Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Funny part

The last few posts have been controversial so I got back to reading the Smalcald articles. A few days ago, I got to this portion of Article IV…

16] For in the Council we will stand not before the Emperor or the political
magistrate, as at Augsburg (where the Emperor published a most gracious edict, and caused matters to be heard kindly [and dispassionately]), but [we will appear] before the Pope and devil himself, who intends to listen to nothing, but merely [when the case has been publicly announced] to condemn, to murder and to force us to idolatry. Therefore we ought not here to kiss his feet, or to say: Thou art my gracious lord, but as the angel in Zechariah 3, 2 said to Satan: The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan.

I cracked up laughing when I read the quote from Zechariah. I mean, the irony, if that is what you can call it is so funny. Luther has a way with words. Tappert had a footnote that there was an addition in some versions wherein Luther added– shame on you.

I am sure you do not share my dry, weird and sick sense of humor but I could not wipe off the grin from my face each time I recall this quote… sorry, I meant no offense, I just found this part of Luther’s Smalcald cleverly devised, really funny...


steve martin said...

I wish I had as much chutzpah in my whole body as Luther had in his little toe.

Thanks L.P.!

- Steve Martin

L P Cruz said...


Bro, tell me if this is not funny...
Thou art my gracious lord, but as the angel in Zechariah 3, 2 said to Satan: The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan.

If you do, we are on the same planet.


Augustinian Successor said...

LUTHER ROCKS! Grinning all the way!

Thanks for quote, Big Bro. Lito!

Augustinian Successor said...

"For all his bulls and books are extant, in which he roars like a lion (as the angel in Rev. 12 depicts him, [crying out] that no Christian can be saved unless he obeys him and is subject to him in all things that he wishes, that he says, and that he does. All of which amounts to nothing less than saying: Although you believe in Christ, and have in Him [alone] everything that is necessary to salvation, yet it is nothing and all in vain unless you regard [have and worship] me as your god, and be subject and obedient to me. And yet it is manifest that the holy Church has been without the Pope for at least more than five hundred years, and that even to the present day the churches of the Greeks and of many other languages neither have been nor are yet under the Pope. 5] Besides, as often remarked, it is a human figment which is not commanded, and is unnecessary and useless; for the holy Christian [or catholic] Church can exist very well without such a head, and it would certainly have remained better [purer, and its career would have been more prosperous] if such a head had not been raised up by the devil. 6] And the Papacy is also of no use in the Church, because it exercises no Christian office; and therefore it is necessary for the Church to continue and to exist without the Pope."

From Article IV, the Smalcald Articles.

No wonder the SSP seemed so keen to emphasise just the AC.

Doorman-Priest said...

I like controversial. Come and play at my place. I am still annoying fundamentalists.

steve martin said...


I love it! Luther had a great sense of humor.

Annoying fundamentalists, DP, is great fun and productive too. The Law does it's thing and all we have to do is sit back and drink our good German beer. (paraphrase from Luther)

- Steve Martin

Augustinian Successor said...

General von Paulus auf Die Festung Stalingrad! It depends what one means by "fundamentalist". A fundamentalist can be one who denies the inerrancy of the Word of God (inspiration), or one who subscribes to the Regulative Principle of Worship (hermeneutics). I affirm the inerrancy of Scripture and see the likes of Karl Barth as goofballs.

L P Cruz said...


Some fundamentalist/pietists from time to time need to get annoyed or given a different view specially in the freedom of the Gospel that drives our works.


L P Cruz said...


If we confess the BoC as a true exposition of Scripture then we should hold the Smalcald Articles as still a true and proper exposition of Scripture.

I see no reason for re-union (their term) talk that does not focus on JBFA and ITS PRACTICE.

The talk of being catholic without being Roman and all of those rites and cultus is just plain missing the real issue.

I contend that it is the Atonement that drives all theology, even our Christology. You can affirm all Christological orthodox statement and still miss the Gospel. Case in point - the reality of the Reformation, RCC affirmed all of those but in Trent anathemized Paul.


Augustinian Successor said...

I could not agree more with you, Big Bro.!

A christology without an Atonement in which we killed God and are killed by God is an *abstraction*, whether Rome or EO. The Cross is precisely where God DOES God TO US sub contrario (under opposite form). Precisely a christology which does not END the old beings in us and CREATES the new is a christology which does not save.

