“The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever.”Isaiah 40:8
Perhaps one of the most-loved hymns of the Reformation is Martin Luther’s A Mighty Fortress is Our God. The hymn bursts with confidence in the triumph of truth: “And though this world, with devils filled,/ should threaten to undo us,/ we will not fear, for God has willed/ his truth to triumph through us.” If you grew up attending church, perhaps you can still hear the organ swelling out those powerful chords.
This line may have frightened you as a child—a world filled with devils threatening God’s people is not a pretty picture! But that’s the image Luther had in mind when he thought of anyone who distorted the good news of grace and truth in Jesus. Paul said that if man or angel should preach “a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned” (Galatians 1:9)!
Luther was bold, but he was under no illusions that he could combat such lies in his
own strength. Remember that God can use us when we take a bold stand for His free grace. We’re feeble and frail, but His Word of grace endures forever.
“The truth will win out.” (Martin Luther, 1535)