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For the Sake of Believers

November 16, 2019
By Martin Luther

Then the men said to Lot, "Have you anyone else here? . . . Bring them out of the place. For we are about to destroy this place."

GENESIS 19:12-13

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For the Sake of Believers

Lot, having been commanded by the angels to do so, goes out to warn his sons-in-law . . . but they . . . laugh at the pious old man. . .. Lot thought that they were pious and saintly, for he could not look into their hearts. But they were hypocrites; they feigned godliness for a time, but now they revealed their true character when they laughed at the Word. Because they laugh, they perish. . .. No matter how righteous we may be, [the Law] should be proclaimed in the Church frequently, lest we fall into the madness of the antinomians, who remove the Law from the Church, as if everybody in the Church were actually a saint and there were no need for such examples of God's wrath. . . . But St. Paul (Romans 16:18) does not want the Church to be led astray by pleasing speeches; for sins should be denounced, and God's wrath should be exhibited for the sake of the unbelievers who are in the Church, yes, also for the sake of the believers, lest they yield to sin, which still adheres to them, and to their natural weakness. Thus even though Christ Himself most pleasantly invites sinners to come to Him, He nevertheless repeatedly cries out the awful "Woe!" over the impenitent Pharisees.

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