Concordia Theological Monthly

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luther, faith, sanctification, sacraments, justification, doctrine, baptism, sanctifying, wesley, catechism

Submission Type

Bible Study; Lecture; Sermon Prep


In a volume of sermons which he published in 1788, John Wesley took occasion to repeat a criticism of Luther that he had first made after reading his commentary on the Epistle to the Galatians many years before. "It has frequently been observed," he says, "that very few were clear in their judgment both with regard to justification and sanctification"; and he cites Luther as an example. "Who," he asks, "has wrote more ably than Martin Luther on justification by faith alone? And who was more ignorant of the doctrine of sanctification, or more confused in his conceptions of it?" In more recent times a similar opinion has been expressed with regard to Luther by a group of Anglo-Catholic theologians in a well-known pamphlet entitled Catholicity. After an appreciation of "the great positive truths of Protestantism," among which they include the doctrine of justification by faith (though not faith alone) they proceed to expose what they call "two radical errors" of Luther, one of which they describe as "the dissociation of justification and sanctification."


Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion

Scripture References in this Resource (separated by semi-colons)

John 17: 17, 19; Acts 15:9;

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Submission Audience

Laity; Ministers; Scholars