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Perhaps no work of Martin Luther's so captures the revolutionary zeal and theological boldness of his vision as 'The Freedom of a Christian'. This translation of Luther's treatise brings alive the social, historical, and ecclesial context of Luther's treatise. Perhaps no work of Martin Luther's so captures the revolutionary zeal and theological boldness of his vision as 'The Freedom of a Christian'. This translation of Luther's treatise brings alive the social, historical, and ecclesial context of Luther's treatise.


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Perhaps no work of Martin Luther's so captures the revolutionary zeal and theological boldness of his vision as 'The Freedom of a Christian'. This translation of Luther's treatise brings alive the social, historical, and ecclesial context of Luther's treatise. Perhaps no work of Martin Luther's so captures the revolutionary zeal and theological boldness of his vision as 'The Freedom of a Christian'. This translation of Luther's treatise brings alive the social, historical, and ecclesial context of Luther's treatise.

30 review for On Christian Liberty

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mortimus Clay

    Billiant. Someone ought to use this to reform the Church!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Juli

    I give it a 3.5 but rounded up on the stars. Luther contends that by putting assurance of salvation on works the Christian is contradicting the work of Christ and the promises of God. Nonetheless, Luther’s conviction is that this freedom does not exclude Christians from works but rather should be the compelling reason to serve God and one another. How would my life look different if I were to live more truly out of a place of freedom? I was especially struck by the weight of Luther’s thoughts wh I give it a 3.5 but rounded up on the stars. Luther contends that by putting assurance of salvation on works the Christian is contradicting the work of Christ and the promises of God. Nonetheless, Luther’s conviction is that this freedom does not exclude Christians from works but rather should be the compelling reason to serve God and one another. How would my life look different if I were to live more truly out of a place of freedom? I was especially struck by the weight of Luther’s thoughts when he said, “What greater rebellion against God, what greater wickedness, what greater contempt of God is there than not believing his promise? For what is this but to make God a liar or to doubt that he is truthful? – that is, to ascribe truthfulness to one’s self but lying and vanity to God?” I think our own Christian culture, similar to the one Luther experienced, often perpetuates the idea of good works needed for God’s approval, only the works today might look like quiet times, prayer, going to church, and not using profanity. Sin often becomes relegated to discreet acts based on the idea that your bank of holiness is based on things you do or do not do. I believe our culture has failed to understand the severity of sin as well as the severe mercy in God’s grace. We live in a world that is mixed with both human sin as well as God’s grace and I think this begs dialogue with Luther’s idea of Christian Liberty.

  3. 4 out of 5

    James Henderson

    In 1520, three years after posting his famous theses, Luther was still a monk in the Catholic Church. It was then that he wrote this short manifesto regarding the nature of the freedom of a Christian. In it he elucidates some of the principles that would become the foundation of the Protestant Reformation. He opens with a discussion of "man's twofold nature" of the inner spiritual nature or the soul and the outer bodily nature of the flesh. These two natures are in conflict for it is the inner n In 1520, three years after posting his famous theses, Luther was still a monk in the Catholic Church. It was then that he wrote this short manifesto regarding the nature of the freedom of a Christian. In it he elucidates some of the principles that would become the foundation of the Protestant Reformation. He opens with a discussion of "man's twofold nature" of the inner spiritual nature or the soul and the outer bodily nature of the flesh. These two natures are in conflict for it is the inner nature or soul that is fed by the preaching of Christ that makes it righteous. He also discusses the seeming contradiction that the Christian is both free and subject to no one while at the same time in bondage and servant to all. This short but rich text also brings out the importance of each individual being his own priest; thus laying the foundation for the doctrine of the "priesthood of all believers". I was impressed with Luther's style of argument, for he argued from the text of the Bible rather than from his unsupported views. In doing so he was able to rationally support statements that seemed contradictory on the surface. Admittedly the arguments depended on your acceptance of the divinity of the Bible as God's word. However, for Luther and his audience this was not an issue. Luther had been concerned with edicts by the hierarchy of the Catholic Church that had no biblical support. It is likely that with this in mind that on September 6, 1520 he sent this manifesto with a letter to Pope Leo X. However the Catholic hierarchy was not be responsive to Luther's arguments. In the following year he was called to appear before the Diet of Worms and was declared a heretic.

