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What Would Martin Luther Say?

An Excerpt From Martin Luther's Spiritual Last Will & Testament


by Martin Luther, 1483-1546

Translation by Rev. Robert E. Smith

From the German text in:


(Weimar: Herman Boehlaus Nachfolger, 1909), pp.499-500.

Because I see that the mobs are always growing, the number of

errors are always increasing and Satan's rage and ruin have no

end, I wish to confess with this work my faith before God and the

whole world, point by point. I am doing this, lest certain people

cite me or my writings, while I am alive or after I am dead, to

support their errors, as those fanatics, the Sacramentarians and

the Anabaptists, have begun to do. I will remain in this

confession until my death (God help me!), will depart from this

world in it, and appear before the Judgment Seat of our Lord Jesus


So that no one will say after my death, ``If Luther was alive, he

would teach and believe this article differently, because he did

not think it through sufficiently,'' I state the following, once

and for all: I, by God's grace, I have diligently examined these

articles in the light of passages throughout the Scriptures. I

have worked on them repeatedly and you can be sure that I want to

defend them, in the same way that I have just defended the

Sacrament of the Altar.

No, I'm not drunk or impulsive. I know what I am saying and

understand fully what this will mean for me as I stand before the

Lord Jesus Christ on the Last Day. No one should think that I am

joking or rambling. I'm serious! By God's grace, I know Satan

very well. If Satan can turn God's Word upside down and pervert

the Scriptures, what will he do with my words -- or the words of