Luther’s Works, Volume 79 (Church Postil V) (ebook Edition)

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This volume completes the Church Postil, bringing forth Luther's sermons on Epistle and Gospel texts from the Eleventh Sunday after Trinity to the end of the Church Year.

About this Volume
This volume completes the Church Postil, bringing forth Luther’s sermons on Epistle and Gospel texts from the Eleventh Sunday after Trinity to the end of the Church Year, plus Luther’s sermons on Ephesians 6:10-17, which have never before been translated and were previously omitted from the Church Postil.

Luther’s preaching in the Summer Postil, as edited by Caspar Cruciger, is mostly didactic and hortatory. His sermons are often expository, explaining the biblical text verse by verse, and sometimes topical, teaching subjects that the biblical text mentions. In both cases, his preaching sticks close to the Bible. As a result, his sermons present the Law and the Gospel in manifold ways and succeed in avoiding formulaic expressions and clichés.

In this work, Luther admonishes and teaches his hearers constantly, but he also consoles their consciences. He does this in accord with the text he is preaching. In all cases, God reveals Himself as the believer’s loving Father. The basis of this loving, paternal relationship is the mediation of the Son, Jesus Christ, in terms of His obedience to God’s Law, bearing His people’s sins, taking God’s wrath upon Himself, His suffering and death, and interceding for His people. Luther emphasizes that the results of this Gospel are real. Believers are improved in heart, mind, and behavior. Christians begin to conform to God’s will and Law, and they even partake of the divine nature. Over and over, Luther describes the Christian life as a struggle between faith and doubt, or between faith and other vices, or between the believer and the devil.

Luther has been characterized as the man between God and the devil, and the same thing could be said about his postil sermons. Here Luther is a theologian of the church militant, battling Satan’s temptations in the hearts of his hearers using God’s weapons—most especially the Spirit-bestowing Word of God.

About the Series

The 28 planned volumes are intended to reflect both modern and sixteenth-century interests and to expand the coverage of genres underrepresented in the existing volumes of Luther's Works, such as Luther's sermons and disputations. The primary basis for the translation is the comprehensive Weimar edition.

“Among the greatest and most prolific theologians of Christian history, Martin Luther still speaks to us today. This 28-volume new series splendidly complements its 55-volume predecessor and offers a treasure-trove of writings never before available in English, writings crucial to understanding Luther’s life, thought, and profound influence throughout the centuries. Offering readable yet reliable translations, well introduced and appropriately annotated, this new series should delight scholars as well as engage laity and clergy.”

—Mark U. Edwards, Jr., Academic Dean, Harvard Divinity School

“Luther’s analysis of human life and his proclamation of God’s merciful deliverance of humankind from sin and evil through Christ ring true across the cultural boundaries of time and space. This supplement to the historic edition of the reformer’s writings, completed a quarter century ago, is bringing significant additions to the texts from his pen than are currently available in English. It will also provide English-language readers access to documents that aid in understanding Luther’s own life and the development of the Wittenberg Reformation. The volumes are being edited according to the highest academic standards and their introductions and notes offer readers helpful guides to the context and content of the reformer’s writings. Casual readers and those seeking to expand and deepen their knowledge of the Reformation will profit greatly from these carefully translated and edited volumes.”

—Robert Kolb, Missions Professor of Systematic Theology, and Director of the Institute for Mission Studies, Concordia Seminary, Saint Louis

“Concordia Publishing House is providing a tremendous service to historians, theologians, pastors, and students by producing these new translations of Luther’s works. The editors have chosen key texts for illustrating Luther’s life and thought, from his earliest works to the biographies written soon after his death. The volumes devoted to Luther’s sermons, lectures, and disputations are especially welcome, because they will give English readers a more complete picture of Luther the preacher and professor.”

—Amy Nelson Burnett, Professor of History, University of Nebraska—Lincoln

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