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  Martin Luther


Who is Really Your God?:

An Excerpt From Martin Luther's LARGE CATECHISM

Translation by Rev. Robert E. Smith

From the German text in: TRIGLOT CONCORDIA.

(St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921). p. 580.


The First Commandment

You must not have other gods.

That is, I must be your only God.

Question: What does this saying mean? How should we understand

it? What does it mean to have a god? What is God?

Answer: To have a god means this: You expect to receive all good

things from it and turn to it in every time of trouble. Yes, to

have a god means to trust and to believe in Him with your whole

heart. I have often said that only the trust and faith of the

heart can make God or an idol. If your faith and trust are true,

you have the true God, too. On the other hand, where trust is

false, is evil, there you will not have the true God either. Faith

and God live together. I tell you, whatever you set your heart on

and rely on is really your god.