The Idea Of Justification By Faith Through Grace: Martin Luther King Jr. Sample Essay

Martin Luther, a Protestant reformer and possibly one of the most influential theologians ever, developed the idea of justification by faith through grace. Martin Luther had been searching for salvation, but had no luck. He had become a monk in trying to guarantee his salvation. He seemed dedicated living his life as a monk, but the holy life of a monk did not bring him the assurance of salvation he was seeking. After teaching and lecturing at the University of Wittenberg, Luther gradually started to understand God and God’s relationship to humanity.

From this gradual understanding Luther created the statement of justification by grace through faith. What Luther meant by justification by grace through faith is the process of God justifying sinners through the faith of Christ. Luther had a central question: “How can miserable, sinful humans ‘be put with’ a holy, righteous God? ” At first he seemed terrified by the thought of the righteousness of God because “he understood it to refer to the holiness and perfection of God, and he hated this righteous of God who punishes unrighteous sinners.

The origin of justification by grace through faith can be traced by as far as the Apostles. Paul was the main apostle that first introduced this idea. Luther studied Paul’s letters and discovered many new ideas of justification through the faith of God. From Paul’s letters he learned: “We stand guilty and condemned before the throne of God, as Apostle Paul said, “There is no one righteous, not even one. ” (Romans 3:10) “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23) “Now we know that what ever the law says, it is to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. ” (Romans 3:19). ” According to the Ten Commandments it requires us to be perfect, but Paul came to the conclusion that it’s simply impossible to be perfect and there is no hope in being able to stand before God.

It came to conclusion that “We need to be justified, in order to be justified, a person must have a righteousness equivalent to Gods perfect righteousness. What it means to be justified is to be totally free of guilt and blame, and in a biblical sense: to be able to stand before God pure and clean. Justification is the process of justice. “Justification deals with past, present and future sins. Justification does not bring innocence, but a state of righteousness before God. Justification is more than forgiveness, as it removes the guilt. ” In order to find justification we must praise to God through gospel, not by “observing the law or by good work before the Lord. Justification and forgiveness are sometimes presented in the same kind of context, but are not the same. “An innocent man may be acquitted, but an innocent man is not the subject of forgiveness. But it is different with the sinner. He needs forgiveness as well as justification. His justification, on the ground of the righteousness of another, includes the forgiveness of the transgressions on account of which he had been under condemnation. ” God doesn’t simply forgive the sinners and let them go without punishment; he’ll let the sinner go without punishment if they believe in Christ.

Instead of punishing the sinner for their wrongdoing God punishes Christ so he wouldn’t have to punish the sinner. Just as long as one believes in Christ, Christ endures all of the pain and sacrifice the sinner deserves. When Luther was preaching as a monk he viewed the gospel as an extension of the law, not a pathway to find freedom of its curse. He then later discovered that a person is saved from sin through faith, rather than having works of the law have an influence. He always saw that faith produced many works, but not allowing those works to take part in the subject of justification, where we ‘passively receive’ righteousness as a gift, apart from our own merit, was something he learned later on. ”

“In the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to the last, just as it is written; the righteous will live by faith” (Romans 1:17). From this section of Paul’s letter Luther interprets that “righteousness doesn’t mention a quality that God possesses in order to judge people, but mentions a gift God gives in order to save people. At first Luther didn’t understand the concept of Romans 1:17. Before overcoming his doubts and misjudgment, Luther used to think that “‘God’s righteousness’ in the gospel ‘was revealed’, not in giving perfect righteousness freely to sinners forever apart from the fact they were sinners, but in punishing sinners and rewarding the righteous. ” When a sinner realizes that he should be punished and that he has offended God, the person must surrender his words, actions, and life to Jesus Christ in order to be forgiven for his sins; the believing sinner will then be justified. In Luther’s own words: “I could not love, nay.

I hated the righteous God who punishes sinners. Certainly, and with intense grumbling (perhaps blasphemy), I was angry with God and said, “As if it were indeed not enough that miserable sinners who are eternally lost through original sin and are crushed again by every kind of calamity through the Ten Commandments, God himself adds pain in the gospel by threatening us with his righteousness and wrath! ” Luther was frustrated with this idea. Luther came up with the term of alien righteousness because “it is God’s righteousness (and not their own) that justifies people before God. He felt that salvation should not depend on man’s own holiness and goodness, but it should be on God’s righteousness to be given generously and devotedly to sinners. Humans are sinners by nature; we don’t deserve God’s free gifts. Humans don’t do anything to prove or justify themselves before God; this is where the term justification by grace alone came from. Luther then questioned: “How does God justify sinners? ” He does it through Christ. “Humans are saved by what god has done for them in Christ, not by what they do themselves.

