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A Treatise on Good Works

3.92  ·  Rating Details ·  145 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews

The first and highest, the most precious of all good works is faith in Christ, as He says, John vi. When the Jews asked Him: "What shall we do that we may work the works of God? " He answered: "This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him Whom He hath sent." When we hear or preach this word, we hasten over it and deem it a very little thing and easy to do, whereas we ou

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Published (first published 1521)
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Julie
Feb 05, 2016 Julie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I come from a works-heavy religion, and all my life I have heard “faith without works is dead.” I have defended this idea, because I believe that the only way to show that you believe something is to behave as though you believe it. I have read stuff by many faith-over-works authors (like CS Lewis) that agree with me. You are not working your way to heaven, but just putting your faith into action. And for me, I feel horrible guilt and pressure to perform all my required works. Truthfully, it has ...more
W. Littlejohn
Pretty solid stuff here. The opening material about the relationship between faith and works is the most interesting section, of course, but also the most problematic. At times Luther says, basically, "the man who has faith will automatically generate good works, so there's no need to prescribe good works to him." But, of course, if that is true, then what's the point of the latter half of the book, where he goes into great pastoral detail about how Christians should obey the Ten Commandments? L ...more
Chris Whisonant
This is a great little book on the Christian's need for good works. Some great thoughts from Luther!
Owen
May 18, 2012 Owen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-library
Excellent book. Luther shows how faith is the greatest work and the basis of all other truly good works. He says that nothing is a good work except what God commands, and nothing is a sin except what God forbids. He goes through the ten commandments and the Lord's Prayer, and he discusses what these things require and what they forbid.

Strong style, quotable quotes, warm heart, great wisdom.
Job Dalomba
Great. Covers much ground and is quite interesting.
Bcoghill Coghill
Jul 27, 2015 Bcoghill Coghill rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religion, essays
I love the clarity of Luther's writing. It is dated and there are better explanations out there but they build on this structure
Vaughn
Oct 31, 2010 Vaughn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderfully written. Through this study of the 10 commandments, Luther shows that faith in Christ is the first and highest, the most precious of all good works.
Chad Reinhardt
Jan 30, 2016 Chad Reinhardt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting walk through the 10 commandments. Worth looking at for Luther's perspective on the Christian ethic.
Brian
May 01, 2011 Brian rated it liked it
Luther had a picture and he was consistent with it.
Thomas Dehod
The truest and most elegant portion of Luther's Treatise on Good Works is the early section during which he argues for Faith as the "First and highest of all good works."

Luther does not argue for Faith as the only important element of a life of faith, as some interpret. Rather, he illustrates that faith must be the foundation and source of every other work. The best paragraph, in my opinion, is this one:

"This we may see in a common human example. When a man and a woman love and are pleased with
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Martin Luther was a German monk, theologian, university professor and church reformer whose ideas inspired the Protestant Reformation and changed the course of Western civilization.

Luther's theology challenged the authority of the papacy by holding that the Bible is the only infallible source of religious authority and that all baptized Christians under Jesus are a spiritual priesthood. According
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“This is the most dangerous trial of all, when there is no trial and every thing goes well; for then a man is tempted to forget God, to become too bold and to misuse times of prosperity.” 15 likes
“Now you see for yourself that all those who do not at at all times trust God and do not in all their works or sufferings, life and death, trust in His favor, grace and good-will, but seek His favor in other things or in themselves, do not keep this Commandment, and practise real idolatry, even if they were to do the works of all the other Commandments, and in addition had all the prayers, fasting, obedience, patience, chastity, and innocence of all the saints combined.” 2 likes
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