  4. 5 out of 5

    David

    Straight to the source. It seems that most reformed theologians bend over backwards to avoid admitting that works have anything do to at all with the Christian walk, while the more ancient and liturgical faiths do the same in regards to anything that has the slightest smack of antinomianism. Luther's treatise here on Faith Alone is the most concise summary and explanation of the doctrine, and it does well to rightfully comment on the necessity of works without relegating them to the dustbin of R Straight to the source. It seems that most reformed theologians bend over backwards to avoid admitting that works have anything do to at all with the Christian walk, while the more ancient and liturgical faiths do the same in regards to anything that has the slightest smack of antinomianism. Luther's treatise here on Faith Alone is the most concise summary and explanation of the doctrine, and it does well to rightfully comment on the necessity of works without relegating them to the dustbin of Romanism or legalism. Short, sweet, and clear.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Preston Blakeley

    Luther is a profoundly influential thinker in the history of the West, kickstarting the Reformation that led to greater literacy in Europe, the widespread formation and appreciation of the democratic system of government, and the significance of individual liberty. I would be remiss not to state that I valued his attention to faith as a virtue that must be recognized and cherished. In spite of religious affiliation, Luther keenly reminds us that we are consistently acting upon an entire slough o Luther is a profoundly influential thinker in the history of the West, kickstarting the Reformation that led to greater literacy in Europe, the widespread formation and appreciation of the democratic system of government, and the significance of individual liberty. I would be remiss not to state that I valued his attention to faith as a virtue that must be recognized and cherished. In spite of religious affiliation, Luther keenly reminds us that we are consistently acting upon an entire slough of unrationalized presuppositions. Although the pursuit of rationalizing these presuppositions is a noble and worthy cause, we must not be too heedless to think through the total rationalization of existence, for we are always putting blind trust in something. Luther has reminded me of Lewis, particularly his statement that reason is the instrument that builds upon faith, the component that represents the essential presuppositions that we inevitably trust in as humans. Nevertheless, this read brought me back to high school, those days defined by oddities and ignorances. I’ll now yield to prima scriptura rather than sola scriptura, deviating from my former view of ecclesiological authority.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lance Crandall

    Incredibly readable and accessible! A clear straightforward defense on faith alone. All the notes and side columns provide context and are very helpful.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Skylar Burris

    I worshipped at a Lutheran church for almost four years and yet never read this. I’m glad I finally did, even though I am no longer a Lutheran. It really helped me to better understand the doctrine of “justification by faith and not by works,” and I appreciated the distinction Luther was careful to make between works and a *belief in* works and his insistence that ceremonies and rituals, though not salvific, are of immense value: “Hence in the Christian life ceremonies are to be no otherwise loo I worshipped at a Lutheran church for almost four years and yet never read this. I’m glad I finally did, even though I am no longer a Lutheran. It really helped me to better understand the doctrine of “justification by faith and not by works,” and I appreciated the distinction Luther was careful to make between works and a *belief in* works and his insistence that ceremonies and rituals, though not salvific, are of immense value: “Hence in the Christian life ceremonies are to be no otherwise looked upon than as builders and workmen look upon those preparations for building or working which are not made with any view of being permanent or anything in themselves, but only because without them there could be no building and no work. When the structure is completed, they are laid aside. Here you see that we do not contemn these preparations, but set the highest value on them.” I also appreciated his emphasis on taking the middle ground between a laxity towards works on the one hand and a tyrannical belief in works on the other. Today, Lutherans and Catholics are not as far apart on this doctrine as they once were, and they have put forth a joint declaration on the doctrine of justification. Luther never intended to start a new church, but to reform an existing one, and yet he succeeded in doing both. This little volume also helped me to make better sense of the seeming contradiction between the points of views of the apostles James and Paul, though I still find their perspectives on faith, works, and justification difficult to reconcile with one another. As far as Luther's writing is concerned, he turns some good phrases here and there, but is a bit repetitive and sometimes dull, and it’s almost comical the way he insists to the Pope, basically, “Hey, I’m not criticizing you. I respect you. You and I are tight. It’s just…why don’t you control your whore of a church? But I totally respect you, pimp. I don't know why people suggest I'm insulting you, pimp.”

