#55- Those Under the Devil are both Liars and Murderers

“This was also the case in Paradise. When the devil had diverted Adam from truth to falsehood and had taken his soul by lies, he also robbed him of his life and gave him death. Then he had the entire man. Thus the bishops boast today that they are the Christian Church, but they will not tolerate the truth about Christ. They suppress it and thereby confirm their lies. If we do not admit that they are right, they hang, drown, burn, and exile us. Thus the burghers, the peasants, and the noblemen now vent their hatred and envy on us if we do not bow to their will. Nor are the bigwigs kindly inclined toward the preachers who tell them the truth.

He who falls away from Christ and His Word and does not stand right with Him becomes a slave to these two sins. He becomes a liar, an enemy of the truth, and an enemy of his neighbors life. Fine virtues, indeed, are displayed by the man who through lies becomes so base as to be hostile to God and man and unable to bear the truth! He is antagonistic to our Lord God, who permits him to hear the truth. If he could kill God, he would be glad to do so. He does his utmost, however, by blaspheming, cursing, and reviling Him. And he murders and kills man. Christ means to say here: ‘Now you see what two great virtues are yours! You are hostile to God and to your fellow men who do not see eye to eye with you. Therefore you are not free; you are committing these two sins, and the devil is riding you.’” (Luther’s Works, v. 23, p. 417).

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