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Martin Luther's Basic Theological Writings, 3rd ed.

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Martin Luther's Basic Theological Writings, a single-volume introduction to Luther's most influential, noted, and important writings in the modern translations—including excerpts of his sermons and letters—presents Luther the theologian "steeped in the word of God, speaking to the whole church," even as it takes the reader straight to Luther the man, to his controversial Reformation insights, to his strongest convictions about God and Scripture and the life of the church, and most importantly to his theology—a still-exciting encounter with the meaning of Jesus Christ for each age.

The third edition includes revised introductions, updated bibliography, index, and the addition of "A Meditation on Christ's Passion" (1519), "Treatise on the Blessed Sacrament" (1519), "Sermon on the Sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ—Against the Fanatics" (1526), "Sermon in Castle Pleissenburg" (1539), and "Consolation to Women Whose Pregnancies Have Not Gone Well" (1542), as well as new translations of "A Practical Way to Pray" (1535) and "On the Freedom of a Christian" (1520).

Whether you’re reading Luther for the first time, or you’re simply looking to expand your library of Lutheran books, Logos provides you with the tools you need. Discover what Luther's thoughts were on theology, Scripture, ethics, man, and more! Take advantage of advanced search tools to find exactly what you’re looking for. The power of Logos Bible Software lets you read and explore Luther's writings like never before!

Key Features

  • Provides a chronology of Luther's life and the writings in this volume
  • Includes an extensive introduction, glossary, bibliography, and index


  • Part 1: Luther on Theology
    • Disputation against Scholastic Theology (1517)—LW 31:9–16
    • The Ninety-Five Theses (1517)—LW 31:25–33
    • Heidelberg Disputation (1518)—LW 31:39–58
    • Confession concerning Christ's Supper—Part III (1528)—LW 37:360–72
    • A Practical Way to Pray (1535)—LW 43:191–209
    • Preface to the Wittenberg Edition of Luther's German Writings (1539)—LW 34:283–88
    • Sermon in Castle Pleissenburg, Leipzig (1539)—LW 51:301–11
  • Part 2: Luther on Scripture
    • "Concerning the Letter and the Spirit" (1521)—LW 39:175–203
    • A Brief Instruction on What to Look for and Expect in the Gospels (1521)—LW 35:117–24
    • Preface to the Epistle of St. Paul to the Romans (1522, revised 1546)—LW 35:365–80
    • Lectures on Galatians (1535)—LW 26:3–11
    • Preface to the New Testament (1522, revised 1546)—LW 35:357–62
    • Preface to the Old Testament (1523, revised 1545)—LW 35:235–51
    • How Christians Should Regard Moses (1525)—LW 35:161–74
  • Part 3: Luther on the Gospel
    • Two Kinds of Righteousness (1519)—LW 31:297–306
    • A Meditation on Christ's Passion (1519)—LW 42:6–14
    • A Sermon on the Three Kinds of Good Life for the Instruction of Consciences (1521)—LW 44:231–42
    • The Bondage of the Will—Introduction, Part VI, and Conclusion (1525)—LW 33:15–19, 246–95
    • Sermon on the Afternoon of Christmas Day (1530)—LW 51:211–18
    • Against the Antinomians (1539)—LW 47:99–118
  • Part 4: Luther on Sacraments
    • The Blessed Sacrament of the Holy and True Body and Blood of Christ (1519)—LW 35:48–73
    • The Babylonian Captivity of the Church—Part I (1520)—LW 36:11–57
    • The Sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ—Against the Fanatics (1526)—LW 36:329–60
    • Concerning Rebaptism (1528)—LW 40:229–62
    • Confession Concerning Christ's Supper—From Part I (1528)—LW 37:206–35
    • The Marburg Articles (1529)
    • Consolation for Women Whose Pregnancies Have Not Gone Well (1542)—LW 43:247–49
  • Part 5: Luther on Reform
    • Eight Sermon at Wittenberg (1522)—LW 51:70–100
    • Concerning the Order of Public Worship (1523)—LW 53:11–14
    • An Order of Mass and Communion for the Church at Wittenberg (1523)—LW 53:19–40
    • The Small Catechism (1529)—BC: 338–56
    • The Smalcald Articles (1537)—BC: 288–318
    • On the Councils and the Church—Part III (1539)—LW 41:143–78
  • Part 6: Luther on Ethics
    • A Sermon on the Estate of Marriage (1519)—LW 44:7–14
    • A Sermon on Preparing to Die (1519)—LW 42:99–115
    • The Freedom of a Christian (1520)
    • Temporal Authority: To What Extent It Should Be Obeyed (1523)—LW 45:81–129
    • To the Councilmen of All Cities in Germany That They Establish and Maintain Christian Schools (1524)—LW 45:347–78
    • Whether One May Flee From a Deadly Plague (1527)—LW 43:119–38
  • Part 7: Luther the Man
    • Letters
      • Letter to George Spalatin (Wittenberg, January 14, 1520)—LW 48:143–47
      • Letter to Hans Luther (Wartburg, November 21, 1521)—LW 48:329–36
      • Letter to Wolfgang Capito (Wittenberg, July 9, 1537)—LW 50:171
    • Fragments
      • A Sincere Admonition by Martin Luther to All Christians to Guard against Insurrection and Rebellion (1522)—LW 45:51
      • Luther's Table Talk (1542)—LW 54:428ff.
      • Preface to the Complete Edition of Luther's Latin Writings (1545)—LW 34:336–38
      • On the Jews and Their Lies (1543)—LW 47:137ff.
      • Luther's Will (Wittenberg, January 6, 1542)—LW 34:289–97