If people continue to bring their works before God, seeking to be saved by them, then they really do not have faith in what God has done for them in Christ. They need to depend completely and entirely on Christ, not on what they do. ” The Roman Catholic Church and the Protestant Church had different ideas of justification. “The Roman Catholic view of justification [is that] God declares a person to be just when justice (or righteousness) inheres in the person. The person, under divine analysis or scrutiny, is found to be just. God justifies the just. According to the Reformation view justification has to do with what’s external to them rather than something that’s congenital in the person. From this Martin Luther said that we can be justified, but still be sinners. “Justification is not based upon what you inherently are (inherent righteousness), but is based upon what Christ did for you and you are given credit for (imputed righteousness). ” These are the basics of how justification by grace through faith works: God can forgive our sins because he put the blame onto Christ, and punished him instead of us.

God is able to declare righteousness to us, but only from taking away Christ’s righteousness. Christ gets the short end of the stick for everything; gets punished and blamed on for our sins and then his righteousness imputes onto us. Martin Luther developed this idea from trying to seek salvation and trying to find answers to his unanswered questions. He felt that this saying was vital to other people trying to figure out how to be forgiven by God and how to be justified to him.

He also felt that it was important for churches to know the correct idea of justification because it had been distorted over the years, and he really wanted to emphasize the idea of justification by grace through faith.


Catherine A. Cory and Michael J. Hollerich, The Christian Theological Tradition, 3rd ed. , (Upper Saddle River, N. J. : Prentice Hall, 2009,), 318. Greenwald, E. , and E. Greenwald. 1868. “The Lutheran Reformation. ” In Lutheran Reformation, 248-250. N. p. : 1868. American Theological Library Association (ATLA) Historical Monographs Collection: Series 1, EBSCOhost (accessed November 19, 12).

James Kittelson, Luther the Reformer (Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1986), 134. “Justification by Faith Alone,” http://contendforthefaith2. com/just2. html (accessed November 19, 2012). Nick Bibile, “Justified By Faith Alone,” http://www. sounddoctrine. net/Nick/justified. htm (accessed November 19, 2012). “When and How Did Martin Luther Arrive at the Justification by Faith? ” http://christianity. stackexchange. com/questions/8742/when-and-how-did-martin-luther-arrive-at-the-justification-by-faith (accessed November 19, 2012).

How Does Kindertransport Analysis

Consider the importance of the characters names in Kindertransport I think that in Kindertransport the writer, Diane Samuels uses the names of the characters as a huge way of showing their personalities and their life’s worth. The very first character that we are introduced to is Eva, now this is the younger and former self of the later introduced Evelyn. The name ‘Eva’ is a Hebrew name which is biblical and means ‘life’ but also ‘God’s grace’.

This is very fitting as when Eva is introduced to her foster mother during the war, Lil, she is a very calm, collective and polite young girl, she had been brought up in a high middle class house with wealthy parents of whom taught her well of right and wrong, Eva was a very good Jewish girl and she did everything to stick to the Jewish ways of life even at the young age of which she was sent to England. The name of Eva is even more well fitted as it means ‘life’ and this is something she may have lost if it wasn’t for her parents sending her to England and Lil taking her in.

But in the same sense Eva lost the old life that she once lived and became a different, English person due to Lil’s actions and some could argue that she was almost born again. She changed her name to Evelyn and also her birth date to the day she first came to England. The name ‘Evelyn’ is said to of originated in Germany which is ironic as that is the part of her image that through changing her name she is trying to cover. The name then went on to be popular in England and was said to be an English name. Evelyn’ is said to mean ‘light’, ‘birth-giving’ and ‘wisdom’, the fact that it means ‘light’ I think is a big issue as she herself doesn’t often find herself in the light about her past, she isn’t aware of the life of her biological family and doesn’t let her daughter into the darkness of her true self. Also the idea that Evelyn hasn’t lived a happy life because of her fear of certain things due to her past of the war and abandonment shows that she in fact isn’t a very ‘light’ and bright person.

