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Frank W. Nelte

March 1995

Little Known Sayings by Martin Luther

Luther wrote an unbelievably huge amount. Over 60 enormous volumes have been published, and that is by no means everything. He wrote partly in German and partly in Latin. His letters alone number well over 3000.

Since the beginning of this century the world of scholarship has proved that "the Luther of the legend" never really existed; i.e. Luther as a person and teacher was TOTALLY DIFFERENT from what he is generally portrayed as having been. I grew up in the Lutheran Church, with both my parents coming from Lutheran families. In view of Luther's generally perceived high status as one of the leading Protestant reformers, I feel it is important to understand that Martin Luther was a totally different man from what we have generally been told.

The following quotations are some of his less frequently published views and ideas. They stand in stark contrast to the picture of Martin Luther that is generally conveyed. I present these quotations mostly without comments, as they speak for themselves.


1) "It does not matter what people DO; it only matters what they BELIEVE."

2) "No other sin exists in the world save unbelief."

3) "Sometimes it is necessary to commit some sin out of hatred and contempt for the Devil."

4) "You must say my sins are not mine; they are not in me at all; they are the sins of another; they are Christ's and none of my business."

5) "Christianity is nothing but a continual exercise in feeling that you have no sin although you sin, but that your sins are thrown on Christ."

6) "Be a sinner and SIN BOLDLY, but believe more boldly still."

7) "The saints must be good, downright sinners."

8) "The Apostles themselves were sinners, yea, regular scoundrels."

9) "I am but a man prone to let himself be swept off his feet by society, drunkenness, and the movements of the flesh."

10) "Why, do you think, do I drink too much wine ...? It is when the Devil prepares to torment me and mock me and I wish to take the lead."

11) "I burn with all the desires of my unconquered flesh."

12) "I rarely pray... My unruly flesh does burn me with devouring flame. In short, I who should be a prey to the spirit alone am eating my heart out through the flesh, through lust, laziness, idleness, and somnolence."

13) "You owe nothing to God except faith and confession. In all other things He lets you do whatever you like. You may do as you please, without any danger of conscience whatsoever."

14) "The body asks for a woman and must have it; to marry is a remedy for fornication."

15) "Since wedlock and marriage are a worldly business, we clergy and ministers of the Church have nothing to order or decree about it, but must leave each town ... to follow its own usage and custom."

16) "In spite of all the good I say of married life, I will not grant so much to nature as to admit that there is no sin in it ... no conjugal due is ever rendered without sin."

17) "The matrimonial duty is never performed without sin. The matrimonial act is a sin differing in nothing from adultery and fornication."

18) "The Word and work of God is quite clear, viz. that women were made either to be wives or prostitutes."

19) "Even though they grow weary and wear themselves out with child-bearing, it does not matter; let them go on bearing children till they die, that is what they are there for."

20) "It is not forbidden that a man should have more than one wife."

21) After the rape of nuns which took place on the night of Holy Saturday, 1523, Luther calls the citizen Koppe, who organized the exploit, a "holy and blessed robber".

22) In April, 1525, Luther refers to himself as "a famous lover" who had "three wives" but "no intention whatsoever to marry". Less than 2 months later he suddenly decided to marry Catherine von Bora... and gave as a reason: "I married in order to spite the Devil".

23) "Luther not merely robbed marriage of its sacramental character, but also declared it to be a purely outward carnal union, which has nothing whatsoever to do with religion and church" (Janssen: "History of the German People", Volume 16, page 137).

24) In December 1539 Luther gave the Landgrave Philip of Hesse written permission to take a second wife (even though capital punishment was still in force for bigamy). When the news spread, Luther wrote: "What harm could it do if a man told a good lusty lie in a worthy cause and for the sake of the Christian Churches? To lie in a case of necessity or for convenience or in excuse --- such lying would not be against God; He was ready to take such lies on Himself."

25) When Philip refused to lie, Luther wrote to him:"When it comes to writing, I shall be quite competent to wriggle out of it and to leave your Grace in the lurch."

26) "Lying is a virtue if it is indulged in for the purpose of preventing the fury of the Devil, or made to serve the honour, the life, and the welfare of one's fellow-men."

