriage, the Gospel does not revoke or forbid. Your 

Highness has, therefore, not only the decision (testimonium) 
of us all in case of necessity, but also our foregomg 
considerations. ""** 

SS- Ibidem, 238. "Certis tamen caslbus locus est dispensationL" 

56, Ibidem, 238-241. 

57, Ibidem, 241. Latin : " Si recte cum consclentia agatur." " Sic et in tantum 

hoc approbamus " 

58, Ibidem, 241, Latin: "Nam quod circa matrlmonium in lege Mosis fuit permis« 

sum, Evangelium non revocat aut vetat Habet itaque Cels. Vestra non 

tantum omnium nostrum testimonium in casu necessitatis, sed etiam antec«- 
denies nosivas consideralione* " 


That is to sa/ : We allow the marriage, but at the same 
time we wish you also to consider, whether it would not be 
more advisable to give up all thoughts of the double 

II. The letter concludes by saying that it would not be 
expedient for the Prince to take counsel of the Emperor in 
this matter. ^ ' 

j9. "Given at Wittenberg on the Wednesdavafter the 
Feast of St. Nicolas MDXXXIX. (Dec. lo, 1539). 

Your Highness* 

Willing and obedient Servants; 

Martinus Lutherus. 
Philippus Melanchthon. 
Martinus Bucerus. 
Antonius Corvinus. 

Adam F 

Johannes Leningus. 
Justus Winther. 
Dionysius Melander."^" 

13. The second marriage of Prince Philip of Hesse took 
place a few months later, early in 1540. 

14. Köstlin, Luther's most prominent German 
champion, confesses that "this double marriage" is the 
^'■greatest blot in the history of the Reformation and in 
the life of Luther r^^ 

We may add that the blot is so great, as to blot out 
every possibility of our ever looking upon Luther as a 
Reformer saiictioned and cornmissioned by Ahnighty God. 
For marriage is one of the most important and most essential 
elements both of the social and of the religious order. And 
God would not allow a Refonner really chosefi by Himself to 
trample under foot the law concerning the unity of marriage, 
which was promulgated by Christ, the first-born Reformer 
of the World. 

15. If this weighty document, which sanctioned 
bigamy, had been issued by one of the Popes of ihe 

5g. Ibidem, 241, 
to. Ibidem, 242. 
61. Köstlin, Luther und J. Janssen, Third edition, i! 


Catholic Church, with what an outburst of indignation would 
It not have been hailed by the whole Protestant world I How 
many Anti-Romish tracts would have been written on the 
subject ! To what a pitch of excitement would not the 
eloquence of the Exeter Hall declamator have raised his 
astounded audience 1 But, alas ! this dispensation 
was granted — not in Rome, but in Wittenberg — the 
cradle, the head, the heart, and the centre of Protestantism 
in those days. Unfortunately, it does not bear the 
signature of any Roman Catholic Pope, but the 
name of Martin Luther is written under it in indelible cha- 
racters. And only a few years before this took place, Pope 
Clement VII. absolutely refused to sanction the second 
marriage of Henry VIII., King of England. In consequence 
of this, England was lost to the Catholic faith. But the Pope 
would sooner see a whole country torn away from the unity 
of the Church, than give his sanction to a marriage, that was 
opposed to the Irw of God. 

1 6. However outrageous this document may oe, it is far 
out-done by one of the most disgraceful sermons, that have 
ever been preached. I allude to Luther's sermon on 
marriage, which I quote with a clear knowledge of the whole 
context. It was preached in Wittenberg, in 1522. 

17. With the authority of a Christian preacher, with the 
additional authority which the extraordinary power of his 
popular eloquence gave him, with the unlimited authority 
which his exceptional position conferred upon him, from the 
lofty eminence of a once Christian pulpit, in the presence of 
men and women, married and unmarried, young and old, 
Luther poslfively sa?ictioned adultery in the clearest and most 
unmistakeable manner. It is true that he only allows it in 
certain given circumstances, and that he requires the previous 
anproval of the community. But this does not alter the 
truth of my statement."^ 

18. I have read the whole sermon from beginning to 
£nd in the original Wittenberg edition of 1522. On my 
own authority, I calmly, deliberately and conscientiously 
accuse Luther of publicly sanctioning adultery. Moreover, 
I consider it to be a most aggravating circumstance that 

■t Vom Eelichec Leben. Marlinus Luther. Wittemberg, 

flD.B.rjii. p. 1718. 


Luther did so — not in the excitement of the moment — but 
in a prjn'ed sermon that is a most carefully-worded, 
systematic treatise on marriage. 

19. The substance of the passage will be found in 

Now 1 ask, is this the teaching of God or of Satan ? 


I. Luther's Intolerance against the Jews. 

I. Luther writes: " Now what are we Christians to do with 

this rejected, damned people of the Jews? I will give my 

honest advice (trewen rat)." 

" First, their synagogues or schools are to he set on fire, 
and whatever will not burn, is to be covered and heaped 
over with earth, so that never again shall one find 
stone or cinder of them left. And this is to be 
done in order to honour our Lord and Christianity, so that 
God may see that we are Christians " 

** Secondly, their houses are likewise to be broken down and 
destroyed, for they do exactly the same in them as they 
also do in their schools. Therefore they may perhaps 
be allowed a roof or a stable over them, as the Gypsies are, in 
order that they may know they are not the lords in 
our country, as they boast to be " 

•' Thirdly, all their Prayer Books and Talmuds are to 
be taken away from them, in which such idolatry, lies, 
curses, and blasphemies are taught." 

" Fourthly, their Rabbis (Priests) are to he forbidden, 
under pain of capital punishment, to teach any 7nore " 

'■^Fifthly, the Jews are to be entirely denied legal protection 
when using the roads in the country (Das man den Juden 

das Geleid vnd Strasse aufifhebe), for they have 

no business to be in the country " 

" Sixthly, usury is to be forbidden them, and all their 
cash and their treasures of silver and sold are to be taken 

$3. Köstlin, Luther and J. Janssen, pa^c ja. 


away from them, and to be put aside to be preserved. And 
for this reason. All that they have (as was said above), they 
have stolen and robbed from us through their usury." ^* 

2. Thirty-seven pages further on, Luther addresses him- 
self to the princes, and says: '■'■Burn their synagogues. Forbid 
them all that I have mentioned above. Force them to work, 
and treat them with every kind of severity (nach aller 
vnbarmhertzigkeit), as Moses did in the desert and slew three 

thousand If that is of no use, we must drive them away 

like mad dogs, in order that we may not be partakers of their 
abominable blasphemy and of all their vices, and in order 
that we may not deserve the anger of God and be damned 
with them. / have dotie f?iy duty. Let every one see hotv 
he does his. I am excused." ^^ 

3. These words are taken from the old edition of 1543. 
The title of the book is : "About the Jews and their Lies." 
// contains very nearly joo pages, and was published only 
thi'ee years before Luthei^s death. 

IL Luther's Intolerance Against Roman Catholics 

1. Luther says: *' All those that step in to defend tht 
authority of the Bishops and are subject to them with willing 
obedience are the real (eyge) servants of the Devil, and 
fight against the order and law of God."®® 

2. Luther writes : " Nobody can be a Papist, without 

being at least a murderer, a robber, a persecutor // is 

clear etiough that they (the Papists^ are the Christians of the 

3. Luther says that Bishops under the Po]De are " Wolves, 
tyrants, murderers of souls, and the Apostles of Antichrist to 
corrupt the world. And, not to mince matters (erauss 
schütte), everybody ought to know that the Bishops who 

64, Von den Jü-den vnd jren Lügen. D. M. Luth. 

Gedrückt zu Wittemberg, Durch Hans Lufft. 