You could say that Evelyn herself has been quite hidden and secretive of herself which creates a quite sinister image of her to her daughter of whom she has told nothing of her past life. Evelyn is so very in the dark about what actually happened to her true family that she could not possibly be ‘wise;’ about life. There is a deep sense of irony by the use of this name in Kindertransport. The name ‘Evelyn’ obviously came from the holy name ‘Eve’ who was believed to be Adam’s wife in the garden of Eden, the idea that her name is strongly linked to God and goodness such as ruth conflicts with the truth that she tried to live a life of lies with not only herself but daughter and I’m sure others around her too. At the very beginning of the play we are introduced to Helga who is Eva and Evelyn’s biological Jewish mother from Germany. ‘Helga’ is a not so common girl’s name, most widespread in Nordic and Germanic countries. The name has now become somewhat a cliche, regarded by some with too many negative connotations, mainly because of the popularity of the name during Hitler’s Nazi Germany. The name is said to mean ‘holy’ and ‘blessed’ also ‘strong’, ‘vibrant’ and ‘determined’.

The words that really stand out to me are ‘blessed’ and ‘determined’. Near the end of Kindertransport we find out that Helga surprisingly survived Nazi Germany and the awful things that happened to the Jews in this time. Helga says that the thought of being back with her daughter Eva kept her going through the whole misfortune. Some would say along with me that Helga must have been blessed to have survived such a rough and dreadful time. She is put across by Samuels as being a very good Jewish mother who has enforced the Jewish ways onto her child.

Helga and her family were true Jewish people and they were holy which is why I think her name is so clever and fitting to what she goes through. In the scenes within the play, mostly at the start with Helga and Eva sharing conversation, we get the idea that Helga is a very strict mother, almost mean to Eva when she keeps denying Eva help when she is trying to learn to sew a button onto her new coat for going away. We as the audience know that Helga is just trying to help Eva as she will not be there in England to look after her and do things for her, the harsh truth is Eva needs to learn the survive and be a mother to herself.

But as Eva is young and doesn’t understand this concept she takes the memory of her mother always saying ‘No’ and not helping her to England to her new life. Helga in fact is just being ‘determined’ to help her child and give Eva what she will need, even if Eva never sees’s it like that. Helga is shown to us as being a very strong woman who in the end survives and still sticks to her morals, she has been a wonderful mother to Eva shows compassion through reading books with Eva of which she takes with her her entire life. Lil, probably short for Lilith is Eva/Evelyn’s foster mother when she comes over to get away from Nazi Germany in the war.

This is a really interesting name as in ancient mythology Lilith was known as the queen of all demons and the very first woman, even before Eve. But Lilith was expelled from Eden for not sleeping under her husband Adam, and from there she became the first succubi, a killer of newborn babies and seducer of sleeping men. The important part is that she killed and consumed newborn babies, and I think this could be a strong link to how she has consumed and taken away Eva’s heritage and past, and almost transformed her into the new person of Evelyn.

Lil in the play did this without even realising at times for example when Lil says “I’m sorry, love. Don’t speak German”, by this Lil means she is sorry that she doesn’t speak German and therefore can’t understand her, but instead of saying “I’m sorry, love. I don’t speak German” therefore Eva takes this as a command of “Don’t speak German” as if she is almost being told off by Lil at their first encounter, this makes Eva try harder with her English language and may of even forced her to lose a bit of herself and her nationality.

Lil is a big factor of why Eva became Evelyn and suffered a huge sense of loss of identity. Evelyn went from being a small young Jewish girl, of who was from a high up middle class family and well mannered called Eva who starts the process of denial of her roots but is still haunted by her memories and becomes an older Christian girl with a different birthday and different name of now Evelyn.

Lil tries hard to help Evelyn to hide her past and when Faith asks questions about her mother Lil is very protective almost as if she hates the fact that she is not Evelyn’s biological mother and wants her to always be her child and not Helga’s, again an image of Lil consuming Eva and keeping her away from Evelyn and Faith. Faith is Evelyn’s only daughter who finds out about Evelyn’s secretive past of being a Jew in Germany. The name Faith means ‘trust’, ‘curiosity’ or ‘belief’, this is a very English name, well suited as Faith thinks she is completely English.

Evelyn may have chose a very English name as she is now English and wanted to keep everything on a low about her German past. Faith has full ‘belief’ in her mother until the day she finds out that her mother isn’t the person she thought she was. Faith questions the trust she has had with her mother and grandmother and so questions who she herself is. Faith is positive unlike the other characters and wants to know her roots and unravel the mess that her mother and gran have made. Faith wants to open boxes whereas her gran and mother want to get rid and hide things away.

