THE GERMAN MASS AND ORDER OF SERVICE
MARTIN LUTHERíS PREFACE
In the first place, I want to make a request, in all kindness, and in Godís name, too, that all who see this Order of Service or desire to adopt it, shall not impose it Ďas a law or cause anyoneís conscience to be distressed or bound by it, but shall use it in Christian freedom as they may please, as, where, when, and as long as conditions warrant or call for it. For we do not publish this with the intent of correcting anyone or legislating for him, but because there is clamor for German masses and services everywhere, and widespread lament and offense has been caused by the different usages in the new masses. For everyone is constructing his own: some with good intentions, others again with presumption, in order that they may shine as also having produced something new to prove that they are not ordinary leaders. Such is the fate of Christian freedom. Few use it save for their own pleasure or advantage, not for the honor of God and the welfare of the neighbor.
Although the exercise of such freedom is a matter for everyoneís conscience and no one should seek to forbid or limit it, yet we must see to it that freedom is and shall ever be the servant of love and of the neighbor.
And where men take offense or are led astray by the differences in usage we are bound, in truth, to forego our freedom and, as far as possible, to seek the improvement of the people and not cause offense by what we do or omit to do. Since this external order of service may serve the neighbor and there is nothing here affecting matters of conscience before God, we should seek to be of one mind in Christian love, as St. Paul teaches, and, as far as feasible, have like usages and ceremonies, even as all Christians have the one Baptism and the one Sacrament; nobody has received from God a special one of his own.
This is not to say that those who are already provided with a proper Order, or by Godís grace can do better than I, shall abandon theirs and give place to ours. For it is not my thought that all Germany must immediately adopt our Wittenberg Order. It has never been so that all foundations, monasteries and parishes had a uniformity of observance. But it would be well if in every jurisdiction public worship were uniform and neighboring towns and villages observed the same ceremonies as the city. Nor should there be any constraint or reproof if in other jurisdictions they wished to observe the same ceremonies or make additions of their own. In short, we do not introduce any Order for the sake of those who already are Christians. They do not need them, for one does not live for such things.
But they live for our sake, who are not yet Christians, that they may make Christians out of us. Their worship is in the spirit.
We need such Orders for those who either must still become Christians or need to be strengthened, since a Christian does not need Baptism, the Word or the Sacrament as a Christian, ó it is all his, ó but as a sinner.
They are needed must read, sing, preach, write and compose, and if it would and must be drilled and trained in the Scriptures and Godís Word every day so that they may become familiar with the Scriptures, apt, wellversed and learned in them, enabled to defend their faith and in due time may teach others and help to increase the Kingdom of Christ. For their sake we must read, sing, preach, write and compose, and if it would help the matter along, I would have all the bells pealing, and all the organs playing, and let everything chime in that has a clapper. For this is the damnable thing in the papal services, that they have been changed into laws, works and merits to the utter destruction of faith.
Nor did they use them to educate the youth and the simple minded, to drill them in the Scriptures and Godís Word, but became so enmeshed in them as to regard them as themselves useful and necessary for salvation. That is the devil himself. The ancients did not institute nor order them with such intentions.
There are three kinds of services and masses. First the Latin, which we have published under the title: Formula missae. f222 This service I do not wish hereby to abrogate or change. As it has been in use by us hitherto, so shall it remain available for use where and when it pleases us or occasion calls for it. For I would in no wise banish the Latin tongue entirely from the Service, for the youth is my chiefest concern. If I could bring it to pass and Greek and Hebrew were as familiar to us as the Latin, and offered as much good music and song, we would hold mass, sing and read on successive Sundays in all four languages, German, Latin, Greek and Hebrew.
I am not at all in sympathy with those who cling to one language and despise all others. I would rather train the youth and folks who could also be of service to Christ in foreign lands and able to converse with the natives there, in order to avoid the experience of the Waldensians in Bohemia, who confined their faith to one language so completely, that they cannot speak correctly and intelligently with anyone, unless he first learn their language. This was not the method of the Holy Spirit at the beginning. He did not tarry until all the world came to Jerusalem and studied Hebrew, but gave manifold tongues for the office of the ministry, so that the apostles could preach wherever they went. I would rather follow this example. It is proper that the youth should be trained in many languages, for who knows how God may use them in time to come. For this our schools have been established.
The Second is the German Mass and Order of Service, with which we are concerned here and which should be introduced for the sake of the simple laymen. These two Orders of Service must be used publicly, in the churches, for all the people. For among them are many who do not believe and are not yet Christians. The greater part stands around and gapes, hoping to see something new, just as if we were holding a service among the Turks or the heathen in a public square or out in a field. For there is as yet no well-ordered and organized congregation here, in which the Christians could be ruled according to the Gospel. Our Service is a public provocation to faith and to Christianity.