/lD.2).XLin. p. 220-224. 
65 Ibidem, 261-262. 

66, Wider den falsch genanttS geystlichen stand 

des Babst vn der bisch-ofFeii. D. Mart. 

Luther Ecclesiasten tzu Wittemberg. 1522 

"D. Luthers Bulla vnd Reformation." p. 38. 

67, Erlanger Ausgabe, LXV. 26-27. Only part of this work was published by 

Luther himself He withdrew it in deference to Kurfürst John, who did not 
wish Duke George to be mentioned in it. It was not withdrawn on account 
of any harsh language against Catholics in general. 


now rule over many towns are not Christian Bishops accord- 
ing to Divine order, but according to devilish order and 
human wickedness. It is also certain that they are the 
messengers and vicars of the Devil." ^^ 

Some of the Protestant Bishops who also " rule over many 
towns" have been lately praising Luther ; let them remember 
what the German Reformer says about such Bishops. 

4. As to the "Cardinals Archbishops, Bishops, 

Abbots," etc., Luther tells us that "//zi? Rhine would be 
scarcely large enough to drown all the scoundrels. (Buben)"" ^ 

5. " If the fury of the Romanists goes on in this way, it 
seems to me that no remedy is available, unless the 
Emperor, the Kings, and Princes should put on full 
strength to wage war against these pests of the whole 
world, and decide the question, no longer with words, 

but with the sword Why do we not wash 02ir hands 

in their blooa?''^^ 

III. Luther's Intolerance Against Protestants 
Differing From Himself. 

I. To simplify the matter I take nearly all ray 
quotations from one particular book of Luther. It was pub- 
lished in 1544, and again in 1545, only one year before the 
Reformer's death. // is written against those who will not 
believe that the Bread and Wine are changed into the Body 
and Blood of Christ ; and it will be so much the more 
interesting, sitice many of Luthei''s admirers here in England 
still refuse to believe in the Real Presence. The edition of 
1544 contains forty-four pages. I have looked through the 
whole of it and have selected the first ten passages according 
to the order in which they occur in the work itself. I am 
certain that I quote in perfect harmony with the context. 

2. Luther writes: "As I am now near the grave, I will 
bring this testimony and this glory with me before the 
judgment seat of my dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ 

68, Wider den falsch genantte geystlichen stand 

des Babst vn der bisch-offen. D. Mart. 

Luther Ecclesiasten tzu Wittemberg. 1522. 

"Die vierde tugent des Bapst." p. 36. 

69, Erlanger Ausgabe _ XXIV. 166. 

70, Tomus primus omnium operum Reverend! Patris D. M. L Jenas. M.CLXXl-X 

fol. 68. 

that with all my heart I have condemned and avoided 
the enthusiasts and the enemies of the Sacrament, Carlstadt, 
Zwingli, Oecolampad, Stenckfeld, and their disciples in 
Zürich, and wherever they may be "''^ 

3. " I have been obliged (and still am obliged) to despair of 
the salvation of his soul (Zwingli, the Reformer of Switzer- 
land), if he died in such sentiments, although his disciples 
and followers make a saint a7id a martyr out of him. Oh, 
Lord God, what a saint and martyr ! For in this book 
(Christianae fidei expositio), he not only remains an enemy 
of the Blessed Sacrament, but he also becomes altogether a 
heatheti ""* 

4. " I would, I say, far sooner be cut into piecci, ur 
burnt, a hundred times over, than be of one opinion or oi one 
mind with Stenckfeld, Zwingli, Carlstadt, Oecolampad, and 
whoever else they may be, the wicked enthusiasts, or agree 
with their teaching "'^^ 

5. "I would have known well nriw to give them 

their proper name, as being not m -dy devourers of 
bread and swallowers of wine, but devourers of souls 
and 7nurderers of souls, and as haii-g a satanical, a 
thoroughly satanical, a stipcr-satanical, blasphemous heart and 
a lying mouth. And I should have told the truth, because it 
cannot be denied, that with such blasphemies of theirs they 
have been telling shameless lies against their own conscience, 
and as yet they do no penance for it, yea they even boast of 

their wickedness. Well, no Christian ought to pray for 

the enthusiasts "^* 

He adds that this is said of the teachers, not of the poor 
people who are misled. 

6. "I look upon them all as forming one faction 

(literally "cake") who will not believe that the bread of 

the Lord ifi the last Supper, is His true 7iatural body, which 
the wicked man or Judas receives into his mouth quite as 
much as St. Peter and all the Saints. Whoever, I say, will 
not believe that, he must not trouble me with letters, writitigs 

71. Kurtz bekentnis Doctor Martini Luthers, 

vom heiligen Sa-cra.ment. Anno /Bi.S.i'!!!!!. 

72. Ibidem, 6. 

73. Ibidem, 8-9. 

74. Ibidem, 13. 

or Ufords. Ana he must not hope for any communion with, 

me. "^5 

I would like to say to many Protestants in this country : 
First believe in the Real Presence before you praise Luther, tor 
he will have nothing to do with you, if you do not believe in it. 

7. Luther goes on to say that "they (Zwingli and others) 
have been found out and proved to be manifest blas- 
phemers and liars. First, when in the beginning they taught, 
there was nothing but merely bread and wine in the Last 
Supper "^" 

8. "/ should have to cofidemn 7)iyself with them into the 
depths of Hell., were I to hold with them, or to have comrmi- 
nion with them., or were I to be silefit, if I find out or hear, 

that they boasted of being in communion with me. The 

Devil and his mother tnay do that, or be silent in such a case 
(dazu), but not I "" 

9. " For it is zmdoubtedly true that whoever neither does 
nor will properly believe one article (after he has been advised 
and instructed), certai^ily does not believe any o?ie (article) with 

earnest a?id true faith Therefore you must either believe 

everything or nothing at all "^® 

ID. "Thus it will be of no use to the enthusiasts that 
they talk very big about the Sacrament, about the 
spiritual eating and driftkifig of the body and blood 
of Christ, and about the love and union of Christians. For 
these are merely the leaves of the fig tree, with which Adam 

and Eve wished to cover and adorn themselves, that 

their sin might not be seen by God. Their great labours^ 
their teaching a?id writing, their earnest, chaste lives will be 
of still less avail to them. All that is mere heathenism. 
Moreover, their belief in God the Father, Son, afid Holy 
Ghost, and in Christ the Saviour is lost, all, 1 say, is lost, 
with all the articles (of faith), however truly and correctly 
they may mention or utter them with their false, blasphemous 
mouths, because they deny this one article, and give the lie to 
what Christ says in the Sacrament : 'Take (the bread) and 
eat, this is my body, which shall be delivered for you, etc.'"^" 

75. Ibidem, 24. 

76. Ibidem, 25. 

77. Ibidem, 26. 
"S. Ibidem, 2q 
7g. Ibidem, -^3-14. 


ti. On the following page, Luther makes this objection : 

" You might say, ' O, my dear Luther, it is to be hoped 

that God will not be so very sternly and cruelly severe, as to 
damn people on account of one article.'" His answer 
is, that people will be damned, even if they deny only one 
article. " It is to be hoped that His humble, sub- 
missive, obedient creature will not deny and blaspheme a 

single word Now, the heretics deal with the Word of 

God, just as if it was the word of a man, or the word of a 
fool ; they despise it, make fun of it, and blaspheme it. And 
they could do everything better themselves, according to 
their own pretty fancies, and at the same time (dazu) they 
will not be taught. In such a case all is lost. And here 
the great [and] numerous good works and labours will not 
counterbalance the one bad point."®" 

12. Now, what is the doctrine concerning the Blessed 
Sacrament which Luther defends in this book ? Let him 
answer himself. With unmistakeable clearness he assures us, 
that it is the same doctrine "<zx was taught under the Pope, 
which (doctrine) we also retain, and still teach, as the true, 
ancient. Christian Church has taught for fiftee}i hundred years, 
(For the Pope did not institute the Sacrament nor did he 
invent it)."^'^ 

1 3 . Anybody who studies Luther's writings will be surprised 
at the vigour of his style when writing in defence of the Blessed 
Sacrament. In one of his numerous works on the subject 
he assures us, that his hatred against the Catholic Church 
would most decidedly have led him to deny the Real Presence 
of the body and blood of Christ in the Last Supper, had it 
been possible for him to do so ; but he adds that he could 
not find any other satisfactory explanation of the words of 
Christ : "This is my body." 

