Forcing Luther into Erasmus' Shoes...

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Having read the article to which Ligon links, regarding Pope Benedict and Martin Luther, it seems that the Luther they want to restore is really Erasmus.  The latter ranted against the moral and spiritual abuses of the Roman Catholic Church just as much as Luther did.  But Luther himself insisted that it was not merely the practice of the Church that he assailed -- it was, most specifically, its salvation doctrine. 

Thus continues the recent Roman Catholic--Evangelical dialogue.  At each step, it is the evangelicals who end up changing, never the papists (after which the evangelicals celebrate their "achievement").  At least when it comes to Luther, this Erasmian remaking is being imposed upon him, five hundred years after his valiant life for the gospel.  Luther knew that we must stand fast on God's Word and on the gospel proclamation of sola fide.  Our dialogue with Roman Catholics today can certainly improve on the tone of previous generations of evangelicals, but we cannot improve on our forefathers' commitment to the biblical gospel.  The reason we have evangelical churches today is that those before us refused to be moved from the gospel.  The question now is whether or not our grandchildren will have a true evangelical church, and it depends on our willingness to stand with and like Luther on sola fide.

Posted March 6, 2008 @ 4:00 PM by Rick Phillips

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