Shocking things everyone should know about Luther

I think it is important that we know as much as we can about a persons character before we make judgements about whether he is fit to lead and preach. Many people for example do not realise that Luther (at least towards the end of his life) was shockingly ant-semitic. In his book “On the Jews and their Lies” Luther (1540s) makes some disgusting ascertations. Luther suggests that the German people should:

  1. set fire to synagogues and schools
  2. burn houses
  3. confiscate all Jewish religious writings
    4)forbid Rabbis from teaching
    5)make the Jews slaves of germans

I personally find the above remarks outrageous and could never imagine that a person who could espouse them could be permitted to preach let alone help forumlate theology.

Your statement is true and it’s worst than the things you posted. Basically, what Hilter did to the Jews is what Luther wrote about them.

I don’t remember the year but the Lutheran Church made an apology to the Jews for what Luther said.

I always wonder why some catholics are quick to point out the anti-semitism of Luther but apparently overlook the anti-semitism of those in their own fold.

No wonder Ben Masada, a Jewish, does not like Christianity. That kind of things were repeated by a German named Hitler.

St. Edith Stein pray for us.

St. John Chrysostom was somewhat anti-semetic.

No one is overlooking anything and no one is quick to point out the anti-semitism of Luther. The OP was showing a part of history that many people do not know about. When I spoke of the same thing to my Lutheran friend he did not believe me. So this thread is not about pointing fingers, just bringing up a fact of history that many did not know about.

Interesting…I thought his (Luther’s) anti-semitism was rather well known.

Only to those who already know of it. My friend I mentioned claims he has read several books on Luther and there was nothing about his problem with Jews. I guess that’s why he didn’t believe me. I had another Lutheran friend that wanted to see proof of it when I told him. So I would not say that it is common knowledge.

Yes, to be sure there are some Catholics who are anti-semitic. But in all fairness, the Catholic Church in modern times has fought against anti-semitism.

In WWII, many priests and nuns were sent to concentration camps for helping Jews – they were considered “Jewish sympathizers”.

In fact, Pope John XXIII helped Jews during WWII and even the current pope said Pius XII “spared no effot” to save Jews.

Many thousands of Roman Jews were saved during WWII because the Vatican ran an underground railroad which got Jews out of Italy. Rome’s chief Rabbi, Israel Zolli, converted to Catholicism at the end of WWII because he was so impressed with the Pope’s concern and help of the persecuted Jews.



Luther defined and inspired much of the theology used by protestant churches. He is therefore in a different category from Popes/Cardinals and others who have erred.

At the very least it must call into question the credibility of Luther’s view on other matters.

Confused Tim:

We Lutherans are well aware of, and dismayed by, Luther’s polemic against the Jews. Let it be known that we do not hold Luther’s views expressed in On the Jews and their Lies as normative for our theology nor for our relations with Jews. If you want to see the side of Luther that inspires us, read his Small Catechism with its excellent expositions on the Ten Commandments, the Lord’s Prayer, the Apostles’ Creed, the Sacrament of Baptism, and the Sacrament of the Altar.

Human beings, even the divines of the Church, are human beings. Were we to know all the details of the lives of those around us, we would be shocked I am sure.

Thank God for grace.

Replacement theology is anti semetic

Could you inform us as to which of these ideas were new with Luther, and which were common opinions in his day?

Given the recent flap over Bishop Williamson, I think those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. The “blood libel” was still being promoted by Vatican-sponsored periodicals in the early 20th century. Catholics don’t have a shining record here, to say the least. Yet I for one do not think that this discredits everything Catholics have to say. It would be nice to see Catholics extend the same courtesy.


Ridiculous. You call someone the “vicar of Christ” and say that this person is infallible in matters of faith and morals. And then you claim that the errors and sins of such a person are irrelevant, while those of an extremely important Protestant theologian (whom no one regards as infallible) are vitally important? It makes no sense.


It’s also documented that many priests in Italy were part of the pipeline to help Nazis escape trial. The man who hid Adolf Eichmann in Genoa was a priest. Eichmann loved him so much he named his youngest son after him. It is even known that after some Jews returned to Poland after WWII they still faced pogroms in their villages, and priests were known to have instigated them.

No one is denying the hatred Jews have faced from Christians, at least I am not. But it gets old hearing about Luther when the hatred of others (by this I mean Catholics) is ignored. Besides, Luther doesn’t speak for all of us protesters, so people need to quit asserting that we are all following an anti-semite. If I said that since SOME Crusaders slaughtered Jews that must mean that all Catholics are guilty people would call for my head and for me to be banned! But I’m not going to do that, EVER, because it would be unfair and dishonet. Everyone needs to be honest and up-front about the history of Christianity, but somewhere along the way it needs to be pointed out that no other group in history has sought to rectify their sins against the Jews like Christians have.

And Luther certainly doesn’t speak for Anabaptists!:eek:

First, as point out by others, we do not know how much of this was Luther himself and how much of it was common in the era/location. Jews have been the whipping boys in much of Northern and Eastern Europe for years.

Second, it is important to take into account many things about Luther’s life and world view. It does give us insight into the man and how he arrived at is position. What is unimportant is how this particular thing affects his theology. For all that we can say against Luther as a human, much of those shortcomings are not reflected in his theology. For example, though he had an issue with the vow of Chastity that he took, he did not ease the restrictions against extra-marital or homosexual sex like we see some modern “theologies” do.

i think you mean “assertions”… (Sorry, I’m an English teacher… if only in my own mind :D)…

Luther suggests that the German people should:

  1. set fire to synagogues and schools
  2. burn houses
  3. confiscate all Jewish religious writings
    4)forbid Rabbis from teaching
    5)make the Jews slaves of germans

I personally find the above remarks outrageous and could never imagine that a person who could espouse them could be permitted to preach let alone help forumlate theology.

actually, he did and said even worse things… Have you ever read The Facts About Luther? The author quotes his (luther’s) own words and also other Protestants who have studied him… so there’s no way you can say “Well, a Catholic priest wrote that book so what do you expect”? or something like that…

I believe Luther was possessed… just my opiniion from what I’ve read…

Catholics are easy targets.islamists can’t see the problems with mahomet.Protestents/Pentecostal etc can’t see the problems with their church.

Atleast ,here in this part of world ,pentecostal/protestent are running from funds from Europe and Americas to “Convert” by Money ,job etc.The Biggest Problem we ,Syrian Catholics face is ,these funded cult members put hoardings infront of Our Church’s ,confuse the normal catholics by weird questions ,most of them against Virgin Mary etc.

Protestents and Pentecostals are Cults.they follow the cult lead ,they can’t understand that we are not worshipping St.Mary and other Blessed.they pay money to catholic preachers from Laity Like Mr.Devasia Mullakkara to give a “booking” for converting as must catholics,Orthodox/Jacobites to these cults ,be it pentecost or protestent and then ends up in Yahova’s Witness(JW) like hell will find reasons to justify extra marrital relationships ,homosexuality etc.yours is not Guided by Lord Jesus Christ for sure.yours all are cult ,where the cult can’t recover by itself from the wrong teaching and blatant anti-catholic yawning.

Sorry ,I don’t want to hurt your cults.but why is that it is always us Catholics suffering for your anti-catholic preachings?I remember the problems in Ireland few years back between catholics and protestents.

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