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The Bondage of the Will (Annotated) Kindle Edition
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|Kindle Edition, 1 Jun 2011||
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Top Customer Reviews
If you can overcome the language barrier, this is a book with many treasures in one. To see why, it is important to understand that this was Luther's direct rebuttal to Erasmus' Diatribe rather than a treatise on the subject of human will. Therefore what Luther included in the discussion of human will was prompted as a response to the arguments put forward or collected in Erasmus' work. Although what Erasmus said were quoted, before Luther launched his counterarguments, nonetheless, it does not alter the fact that we only see half of a dialogue. We almost have to deduce from what Luther said in the rebuttal what Erasmus might have said! This is the set up of this book, which brings with it pros and cons for us in understanding the topic.
If your focus is only on the subject of "free-will" and nothing else, this book may irritate you as Luther was not concerned about developing the concept in a systematic manner but to react and response to the specific points raised by Erasmus. However if your interest is broader than the subject matter itself, this book offers you so much more than meets the eyes.Read more ›
"You read this and you realise that 99% of modern evangelicals think like the great catholic scholar, Erasmus, and squirm when reading Luther."
This book is definitely a must read for anyone who wants to make sense and survive the chaos scenario in modern churches.
That being said the book is fascinating as it shows that what is usually thought of as Calvinism is not really any different to Luthers teachings with relation to free will and election. The reformation was squarely based on total depravity and election, there was no disagreement between Luther and Calvin on this issue.
A real strength of this particular volume is the lengthy historical notes as more than any other book an understanding the context of this book is vital if it is to be understood.
My own feeling is that the debate between Erasmus and Luther was a bit of a mismatch, they were arguing different things. Erasmus was making a philisophical arguement, Luther a theological one. Luther's belief was based on what the Bible said, Erasmus believed a combination of what he wanted to be right and what the church said was right.
The points put forward by each party are still classic arguments, but it is the context of the argument that is so fascinating.
From what ive read, its a letter Martin sent to Erasmus (some heretic or something) but in old style language and has been translated into english only in the same old style which is hard to follow sometimes.
I would recommend an abridged version or a simplified version for those new-In-faith or those new to theology.