The ‘curiosity’ meaning of Faiths name is key to the play, and the name is perfect for the character. Finally the Ratcatcher, the meaning of this title is usually a man whose job is to destroy or drive away vermin. The character of the Ratcatcher plays an important role in the play as a vital symbol in the play’s context. During play, Eva’s mother, Helga is reading Eva’s favourite book about the pied piper of Hamlin. But also, during this scene there is cross cutting between Helga reading the book and Faith also reading the same book, but in a different setting.

The Ratcatcher in this scene is portrayed as an evil and dark mysterious figure, whose ultimate plan is not immediately recognised, but towards the end of the scene, the Ratcatcher is the symbol of separation, as the scene moves into another short scene which shows Eva finally on the Kindertransport leaving her family and heading for a new life in England. Throughout the plot of “Kindertransport”, the Ratcatcher takes the form of other characters in the play, such as the Nazi guard on the train. In this scene, Eva is sitting on the train too petrified to move.

This is ironic as the Ratcatcher is the personification of Evelyn/Eva’s fear and at that moment in the play, the audience would expect that a child of Eva’s age would be scared about leaving their family behind. The stage directions in this scene describe the emotion of Eva as being terrified and scared. This scene also shows what the Nazi supporters thought of the Jews as being scum as the officer takes Eva’s luggage and dumps it all on the train floor and draws a huge Star of David on her label. He also throws a sweet for Eva on the floor showing that he thinks he is of a higher standard than the Jewish children.

Every other character that the Ratcatcher plays are those of men, and always in high up uniformed jobs. This cause’s great fear in Evelyn anytime she comes into contact with anyone of this sort and has therefore affected her whole English life. This story of the Ratcatcher is the only German thing that she brought with her and passed down to her daughter Faith. The story book always told her that she should count her blessing and be grateful otherwise he would come for her and take her away from her family, which in Evelyn’s eyes is exactly what he did by taking her to England.

The Big Sleep – The Depiction Of Marlowe As A Modern-Day Knight Character Analysis

The novel “The Big Sleep” by Raymond Chandler was published in 1939 during the heart of the Great Depression. The novel is written in a very sinister, dark and kind of a gangster tone and carries much of the cynicism of 1930s America. The Big Sleep is a story of intrigue, corruption, delinquency and obliquity with a rather complex plot which can be very confusing. The main character in “the Big Sleep” is the private detective Philip Marlow who is very masculine man with values and a good moral.

His strong moral is often evidenced throughout the novel. Marlowe is the only one in this complex world who cannot be corrupted because the other characters are all described as sleazy, vampy and decadent. Considering all these aspects; Marlowe is different to all the other characters, somehow superior. This superiority is somehow underlined through the depiction of Marlowe in the novel. Marlowe embodies the characteristics of a knight in many different ways, namely through his morality, faithfulness, and symbolism throughout the novel.

There is a lot of imagery of knights in this novel and there is always a parallel between the imagery and Marlowe. Furthermore, the most evidential proof is Marlowe?s moral, exemplary and chivalrous behavior that is displayed throughout the whole novel which is giving point to the depiction of Marlowe as a knight. In particular, Philip Marlowe can be depicted as a modern-day knight as he is frequently compared to a knight through the imagery in the novel, his chivalrous behavior and his loyalty and commitment.

This thesis is going to be analyzed and reinforced within this essay through several examples and interpretations. The novel is full of symbols, metaphors and different themes and one of the most important and obvious ones is surely the symbol of the knights and hence the associated attributes. The importance of this symbol can not only seen by the fact that already at the beginning of the novel, at page three, a detailed description of a picture with a knight is mentioned.

This detailed description does not only underline the importance of this symbol but to a greater degree this imagery serves to point out the parallels between the ancient knight and the modern chivalry of the main character Philip Marlowe since it is obvious that these imagery of knights is used to prompt the reader in perceiving Marlowe as a modern-day knight. This imagery is therefore used to indirectly award Marlowe as a knight and that is also the way how he depicts himself.

As abovementioned, the beginning of the book serves as great example of that imagery when Marlowe is leaving to Sternwood?s house. In this scene, Marlowe describes himself as “wearing my powder-blue suit, with dark blue shirt, tie and display handkerchief, black brogues, black wool socks with dark blue clocks on them. I was neat, clean, shaved and sober, and I didn’t care who knew it. I was everything the well-dressed private detective ought to be” (3). This very first description of Marlowe correlates exactly with the personification of the picture of a modern-day knight.