Let us now listen to this extraordinary statement of the 
Reformer; he writes: " If five years ago D. Carlstadt, or 
anybody else, had been able to persuade me that there is 
nothing but bread and wine in the Sacrament, he would, I 
confess, have rendered me a great service. I have under- 
gone severe struggles and have twisted and turned to get over 

So, Ibidem, 35-37. 
81. Ibidem. 10. 


// (belief in the Real Presence), hecmise I was fully aware 
that it would have beefi the most severe blow which I could 

have dealt against Popery But I am in prison. T ca?inot 

escape, the text ('This is my body') is too 'power/id, and no 
words can make it mean anythitig elseP^'^ 

14. Now, after expressly mentioning the Blessed Sacra- 
ment, Luther said in his book against the King of England : 
"Whoever teaches differently from what I have taught 
herein, or condemns me for it^ he condemns God and must 
be a child of Hell."^» 

15. Thus, you must either believe in the Real Presence 
of our Lord's Body and Blood in the Last Supper, as the 
Catholic Church does, or else you are a child of Hell. 
Such is the infallible teaching of Pope Martin Luther L 
concerning Protestants differing from himself 

82. Eyn brieff an die Christen Zu Straspurg 

widder den schwer-mer geyst. Martini Luther. 

Der HERR kennet den weg der ge-rechteii, aber der Gottlosen v/^g wird 
vmbkommen. Psal. i. Wittemberg. p. 7. 

I3. Antwortt deutsch Mart, Lu-thers auff König Henrichs von 

Engelland buch, Lügen thun myr nicht, 

Warheyt schew ich nicht, 1323 On the last page we read ! 

•• Gedruckt tzu Wittemberg, durch Nickell Schyrlentt, 

/H>,S».Jf ff." n. j-s. 

Pat^t TT. 

In order that the reader may have a correct idea of 
fAitlier's bearing on the dreadful Revolution of 1525, we 
give our quotations in this chapter in chronological order. 


1. February, 1520, Luther wrote to his friend George 
Spalatin : "If you understand the Gospel rightly, I beseech 
you not to believe that it can be carried on without tumult, 

scandal, sedition The word of God is a sword, is war, is 

ruiti, is scandal, is perdition, is poiso7i."^*' 

2. In the same year, Luther wrote these remarkable 
words : " If we punish thieves with the gallows, robbers with 
the sword, heretics with fire, 71. hy do we not still jnore 
attack with every kind of weapon these teachers of pei'ditiofi, 
these Cardinals, these Popes, and that whole abonmiatioti of 
the Romish Sodom, which, without ceasing, corrupts the 
Church of God, and why do we not wash our hands in their 
blood? "8^ 

The inflammatory power of this violent language is not 
very much mitigated by saying, that Luther here addressed 
himself only to the princes. 


3. Luther publishes "A sincere advice of Martin Lutherto 
all Christians to abstain from revolt and rebellion."^ ^ 

84, De Wette I. 417. 

85. D Martini Lutheri Opera Latina, curavit pr. Henricus Sclimidt, Frankofurti ad Erlangi, Sumptibus C. Heyderi et H Zimmeri. Seven Volumes, 1865- 
1873. My quotation is taken from Vol II. 107. The passage is so striking that 
I will give the exact Latin words : '" Si fures furca, si latrones gladio, si 
haereticos igne plectimus, cur non niagis hos magistros perditionis, hos 
Cardinales, hos Fapas et totam istam romanae Sodomae colluviem, quae 
ecclesiam Dei sine fine corrumpit, omnibus arrais impetimus, et manus nostras 
in sanguine istorum lavamus?" 
9*. Eyn Irew vorraanung Mar-tini Luther tzu alien Chri-sten. Sich tztj vorhuten 
fur auffruhr vnnd Emporune. Vuittemberg. 


Now, I do not exactly doubt his sincerity, but the work 
contains most inflammatory expressions, and the people, who 
were becoming more and more excited from day to day, were 
likely to disregard the sound "advice," and to find new 
nourishment for their revolutionary tendency in the violent 
language to which I,uther had recourse in some parts of 
the work. 

4 In this very book Luther writes : "It seems as if a 
rebellion is going to break out, and Priests, Monks, Bishops, 
with the whole clerical body are about to be murdered 
and driven out, if they do not prevent it by an earnest, 
visible change for the better. For the poor man, in excite- 
ment and grief on account of the damage he has suffered 
in his goods, his body, and his soul, has been tried 
too much, and has been oppressed by them beyond all 
measure, in the most perfidious manner. Henceforth 
he can and will no longer put up with such a state 
of things, and moreover, he has ample reasoti to break forth 
•with the flail and the chib as Karsthans threatens to do " ^ ^ 

5. In the same worTc Luther writes : " Whereas I have 

said that Popery and the clerical body will not be upset 

by the hand of man, nor by rebellion, but that its wickedness 
is so abominable that no punishment is sufificient for it, except 
only the anger of God, without any (human) intervention ; 
/ have never yet been i?idnced to keep those back who threaten 
with the fist and with flails " ^ ® 

I ask, could the poor peasants be expected to listen to 
Luther's " advice " against rebellion, after having read such 
inflammatory words as these ? 

6. July 26th, 1522, Luther writes to George Spalatin: 
•* Do not either fear or hope that I will spare them (the 
princes) ; if they have to suffer from disturbances and 
reverses, they will not suffer it through any doing of ours, 
but in consequence of their own tyranny,"^" 

7. In this year Luther also wrote a most violent book 
against the Pope and the Bishops. It must be remembered 
that at that time many Bishops were sovereigns in their own 

87. Ibidem, 3. 

88. Ibidem, 6. 

8g. De Wette II. 23. 


dioceses, just as the Pope was formerly King in the Papal 

8. In this work Luther says : " We must avoid a Bishop 
who does not teach the word of God, no less than the Devil 

himself. But if they say there is reason to apprehend 

(the outbreak of) a rebellion against the spiritual authority j 

then answer Is it reasonable that the souls of all should 

be murdered for ever, in order that the temporal display 
of these ghastly wretches (larven) should remain undis- 
turbed ? It would be better if all the Bishops were murdered, 
all institutions and convents rooted out, rather than one soul 

should be lost Yet if they will not hear the Word of 

God, but rage and break out into acts of banishing, burn- 
ing, murdering [when did the Bishops do that ?] and all 
kinds of evil, is it tiot most reasonable that they should en- 
counter a powerful rebellion, which will root them out froJK 
the earth ? And we could only laugh, were this to happen."^ ^ 

9. In the same work Luther writes: ^'^ All those who 
help to upset the dioceses and to destroy the power of the 
Bishops, who cast bodily life, goods aiid honour into the scale, 
they are the beloved children of God, and true Christians; 
they defend the commandment of God, and contend against 
the order of the Devil." Luther, however, adds that he 
does not wish the Bishops to be attacked " with the fist and 
the sword ; for they are unworthy of such a punishment, nor 
is it of any avail."® '^ 

10. It is with such revolutionary language as this that 
" D. Luther's Bull and Reformation " begin. The con- 
cluding words of this remarkable document are worth 
recording. " This is my Bull, D. Luther's, which giveth 
the grace of God as a reward to all those who observe it and 
carry it out. Anien."^^ 


11. The few quotations which follow are taken from 
Luther's work : " About worldly authority, how far we are 

go, Wider den falsch genantte geystlichen stand 

des Babst v3 der bisch-offen. D. Mart. 

