Review of Martin Luther’s Theology by Oswald Bayer

Martin Luther’s Theology, a masterly and mature summary by the grand old man of Luther studies in Germany, is not just a review of the reformer’s thought across the doctrinal loci: it is a handbook for life. This is quite deliberate on Bayer’s part. “Intellectual knowledge about faith,” he writes in the Preface, “is not separated from the affective experience of faith; the art of disputation serves the task of caring for souls” (xvi). Bayer consistently refuses the “God’s-eye” approach to theology, which looks down from heaven upon a complete and seamless whole. Instead he, with Luther, with all sinners struggling toward faith, looks up from the midst of the struggle, sorting out the interplay of human hope and doubt surrounding the promise of Jesus Christ…

[Read the rest of the review at the online Journal of Lutheran Ethics.]

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