Luther On How To Study Theology

I want to point out to you a correct way of studying theology, for I've had practice in that. If you keep to it, you will become so learned that you yourself could (if it were necessary) write books just as good as those of the fathers and councils. This is the way taught by holy King David (and doubtlessly used also by all the patriarchs and prophets) in Psalm 119. There you will find three rules, amply presented throughout the whole Psalm: prayer (oratio), meditation (meditatio), and testing (tentatio).

Prayer. First, you should know that the Holy Scriptures constitute a book that turns the wisdom of all other books into foolishness, because not one teaches about eternal life except this one alone. Therefore you should straightway despair of your reason and understanding. With them you will not attain eternal life, but, on the contrary, your presumptuousness will plunge you and others with you out of heaven (as happened to Lucifer) into the abyss of hell. But kneel down in your room and ...

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From Issue:Spring 1981: Money
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