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tessa

    Amazing. Martin Luther's arguments have both beauty and clarity. Amazing. Martin Luther's arguments have both beauty and clarity.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Marc Sims

    Classic Luther. This was written in 1520, one year before the Diet of Worms and Luther's formal and final break with Rome. This was one of the books that was laid before him which he was told to recant. He didn't. And that is good. "A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all." This is the thesis of this work. The heart of it centers on the role of faith and works, and the Christian's responsibility to his neighbor. Classic Luther. This was written in 1520, one year before the Diet of Worms and Luther's formal and final break with Rome. This was one of the books that was laid before him which he was told to recant. He didn't. And that is good. "A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all." This is the thesis of this work. The heart of it centers on the role of faith and works, and the Christian's responsibility to his neighbor. A Christian is not "subject" to anyone and a "perfectly free lord of all" because God alone--not the church--justifies him through his faith. So good works for a neighbor are not required to earn salvation. But, a Christian is simultaneously "subject to all" and a "perfectly dutiful servant" precisely because he already has been saved by his faith alone. Because of the love of Christ given to the Christian through Jesus' own death, a Christian now naturally overflows with a desire for good works and love for neighbor as a natural consequence. Thus, Luther's famous dictum is proved true, "We are justified by faith alone, but not by a faith that remains alone." If you want a snapshot of early Reformation theology--and, for that matter, simply Christian theology--look no further. I was surprised at the balance in this book since Luther (particularly later in life) can be famously lopsided in some of his writing. The Reformation sought to recover the doctrine of the early church that the middle ages had lost, and this work shows just how spot on (and how needed) that Reformation was.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ray LaManna

    This is the clearest and most succinct description, in his own words, of Martin Luther's doctrine of Justification by Faith Alone. This is the clearest and most succinct description, in his own words, of Martin Luther's doctrine of Justification by Faith Alone.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Joseph Sverker

    I find Luther doing an excellent job in short and clear terms explain with biblical justification his view of justification by faith. He was accused ignoring the importance of good deeds for a Christian. But I think it becomes clear in this book that he is not ignoring them at all, he is, to his mind, putting them in their rightful place, namely as the consequence for living after one has been accepted by God through faith in Christ. I think this, if anything, is a more noble view of good deeds, I find Luther doing an excellent job in short and clear terms explain with biblical justification his view of justification by faith. He was accused ignoring the importance of good deeds for a Christian. But I think it becomes clear in this book that he is not ignoring them at all, he is, to his mind, putting them in their rightful place, namely as the consequence for living after one has been accepted by God through faith in Christ. I think this, if anything, is a more noble view of good deeds, doing them for the love of God and your neighbour rather than for merit. The Catholic church would probably say as well that one should not do the deeds because of merit, but that the still issue merit. However, that will be a fine line to tread for the Christian. And I also find it strange that the Catholic church would teach that good works are meritorious since already Anselm argued in Cur Deus Homo that there is nothing that we humans do that can so to speak "give anything to God". If that is the case, then why would God reward good deeds. They don't do anything towards him. Rather, I would agree with Luther here, that good deeds is simply the signs for a Christian lifestyle, it is the way God wants us to live and thus we should try to live that way. An irony here, that I think I must look in to deeper is that I get the feeling that Luther is proposing virtue ethics. He states that a good person does good deeds and a bad person does bad deeds, from the Jesus' saying about the good tree and the fruit. However, that also sounds a bit like Aristotelian ethics, does it not? So while Luther is very cirtical against Aristotle in theology on the one hand, n questions of logic for example, and "prime mover", he seems to agree with him on the other - Aristotelian ethics.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Adam

    An excellent short introduction to Luther. His thesis here concerns a sacred mystery: “A Christian man is the most free lord of all, and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to every one.” In pursuing this paradox, Luther distinguishes true Christianity from lax liberalism on the one hand, and the oppressive dogmatism of Catholicism on the other. Carrying out this argument, of course, he promotes with characteristic boldness his vision of justification An excellent short introduction to Luther. His thesis here concerns a sacred mystery: “A Christian man is the most free lord of all, and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to every one.” In pursuing this paradox, Luther distinguishes true Christianity from lax liberalism on the one hand, and the oppressive dogmatism of Catholicism on the other. Carrying out this argument, of course, he promotes with characteristic boldness his vision of justification by faith alone. Of secondary interest, there are a few very brief passages near the center of the book that will jump out at anyone curious about Luther, including: his vestigial Mariology, his criticism of the 16th-century equivalent of Christ-as-life-coach preaching, and his express disapproval of anyone using the Gospel to stir up anger against Jews. Also, the book begins with an introductory letter of several pages which was presented with the book to Pope Leo X. The letter contains more than a few surprises for any reader resisting the temptation to skip ahead to Luther’s treatise.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Brent McCulley

