Lutheran - another Confederate Flag?

Just as the Confederate flag stands for the defence of slavery, the word Lutheran is a defence of anti-Judaism which instantly blurs to antisemitism all the way to the Holocaust.

On the Jews and Their Lies by Luther advises Protestants:

  1. to burn down Jewish synagogues and schools and warn people against them
  2. to refuse to let Jews own houses among Christians
  3. to take away Jewish religious writings
  4. to forbid rabbis from preaching
  5. to offer no protection to Jews on highways
  6. for usury to be prohibited and for all Jews’ silver and gold to be removed, put aside for safekeeping, and given back to Jews who truly convert
  7. to give young, strong Jews flail, axe, spade, and spindle, and let them earn their bread in the sweat of their brow

and, going only a little further in the steps of tyranny, ‘We are at fault in not slaying them.’

Time to repudiate ‘Lutheran’?

(And that’s before we get on to Luther’s mistranslation of Pistis Christou, forging the sola fide dark heart of Protestantism and its litotic euphemism Evangelicalism.)

Luther was a child of his time. Modern lutheran churches have recognised the faults of Luther and do not stand behind everything that Luther said.

Yet, the word ‘Lutheran’ fits poorly to the teachings of Paul (1 Corinthians 1:10-13). In that sense, ‘Lutheran’ is a bit questionable title for a church or a Christian.


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Aye knor. Lutherans have long repudiated the Jew hating (a better term than antisemitism) and more; the Scandinavian Lutherans did everything they could to save their Jews. And good point on naming a denomination after anyone but the founder.

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For me none of it matters. Almost any symbol has been used by someone, or some group for evil. I know some people who believe that the American flag stands for the same thing. Invaders subtly justifying murdering lots of people under the guise of liberating them from their culture. Things often change in their meaning and context.

There are southern people, mostly white but also black and Hispanic , who views the southern flag as nothing more than a flag representing your life for the south. It’s not focused on the single topic, nor does it encourage, segregation and racism. Same as how where I live for the longest time someone wearing white shoes with blue shoestrings and a blue hat meant they were in or associated with a gang. But because so many were in the gang in the past over time the style simply became one of many you seen by people who were not associated whatsoever with the gang.

When it comes to the name Lutheran I’m not concerned with it either. Just like many words, it’s obvious that despite evil things in the last times have changed for many.

Darwin made racist comments. Linnaeus too and there are movements that want to erase the current clade classification system because they don’t sees by latin should be used to name an African plant and who do mostly a bunch of white guys who traveled innthe last century to other countries get the gift of naming them what they want and some want to remove anything by Lovecraft because he was a bit of a crappy person and continue the “cancel” movement. I disagree with all of it.


It sounds like you don’t like Martin Luther and all he stands for! Have you heard of people today who believe that, ‘the word Lutheran is a defense of anti-Judaism’? I know Hitler used Luther’s words to support his anti-Judaism program but I have not met any with this view today.

As others have said, the issue is how something or someone of the past is understood or used today. As far as I know, Luther is not used as an anti-Jewish symbol today. He was a man of his time and many others held similar views. The Jews were often viewed with suspicion, blamed for disasters such as plagues and persecuted for all sorts of reasons over the centuries.

The use of symbols changes over time and from one culture to another. For example, many people in Europe and the USA, see the swastika as a symbol of Nazism with all its connotations. But for many Hindus and Buddhists living in India, Nepal, etc., the swastika is a symbol of good luck and prosperity.

Are you using Luther’s anti-Semitism as wedge to get people to support your anti-Lutheranism?

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He belongs to Calvin, thinking that is a better platform from which to push universalism. But I don’t think the evidence supports this.

I am not a fan of Luther any more than Calvin. I stick to Jesus and Paul in which there is no support for universalism except to shoot down Calvin’s teaching of limited atonement. In fact I see no support for any of the five points of TULIP Calvinism.

  1. Total Depravity? Nope, in the Bible, God sees good in people all the time.
  2. Unconditional election (which is equated with salvation)? Nope. Election is not about salvation but about God selecting people for providential work. Salvation is offered to all as a gift for all to accept if they choose.
  3. Limited Atonement? Nope, Christ died for all people.
  4. Irresistible Grace? Nope, that which cannot be refused is an assault by a stalker not a gift.
  5. Perseverance of the Saints? Nope. Romans 10… faith doesn’t ask such questions.

Though I well understand that not only is there is much more to Calvin than these, but these in themselves are an interpretation of Calvin by the Dutch Reformed in opposition to the Articles of Remonstrance (which I do not support either).

