I came across this quote from a well-known preacher today, and wonder what my readers might think of it? I'll not mention names at the moment, but he said
'Nothing can separate us [from Jesus] even if we are sexually filthy, and worse, a thousand times a day.'
Is it somewhat worrying? Is it neo-evangelicalism gone mad?
The well-known preacher I quoted is Martin Luther; and I changed his quote only slightly to avoid giving anything away by archaic language - but you may regard it as simply a better translation of the German, if you wish. The whole quote is found in Michael Reeves' book 'TheUnquenchable flame' (page 49) which I am thoroughly enjoying as the best entry-level book on the Reformation I've ever read. It's clear, it's theological, it's funny. A longer version of the quote goes like this:
'Be a sinner and sin boldly, but rejoice in Christ even more boldly... No sin will separate us from the Lamb, even though we commit fornication and murder a thousand times a day. Do you think that the purchase price that was paid for the redemption of our sins by so great a Lamb is too small?'
And I confess freely that, though I (by grace alone) have committed neither fornication nor murder, not even once, when I read this quote this morning it was exactly what I needed to hear and my poor heart leapt with joy that God should bring this quote to me today of all days, when the weight of sin was heavy on me.
To quote Luther further, 'My temptation [was and] is this, that I think I don't have a gracious God.’
' Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing!’