What was once the “shining armor” is nowadays the suit in combination with a tie. Marlowe is well dressed and especially he is sober as benefit for a noble man with honor equal as an ancient knight once was. After entering the house there is the next imagery in terms of a stained glass window that is recognized by Marlowe. The picture shows “A knight in dark armor rescuing a lady who was tied to a tree and didn’t have any clothes on but some very convenient hair” (3).

Not only the fact that Marlowe is especially fascinated by this picture is distinctive but also the fact that he instantly has the feeling to help the knight in his rescue operation “if I lived in the house, I would sooner or later have to climb up there and help him (3). Later on in the novel he somehow does rescuing the lady in person of Carmen Sternwood. This parallel between the picture and the novel is striking and creates the perception of Marlowe as a knight.. There is another passage where he is looking down at a chess board saying: “I looked down at the chess board. The move with the knight was wrong.

I put it back where I have moved it from. Knights had no meaning in this game” (95). It is clear that he depicts himself as the knight and he is referring to his cold case and the mistakes he has made so far in solving the crime. The sentence “knights had no meaning in this game” refers to his chivalrous behavior and that this has not been helpful so far in solving the crime and that frustrates him. Furthermore, his behavior has no meaning or value for the other characters that are included in this crime and he is instantly reminded that he is the only one in this “game” who is faithful and morally.

However, the description of chivalry is not only portrayed through the imagery in the novel but moreover through the behavior of Philip Marlowe. For hundreds of years, the knight is one of the most fascinating figures or motives of the history which has not lost his symbolic brightness and power. If one is looking for a definition of a knight it always includes certain terms like strong, noble, chivalrous, morally straight or protector of the weak as well as the existence of a certain code. According to this code it is the duty of a knight to protect women, children and to have faithfulness.

This is exactly the behavior that Marlowe displays throughout the novel. Within the novel there are several passages and examples that underline this behavior. An outstanding example is the salvation of Carmen when Marlowe rescues the completely naked Carmen and carries her away from the crime scene. Nevertheless, his chivalrous behavior continues through the fact that he did not take advantage of the situation and moreover is loyal to his employer and does not want him to see his daughter in this condition.

These are only some examples of his chivalrous behavior than underline the fact that this behavior depicts him as a knight. Throughout the novel there are many other situations where he acts knightly and finally he is able to stop “The Big Sleep” which in this context can be seen as the death or the killing. He stops the “The Big Sleep” while solving the crime which exceeded his proper mandate. Another chivalrous behavior is the fact that he does not take too much money for his job “ZITAT Wiveil geld er nimmt” only as much as he needs for living.

Furthermore, after finishing is proper mandate he continues solving the crime without even getting paid for it only in order to prevail peace and because his code requires him to do so. Another indication for Marlowe to be a modern-day knight is his loyalty and commitment to general Sternwood. Likewise knights in ancient times which have been loyal to their king and fought in battles for freedom and honor. This connection is transferable to Marlowe and general Sternwood. The main proof of this loyalty is shown in Marlowe?s iron will to solve the crime not only for himself but also for his employer Sternwood.

Right in the beginning of the novel it is also stated that Marlowe and Sternwood cherish and like each other which is another proof for Marlowe?s loyalty. In the scene where Marlowe finds Sternwood?s daughter Carmen completely drugged and naked he instantly removes her from the crime scene. Furthermore, he never tells his employer about the state of his daughter because he does not want to upset or embarrass him. This loyalty and the relation between Sternwood and Marlowe straightaway create the picture of a king and his knight.

The adherence of their code of chivalry and their acts of bravery made the knights remarkable not only as persons but rather as a symbol. Raymond Chandler used this symbol to equip his main character with the attributes of knights. Philip Marlowe is the reincarnation of a knight who is fighting for peace and the truth. In order to underline this picture of a knight, Chandler lets his character behave according to the act of the knights by letting him save women, protect the weak, fight against crime and resist temptation.

Moreover his moral behavior is portrayed in many different situations and this is what makes him superior to the other characters in the novel. Chandler has been successful in assigning the picture of a knight to its main character in the novel. Through his extraordinary writing skills Chandler was successful in manipulating the reader to acknowledge Marlowe as a modern-day knight without uttering this as a clear statement. In order to achieve this he continues using the images of knights and draws parallels to his main character.

error: Content is protected !!