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On Christian Liberty (Facets) Paperback – April 1, 2003
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Top Customer Reviews
He begins the work by summarizing the Christian life in paradoxical fashion. He writes, "A Christian is a perfectly free Lord of all, subject to none." And he continues by stating, "A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to none." Luther correctly believed that these two assertions, although seemingly contradictory, are nonetheless biblical and he seeks to show how they work together in the rest of this treatise.
It is only through faith alone in the gospel of Jesus Christ whereby one is saved and is given the free gift of Christ's righteousness and the perfect freedom found in being united with Christ. Thus the only thing necessary for Christian life, righteousness, and freedom is the Word of God, which is the gospel. Without the Word of God there is no help for the soul. Yet a soul that has the Word of God is found lacking nothing.
Luther's work asserts the underlining truth of the Christian life: that we are freed through the death of Christ to service.Read more ›
With the clarity and bold authority of a true prophet, Luther sets forth the whole of the Christian life in two theses: "A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all." We are free from sin and the law (subject to none) but slaves to Christ in love (subject to all). As Paul writes in Romans 6:22, "But now...you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God."
Luther writes as a shepherd of the common people and the tone and content differ greatly from his better-known debate-oriented works (ie. Bondage of the Will, 95 Theses). The doctrine of justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone is the heart and soul of Luther's message, founded upon a firm conviction in the authority of scripture alone.
He writes, "One thing, and only one thing, is necessary for Christian life, righteousness, and freedom. That one thing is the most holy Word of God, the gospel of Christ.Read more ›
The second punch, if you will, is the letter Luther sent to Pope Leo X wherein he tells the pope that Luther is a friend of the church but speaks out against the sacreligious and sinful Indulgences being sold to masses by those around the Pope. Luther debunks the notion that we can buy our own salvation.
I'd recommend that you read the introduction, then the letter, then the actual essay, and THEN reread the letter to the Pope because it will speak so much louder.
In this short work on Liberty, Luther sets forth the whole of the Christian life in two theses: "A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all."
Other notably quotes, for me, that also represent major streams within this book are: 1) "One thing, and only one thing, is necessary for Christian life, righteousness, and freedom. That one thing is the most holy Word of God, the gospel of Christ." 2) The "wedding ring of faith" unites believers to Christ. 3) "So let him who wishes to do good works begin not with the doing of works, but with believing, which makes the person good, for nothing makes a man good except faith, or evil except unbelief."
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is the foundational truth that the protestant reformation was built on. This is a must read for every protestant Christian. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Kevin from Texas
I purchased this for less than half of what the University book store was asking for it. It was in perfect condition, I was able to qualify for free shipping after purchasing all... Read morePublished on April 10, 2014 by Kristy May
Are you good for doing good things or must you also need to "think good" to make your doings be really good? Read morePublished on March 29, 2012 by Nivar
Martin Luther, On Christian Liberty (The Freedom of a Christian), Translated by W. A. Lambert, revised by Harold J. Read morePublished on August 10, 2010 by B. Marold