But I give my full support to the 5 solas of Protestantism, which we have from a Lutheran scholar Theodore Engelder.

  1. By grace of God alone. Salvation is 100% the work of God.
  2. By faith alone. No this is not a power to save ourselves. This is the other side of the coin of grace about what we are to do, which is to accept the gift which God offers. And accepting a gift never changes the gift into something earned.
  3. Through Christ alone. No one comes to the Father except through Jesus, because Jesus and the Father are one God. This does not mean that the words “Christ” or “Jesus” are some kind of password into heaven. There are no secret handshakes or passwords like with the Gnostics.
  4. Scripture alone. The Bible is the sole authority for the Christian religion. This is includes John 5:39 which warns that scriptures are not the source of salvation but are only meant to lead us to Christ.
  5. Glory to God alone. The point here is not that God is seeking to glorify himself but only that people should not be using Christianity to elevate themselves like the Pharisees had done: Matthew 23: 6 they love the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues, 7 and salutations in the market places, and being called rabbi by men. 8 But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brethren. 9 And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. 10 Neither be called masters, for you have one master, the Christ. 11 He who is greatest among you shall be your servant; 12 whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.

With that said we should remember the warning of Paul…

1 Corinthians 1:10 I appeal to you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree and that there be no dissensions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. 11 For it has been reported to me by Chlo′e’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brethren. 12 What I mean is that each one of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apol′los,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14 I am thankful[b] that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Ga′ius; 15 lest any one should say that you were baptized in my name. 16 (I did baptize also the household of Steph′anas. Beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized any one else.) 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.

Paul, Luther, and Calvin were human beings with any number of sins. If we believe the attribution of all the text to Paul then we see that Paul was just as much a product of his culture as Luther and Calvin were. What? Calvin wasn’t perfect either? Perhaps not as anti-Semitic as Luther or no more misogynistic than what is attributed to Paul, but certainly a deadly holocaust persecution of those who disagreed with his version of Christianity such as the Anabaptists as well as a puritanical police state with harsh punishments of such trivialities as laughing in church.

“‘Lutheran’ is a bit questionable title for a church or a Christian.”

This view would seem to hold for the title “Calvinist” too, no?

I agree with you. At least the post-Reformation “new denominations” that called themselves methodists, pentecostals, presbyterians, anglicans, adventists, anabaptists, charismatics, quakers, mormons, & baptists figured that one out. unification church people have it both ways, with the label “Moonies” ( “In informal interviews with U.C. members have indicated that they do not consider the term ‘Moonie’ derogatory.” 1982). The Marxists and Darwinists are in the same “heroic history” category as the Calvinists, Lutherans & Moonies, despite their considerably different worldviews.

Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox are of course not bothered by Protestant fragmentation or swayed by the heroic history of individualistic religion.

The Mormons and Moonies are more in the category of pseudo-Christian along with the JWs since they don’t fit even the earliest definition of Christianity by the creed of Nicea 325 AD. Which I only credit regarding the definition of the word “Christianity” as a religion distinct from Judaism and Islam. And certainly not to take on myself any monopoly with regards to God, truth, or salvation.

Yes the Catholics have their own fragmentations to worry about – their own rites, communions, and polity. At least the Eastern Orthodox are still ruled by ecumenical councils, so I would credit them with being the most like the earliest churches. But remaining unchanged is not always the best way go. I like the changes in the RC church, at least since the counter reformation anyway. But personally I am not only Protestant but evangelical, some of whom take the diversity of Christianity as natural and healthy (I certainly do). Though I feel quite free to side with the Eastern Orthodox on some doctrinal issues where I think they make more sense.


In some cases (well … I can name one anyway) the names were not chosen by a group for themselves, and certainly not by their founder, but were an insult levied against them by their opponents; and then the name just stuck. “Mennonite” was a taunting label applied to the followers of the renegade priest, Menno Simons, who is probably spinning in his grave at the thought that followers are now called by his name. I can’t imagine that Luther or Wesley, et all would have been excited about followers being named after themselves. As you say … “is Christ divided? … Are there Paulians and Apollosians?”


For me I don’t worry about the name. I look at a persons doctrine and life. I then , just like my own is up for, challenge it with scripture.

If someone says baptism is a necessary step for salvation I say let’s go through scripture and see .

If someone says belief alone just means to acknowledge the truth and that’s all it takes I say let’s go through scripture.

If someone says knock and you’ll receive is support of the sinners prayer than let’s examine the scriptures.

If someone says only these people can be married , or these people cannot be married, or these people cannot be remarried than let’s go back through scripture.

