Archive for January 16th, 2015

Front Page of Luther’s Edition of the Qu’ran

Historical note:  In Luther’s lifetime, in 1529, the Ottoman Turkish sultan, Suleiman the Magnificent brought his armies to the outskirts of Vienna, Austria and laid siege. Then in 1540, the same Islamic nation conquered Hungary.  This meant that Western Europe was facing Islamic Armageddon.  So much so, that Martin Luther had the Qu’ran printed from an earlier translation that he had found.  He thought people should know the Qu’ran in order to refute its false doctrine, as Luther wrote in his preface to  his edition of the Qu’ran:

“For Muhammad denies that Christ is the son of God, denies that he died for our sins, denies that he arose for our life, denies that by faith in him our sins are forgiven and we are justified, denies that he will come as judge of the living and the dead … denies the Holy Spirit, and denies the gifts of the Spirit. By these and similar articles of faith consciences must be fortified against the ceremonies of Muhammad. With these weapons his Qur’an must be refuted.”

Luther also reasoned that if Western Europe were conquered, they should know their conquerors.  

 In our day, in which church after church either denigrate doctrine as doctrinaire, or deny basic Christian doctrine, which Luther listed above as fundamentals of the faith by asserting their historical truth, then the Church is no longer steadfast and so prey for the devil (see 1 Peter 5:8) .  Denying basic Christian doctrine, and the resultant practice of faith in Christ and His grace for poor sinners,  has helped Islam, and so many other anti-Trinitarian heresies (e.g. Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses) to grow and flourish. 

Given the  risk Christian Europe faced, there  are many references in Luther and Lutheran Reformation writings (sermons, tracts, hymns) about “the Turk”, as in the sermon quote below.  Note again:  “Turk” equals Muslim.  This quote is from Luther’s sermon on John 1: 46 (From the Gospel lesson, John 1:  43-51) for 2nd Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B):

(God’s Kingdom) is to be a kingdom of grace, belonging to those who are wretched and poor, whether they be men or women, rich or poor…

Since all (the Turk’s) undertakings prosper, they conclude at once that they are God’s people, that God is their friend and gracious to them. For fortune, success, and victory attend them against all their enemies; and they vanquish all whom they attack, also those who glory in the Christian name. You cannot dispel such a terrible illusion, which is ignorant of the judgment of God and blusters and brags that God is on their side. Therefore the Turks massacre so wantonly, and all this under the pretense that God is their ally.

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