27) "The lie of service is wrongly termed a lie ... it may be called Christian and brotherly charity."

28) "We consider EVERYTHING allowable against the deception and depravity of the papal antichrist."

29) FIRST: "God has delivered the princes up to a perverted mind, and means to make an end to them ... All the princes could do was to rob and oppress the people, heaving tax upon tax, and rate upon rate... The princes are the greatest fools and the worst scoundrels on earth. The people cannot, will not any longer, endure your tyranny and your presumption."

30) LATER: "To kill a peasant is not murder; it is helping to extinguish the conflagration. Let there be no half measures! Crush them! Cut their throats! Transfix them! Leave no stone unturned! To kill a peasant is to destroy a mad dog! ... Our princes must in the circumstances regard themselves as the officers of the divine wrath which bids them chastise such scoundrels. A prince who fails to do so would be sinning against God very badly. He would be failing in his mission. A prince who in such circumstances avoided bloodshed would become responsible for the murders and all the further crimes which these low swine might commit. It is no longer a question of tolerance, patience, pity. It is the hour of wrath and for the sword; the hour for mercy is past."

31) "I will not forbid such rulers as are able, to chastise and slay the peasants, without previously them offering terms, even though the Gospel does not permit it."

32) "What strange times are these when a prince can enter heaven by the shedding of blood more certainly than others by means of prayer!... Come, dearly-beloved lords and nobles, strike them transfix them, and cut their throats with might and main. Should you find death in so doing, you could not wish for one more divine, for you would fall in obedience to God and in defending your like against the hordes of Satan."

(** This is the most brutal, inhuman and low way that ANYONE has ever turned against his own followers without any reason whatsoever, except to establish his own position with the princes!!!**)

33) Luther's answer to the princes' brutal application of his advice was: "If they say I am very hard, and merciless, mercy be damned. Let whoever can stab, strangle and kill them like mad dogs."

34) In 1526 Luther wrote: "they (i.e. the rulers) must drive, beat, throttle, hang, burn, behead and torture, so as to make themselves feared and to keep the people in check."

35) "It was I, Martin Luther, who slew all the peasants in the insurrection, for I commanded them to be slaughtered. All their blood is upon my shoulders. But I cast it on our Lord God who commanded me to speak in this way."

(COMMENT: This statement should make very clear which "god" was the one that Luther received his instructions from ... see 2 Corinthians 4:4.)

36) From the Peasants' War onwards Luther always maintained this brutal attitude. For example, in 1535, at the height of his power, Luther urged the rulers to persecute and kill the Anabaptists... "the principal thing required to protect the people against the devils who were teaching through the mouths of the Anabaptist prophets was in the case of the common people compulsion by the sword and by the law ... the law with its penalties rules over them in the same way that wild beasts are held in check by chains and bars ...". Not surprisingly, many Anabaptists were beheaded with the express approval of Luther.

37) "Every Christian leads a double life: one faithful and spiritual, the other as a citizen or a worldly one... Civilian life does not regard God... God does not need our works, if we praise Him and thank Him, that is all He wants."

38) "We must make a great distinction between justice on earth and the justice of God... as far as earthly justice is concerned, we need not be guided by the Scripture."

39) Once he was in power, Luther re-introduced censorship and also concentration camps. Nothing was to be published which had not been cleared with Luther first. Luther also persuaded the Elector of Saxony to have a prison built and reserved for pastors and preachers whose conduct or utterances he regarded as reprehensible.

40) Regarding strengthening the powers of the rulers to the highest degree, Luther wrote: "Since the times of the Apostles, no doctor or scribe, no theologian or jurist, has confirmed, instructed, and comforted the consciences of the secular estates so well and lucidly as I have done."

(** NOTE THIS!!**)

41) To justify his double standards, Luther wrote again: "As a Christian, man has to suffer everything and not resist anybody. As a member of the State, the same man has to rob, murder, and fight with joy, as long as he lives.

