Friday, November 02, 2007

Works of penitence: theses 8 & 9

Some of our Baptist (and other) brethren would make Luther a kind of zealous protestant. But don't be so hard on them: lots of Lutherans do the same thing. Luther's theology developed; he learned and grew, and there were things that he at one point found acceptable that he came to realize were not acceptable. Theses 8 and 9 are firmly fixed within the world of late medieval catholicism. Note -- in thesis 9 -- how Luther views how the Holy Spirit works in the pope.

8. The penitential canons are imposed only on the living, and, according to them, nothing should be imposed on the dying.

9. Therefore the Holy Spirit in the pope is kind to us, because in his decrees he always makes exception of the article of death and of necessity.

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