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In 1540 Martin Luther’s friend and assistant, Frederick Myconius, became sick and he was expected to die. As he lay there on his death bed he wrote a farewell letter to Luther. And when Luther got it he sent back the reply: ‘I command thee in the name of God to live, because I still have need of thee in the work of reforming the church. The Lord will never let me hear that thou art dead, but will permit thee to survive me. For this I am praying, this is my will, and may my will be done, because I seek only to glorify the name of God’. Strong words, strong prayer. But Myconius – even though he had lost the ability to speak when Luther’s letter arrived, in a short time got better. He completely recovered, and he outlived Luther by 2 months.

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