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Daily Devotion


Created for Life

October 06, 2018
By Martin Luther

You return man to dust. . .. We are brought to an end by Your anger; by Your wrath we are dismayed.

PSALM 90:3, 7


Created for Life


The death of human beings is a genuine disaster. Man's death is in itself truly an infinite and eternal wrath. The reason is that man is a being created for this purpose: to live forever in obedience to the Word and to be like God. He was not created for death. In his case death was ordained as a punishment of sin; for God said to Adam: "In the day that you eat of this tree, you shall die" (Genesis 2:17). The death of human beings is, therefore, not like the death of animals. These die because of a law of nature. Nor is man's death an event which occurs accidentally or has merely an aspect of temporality. On the contrary, man's death, if I may so speak, was threatened by God and is caused by an incensed and estranged God. . .. Therefore it comes to man as shocking news to hear that he, who had been created as a good and perfect being for life and who was to have his dwelling place in God, is now destined for death. Man fell from his former blessed estate through sin. It is this truly awful revelation which Moses wishes to communicate to us when he studiously portrays God as an enraged God. He does it in order to terrify smug and impenitent sinners.

From Commentary on Psalm 90 (Luther's Works 13:94)

October 6