Praise for the First Edition

A superb selection of texts. . . . All Christians concerned with the ecumenical dialogue will find this edition an indispensable introduction to Luther's theology.

—Francis Schüssler Fiorenza, Charles Chauncey Stillman Professor of Roman Catholic Theological Studies, Harvard Divinity School

Well designed to initiate readers into the world of Luther's thought . . . college students, seminarians, pastors, and students of theology in general will get a taste of the real Luther.

—Eric Gritsch, Professor Emeritus of Church History, Gettysburg Seminary

Product Details

  • Title: Martin Luther's Basic Theological Writings
  • Author: Martin Luther
  • Editors: Timothy F. Lull and William R. Russell
  • Edition: 3rd
  • Publisher: Augsburg Fortress
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Pages: 560

About Martin Luther

Martin Luther stands as one of the most significant figures in Western history. His distinction as the father of the Protestant Reformation is augmented by his innovative use of new technology (the printing press), his translation of the Christian Bible into the vernacular, and his impact upon European society. Born in 1483 to middle-class parents in Saxony, eastern Germany, he became an Augustinian monk, a priest, a professor of biblical literature, a reformer, a husband and father. He died in 1546 after having witnessed the birth of a renewal movement that would result in a profound shift in faith, politics, and society. He has been both praised and vilified for what he preached and wrote. His thought continues to influence all Christians and to animate the movement that bears his name.

About the Editors

Timothy F. Lull was President of Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, Berkeley, and Professor of Systematic Theology there before his death in 2003.

William R. Russell is the translator of The Schmalkald Articles in The Book of Concord. He is the author of Praying for Reform: Luther, Prayer, and the Christian Life and Luther's Theological Testament.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition

Resource Experts

Top Highlights

“One thing and one thing alone leads to Christian life, righteousness, and freedom. This is the holy word of God, the gospel of Christ, as Jesus himself says in John 11:25: ‘So if the Son makes you free you will be free indeed.’” (Page 405)

“The word is the gospel of God concerning his son, who was made flesh, suffered, rose from the dead, and was glorified through the Spirit who makes us holy. To preach Christ means to feed the soul, make it righteous, set it free, and save it, provided the preaching is believed. For faith alone is the saving and efficacious use of the word of God.” (Page 405)

“‘Good works do not make a good person, but a good person does good works. Evil works do not make a person wicked, but a wicked person does evil works.’” (Page 416)

“7. As a matter of fact, without the grace of God the will produces an act that is perverse and evil.” (Page 3)

“The promises of God give what the commands demand, in order that everything might be done by God alone—both the giving of the commands and the fulfillment of them.14 God alone commands and God alone fulfills.” (Page 408)

  • Title: Martin Luther’s Basic Theological Writings
  • Author: Martin Luther
  • Edition: Third Edition
  • Publisher: Fortress Press
  • Print Publication Date: 2012
  • Logos Release Date: 2012
  • Language: English
  • Resources: 1
  • Format: Digital › Logos Research Edition
  • Subject: Theology › Early works to 1800
  • Resource ID: LLS:MLBTW3ED
  • Resource Type: Monograph
  • Metadata Last Updated: 2022-02-12T04:36:15Z
Martin Luther

Martin Luther (1483–1546), one of the most significant figures in Western history, was a key figure in the Protestant Reformation. Over the course of his life, Luther was a monk, a priest, a professor of biblical literature, a Reformer, a husband, and a father.

Luther is most noted for his Ninety-Five Theses (1517), in which he argued that indulgences were not acts of penance which could replace true repentance. His refusal to retract all his writings, demanded by Pope Leo X in 1520 and the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V at the Diet of Worms in 1521, resulted in his excommunication by the pope and condemnation as an outlaw by the emperor.

Luther has been both praised and vilified for what he preached and wrote. Luther’s translation of the Christian Bible into the vernacular greatly influenced the church. His works continue to impact all Christians and animate the movement that bears his name. Luther’s Works (55 vols.) contains many of Luther’s writings, including commentaries, sermons, and lectures.


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Print list price: $49.00
Save $4.01 (8%)