Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Myth and the Man... Martin Luther

I recently came across an article on "Ten Martin Luther Myths" which was interesting to me. Yet, as usual for some reason I saw a at least one thing that was not accurate.

And here we go, straight to the toilet.

2. Luther's Evangelical Breakthrough Occurred in the Bathroom
This same Jehovah's Witness denigrated Luther by repeating a newer myth, that Luther's understanding of Romans 1:17-18 came to him while in the bathroom in the tower of the Augustinian cloister. In the twentieth century, many approached Luther by applying psychoanalysis to his writings. Psychologist Eric Erikson took a German phrase uttered by Luther and interpreted it literally to mean Luther was in the bathroom when he had his evangelical breakthrough. Erikson concluded, from a Freudian perspective, Luther's spiritual issues were tied up with biological functions. But, there was not a bathroom in the tower. The phrase Erikson interpreted literally in German was simply conventional speech. Luther really was saying that his breakthrough came during a time when he was depressed, or in a state of melancholy.

Funny thing is that I found an article on this a while back... which I thought was rather amusing... but it seems to be at odds with this article.

Luther's lavatory thrills experts

Now do I believe this ministries article of the archaeologists?

I am not trying to start a fight... don't get me wrong. This is not a critique on any one's research... but it shows how fast some things can change on the Internet. It also shows that at times when we think we have all the info, we may not.

Which leads me to humility... and it's importance. Since we do not know all things, we need to be humble enough to acknowledge that maybe the other guy might have something. It is hard if you are like me and have a tendency to be right most the time... (that was tongue in cheek but feel free to cut and paste that if you are a critic... just give the reference. If you don't I will send the copy right police to your door. LOL!)

In reality even our worst critiques can teach us things about ourselves if we listen. We may not like what they have to say, and in some cases they may be just blowing smoke up your kilt... but if we think that we have it all together... then we are as guilty as they are if they are wrong. As gently as one can, we must return grace and mercy... and love... if one is falsely accusing or attacking you.

On that note a while back Andrew Jones wrote a very funny post on John MacArthur's "Truth War" in which in a backhanded way, he called the emerging church a "poopslide" (roughly reinterpreted by Andrew) on the garment of Jesus... here is my post with the links.

Well I found an interesting quote by Martin Luther on the topic that might just put Jonny Mac in his place... LOL!

"Therefore let us embrace Christ, who was delivered for us, and His righteousness; but let us regard our righteousness as dung, so that we, having died to sins, may live to God alone" [LW 30:294]. "Explanation of Martin Luther: I said before that our righteousness is dung in the sight of God. Now if God chooses to adorn dung, he can do so. It does not hurt the sun, because it sends its rays into the sewer" [LW 34: 184].

Be blessed!

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