The Third Sunday after Easter
April 28, 1996
I. Errors of legalism
A. Peter erred; Paul corrected.
B. Others were taken in for a time.
II. Legalism = liberalism
A. Both destroy the Gospel
B. Both turn Christ into Moses
"Let him therefore who is concerned about his life not be taken in by the friendliness of heretics to agree with their doctrine. Neither let him be offended at my faults, who am a teacher, but let him consider the doctrine itself." [Origen, Homily 7, on Ezekiel]
Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1971, I, p. 154.
"But now I ought not to quote the Nicean, nor you the Ariminensian Council, as if to judge beforehand. I will not be bound by the authority of this, nor you by the authority of that. On the authority of the Scriptures and not on any one's own, but on the common witnesses of both, let matter contend with matter, cause with cause, reason with reason." [Augustine, Contra Maximum, Book 3, chap. 14]
Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, I, p. 155.
"Later on we read that even the most prominent leaders, both Peter and Barnabas, fell into error and all the other Jews with them. Then Paul alone rose up and rebuked Peter publicly, as he himself writes in Galatians 2:11."
Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., II, p. 28. Gal. 2:11.
"I often say that there is no power or means to resist the sects except this one article of Christian righteousness. If we have lost it, we cannot resist any errors or sects." What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., III, p. 1225. Galatians 2:20.
"In philosophy an error that is small at the beginning becomes very great in the end. So a small error in theology overturns the whole body of doctrine...That is why we may not surrender or change even an iota (apiculum) of doctrine."
What Luther Says, III, p. 1365.
"Therefore, do not speak to me of love or friendship when anything is to be detracted from the Word or the faith; for we are told that not love but the Word brings eternal life, God's grace, and all heavenly treasures."
What Luther Says, III, p. 1411f.
"In matters concerning faith we must be invincible, unbending, and very stubborn; indeed, if possible, harder than adamant. But in matters concerning love we should be softer and more pliant than any reed and leaf and should gladly accommodate ourselves to everything."
What Luther Says, I, p. 412f. Galatians 2:8.