    Martin Luther, in writing to Pope Leo X, expounds upon some theological doctrines that were so thoroughgoing in comparison to what was theretofore exegetically discussed, is it any marvel that Luther was tried at the Diet of Worms and planned to be subsequently found guilty and captured (praise God he escaped!)? In his short treatise, Concerning Christian Liberty, Luther defines the Christian life; viz., the Christian is a free-man, subject to no one, and also, a slave, subject and a servant of Martin Luther, in writing to Pope Leo X, expounds upon some theological doctrines that were so thoroughgoing in comparison to what was theretofore exegetically discussed, is it any marvel that Luther was tried at the Diet of Worms and planned to be subsequently found guilty and captured (praise God he escaped!)? In his short treatise, Concerning Christian Liberty, Luther defines the Christian life; viz., the Christian is a free-man, subject to no one, and also, a slave, subject and a servant of all. Luther fantastically ties in old testament exegesis from Genesis to New Testament expository from Romans in typical ostentatious Luther fashion. Moreover, he also touches on every believers right as a priest before God, with Christ as our advocate and Great High Priest. Luther is a true prophetic voice, that should still be heralded in a Christian day in age which is all sensation and no substance. A must read for all believers. Brent McCulley (10/26/13)

  14. 4 out of 5

    Giovanni Generoso

    Luther at his best! This is a classic text on the Reformed doctrine of justification by faith alone, apart from the works of the Law, over against the Catholic doctrines of justification by faith and works. Recent scholarship, however, (namely, the New Perspective on Paul) has challenged the very assumptions that shaped the debate between the Reformers and the Catholics, and has sought to redefine such terms as "righteousness," "justification," and "faith" in terms of what we find in Jewish liter Luther at his best! This is a classic text on the Reformed doctrine of justification by faith alone, apart from the works of the Law, over against the Catholic doctrines of justification by faith and works. Recent scholarship, however, (namely, the New Perspective on Paul) has challenged the very assumptions that shaped the debate between the Reformers and the Catholics, and has sought to redefine such terms as "righteousness," "justification," and "faith" in terms of what we find in Jewish literature of the Second Temple Period. The debates continue on! We shall see the shape of Pauline scholarship in due time. Nonetheless, this text is as important historically as it is helpful theologically.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Brian Eshleman

    For a thinker of such theological depth that he might have single-handedly shaped the Protestant paradigm of the modern world, Luther is a very accessible writer in this little volume. He endeavors to come up with examples and illustrations that make deep Truth readily apparent, and he is surprisingly deft with the "soundbite". For a thinker of such theological depth that he might have single-handedly shaped the Protestant paradigm of the modern world, Luther is a very accessible writer in this little volume. He endeavors to come up with examples and illustrations that make deep Truth readily apparent, and he is surprisingly deft with the "soundbite".

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kofi Opoku

    Very good. Luther explains the nature of grace and works with great clarity. Also helpful in understanding differences between Roman Catholicism and Protestantism.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Caleb

    Truly an amazing book. It’s a short, easy read written to German lay people of that time, and it’s written with the primary purpose of explaining and defending the fact that we are saved by faith alone because our faith connects us to Jesus. In one part Luther uses the biblical example that faith is how Jesus becomes our bridegroom, and when this happens all that is his becomes ours and all that is ours becomes his—just like in human marriages. So we obtain the righteousness, glory and sonship o Truly an amazing book. It’s a short, easy read written to German lay people of that time, and it’s written with the primary purpose of explaining and defending the fact that we are saved by faith alone because our faith connects us to Jesus. In one part Luther uses the biblical example that faith is how Jesus becomes our bridegroom, and when this happens all that is his becomes ours and all that is ours becomes his—just like in human marriages. So we obtain the righteousness, glory and sonship of Christ while Christ took on our humanity and sin and suffered God’s wrath as if he had sinned himself. God doesn’t see Christians as sinners still in need of saving, but as the bride of Christ made perfect through faith in Christ. There is so much more I learned from this book, but I’d rather you read him than me so I’ll stop there. Read this book, highlight in it, take notes in the margins and recommend it to your friends! I would recommend this to a believer of 20 years, one of a few days, or even someone who isn’t a Christian but wanted to know what it means to become a one.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Pig Rieke