42) "It is Christian and a work of love not to go slowly in a war. One must cut the throats of one's enemies, pillage them, burn them, do everything that may do them harm until one has beaten them. ... Only a simpleton argues that it is not Christian to strangle and to rob and that it is no work of love."

43) "If the authorities order war, then the people have to fight and obey, not as Christians but as members and obedient people of the secular power."

44) "One should not look at war how it strangles, burns and fights. This way to look at it is narrow and childish..."

45) Regarding an unjust war Luther states: "What is undertaken in real confidence in God, ends well, even though it should be mistaken and sinful."

46) Regarding the Jews Luther stated: "It is impossible to teach or re-educate the Jews.... Were God to promise me no other Messiah than him for whom the Jews hope, I would much rather be a pig than a man."

(**COMMENT: most of Luther's statements about the Jews are so vulgar and obscene, vicious and crude that they simply cannot be quoted.**)

47) His most charitable advice about the Jews is: "We ought to take revenge on the Jews and kill them."

48) "If I had to baptize a Jew, I would take him to the bridge of the Elbe (a German river), hang a stone around his neck and push him over with the words, 'I baptize thee in the name of Abraham'."

49.) "It is our own fault that we have not annihilated the Jews but placidly let them stay where they are in spite of all their murders, their curses, blasphemies, lies, violations, and that we even protect their schools, their dwellings, their persons and property."

50) "The Jews deserve to be hanged on gallows seven times higher than ordinary thieves."

(**NOTE: sounds like Haman in Esther 5:14).

51) Luther drew up his own code of antisemitic laws, consisting of 7 paragraphs, which were more strict and severe than those of Adolf Hitler.

52) "I have been born for my beloved Germans, for them will I die! ... We Germans must remain Germans!"

53) "If Germany had only a real leader, then no enemy could ever be victorious."

(**NOTE: this is anticipating Adolf Hitler!**)

54) "RAGE acts as a stimulant to my whole being. It sharpens my wits, puts a stop to the assaults of the Devil and drives out care. Never do I write or speak better than when I am in a rage. If I wish to compose, write, pray, and preach well, I have to be in a rage."

55) Regarding what Luther meant by PRAYING: "If I can no longer pray, I can at least curse. I will no longer say, 'Hallowed be Thy Name', but 'Curse and blast and damn the name of Papist'. I will no longer say 'Thy Kingdom come', but will repeat 'Curse and damn the Papacy and send it to perdition'. YES, THAT IS HOW I PRAY, AND I DO SO EVERY DAY OF MY LIFE AND FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART."

56) "When I am angry, I am not expressing my own wrath, but the wrath of God."

57) "St Augustine or St Ambrosius cannot be compared with me.... They shall respect our teaching which is the Word of God, spoken by the Holy Ghost, through our lips.... Not for a thousand years has God bestowed such great gifts on any bishop as He has on me ... God has appointed me for the whole German land, and I boldly vouch and declare that when you obey me you are without a doubt obeying not me but Christ ... I believe that we are the last trump that sounds before Christ is coming ... What I teach and write remains true even though the whole world should fall to pieces over it .... WHOEVER REJECTS MY DOCTRINE CANNOT BE SAVED ... Nobody should rise up against me."

58) Once Luther said: "I HAVE GREATER CONFIDENCE IN MY WIFE AND MY PUPILS THAN I HAVE IN CHRIST". On another occasion he said: "GOD OFTEN ACTS LIKE A MADMAN ... God paralyses the old and blinds the young and thus remains master ... I look upon God no better than a scoundrel."

(**NOTE: Again it should be clear that the "god" Luther really served was none other than Satan!**)

59) Luther also accused Christ of committing adultery with the Samaritan woman at the well, with Mary Magdalene and with the woman taken in adultery ... "whom He dismissed so lightly. Thus even Christ, who was so righteous, must have been guilty of fornication before He died."

60) Luther also admitted: "I KNOW THAT I DON'T PRACTISE WHAT I TEACH".


Luther's statements speak for themselves. He was most assuredly not "a man of God"! His viciousness towards the Jews paved the way for Adolf Hitler. Hitler simply put into practise the things Martin Luther had preached. Luther's views were totally depraved.

Frank W. Nelte