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What Luther Says About True Worship

 

“Consequently the true worship of God is to kiss this Son, that is, to adore Him in such a way that you see nothing in heaven and earth aside from Him and believe in nothing else than Him. As the First Commandment requires (Ex. 20:4): ‘You shall not make yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.’ With this commandment God took His people captive for a spiritual point of view and led them away from all roving thoughts. Still they lapsed into idolatry, as history shows. For they reasoned that they were praising God if they praised a creature which He had made. Hence there followed the worship of the sun, of the moon, and of the heavenly host, even though God has expressly forbidden worship except at the throne of mercy. In this way we should also here guard against images of heaven and earth and cling to the Son alone. Thus we shall certainly apprehend the Father and the whole Divinity. For Paul also says (Col. 2:9): ‘In Christ the whole fullness of the Deity dwells bodily.’ You will, then, not find God in the sun, moon, or any other creatures; you will find Him only in the Son, who was born of Mary. In Him alone is salvation, grace, and life.” (LW 12:87-88)

 

Quotation from Luther’s Works is from the American Edition: vol. 12 © 1955 by Concordia Publishing House, all rights reserved.

Written by

Mason Vieth

Mason Vieth is a recent graduate of Concordia University Chicago and is currently a first-year student at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. He interned in the professional and academic editorial department at Concordia Publishing House in the summer of 2017. Some of the projects he worked on include Who Was Martin Luther?, CPH’s Academic Blog, as well as other academic and professional resources.

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