Luther Ecclesiasten tzu Wittemberg. 152» 

Last page ; " Gedruckt tzfi Wittemberg durch Nickel Schyrlentz. 

jrm tzwey vn tzwentzigste Jlar." p, 7-8. 

91. Ibidem, " D liUthers Bulla vnd Reformation," p. 38. 

03. Ibidem, 44. 


obliged to obey it" The most critical German edition of 
Luther's AVorks, the Erlangen edition says : "This in 
some places rather violent publication was occasioned by 
the refusal to admit Luther's translation of the N.T. in some 
German countries, and by orders given that the subjects 
who were in possession of it, should hand it over to the 

12. In the second part of this work Luther answering the 
question: "How far does worldly authority extend?" 
savs : " But do you want to know why God has 
ordained that the temporal princes should make such 
shameful mistakes ? I will tell you. God has handed them 
over to their wicked heart, and will make an end of 
them '">'- 

13. "You must know that from the beginning of the 
world a wise prince is a rara avis, and still more so a pious 
prince ; they are generally the greatest fools or the worst 
rascaLs on earth therefore, as regards them we may 
always look out for the worst and expect little good from 
them "»^ 

14. " There are very few pri?ices tvho are not looked upon 
as fools or rascals " ® " 

15. Addressing the princes, Luther says, '•'■ People cannot, 
people will 7iot, put up with your tyranny and caprice fo/ 
any length of time " ^ '' 

16. He raises the objection, "There must be an 
authority even among Christians." And his answer is, 
"Among Christians there ought not to be, and there cannot 
be, any authority. But they are all at the same time subject 
one to another."®^ 


17. We shall now consider in what choice language 
Luther wrote, when, only one year before the outbreak ol 
the Rebellion, he published a book, the title of which is : 

93. Erlanger Ausgabe XXII. 59. 

94. Von welltlich-er vberkeytt wie weytt man yhr gehorsam 

schuldig sey. Mart. Luther Vuiltemberg 

ffl>,S).yfÜi. On last page: "Gedruckt zu Wittemberg Duici 
Nickel Schyrlentz, Anno. /m..S).J'S'Üt " p. 30. 

95. Ibidem, 34. 

96. Ibidem, 37. 

97. Ibidem, 37. 
g8. Ibidem, 3§, 


"Two Imperial, Inconsistent, and Disgusting Orders con« 
cerning Luther."®' 

i8. " Here you see how the poor mortal sack of worms 
(Madensack), the Emperer, who is not sure of his life for a 
moment, shamelessly boasts that he is the true, supreme 
protector of the Christian faith "loo 

19. Nor are the last words of this work very compli- 
mentary to the German princes. Luther writes : " From 
the bottom of my heart I bewail such a state of things in 
the hearing of all pious Christians, that like me they may 

bear with pity such rrazy, stupid, silly, furious, mad fools 

May God deliver us from them, and out of mercy give us other 
rulers. Amen." ^ " ^ 


20. The rebellion is now on the point of breaking out. The 
peasants appeal to Luther. He writes a book, in which he 
advises them to keep quiet, and bids the princes give in to 
such demands as are reasonable. ^ ° ^ 

It would be an injustice to Luther to say, that he was not 
sincere in this his endeavour to stop the full outbreak of the 
revolution. All that can be said is, that even in this work 
he more than once used language calculated, rather to 
excite, than to calm the disturbed minds of the peasants. 

2 1 . This work also contains umnistakeable proofs of the 
religious character of the rebellion. For the peasants published 
twelve articles, in which they insisted on what they looked 
upon as their rights. Now, Luther tells us that they " tried 
to prove (the articles) with szuidry texts of Scripture." 
Moreover the peasants say, that they are willing to be advised, 
provided this be done '■'■ivith clear, manifest, undeniable texts of 
Scripture^ The "first article" ran thus : "The whole Parish 
shall have the power of electing and of deposing 
their Parish Priest." The third article declared: "There are 
to be no serfs, because Christ has liberated us all."^^^ 

22. I said that even in this work Luther made use of 
expressions which, unintentionally on his part, were calculated 

99, Erlanger Ausgabe XXIV. 210. 
i*o. Ibidem, 236. 
loi. Ibidem, 236-237. 

102, Ermanunge zum fride aufif die iwolff artickel der Bawer schafft 

in Schwaben. Mart. Lutber Wittemberg. i5»5» 

103. Ibidem, 3, 31, 33. 


to increase the excitement among the peasants. He writes : 
*' First, as to such disorder and rebellion, we are indebted to 
nobody on earth but to you, Princes, and Lords, especially t« 
you, blind Bishops and mad Priests and Monks, who even 
now-a-days are obstinate, and do not cease to rage and storm 
against the Holy Gospel, although you know that it is true, 
and you cannot refute it Moreover, in your worldly govern- 
ment you do nothing else but cheat ancf treasure up, in order 
to serve your splendour and your pride, till the poor 
simple people neither can, nor will, put up with it any 
longer "i"* 

23. On the following page Luther continues : "For this 
you must know, my dear Lords, God ordains it in 
such a manner thai people Tieither can, nor will, nor 
ought to put up with your tyranny for any length of time. 
You must change, and give in to the Word of God. If you 
do not this in a friendly, willing spirit, you will have to be 
forced into it by violent and subversive measures. 
If these peasants dont do it, others will have to do it. And even 
if you were to overcome them all, they are nevertheless not 
beaten. God will raise up others. For He is deter?nined to 
strike you, and He will strike you. My dear Lords, it is not 
peasants who oppose you, it is God himself who opposes you, in 
order to punish your fury »los 

24. "They have presented twelve articles, some of which 
are so reasonable and fair that they must deprive you of 
your good name before God and the world "^**^ 

25. " As to the first article, in which they claim liberty 
to hear the Gospel and the right of electing a Parish Priest, 
you cannot refuse it and yet save appearances.. "107 

26. " The other articles, in as far as they deal with 
(anzeigen) bodily oppression are also reasonable " ^ ® * 

27. In the second part of the same work, Luther 
addresses himself to the peasants, and says : " My dear 
friends, you have hitherto always heard of my admitting 
what, I am sorry to say, is only too true and undeniable, 

104, Ibidem, 5. 

X05. Ibidem, 6. 

X06. Ibidem, 9. 

107. Ibidem, 9. ' < 

?©8. Ibidem, 9-?s>> 


that the princes and lords who forbid the preachihg ©I" the 
Gospel and who oppress the people in such an unfoAVabl© 
manner, are ivorthy^ mid have well deserved that God should 
cast them dottni from their seats, as they sin mightily ägäimi 
God and man, nor have they any excuse "löo 

28. After this, TjUther most earnestly exhorts the^people 
to have nothing to do witli rebellion or revolution. But wa§ 
it not almost certain, that the excited peasants would despiii 
the good advice, and would lay stress only on those parts ol 
Luther's work, in which he speaks most vigorously about th© 
injustice of the princes and the oppression of the peasants ? 

29. At any rate, Luther's well-meant advice was despised 
by the p.aoAuls. A most frightful revolution, which had 
already partly broken out before the publication of Luther's 
work, swept over several parts of Germany. Luther became 
so vexed, that he wrote a book " Against the murderous 
and rapacious hordes of the peasants."^ ^° 

This was in 1525. I most carefully read the whole work 
from beginning to end at the British Museum, London, in 
one of the old copies printed in the same year. 