The third kind of Service which a truly Evangelical Church Order should have would not be held in a public place for all sorts of people, but for those who mean to be real Christians and profess the Gospel with hand and mouth. They would record their names on a list and meet by themselves in some house in order to pray, read, baptize, receive the Sacrament and do other Christian works. In this manner those who do not lead Christian lives could be known, reproved, reclaimed, cast out or excommunicated, according to the rule of Christ in Matthew 18:15. Here one could also establish a common benevolent fund among the Christians, which should be willingly given and distributed among the poor, according to the example of St. Paul, 2 Corinthians 9:1. The many and elaborate chants would be unnecessary. There could be a short, appropriate Order for Baptism and the Sacrament and everything centered on the Word and Prayer and Love. There would be need of a good brief catechism on the Creed, the Ten Commandments and the Our Father. In short, if one had the people and persons who wanted to be Christians in fact, the rules and regulations could easily be supplied.
But as yet I neither can nor desire to begin, or to make rules for such a congregation or assembly. I have not yet the persons necessary to accomplish it; nor do I observe many who strongly urge it. If circumstances should force me to it and I can no longer refuse with a good conscience, I shall gladly do my part and help as best I may. In the meanwhile the two kinds of service mentioned must suffice and I shall publicly help to foster, in addition to the preaching, such services for all the people as shall train the youth and call and provoke others to faith, until the Christians who take the Word seriously, find themselves and become insistent. If I should begin it by myself, it may result in a revolt. For we Germans are an untamed, crude, boisterous folk with whom one ought not lightly start anything except under the compulsion of a very great need.
Let us to it, in Godís Name. First, the German Service needs an easily understood, plain, simple catechism. Catechism means instruction, in which heathen who want to be Christians are taught and directed in what they should believe, do, omit to do, and know in the Christian religion. For this reason beginners, who were admitted to such instruction and studied the Creed before they were baptized, were called Catechumenos. This instruction or direction I know not how to put in a clearer or better way than has been done since the beginning of Christendom and retained to our own day, namely in these three, the Ten Commandments, the Creed and the Our Father. These three contain, simply and briefly, about everything a Christian needs to know. This instruction must be given, as long as there is no special congregation, from the pulpit at stated times or daily as may be needed, and repeated or read aloud evenings and mornings in the homes for the children and the servants, if we want to train them as Christians.
They should not merely learn to say the words by heart, as heretofore, but with each part they should be asked questions and give answer, what each part means and how they understand it. If everything cannot be covered at once, one part should be taken up and the next day another. For if the parents and guardians of youth will not take the pains to do this themselves or secure others to do it, there will never be a catechism, unless it should come to pass that separate congregations were organized, as stated above.
They should be questioned like this: What do you pray? Answer: The Our Father. What does it mean when you say, Our Father in heaven? Answer:
That God is not an earthly but a heavenly Father who would make us rich and blessed in heaven. What does this mean: Thy Name be hallowed?
Answer: That we should honor His Name and keep it from being profaned.
How is His Name dishonored and profaned? Answer: When we, who should be His children, live evil lives and teach and believe what is wrong.
And so on, what the Kingdom of God means; how it comes; what Godís Will is; what Daily Bread means; etc.
So in the Creed; What do you believe? Answer: I believe in God the Father, to the end. Thereafter one part after the other as time permits, one part or two at once. For instance; What does it mean to believe in God the Father Almighty? Answer: It means to trust in Him with all the heart and with assurance to expect all grace, favor, help and comfort from Him in time and in eternity. What does it mean to believe in Jesus Christ His Son?
Answer: It means to believe in the heart that we would all be eternally lost if Christ had not died for us, etc.
Likewise in the Ten Commandments; one must ask, What does the first Commandment mean, the second, the third and the other Commandments?
These questions can be taken from our Betbuechlein where the three chief parts are briefly explained, or one can follow his own method, until all Christian teaching is summed up for the heart in two portions, as it were two pouches, which are faith and love. Faithís pouch may have two purses.
Into the one we put this, that we believe that through the sin of Adam we are all corrupt, sinners, and under condemnation, Romans 5:12, Psalm 51:7. Into: the other purse we put this, that we are all saved through Jesus Christ from such corruption, sin and condemnation, Romans 5:18, John 3:16. Loveís pouch may also have two purses.
One shall contain this, that we should serve and do good to; everyone, even as Christ hath done for us, Romans 13:8; the other shall have this, that we should suffer and endure all kinds of evil with joy.
