Before writing, "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God," before becoming a leader of the Reformation, before his 95 Theses, Martin Luther was a Catholic priest. One thing that did not change for him was a passionate conviction that Christians must repent and confess their sins.
As a priest, Luther's confessions were excruciating both for himself and the confessor who had to listen. He did not have the kind of lurid, scandalous confessions that might leave his confessor thinking, "Oh, how wicked... Tell me more!" He tediously confessed every thought, word, or deed he thought was even questionable.
At the end of one confession, his exhausted confessor asked, "Is there anything more?"
Martin Luther, in great agitation, said, "Yes, I can think of one more thing. At supper, as the bread was being passed, I noticed another priest had a piece of bread that looked a little bit bigger than mine. I remember being envious, wishing I had that little bit bigger piece of bread."
God is infinitely patient in hearing our sincere confession. Humans are not. That was his confessor's breaking point. "Martin... Go out and kill someone... Then come back and confess... when you have something to confess!"
Related Text Illustrations
Contributed by Melvin Newland on Aug 14, 2001
"I guess I was a kind of an unruly girl or something, so maybe they didn’t want me. I attended a church college, too. But nobody ever said a word to me about becoming a Christian. So I never did." (Powerpoint Available - #221)