30. Luther says : " A rebellious man, of whom this 
can be proved, is already an outlaw in the sight of God 
and of the Emperor, so that the first who is able and 
willing to strangle him, does what is right and good. For in the 
case of a man in open rebellion, everyone is both chief Justice 
and executioner, just as when a fire breaks out, whoever can 
extinguish it first, does the best service Therefore, who- 
ever can, ought to strike in here, to strangle and stab, secretly 
or ope7ily, and he ought to remember that there is nothing 
more poisonous, disastrous, diabolical than a man in 
rebelHon ; fust as 7ve must kill a mad dog if you don't kill 
him, he will kill you and a whole country with you "in 

-31. Luther adds : " I think there is not one Devil left 
in Hell, but they have all gone into the peasants. The 
raging is exceedingly great and beyond all measure."^ ■^^ 

log. Ibidem, lo. 

tio, Wider die Mordischen vB Reubischen Rotten 

der Bawren : Martinus Luther : Wittembeij^ 

Psalm, vii. Se3me tuck werden jn selbs tref-fen, 

Vnd seyn mütwill, wird vber jn aussgeen. iS«5' 

III. Ibidem, 3. 
IIS. Ibidem, 4. 


32. Again he says: *^For the first, if the authorities can and 
will strike and punish such peasatits^ without first ofi^eringthem 
just and reasonable terms, I tuill not forbid them, although 
it is not according to the Gospel. For it (the authority) has 
the full right to do so, since the peasants now no 
longer fight for the Gospel, but have manifestly become 

rebellious murderers, robbers, blasphemers, whom even 

heathen authorities have the right and the power to punish ; 
yea, they are even obliged to punish such rascals "113 

33. Luther, however, advises tliat after having prayed to 
God, the princes should, byway of superabundant generosity, 
make just and reasonable offers to tlie ^' mad peasants." " Then, 
if that won't do, let them immediately draw the sword " 1 1 * 

34. He writes: "The present time is so strange 
that a prince can gain Heaven by spilling blood easier 
than another person can by praying."-'--'-^ 

The times were, indeed, strange. For while the 
princes were gaining Heaven by spilling the blood of one 
hundred thousand unfortunate peasants, Luther found that 
the time had come for him to marry Catherine Bora. 

31^. This cruel book of Luther caused such an amount 
of excitement, even among the friends of the Reformer, that 
he thought himself called upon to write a work in vindi- 
cation of his previous publication. It was published in the 
same year, 1525. I have looked through it very carefully. 
Luther retracts nothing, but upholds everything that he 
had said in it. He expressly mamtains that it was quite 
ri.o-ht for him to say, that everybody ought to strike into the 
peasants, strangle them, stab them secretly or openly. 
Luther's deliberate opinion concerning his previous publi- 
cation is clearly expressed in the following passage : 
"Therefore my little book (against the peasants) is quite in 
tiie rip'ht and shall remain so, even if all the world were to be 
scandalized at it."'-'- ^ 

36. In order to bring Luther's behaviour towards the 
peasants home to the people of this country, let me make the 
tbllowm"' supposition. A man publishes a book in Ireland, m 

xij. Ibidem, 4-5. ' 

: ,4^ Ibidem, 5, 

J , , .hidem, 6. 

ani3, Ei-langer Ausgabe, XXIV. 399. 


which he says to the Irish Landlords : The tenants *' neither 
can, nor will, nor ought to put up with your tyranny for any 
length of time." He tells the tenants that they have "ample 
reason to break forth with the flail arid the club." A revo- 
lution being on the point of breaking out, he now advises the 
tenants to keep quiet, but it is too late ; and the rebellion 
sweeps over the greater part of the Sister Isle. Our friend 
then says, that " whoever can, ought to strike in here, to 
strangle and stab, secretly or openly. For in the case of a man 
in open rebellion, everybody is both chief justice and 
executioner." What would Englishmen think of such a 
monster ? Yet, this is exactly the way Luther treated the 
poor German peasants. 

37. In order to show, that I am not unfair to Luther in 
stating that he over-excited the poor German peasants, I will 
refer the reader to the opinion expressed by an eminent 
Protestant Historian of Germany. Karl Hagen writes : 
"Even Luther in his earlier writings, contributed consider- 
ably to foster the rebellious feeling among the people; for once 
he actually incited the German nation to bathe itself in the 
blood of the Papists, and he declared that they do a thing 
agreeable to God, who would make away with the Bishops, 

destroy churches and convents!" He "called the 

Princes impious, miserable rascals silly fools, whose 

tyranny and caprice people neither could, nor would put 
up with for any length of time. Was it surprising that 
this judgment of the Reformer, concerning the reigning 
powers remained uppermost in the minds of his readers, 
and that on the other hand they doubted the correctness of 
his doctrine of unconditional obedience ?"^^'^ 

38, Some people think that religion had nothing to do 
with the outbreak of the rebellion. Let us again listen to 
the same Protestant Historian, when he says : " All those 
preachers (of the new Gospel) who earned such extra- 
ordinary applause, who gathered hundreds and thousands 
of hearers round about them, were at the same time 
men of free opifiions in state matters, and in their speeches 
did not neglect also to dwell upon political questions 

t\j, Karl Hagen, Deutsche Geschichte von Rudolf von Habsburg bis auf die neuest« 
Zeit. Frankfurt a. M., Meidinger Sohn & Cie., 1855, Zweiter Band, Ersto 
Abtheilung, Nr, x6. Der Bauernkrieg, p, iSa-iS^. 


ana on the necessity of a change for the better, and thh 
was done with the same fervour that they bestowed gn 
religious questions. " ^ ^ ** 


Every reasonable person will agree with me, that Luther 
can only have been a Reformer chosen by Almighty God, 
if his teaching caused an increase of virtue and a decrease 
of vice. If, however, it can be plainly shown, that in conse- 
quence of his teaching there was, on the contrary, an increase 
of vice and a decrease of virtue, we must come to the con- 
clusion, that Luther bad not the sanction of God for the 
work which he undertook. 

Now, under different headings, I quote forty-five passages 
from his writings, all of which disclose a sad state of morality 
among the followers of the new Gospel ; but in no less than 
fifteen of these passages, Luther tells us in plain words that 
people have become worse than they for?tierly were under the 
Fope. It is to these passages that I wish to direct the special 
attention of the careful reader. 

I. — Contempt of the Word of God. 

1. Luther says : "The security among the poor people is 
now so great, that they laugh at the preachers." He adds 
that the time will come, when they will say : " You are 
a fool; why do you care much about a sermon ?"ii-9 

2. "Peasants and nobles know the Gospel better than 
St Paul or D. M. Luther ; they are wise and they think 
themselves better than all their clergy."!^" 

3. "Peasants, citizens, and nobles boast that they 

do not want any preacher. and would not give a penny 

for any number of sermons."^ ^^ 

4. " A poor village parson is now the most despised man 

of all so that there is no peasant who does not 

trample him under-foot.''^^^ 

118. Ibidem, 184, 

119. Erlanger Ausgabe, I. 103-104. 

120. Walch. XIV. 1360. 

131, Erlanger Ausgabe, LI. i88< 
IM, Walch. V. 577. 


5. " It seems as if the world was determined to starve 
the ministers of the Gospel to death.''^^' 

6. Already in 1524 Luther tells us, why the preachers 
of the new Gospel were so thoroughly despised. He says : 

"They lead such a bad life that they do more harm than 

goody The Latin text is : "Vivuntque vitam sic pravam, 
ut plus sane offendant, quam prosint."^** 

IL — Contempt of the Sacrament. 

