George V. Schick, who translated Luther's Lectures on Genesis from Latin into English, has succeeded admirably in reproducing the simplicity, the directness, and the lucidity of the Reformer's language. The Reformer's lectures on the First Book of Moses must be numbered among the great works in the field of exegetical writing. Unlike many scholars who have undertaken to expound Genesis, Luther is not afraid to adhere strictly to the letter of what Moses wrote. He does not indulge in wild allegories. He does not tear words or sentences out of their context. He knows that Genesis is the Word of God. Therefore he approaches the book with awe and reverence. His is a genuinely Christian commentary.
“Therefore my understanding of the image of God is this: that Adam had it in his being and that he not only knew God and believed that He was good, but that he also lived in a life that was wholly godly; that is, he was without the fear of death or of any other danger, and was content with God’s favor.” (Volume 1, Pages 62–63)
“Nor does it serve any useful purpose to make Moses at the outset so mystical and allegorical. His purpose is to teach us, not about allegorical creatures and an allegorical world but about real creatures and a visible world apprehended by the senses. Therefore, as the proverb has it, he calls ‘a spade a spade,’ 10 i.e., he employs the terms ‘day’ and ‘evening’ without allegory, just as we customarily do.” (Volume 1, Page 5)
“For the chief temptation was to listen to another word and to depart from the one which God had previously spoken: that they would die if they ate from it.” (Volume 1, Page 147)
“The Jews apply their sophistry to Moses in various ways, but to us it is plain that he wants to hint at the Trinity or the plurality of Persons in one single divine nature.” (Volume 1, Page 12)
“Out of nothing God created heaven and earth as an unformed mass so that the unformed earth was surrounded by the unformed heaven or mist.” (Volume 1, Page 10)