    Disclaimer: I haven’t read this, but did listen to the whole thing twice. The biggest surprise to me was how quickly Luther grasped justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. He wrote this only 3 years removed from nailing his 95 Thesis to a door in Wittenberg. It’s a wonderful little treaties that displays how Luthers desire truly was to reform the church and bring her back to the clear teach of scripture. He doesn’t have everything figured out at this point, nor will he e Disclaimer: I haven’t read this, but did listen to the whole thing twice. The biggest surprise to me was how quickly Luther grasped justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. He wrote this only 3 years removed from nailing his 95 Thesis to a door in Wittenberg. It’s a wonderful little treaties that displays how Luthers desire truly was to reform the church and bring her back to the clear teach of scripture. He doesn’t have everything figured out at this point, nor will he ever. But Luther really does make clear the gospel: through faith our sins imputed to Christ and His righteousness imputed to us. He demonstrates a clear grasp of what scripture teaches about faith: that through it alone we are justified and it of necessity of its nature producing fruit. Highly recommend. It’s only a two hour listen. Can be found here: https://librivox.org/concerning-chris...

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ty Lukasiewicz

    Written September 6, 1520 by Martin Luther. This book entails Martin Luther‘s view on the Bible and salvation through faith. In this little book, Martin Luther explained that salvation is through faith alone and not through works. “ Faith alone is the saving and efficacious use of the word of God”. He ExplainsExplains that as Christians, through faith we are able to draw near to Christ. “Therefore we may boldly come into the presence of God in the spirit of faith and cry Abba, father. Pray for o Written September 6, 1520 by Martin Luther. This book entails Martin Luther‘s view on the Bible and salvation through faith. In this little book, Martin Luther explained that salvation is through faith alone and not through works. “ Faith alone is the saving and efficacious use of the word of God”. He ExplainsExplains that as Christians, through faith we are able to draw near to Christ. “Therefore we may boldly come into the presence of God in the spirit of faith and cry Abba, father. Pray for one another, and do all things which we see done and foreshadowed in the outer invisible works of priests”. Lutheran explains that “although the Christian is thus free from all works, he ought to empty himself and take upon himself the form of a servant”. The second part of this book was Luther’s letter to Pope Leo the 10th. In it, he states that “he has never thought ill of Lio personally”. Instead Luther states: “ I have truly despise your see, the Roman curia, which, however, neither you nor anyone else can deny is more corrupt than any Babylon or Sodom ever was”. Good book to read especially for the history of religion.

  20. 4 out of 5

    E.

    I gave this 4 stars because Luther was breaking new ground--the explanation of some of his ideas is a little rough. Luther actually did not use this approach as much after 1522 or so because he had to deal with the problem of people taking his ideas on Christian liberty too far. Maybe the most fascinating thing about the book, given current theological controversies, is the way Luther lays out his idea of justification based on marital rather than legal imagery. Just as a husband shares all his b I gave this 4 stars because Luther was breaking new ground--the explanation of some of his ideas is a little rough. Luther actually did not use this approach as much after 1522 or so because he had to deal with the problem of people taking his ideas on Christian liberty too far. Maybe the most fascinating thing about the book, given current theological controversies, is the way Luther lays out his idea of justification based on marital rather than legal imagery. Just as a husband shares all his belongings with his wife when they marry, Christ shares all of his (communicable) attributes with his bride, the church. Thus, his righteousness becomes ours.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jeremiah Gumm

    Timely and excellent. Designed to be devotional in nature, this book includes historical context for Luther's 1520 treatise, On the Freedom of a Christian, as well as a fresh translation of that treatise, collected writings by Luther on Christian Freedom, and a portion of Philipp Melanchthon's Loci on the same subject. The appendixes are also helpful. Timely and excellent. Designed to be devotional in nature, this book includes historical context for Luther's 1520 treatise, On the Freedom of a Christian, as well as a fresh translation of that treatise, collected writings by Luther on Christian Freedom, and a portion of Philipp Melanchthon's Loci on the same subject. The appendixes are also helpful.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    Read in the Starbucks of Durham. Not a bad experience, overall.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kelle Craft

