Wisdom from the Meister
From the Disputation Against Scholastic Theology (1517)
17. Humans are by nature unable to want God to be God. Indeed, they want to be God, and do not want God to be God.
41. Virtually the entire Ethics of Aristotle is the worst enemy of grace. This in opposition to the scholastics.
45. To state that a theologian who is not a logician is a monstrous heretic–this is a monstrous and heretical statement. This in opposition to common opinion.
55. The grace of God is never present in such a way that it is inactive, but it is a living, active, and operative spirit.
76. Every deed of the law without the grace of God appears good outwardly, but inwardly it is sin. This in opposition to the scholastics.
From the Ninety-Five Theses (1517)
1. When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said, “Repent”, he willed the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.
From the Heidelberg Disputation (1518)
3. Although the works of human beings always seem attractive and good, they are nevertheless likely to be mortal sins.
4. Although the works of God always seem unattractive and appear evil, they are nevertheless really eternal merits.
14. Free will, after the fall, has power to do good only in a passive capacity, but it can always do evil in an active capacity.
19. That person does not deserve to be called a theologian who looks upon the invisible things of God as though they were clearly perceptible in those things which have actually happened.
20. One deserves to be called a theologian, however, who comprehends the visible and manifest things of God seen through suffering and the cross.
21. A theologian of glory calls evil good and good evil. A theologian of the cross calls the thing what it actually is.
25. One is not righteous who does much, but the one who, without work, believes much in Christ.
26. The law says, “Do this,” and it is never done. Grace says, “Believe in this,” and everything is already done.
28. The love of God does not find, but creates, that which is pleasing to it. Human love comes into being through that which is pleasing to it.
30. Just as persons do not use the evil of passion well unless they are married, so no one philosophizes well unless they are fools, that is, Christian.