20 August 2013

Why Bainton's Here I Stand Is a Classic

Luther's principles in religion and ethics alike must constantly be borne in mind if he is not at times to appear unintelligible and even petty.

The primary consideration with him was always the pre-eminence of religion. Into a society where the lesser breed were given to gaming, roistering, and wenching--the Diet of Worms was called a veritable Venusberg--at a time when the choicer sort were glorying in the accomplishments of man, strode this Luther, entranced by the song of angels, stunned by the wrath of God, speechless before the wonder of creation, lyrical over the divine mercy, a man aflame with God.

For such a person there was no question which mattered much save this: How do I stand before God?
--Roland H. Bainton, Here I Stand: A Life of Martin Luther (1950), 213-14

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