1. " People have now so little esteem for the Holy 

Sacrament of the Body and Blood of our Lord it is as if 

there was nothmg on earth that they were less in want of."^ ^ ^ 

2. ^'■Formerly under the Pope, when we were forced and 

urged to receive the Sacrament, we went in crowds 

now our behaviour towards it is as disgusting and 

shameless, that it is as if we were not human beings (still 
less Christians)^ but only sticks and stones, that stand in no 
need of it."^''^ 

III. — Want of Generosity in Supporting the Clergy, 
Churches, and Schools. 

1, Luther says: "Under the Pope people were 

very fervent in building churches Now that the true 

Religion is taught, and that the people are properly instructed 
concerning good works, everybody is cold, so much so 
that we cannot help being surprised at it."^^'' 

2. "Formerly, they could build convents and churches, 
with an outlay which was quite unnecessary; now they cannot 
repair a h^le in the roof, in order that the clergyman may 
be protected from the wet.''^^^ 

3. " Tell me where is there a town at present with 
sufficient means or piety, to contribute enough for the 
support of a schoolmaster or a clergyman ?"i^^ 

4, "Such is the fate of the beloved Gospel, when it is 
preached, nobody is willing to give anything towards feeding 

123. Walch. VI. 967 

124. Epp. ed. Aurifaber, II. 191, 

125. Walch, X. 2666. 
I2(S. Walch. X. 2715. 
»»7. Walch, VI. i2rx 
■■8, Walch; XIII. 8. 
i<9. Wakh, XI. «sea. 


and supporting the persons who ought to take charge of 
the pulpit and schools."^ ^" 

5. "Formerly, when we served the Devil all purses 

were open, and there was no measure in giving to 

churches, schools But now that the proper kind of schools 

and the proper kind of churches are to be built, nay, not 

built, but only preserved as they now stand all purses 

are bound up as with iron chains."^ ^^ 

6. "According to its size every town could formerly 

support with ease several convents now that in one town 

two or three persons only are to be supported, who preach 
the Word of God, administer the Sacraments, visit and 

console the poor, instruct the youth everybody finds 

that too much, although (the money has to come^, not out of 
their oiun pocket, but from the property of othefs, for which 
we are indebted to Popery." ^'^" 

7. " Our peasants want a Christian liberty, that will bring 
them temporal gain, but if on the other hand they are to 
give a penny to their clergyman, or do the least thing for the 
Gospel^ eve7i the Devil cannot make them stirf^f^ 

IV. — Neglect of the Poor. 

1. Luther informs us that his followers used to say, " If 
we are not saved on account of our good works, why should 
we give alms to the poor ? "i s 4 

He adds that they maintain this at least in their way of 
acting, if not in their words. 

2. " Formerly, under the Pope people gave very largely 

indeed and beyond meastire then they gave in heaps 

for they looked upon the reward But now that 

with the light of the Gospel we are told nothing about 
our merits, nobody is willing to give and to help."-"-^^ 

3. " Formerly, whe?i we served the Devil binder Popery, 
everybody was merciful and kind ; then they gave with 

00 th hands, joyfully and with g?-eat devotion Now 

that we ought to be 7nerciful, to give willingly, and to show 

130. Walch. VIII. 2S15. 

131. Walch, X. 530 

132. Walch, XI. 1758. 

133. Walch. XIII. 89. 

134. Walct. VIII. 2683. 

135. Walch. VIII, 946-947. 


aiir selves thankful to Goä for the Holy Gospel nobody 

is willing to give, but only to takeT^^^ 

V. — Neglect of the Sick. 

1. In 1527 an ipidemic broke out at Wittenberg, Luther's 
headquarters and residence. Luther writes : "The pest has 
broken out here, but in rather a mild form (satis propitia) ; 
however, the fear and flight of the people is something 
dreadful."^ 3^ 

2. For the second time a contagious disease broke out 
;n the same town, during 1539. Writing to Wenceslaus Link 
on the subject, Luther says : " One person runs away from 

Uie other, so that you cannot find a servant. I think 

the Devil must have taken possession of the people with the 
real pestilence, to fill them with such terrible fear, that the 
brother forsakes his brother, the son his parents."-'-^^ 

3. Again, he says : " I am astonished, that the more we 
preach about the life in Christ, the greater the terror of death 
becomes among the people."^ ^* 

4. One of Luther's explanations of the fact, that 
formerly, under the Pope, people were not so afraid is 
^'■because out of a false hope of life, they feared death less."^^^ 

VL — Sad State of the Youth, 

1. Luther exclaims : " It is a shame how badly we now 

bring up our children Parents allow their children to please 

themselves i\I others do not look after their daughters 

do not punish them, do not teach them to lead a modest 

and chaste hfe."^*^ 

2. "Everywhere complaints are made about the dis- 
obedience, lawlessness, and pride of the young people."^*^ 

3. Luther tells us that drunkenness "/zai- spread 

among the youth so that 7iow the greater part of the finest, 

vwst talented young me^i (especially among the nobility and at 

Court), ufiderniine their health, their body and their life 

before the time."^^^ 

136. Walch. XI. 1758. 

137. Epp ed. Auiif. II. 34S-346t 

138. De Wette V. aig. 

139. Walch. XXI. 1461. 

140. Ibidem* 

141. Walch. XI. 3095-3090, 

142. Walch, XII. 895. 

143. Walch. XII. 79g. 


VIT. — Increase of Drunkenness. 

1. We have just seen the prevalence and the frightful 
consequen'^cs of drunkenness among the youth. 

2. formerly, such was not the case. Speaking of drunk- 
enness, Luther says ; "I remember, when I was young, what 
a very great shame this was considered to be among tlie 

Now, however, he tells us that these young men, 
the greater part of whom are given to drunkenness, are 
"especially among the nobility."^ *^ 

3. " We have now got so far that coarse vices, excessive 
drinking, rioting are no longer looked upon as a disgrace, 
but drunkenness must now be called hilarity."^*** 

4. *' Drunkenness has tiow, I am sorrj to say, come down 
tipon us like a deluge. " ^ * " 

5. " The people look upon the Gospel as a doctrine 

which teaches them to eat and d7-ink. Such 

are the thoughts of almost everybody^ from the lowest to tht 
highest:'^ ^"^ 

6. "The people are like pigs, so to speak, dead and buried 
in constant drunke?itiess.^'^*''^ 

VIII. — Increase in the Number of Suicides. 

Suicides became more and more frequent among his 
followers. On the 25th of July, 1542, three years and a 
half before his death, he said some suicides among 
his followers were caused by Satan, to whom God 
had given this power in the Lutheran Church as a 
punishment for contempt of the Word of God. 

His exact words are : " AVhat you write concerning the 
power that the Devil has shown in the case of three men 
who have hanged themselves, I have read with fear, my 
Anthony. God gives us, ungrateful and arrogant creatures, a 
foretaste of His future anger, by conceding so much to 
Satan in our Church He (Satan) is the Prince of the 

X44, Ibidem. 
145. Ibidem. 
»45. Walch. XIII. 1579. 
847. Walch. XII. 788. 
»48. Walch. VII. 1896. 

H^ Walch. XII. 789. Auslegung der Epistel am Sonntage nach der Himmelfahrt 


world ; in order to bring us into contempt he pretenas 
that those men hanged themselves, whereas he killed them, 
and, by working on their imagination, made them believe 

they had hanged themselves Satan's presence is 


IX, — Lower State of General Morality. 

