Saturday, March 1, 2008

Large Catechism, The Sacrament of the Altar (Worthiness)--Martin Luther

“…it is the highest art to know that our Sacrament does not depend upon our worthiness. We are not baptized because we are worthy and holy. Nor do we go to Confession because we are pure and without sin. On the contrary, we go because we are poor, miserable people. We go exactly because we are unworthy…

But whoever would gladly receive grace and comfort should drive himself and allow no one to frighten him away. Say, ‘I, indeed, would like to be worthy. But I come, not upon any worthiness, but upon Your Word, because You have commanded it. I come as one who would gladly be Your disciple, no matter what becomes of my worthiness. This is difficult. We always have this obstacle and hindrance to encounter: we look more upon ourselves than upon Christ’s Word and lips. For human nature desires to act in such a way that it can stand and rest firmly on itself.”

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