Luther: Do not preach on lofty topics...

Rector Bernard von Dolen, minister in Herzberg, complained bitterly about his arrogant auditors who despised the reading of the catechism.

Dr. Martin Luther was greatly disturbed and fell silent. Then he said, "Cursed be every preacher who aims at lofty topics in the church, looking for his own glory and selfishly desiring to please one individual or another. When I preach here I adapt myself to the circumstances of the common people. I don't look at the doctors and masters, of whom scarcely forty are present, but at the hundred or thousand young people and children. It's to them that I preach, to them that I devote myself, for they, too, need to understand. If the others don't want to listen they can leave. Therefore, my dear Bernard, take pains to be simple and direct; don't consider those who claim to be learned but be a preacher to unschooled youth and sucklings."

-Martin Luther; Luther's Works, vol. 54; Table Talk; ed. & trans. Theodore G. Tappert; gen. ed. Helmut T. Lehmann; pub. by Fortress Press; pp. 235-236 under heading "Preach to the Simple and Not to the Learned" (also "Between March 28 and May 27, 1537" "No. 3573").



This quote demonstrates why Luther is so much fun to read. He teaches plainly and with vivid imagery.

Very convicting.

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