Precisely the christology of the EO which is dependent on the "personal" will in aligning itself with the "natural" will is ultimately a sacrifice-LESS Atonement. Christ is not sacrifice, He is only example. All the grace is of no use because it does not reclaim the whole man by killing and making alive.

Precisely the christology of Rome which is dependent on the action of man aligning with the action of God is ultimately a Atonement-LESS sacrifice. Christ did not reconcile, He only accumulated merit. All the grace is no use because it does not reclaim the whole man by killing and making alive.

Ultimately the Roman Cross and EO Cross depend on "free will". But if my will is bound to sin, who but Christ alone through the Cross alone can save me from the BONDAGE of my will???

Augustinian Successor said...

Past Elder said...

Walther once said something like a man can no more decide to believe in Christ or to have faith than a dead man can decide to wake from the dead.

L P Cruz said...

You guys have a wonderful divine service tomorrow, rejoice in your salvation.

Will be back for an update.


Lucian said...

Modern American Lutheranism is filthy with Calvinist influence

I knew it! Told You so! Remember?

David said...


Not that it is an excuse but we also battle decision theology in pop American Christianity. So it is not surprising in battling that enemy one slips and falls into the ditch on the other side. However, I do not know of Lutheran pastors and profs who teach Limited Atonement or Double Predestination. It is always a battle isnt it.


I sent you an email explaining that blogger did not notify me of your comments or I did not see the notice. I have removed the moderation due to schedule changes I cannot always get to my email. At times my lovely bride cleans out my inbox in order to "help" me. Thanks be to God for my lovely bride.

Bro Lito,

Yes indeed Luther had a way of turning phrases that would not go over so big in our touchy feely culture. Too bad some of our modern Lutherans cannot spot Satan in the Vatican. Perhaps a kinder and gentler devil but he is still building walls between God and His people.

God's peace. †

L P Cruz said...


Too bad some of our modern Lutherans cannot spot Satan in the Vatican. Perhaps a kinder and gentler devil but he is still building walls between God and His people.

I love the way you put that bro, it brought laughter to my morning, heeeheeehawhawhaw (LOL).


I have the thoughts as David, actually if one is faithful to what BoC meant, it will train the Lutheran's mind and keep him straight and not fall into the ditch influenced by Calvinistic debate on predestination. Both Calvinist and Arminians are into this all the time! They think that is where the crux lies.

We are into the means of grace, in this thinking one is prevented from dropping into either being a Romanist or Calvinist, because the two, when stretched to their maximum point collapse to be the same.


L P Cruz said...

Bro. J.

Thanks for that Maxwell paper! Did you not have another one that you shared with us about being Protestant?

I love this part in Maxwell...
The term “Evangelical” gets at the heart of our Lutheran identity in an even more central
way, for at the heart of Luther’s preaching and his polemic both against the papal church and the
Sacramentarians and Anabaptists was the evangel, the gospel. It seems a weak surrender that the
name used most widely to describe Luther’s movement for reform and the churches that adopted
it has become in much discourse today a derogatory term to denote a theological and liturgical
populism descended from eighteenth-century pietism and nineteenth-century revivalism in
Britain and America, and unionism in Germany. Let us rather treasure the name Evangelical, and
use it descriptively of our endeavor to keep the gospel at the center of our preaching and our
understanding of the life of faith in Christ.

I am glad there are others singing the same song!

We are Evangelicals - the Original Evangelicals -- most definitely.

I wish Mr. Bollywood could read this paper and I want to say: Mr. Bollywood, yes I can speak about the Gospel until the cows come home because at the end of the day, there is no home to come home too even if you get your Christology right. Rome confessed all orthodox articulation of Christ, yet missed the Gospel in Trent.

The Gospel is the root of all theologies.


Augustinian Successor said...

"So it is not surprising in battling that enemy one slips and falls into the ditch on the other side."


Boy-o I tell you, that is surely one of the understatement of the year or even eternity for that matter. Listen, Christian fights enemy, he doesn't fall into the ditch on other side. Simply put, the Christian is always on the right side. If falls to the other extreme, he ain't fighting the enemy. He belongs to enemy.

The Christian isn't impressed by sissies. He puts up the fight anf he carries on. ;-)