1. Luther says : " As soon as our Gospel began 

dece?icy and modesty were done away with, a tid everybody 

wished to be perfectly free to do whatever he liked "^^^ 

2. " We deserve that our Evangelicals (the followers of 
the new Gospel) should now be seven times worse than they 
were before. Because after having learnt the Gospel, we steal, 
tell lies, deceive, eat and drink (to excess), and practice all 
manner of vices."^ ° - 

3. " After one Devil (Popery) has been driven out of 
us, seven worse ones have come down upon us, as is the case 
with Frinces, Lords, Nobles, Citizens and Peasants."^^^ 

4. " In all classes frivolity and every kind of vice, sin, 
and disgrace are now much greater than formerly."^ ^* 

5. " I think it must needs be the case, that those who 
follow the Gospel (literally *' who become evangelical "), 
should be worse after (receiving) the Gospel than they had 
been before, not on account of the Gospel, but on account 
of the people who so abuse the Gospel."^ '"^ 

6. " The more and the longer we preach, the worse matters 

7. " People are now possessed with seven Devils, whereas 
formerly they were possessed with one Devil ; the Devil now 
enters into the people in crowds, <o that men are ?iow 

more avaricious, unmerciful^ impure^ i7isolent. tJian 

formerly ufider the PopcP ^ ^ '^ 

8. "After the dominion and power of the Pope has 

ceased the people, while despising the true doctrine, 

are now changed into mere irrational animals and beasts • 

150. De Wette V 487-488. 

151. Walch V. 114. 

152. Walch. til. 2727. 

153. Walch, III. 27«7. 
J 54. Walch. V. 114. 
15s. Walch. XIII. 2i9> 
156. Walch. XII. 2120. 
x=.n. Walch. XUI.ia. 


the number of holy and pious teachers becomes constantly 

9. About a year before his death, Luther confesses : *' We 

are living in Sodom and Babylon everything is daily 

getting worse."^^* 

10. The town of Wittenberg was the principal scene ol 
Luther's activity. It was there that he resided. It was 
there, if anywhere, that the results of his teaching ought to 
have made themselves felt. Now, about seven months before 
his death, Luther wrote to his wife, '''■Away from this Sodom 

(Wittenberg) / will wander about, and sooner beg my 

hread than -alloiv my poor old last days to be martyred ana 
upsst with the disorder of Wittenberg. " ^ ^ <> 

1 1. We find Luther owning that he would never have 
begun to preach, if he had foreseen these unhappy results, 
and that he scarcely knows whether he ought to continue 
preaching. His words are • " See how foolishly the people 
everywhere behave towards the Gospel, so that I scarcely 
know whether I ought to continue preaching or not."-*^^^ 

12. Writing on the same subject, he says: *■'' If God 
had not closed mv eyes, and if I had foreseen these scandals^ 
I would never have begun to teach the Gospel."^ ^^ 

13. In 1538, more than twenty years after the beginning 
of the Reformation, Luther dwells on the same thought : 
" Who would have begun to preach, if we had known 
beforehand that so much unhappiness, tumult, scandal, 
blasphemy, ingratitude, and wickedness would have been the 
result ?"^'^'^ 

14. The new Gospel did not even make Luther himself 

better. Rewrites: "/ confess that I am much more 

negligent, than I was under the Pope, and there is now no- 
where such an amount of earnestness under the Gospel, as was 
formerly seen among Monks a7id Priests."^ ^^ 

15. If all these testimonies, taken wholly and solely 
from the very words of Dr. Martin Luther himself, should 

158. Walch, I. 615. 

159. De Wette V, 722. 

160. Luther's Letter to his Wife, July, 1345, de Wette V. 753. 

161. Walch. XI. 3052, 
163. Walch. VL 920, 
163. Walch. VIII. 564. 
«64. Walch. IX. 131S. 


not De considered sufiicient, to prove that the state of general 
morality became worse in consequence of the teaching of 
the Reformer, I still have another argument in store, which, 
I think, will convince even the most prejudiced mind. 
During the last few years, Janssen has been publishing the 
first volumes of his History of Germany since the end of the 
Middle Ages (Geschicte.des Deutschen Volkes seit dem 
Ausgang des ISiittelalters). This standard work has caused 
a thorough Revolution throughout historical circles in 
Germany. The excitement created by the publication ol 
these volumes is principally due to the unlimited acquaintance 
of the author vath the works and writings of Dr, Martin 
Luther. It is difficult to imagine a more thorough and 
scientific condemnation of the Reformation, drawn to a great 
extent from the words of Martin Luther himself. The sensa- 
tion caused by Janssen's History was so great, in both Pro- 
testant and Catholic circles, that Protestant Germany could 
not remain silent. Professor Köstlin took up Luther's 
defence in a book entitled "Luther und J. Janssen." The 
proofs,, however, brought forward by Janssen, were so clear 
and so striking, that Köstlin, the very man whose express 
obiect was to defend Luther, could not help saying : 

" liiere was really a certain increase of corj-jiption at the 

time of tJie Reformation. We may a. so imhesitatin^ly admit 
that, in a certain sense, the Reformation had something to do 
with it:' ^''^ 

t6. I beg the reader to consider these two distinct 
admissions, especially as they are made by the most 
prominent and most weighty supporter of Luther s cause 
in Germany. 

a. He acknowledges that there was an increase oi 
corruption at the time of the Reformation. 

b. He "unhesitatingly" adds that, "in a certain sense'* 
the Reformation contributed to this increase of corruption. 
I 17. This fact that the Reformation had something to Ao 
with the increase of moral corruption must, therefore, be 
admitted by everyone who takes for the ground on w^hich 
he stands, not fancy and imagination, but historical truth. 

165. Köstlin, Luther und J, Janssen, p. 58 j 


The following facts have been clearly established fronj 

Luther's own writings : 

1. At the beginning of the Reformation, Luther acted as 
a downright hypocrite towards Pope Leo X., and shortly 
before dying, he wrote a most low, coarse, disreputable, 
and satanical book of one hundred and fifty-seven pages, 
against Pope Paul IIL Even supposing Protestantism was 
right and the Catholic Church was wrong, such a book 
as Luther wrote " Against the Popery of Rome, instituted 
by the Devil," would be a lasting disgrace to any 
author.^ ^* 

2. Having rejected the authority of the Pope, he admits 
the authority of Satan ; for he informs us in plain, un- 
mistakeabie words, that the Devil argued in favour of his 
doctrine of justification by faith alone, and against Mass, 
Mary, and the Saints. ^ ^ ^ 

3. Strange to say, he expects Christ will approve of his 
preaching those very doctrines, which had met with the 
sanction of Satan. For Luther has the boldness to assure 
us, that Our Lord looks upon him as an Evangelist^ and 
that he himself will not allow his teaching to be judged by 
anyone, not even by an Atigel. ^ ^ ^ 

4. Having thus set the authority of the Pope at nought, 
admitted the authority of Satan, proclaimed his own 
authority as that of an Evangelist, who is not even to be 
judged by an Angel, Luther boldly rejects the inspired 
Word of God, as contained in St Paul's Epistle to the 
Hebrews, and in the Apocalypse or Book of Revelations. 
As to the Epistle of St. James, it is only a straw epistle^ 

166. See above, pages 9-13. 

167. Page» 13-19, 

168. Pages i9-30f 

Decause, m opposition to Luther, St. James ventures to 
"attribute justification to the works."^*'^ 

5. Not satisfied with this, he even falsifies the Bible by 
adding the word ^^ alone" to Rom. III. 28. He has 
the honesty to tell us why he does so. It was in 
order to express his doctrine of justification by faith alone 
in a more "clear and powerful " manner. The text in the 
English Protestant Bible is: " We conclude that a man is 
iustified by faith without the deeds of the law." Luther 
translates : " So we now hold it, that man is justified, without 
doing t\\t works of the law, alone by faith."-"- '" 

6. We can hardly expect, that a man who thus deals with 
die inspired Word of God, will res]:)ect the laws of God. 
Now, one of the most fundamental laws, promulgated here 
on earth by the Son of God, is the law concerning the 
unity of Christian marriage, Luther's teaching, however, 
is in direct opposition to this. He says : ^^ I cannot forbid 
a person to marry several wives^ Nor does he, in the case 
of Prince Philip of Hesse, shrink from putting this his 
doctrine into practice ; for Luther wilfully and deliberately 
signed a document granting his Highness leave to have two 
wives at the same time. Moreover, in one of his sermons, 
the Reformer of Germany did not blush to sanction adultery 
under circumstances, which ought never to be mentioned 
from a Christian pulpit. ■'■'^ 

Is it God, or is it Satan who speaks through Luther? 