Thanks for the reminder about Mennonites. There were a considerable number of Mennonites where I grew up in the Fraser Valley, BC.

Yes, the label stuck as another unfortunate heroic history name, eventually accepted if not chosen by a community of new “Christian practitioners” (church) disunited from the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church explicitly by intention. Mennonites call themselves “Mennonites” now, so they eventually adopted the language of “insult levied against them by their opponents”, right? “Mennonite Brethren”, etc. The name “Mennonite” was thus not only forced from outside, but eventually embraced from the inside, yes?

In general, this constitutes an issue of Christian schismatics taking on labels and “planting churches” that keep them apart from most other churches, only nearer to a small few, right? It’s a form of individualistically divisive “religious tribalism” when studied from a sociological perspective. The lack of apostolic succession in Lutheranism, Calvinism & the Mennonite communities reveal one feature of their anti-Church historical teachings.

Most perceptive @phildub. Luther’s antisemitism (Anti Defamation League standard spelling) is a result of the Jews rejecting his sola fide heresy, built on the thousand year older one of Augustine’s original sin, built on Tertullian’s erroneous thinking. Neither of these heresies is found in Judaism or Eastern Christianity.

I was going to give you a like, but you ruined it by dissing Darwin! He’s the only hero in that eponymous list. His followers are just rational in following his clear, giant, courageous, brilliant, heroic footsteps.

I’m going to have to guess at the playfulness behind this. In any case, thanks for it.

No worries. I was going to “laugh along with you”, but there is no laugh button here. = )

To clarify, Charles Robert Darwin of Down, England is surely no “hero” of any kind to me.

Who is? And why not him?

I suppose that’s the way it’s worked far too often. It doesn’t have to, though. A person can have (and even embrace … celebrate) a heritage without automatically thinking theirs is the only valid tradition or heritage. And I suspect that many of the so-called non-denominational churches so popular right now are no less sectarian in their thoughts and ways than any of the traditions they have sought to emerge from. In fact in some ways, I suggest, they could even be more so. [after all… they don’t even have so much as any larger conference to call their attention beyond themselves; they may be a rather more singular entity in their own minds than their more traditionally identified brethren.] Not that it has to be that way. I know there are plenty of non-denominational sorts who are as outward looking as the best.

It’s just good to remember that we all grew up with something. And just because some may ditch the name in a bid to be seen as more big-tent, doesn’t mean their history just disappeared or its influence over them got diminished in any way. It just “went underground and unevaluated” as far as their internal educational materials are concerned - sorta like making a study of plants be all about what happens in the air and sunshine while ignoring anything about any messy roots.

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So what about this supposed mistranslation of “Pistis Christou” by Luther? Is this a big deal? No. Even if we accept that “saved by the faith of Christ” is the correct translation of this, it doesn’t change the rather endless list of the other passages by Jesus and Paul which says we are saved by our faith. Is this mountain out of a molehill spiel like the distraction of a magic trick whereby we do not notice all these other passages?

There’s nothing supposed about it. It’s the biggest deal in at least 500 years. Please cite the endless list, the Greek translation of Hebrew thinking and the etymology of that. Choose just one for a start.

No one is saved by the work of their faith, the exercise of the gift that they’ve been given in the first place. Only the elect who want to use it of course. What third rate giants’ shoulders we need to climb down from. Augustine, Luther, Calvin.

Jesus saves.

If it’s grace alone - which it is, no faith is required. If it’s faith at all, it isn’t grace. No fallacy is possible.

As far as I understand, ’apostolic succession’ has been advertised as something that somehow ensures ‘correct’ teaching. This is not true; teaching may drift during centuries in ways that lead far from the original teaching.

I assume that all or at least most Christian churches and denominations agree that the teaching of Jesus and the apostles sent by him forms the basement on which all later teachings should be built. If some later teaching is in conflict with the teaching of Jesus & his apostles, it should be rejected no matter who the preacher, priest or bishop is.

Even if we can agree that the teachings of Jesus and his apostles are the standard, there is always the question of correct interpretation. Unfortunately, disagreements about interpretation is one reason why the global church has been divided to smaller denominations, several times during the history.

By the way, the largest Lutheran and probably also Anglican churches can list a continuous ‘apostolic succession’. Yet, their teaching differs from the teaching of the Roman catholic church.

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I agree. For a small local church, it would be ridiculous to claim that their small group is the only correct church. The largest church(es) can be more self-centered as they cover a larger proportion of the population. The larger the church, the higher the risk of being exclusionary in a way that may grieve the Holy Spirit.

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

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