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The Forms of God

October 10, 2018
By Martin Luther

Return, O LORD! How long? Have pity on Your servants! . . . Let Your work be shown to Your servants, and Your glorious power to their children.

PSALM 90:13,16

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The Forms of God

Trembling consciences, which do not see [God's] work of glory, fear Him and imagine Him to be the devil; for they cannot picture Him as having a lovely form or costume. They arm Him with swords and lightning, as though, in reality, nothing in heaven or on earth were more repulsive and more horrible than an incensed God. As such a God He did appear on Mount Sinai (Exodus 19:18). As such a God Moses also depicted Him above. But in the passage before us Moses prays that God might reveal another form of Himself, one which we can behold with pleasure and over which we can rejoice. Such a form God truly has when we behold Him in the person of Christ. In Christ He is consummate Grace, Life, Salvation, Redemption. In Christ we see the glorious God, God clothed in His glorious and gracious works. And so Moses prays: "Show Thyself to us miserable and condemned sinners in this form." This is the chief part of his petition. In it he prays for remission of sins, righteousness, and life eternal. But he prays for these gifts in such a way that we might have assurance and that our heart might not in the least degree doubt these matters. Because this petition cannot be realized except in Christ.

From Commentary on Psalm 90 (Luther's Works 13:137)

October 10

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