7. Whilst constantly asserting his own authority and 
acting with the utmost recklessness, concerning the Holy 
Bible and the unity of marriage, Luther treats with an 
msufferable arrogance and intolerance all those who refuse 
to submit to his authority As to the Jews, it is well 
known how, in the Middle Ages, they were constantly pro- 
tected by the Popes, even in Rome itself, where 
they had a special quarter of the town allotted to 
them. How differently Luther acts. He says the 
churches (synagogues) and schools of the cursed 
Jews are to be burnt down, their houses destroyed, 
their Prayer Books taken away from them, their Rabbis 

169. Pages «1-22. 
[70. Pages a2-t§, 
i7t. Pages -.9-34, 


forbidden to teach, they are to be refused all legal pro- 
tection when they go into the country ; all their money is to 
be taken from them, and if all that is not sufficient, they 
are to be driven off like mad dogs. ^ ^ ^ 

8. A satanical hatred of the Pope and of all Roman 
Catholics is one of the characteristic features in the history 
and character of Luther. According to his views Popery is 
instituted by the Devil, the Pope is Antichrist, whose tongue 
ought to be torti out through the hack of his neck and fiailed 
to the gallows ; the Catholic Bishops are " wolves^ tyrants., 
murderers of souls, and the Apostles of Antichrist ;^^ 
tvery Catholic is *' at least a murderer, a 7-obber, a 
persecutor." And he asks the Princes : " Why do we not 
wash our hands in their blood V^"'^ 

9. But even Protestants differing from him do not fare 
any better. So, for example, he denounces those who do 
not believe that the very same Body of Our Lord which 
was nailed to the Cross is received in the Last Supper, as 
blasphemers and enemies of Christ, and he adds that they 
cannot hope for any communion with him (Luther). He says: 
*'/ should have to condemn myself tvith them into the depths 
of Hell, if I were to hold with thejn."'^'' *' 

Now, many Protestants in this country do not believe in 
the Real Presence, and, nevertheless, they praise Luther 
who condemns them to the everlasting flames of Hell. 

to. The results of his teaching are such as might be 
expected from what we have already said. He maintains 
that the poor man "has ample reason to break forth with 
the flail and the club." The peasants do break forth with 
the flail and the club. Lutaer now advises them to go 
home quietly. They refuse. Luther then orders everybody 

to ^^ strike in to strangle and stab, secretly or openly.^^ 

*^For in the case of a man in open rebellion everybody is both 
chief Justice and executioner."^'^ ^ 

One hundred thousand peasants are killed or executed. 

II. Such were the political consequences of his teach- 
ing. The moral results were even more disastrous; foi 

172. Pages 34-3S. 

173. Pages 35-36 and la. 

174. Pages 36-40, 

175. Pages 41-50. 


wherever Luther's teaching was accepted, the Last 
Supper was treated with contempt, the former generosity in 
supporting the clergy, churches, schools, the sick and the 
poor, ceased; children were neglected, drunkenness began to 
spread like a deluge, in fact every virtue decreased, and 
every kind of vice increased. Luther tells us that, under 
the Pope, people had had only one Devil, and that no\v, 
under the Gospel, they had '■^ seven worse ones."''-'^^ 

Would it not have been better if he had left the poor 
people with the one Devil, and had spared them the six 
other worse ones ? 

12. A man who pretends to be a Reformer is sent either 
by God or by Satan. Now, every single sign of a Divine 
mission is utterly wanting, both in Luther's teaching, 
and in the results of his teaching. How different in 
every respect are not Moses, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, 
Ezekiel, and the prophets of old from the would be 
Reformer ? But, can Luther perhaps be compared 
to the Apostles ? Let us see. Did St. Peter, or St. Paul, 
or any of them, ever dare to allow a Christian to have two 
wives at the same time? Is not this fact alone sufficient to 
prove to every fair-minded man, that Luther was not sent 
by God ? Moreover, was the result of St. Paul's teaching an 
increase of drunkenness and every kind of vice, and a 
decrease of every kind of virtue ? No, certainly not. Luther, 
therefore, bears no resemblance to any of those men, of whom 
the Scripture tells us that they were setit by God as Reformers 
of their fiation or of the world. We, therefore, refuse to believe 
m his Divine mission, and that on Scriptural groiuids. But 
mark also another reason. Luther refused to believe that 
Carlstadt bad the sanction of Heaven, and for a reason which 
is very instructive. Writing against this pretended Reformer, 
he says, " God does not break up the old order for a 
new one without working great signs. Therefore we cannot 
believe a person, who appeals to his own spirit and to his 
inward feeling, and rushes head-long against the usual 
order of God, unless he also performs 7niracles."'^'''' 

176. Pages So-57> 

<77. Erlanger Ausgab«. XXIX, 173. 

13- Now, Luther, I judge you by your own test. Where 
are the miracles, with which you prove your Divine mission ? 
You know very well, that you never performed a single one. 
And therefore we would be acting in opposition to your own 
advice, were we to believe in you. 

14. But, if Luther was not commissioned by God, then the 
glorious old Church of our Forefathers, the Church of which 
we say, in the Apostle's Creed : " I believe in the Holy 
Ghost, the Holy Catholic CkuTch" is the true Church of 
God. And, in that case, not Luther, but the great and 
illustrious St. Ignatius, was the real Reformer of the 
sixteenth century. 







Instead of 





























These few collections enable me to guarantee the absolute correctness 
of every single reference. 

Luthers Own Statements. 



1. THE CATHOLIC REVIEW, 1884, No. 16: 
** The best comment we have seen on the Lutheran Cen- 
tenary in any language. . . a work of the mo'^tminute and 
patient research, conducted in the most dispassionate and 
impartial manner — a true photograph of tlie Reformer pro- 
duced by the irradiance of his own hold statements, without 
any colouring on the part of the artist." 

2. THE CATHOLIC WORLD, July, 1884 : 
"There are as niuiy file ts compressed into this little work 
as would furnish material for a bulky volume, and 

they are marshalled in such a manner that their force is 

3. THE CATHOLIC HERALD, June 14, 1884 : 
"Of all the works concerning Luther, this one, literally 
written by himself, is the best." 


CORD, October, 1884 : '-We advise every student of' 
Church History to provide himself with a copy.'' 

2. THE DUBLIN REVIEW, October, 18S4 : 
"The work should be in every Priest's library." 

3. THE MONTH, March, 1884 : " Perhaps the most 
solid and effective contribution t6 tlie Luther literature of 
the day." 

4. THE TABLET, May 17, 1884: "Full of the 
most remarkable and useful historical extracts. " 

5. THE CATHOLIC TIMES, March 13, 1S85 : 
"The writer of this review, himself a German, has gone to 
the trouble of testing the accuracy of a very considerable 
portion of the references. He can unhesitatingly affirm 
that he was not able to come across a single mis- 
quotation, and that he invariably found the translation to 
be in scrupulous conformity with the original German or 
Latin text."