“For if you hesitate to believe, or are too proud to acknowledge, that God foreknows and wills all things, not contingently, but necessarily and immutably, how can you believe, trust and rely on His promises? . . . for the Christian’s chief and only comfort in every adversity lies in knowing that God does not lie, but brings all things to pass immutably, and that His will cannot be resisted, altered or impeded” (Martin Luther, The Bondage of the Will, 84-85).
“It is, then, fundamentally necessary and wholesome for Christians to know that God foreknows nothing contingently, but that he foresees, purposes, and does all things according to His own immutable, eternal, and infallible will” (Martin Luther, The Bondage of the Will, 80).
“We need, therefore, to have in mind a clear-cut distinction between God’s power and ours, and God’s work and ours, if we would live a godly life” (Martin Luther, The Bondage of the Will, 78).
“The Holy Spirit is no sceptic, and the things He has written in our hearts are not doubts or opinions, but assertions — surer and more certain than sense and life itself” (Martin Luther, The Bondage of the Will, 70).
“Away, now, with Sceptics and Academics from the company of us Christians; let us have men who will assert, men twice as inflexible as very Stoics! . . . Nothing is more familiar or characteristic among Christians than assertion. Take away assertions, and you take away Christianity. Why, the Holy Spirit is given to Christians from heaven in order that He may glorify Christ and in them confess Him even unto death — and is this not assertion, to die for what you confess and assert?” (Martin Luther, The Bondage of the Will, 67).
“It is my belief that a recovery of the Trinity at ground level, the level of the ordinary minister and believer, will help revitalize the life of the church and, in turn, its witness to the world” (Robert Letham, The Holy Trinity, 7).
“Today most Western Christians are practical modalists. The usual way of referring to God is “God” or, particularly at the popular level, “the Lord.” It is worth contrasting this with Gregory Nazianzen, the great Cappadocian of the fourth century, who spoke of “my Trinity,” saying, “When I say ‘God,’ I mean Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.” This practical modalism goes in tandem with a general lack of understanding of the historic doctrine of the Trinity” (Robert Letham, The Holy Trinity, 5-6).
“The post-Reformation slide into a privatized, individualistic religion that neglects the church and the world has led many to downplay the ecumenical creeds in favor of the latest insights from biblical studies, whatever may be the motivation behind them. Prominent aspects of the church’s doctrine of the Trinity have often been derided or neglected as unbiblical speculation. Opposition to the orthodox doctrine has often tended to come from those who stress the Bible at the expense of the teachings of the church. These people forget that the church was forced to use extrabiblical language because biblical language was open to a variety of interpretations — some faithful, others not” (Robert Letham, The Holy Trinity, 5).
“[T]he ancient church was forced to use extrabiblical terms to defend biblical concepts. This was necessary because heretics misused the Bible to support their erroneous ideas…. To think clearly about the Trinity, we must grapple with the history of discussion in the church” (Robert Letham, The Holy Trinity, 1-2).
“A satisfactory spiritual life will begin with a complete change in relation between God and the sinner; not a judicial change merely, but a conscious and experienced change affecting the sinner’s whole nature. The atonement in Jesus’ blood makes such a change judicially possible and the working of the Holy Spirit makes it emotionally satisfying” (A.W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God, 94).