Monday, May 17, 2004


On the Study of Ancient Languages

Martin Luther, quoted by Jean Héring in The First Epistle of Saint Paul to the Corinthians, tr. A.W. Heathcote and P.J. Allcock (London, 1962), p. vi:
In so far as we love the Gospel, to that extent let us study the ancient tongues. And let us notice that without the knowledge of languages we can scarcely preserve the Gospel. Languages are the sheath which hides the sword of the Spirit, they are the chest in which this jewel is enclosed, the goblet holding this draught. So although the Faith and the Gospel may be proclaimed by preachers without the knowledge of languages, the preaching will be feeble and ineffective. But where the languages are studied, the proclamation will be fresh and powerful, the Scriptures will be searched, and the Faith will be constantly rediscovered through ever new words and deeds.

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