Martin Luther, writing to a despondent friend, 1532:
“Good friends have informed me that the evil one is tempting you severely with weariness of life. Our Lord Jesus Christ also found life to be burdensome, yet he was unwilling to die unless it was his Father’s will. Accordingly, be resolute, and say to yourself wrathfully, ‘Not so, good fellow. No matter how unwilling you are to live, you are going to live and like it! Begone, you thoughts of the devil! To hell with dying and death! You will get nowhere with me!’
Via Ray Ortlund
This may (or may not) be of interest to you.
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But this bit is a bit weird, honestly.
Be world class. Be Logos.
What? First, the most world class academics in the history of the Church (like Bultmann, von Rad, Eichrodt, etc) never owned more than a typewriter and they produced better stuff than anyone working today with 50 computers at their disposal. And second, you can be world class only with a proper work ethic. Software doesn’t make it happen. And finally, third, I’m not sure how you can ‘be Logos’ or even what it may mean.
But just here and in a couple of counties nearby…
Socialism doesn’t work
Communism doesn’t work
Capitalism doesn’t work
They are all human systems of economics and as such, sinful.
But it sure doesn’t look like the flooding threat is ending by noon. Does it.
Huldrych Zwingli published his ‘clear explanation‘ on the 23rd of February, 1526 with the publishing house of Froschauer in Zurich.
In it he goes into extensive detail discussing the pivotal phrase ‘this is my body’ in four parts- 1) the false understanding of the phrase, 2) Scriptural evidence against the false understanding, 3) the right scriptural understanding, and 4) further proofs.
The booklet was written in German (so that the ordinary folk could read it) and not in Latin (because he wanted the truth widely disseminated and not merely debated amongst the theologians). It is prefaced by Zwingli’s motto, Matthew 11:28.
Δεῦτε πρός με πάντες οἱ κοπιῶντες καὶ πεφορτισμένοι κἀγὼ ἀναπαύσω ὑμᾶς.
And it concludes with a little poem
Sag mir an, ob du’s weist,
Das vatter, sun und geist,
Fleisch und blut, brot und wyn
Als sampt ein got mög sin?
I form the light and I create the darkness, I make well-being, and I create disaster, I, Yahweh, do all these things. (Isa. 45:7)
I’m remembering my friend George Beasley-Murray, who died on 23 February, 2000.
In the early 1990’s when George was visiting SEBTS with his wife Ruth we struck up a fast friendship and they invited me to visit them at their home in Hove, East Sussex. It was my first visit to England (although certainly not my last) and it was wondrous.
I’m thinking of it today because Matt Montonini and I were chatting about the great man a few years ago and I was reminded of my time with him and the very few photos I took while I was there. These were the days before digital cameras so I had to hunt through the photo books to find and scan them.
They’ve brought back some very fond memories of my two weeks with George and Ruth, our visits to London and Cambridge, and our trip across the Channel to Dieppe, France for a day excursion. We discussed everything under the sun and I wondered aloud at the fact that the people at the Baptist Church he attended in Hove knew nothing of his international reputation as a leading New Testament exegete, expert on baptism in the early church, and lead translator of Rudolf Bultmann’s commentary on John. By the by, Beasley-Murray met Bultmann on a number of occasions and shook his hand. Meaning I too had shaken Bultmann’s hand (once removed).
George was a brilliant man and a good friend to me. And his wife Ruth was a witty treasure who, like all Brits, loved to swap tales (usually of some fascinating personal tidbit about this or that person).
Here are the photos. I think of you often, George. I miss you. Very much. (And I miss the fact that, unlike you, no one wears a tie anymore even when sitting in the parlor reading the paper).
GRBM at the BM
His house in Hove
His view to the sea
His living room
At St Paul’s Cathedral
At Tyndale House
A Pub for Breakfast
Here’s what he said about him (Opera Omnia X,176)- Hoc sane video, nihil hoc asino posse fingi superbius, nihil petulantius hoc cane (with thanks to Lloyd Petersen for the heads up).
Now that’s how you insult someone. Take note, Luther.
Calvin- of his colleagues in Geneva- “Our other colleagues are rather a hindrance than a help to us: they are rude and self conceited, have no zeal, and less learning.”
Next faculty meeting use that line. Go ahead.