    Really insightful. A breath of fresh air. If only most Christians would understand the depth of the freeing reality of justification by faith alone, the gospel might actually look like the power of God to save.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Davalos

    What struck me most is Luther’s pastoral tone. Despite his reputation for irascibility, he shows great concern for the common, uneducated people, and reserves his harsh indictments for the Roman clergy. I have some issues with hints of two kingdom theology, but Luther is easy to read and very edifying.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Mike E.

    Read it online. Concise and excellent. Fuel for freedom and peace over sin, anxiety, and defeatism. www2.hn.psu.edu/faculty/jmanis/m~luth... [Must paste this in browser to work] A Christian man is the most free lord of all, and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to every one. Although these statements appear contradictory, yet, when they are found to agree together, they will make excellently for my purpose. They are both the statements of Paul himself, Read it online. Concise and excellent. Fuel for freedom and peace over sin, anxiety, and defeatism. www2.hn.psu.edu/faculty/jmanis/m~luth... [Must paste this in browser to work] A Christian man is the most free lord of all, and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to every one. Although these statements appear contradictory, yet, when they are found to agree together, they will make excellently for my purpose. They are both the statements of Paul himself, who says, "Though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all" (1 Cor. ix. 19), and "Owe no man anything, but to love one another" (Rom. xiii. 8). Now love is by its own nature dutiful and obedient to the beloved object. Thus even Christ, though Lord of all things, was yet made of a woman; made under the law; at once free and a servant; at once in the form of God and in the form of a servant. True, then, are these two sayings: “Good works do not make a good man, but a good man does good works”; “Bad works do not make a bad man, but a bad man does bad works.” Thus it is always necessary that the substance or person should be good before any good works can be done, and that good works should follow and proceed from a good person. As Christ says, “A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit” (Matt. vii. 18). Now it is clear that the fruit does not bear the tree, nor does the tree grow on the fruit; but, on the contrary, the trees bear the fruit, and the fruit grows on the trees. “None of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord” (Rom. xiv. 7, 8). Thus it is impossible that he should take his ease in this life, and not work for the good of his neighbours, since he must needs speak, act, and converse among men, just as Christ was made in the like- ness of men and found in fashion as a man, and had His conversation among men. Thus the Apostle commands us to work with our own hands, that we may have to give to those that need. He might have said, that we may support ourselves; but he tells us to give to those that need. It is the part of a Christian to take care of his own body for the very purpose that, by its soundness and well-being, he may be enabled to labour, and to acquire and preserve property, for the aid of those who are in want, that thus the stronger member may serve the weaker member, and we may be children of God, thought- ful and busy one for another, bearing one another’s burdens, and so fulfilling the law of Christ. Here is the truly Christian life, here is faith really working by love, when a man applies himself with joy and love to the works of that freest servitude in which he serves others vol- untarily and for nought, himself abundantly satisfied in the fulness and riches of his own faith.

  26. 4 out of 5

    James Bunyan

    "A Christian man is the most free lord of all, and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to every one." Luther basically writes this short book as an exposition of these two propositions. Banger- very helpful and a good way to get to grips with Luther and his view of justification by faith. Loads of it is quotable! Helpful quotes On the convicting power of the law: "[The Laws] were ordained, however, for the purpose of showing man to himself, that through th "A Christian man is the most free lord of all, and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to every one." Luther basically writes this short book as an exposition of these two propositions. Banger- very helpful and a good way to get to grips with Luther and his view of justification by faith. Loads of it is quotable! Helpful quotes On the convicting power of the law: "[The Laws] were ordained, however, for the purpose of showing man to himself, that through them he may learn his own impotence for good and may despair of his own strength." On the marriage of Christ to the church: "If we compare these possessions, we shall see how estimable is the gain. Christ is full of grace, life, and salvation; the soul is full of sin, death, and condemnation. Let faith step in, and then sin, death, and hell will belong to Christ, and grace, life, and salvation to the soul. For, if He is a husband, He must needs take to Himself that which is His wife's, and at the same time, impart to His wife that which is His. For, in giving her His own body and Himself, how can He but give her all that is His? And, in taking to Himself the body of His wife, how can He but take to Himself all that is hers?" On how the good gospel impacts our hearts: "Who can injure such a heart, or make it afraid?" On identity leading to works: "For nothing makes the person good but faith, nor bad but unbelief." On legalists and those of tender conscience: "Fight vigorously against the wolves, but on behalf of the sheep, not against the sheep."

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kaitlyn

    "Focus...Focus...Focus..." This is what I had to tell myself countless times while reading this book. I read this book for a History of Renaissance & Reformation class, and finished it just last week. It's a short book--only about 60 pages-- but I took me a while to read just because I had a hard time focusing. It wasn't hard to understand or anything, it just wasn't overly interesting and I had a hard time reading it. Luther makes an argument that faith is all one needs to be saved, and uses scri "Focus...Focus...Focus..." This is what I had to tell myself countless times while reading this book. I read this book for a History of Renaissance & Reformation class, and finished it just last week. It's a short book--only about 60 pages-- but I took me a while to read just because I had a hard time focusing. It wasn't hard to understand or anything, it just wasn't overly interesting and I had a hard time reading it. Luther makes an argument that faith is all one needs to be saved, and uses scriptures to back his argument. So if you want a Reformation read, this surely is such. However, I guess as a history major, I would have rather have read a history on the Reformation or something...this book just wasn't the ticket for me.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Vaughn

    This little booklet was written by Luther while he still was an Augustinian friar (in essence, a monk), to Pope Leo X, to whose discipline he was subject. Luther tends to think in terms of dualistic paradoxes. This tract contains perhaps his most famous paradox, the claim that the Christian is both "a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none" and "a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all." For Luther, the essential religious question was how we can be "justified", that is, set right This little booklet was written by Luther while he still was an Augustinian friar (in essence, a monk), to Pope Leo X, to whose discipline he was subject. Luther tends to think in terms of dualistic paradoxes. This tract contains perhaps his most famous paradox, the claim that the Christian is both "a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none" and "a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all." For Luther, the essential religious question was how we can be "justified", that is, set right with, God. He expressly shows that justification is by grace through faith alone. Following that, he shows why good works are the natural and only possible outcome for those whom God has justified by faith (i.e., the Christian)

  29. 4 out of 5

    Patrick

    "For the Christian freeman will speak thus: I will fast, I will pray, I will do this or that which is commanded me by men, not as having any need of these things for justification or salvation, but that I may thus comply with the will of the Pope, of the bishop, of such a community or such a magistrate, or of my neighbour as an example to him; for this cause I will do and suffer all things, just as Christ did and suffered much more for me, though He needed not at all to do so on His own account, "For the Christian freeman will speak thus: I will fast, I will pray, I will do this or that which is commanded me by men, not as having any need of these things for justification or salvation, but that I may thus comply with the will of the Pope, of the bishop, of such a community or such a magistrate, or of my neighbour as an example to him; for this cause I will do and suffer all things, just as Christ did and suffered much more for me, though He needed not at all to do so on His own account, and made Himself for my sake under the law, when He was not under the law. And although tyrants may do me violence or wrong in requiring obedience to these things, yet it will not hurt me to do them, so long as they are not done against God." -Martin Luther (Concerning Christian Liberty)

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kyle

    CPH has once again provided a delightful and insightful resource and designed it in an approprite manner, by providing a easily manageable reading plan during the season of Lent. "Christian Freedom" has long been available from Luther's Works. But this little booklet is different. It not only presents one of the pinical works of Dr. Luther, but combines it with some of his later sermons and the writing of Philip Mclanchthon. This little tome becomes an inspiring and thought provoking book, so ap CPH has once again provided a delightful and insightful resource and designed it in an approprite manner, by providing a easily manageable reading plan during the season of Lent. "Christian Freedom" has long been available from Luther's Works. But this little booklet is different. It not only presents one of the pinical works of Dr. Luther, but combines it with some of his later sermons and the writing of Philip Mclanchthon. This little tome becomes an inspiring and thought provoking book, so appropriate for the time of the church year and for the times we are in, showing that the Word of God is never out of season and is always there to care for and guide us according to His will.

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