When a child begins to understand this, it should be encouraged to bring home Scripture texts from the sermons and repeat them at meal-time for the parents, as was formerly the custom with the Latin lesson. Then those texts should be put into the pouches and purses just as the Pfen-nige, Groschen or Gulden are put into the pockets. For instance: let faithís pouch be the golden pouch. Into the first purse this text shall go, Romans 5:12 Through one manís sin all men are sinners and have passed under condemnation. Also this one, Psalm 51:7. I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me. These are two Rhenish Gulden for this purse. The Hungarian Gulden go into the other purse, as this text, Romans 4:25 Christ was delivered up for our trespasses and was raised again for our justification. Again, John 1:29 Behold the Lamb of God, that beareth the sin of the world. These are two precious Hungarian Gulden for that purse.
Let loveís pouch be the silver pouch. Into the first purse shall go the texts concerning welldoing, such as Galatians 5:13 Through love be servants one to another. Matthew 25:40 What ye have done unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done unto Me. They would be two silver Groschen for that purse. Into the other purse shall go this text, Matthew 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall persecute you for my sake. Hebrews 12:6 Whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. These are two Schreckenberger for that purse.
Let none think himself too wise for this and despise such childís play.
Christ, in order to train men, must needs become a man himself. If we wish to train children, we must become children with them. Would to God such childís play were widely practiced. In a short time we would have a wealth of Christian people, souls becoming rich in Scripture and the knowledge of God, until they would, of their own accord add more of such purses as Locos communes and comprehend all Scripture in them. Otherwise things will remain as they have been, a daily going to church and a coming away again. For no one thinks that it makes any difference except for the time it takes. No one expects to learn anything there. A man listens to preaching three or four years and does not learn enough to give answer concerning one article of the Creed; this I know from daily experience.
Enough is written in the books, yes; but it has not been driven home to the hearts.
CONCERNING THE SERVICE
Since the chief and greatest aim of any Service is to preach and teach Godís Word, we have arranged for sermons and lessons as follows: For the holy day or Sunday we retain the customary Epistles and Gospels and have three sermons. Early at five or six oíclock a few Psalms are chanted for Matins. A sermon follows on the Epistle of the day, chiefly for the sake of the servants, so that they too, may be cared for and hear Godís Word, if perchance they cannot be present at the other sermons. After this an antiphon and the Te Deum or the Benedictus, alternately, concluding with the Lordís Prayer, Collect and Benedieamus Domino. f232 At the Mass, at eight or nine oíclock there is preaching on the Gospel appointed for the day. At Vespers in the afternoon there is preaching before the Magnificat, on the Old Testament, taken in proper order. The customary Epistles and Gospels of the various days of the year are retained by us because there is nothing specially censurable in this custom. This is the arrangement at Wittenberg at the present time when many are here f234 who must learn to preach in the places where the system of Epistles and Gospels still is and may remain in vogue. Since in this matter we can be of service to others without loss to ourselves, we have made no change, without thereby implying any criticism of those who would take the complete books of the Evangelists in hand. This, we think, provides sufficient preaching and teaching for the layman; he who desires more, will find an abundance on the other days.
On Monday and Tuesday, early, we have a German lesson on the Ten Commandments, the Creed and the Lordís Prayer, Baptism and the Sacrament, so that these two days shall preserve the Catechism and deepen its understanding. On Wednesday, early, again a German lesson for which the Evangelist Matthew has been appointed, so that the day shall be his very own, especially since he is an excellent evangelist for the instruction of the congregation, reports the great sermon of Christ on the mount, and strongly urges the exercise of love and good works. The Evangelist John, who is so mighty in teaching faith, has his own day, too, on Saturday afternoon at Vespers. In this way we have a daily study of two evangelists. Thursday and Friday bring us, early in the morning, the weekday lessons from the Epistles of the Apostles and the rest of the New Testament. Thus enough lessons and sermons are appointed to give the Word of God free course among us. Then there are still the lectures given in the university for the scholars.
To exercise the boys and pupils in the Bible, this is done. Every day of the week they chant a few Psalms in Latin, before the Lesson, as customary at Matins hitherto. For we want to keep the youth in the knowledge and use of the Latin Bible, as was said above. After the Psalms a chapter from the New Testament is read in Latin by two or three of the boys in succession, depending on its length. Another boy then reads the same chapter in German, for the exercise, and for the benefit of any layman who might be present. Thereupon they proceed with an antiphon to the German lesson mentioned above. After the lesson the whole assembly sings a German hymn, the Lordís Prayer is said secretly, the pastor or chaplain reads a collect, closing with the Benedicamus Domino as usual.
At Vespers they chant a few of the Vesper Psalms in the same manner as heretofore in Latin with an antiphon, followed by a hymn, if one be available. Two or three of the boys, one after the other, again read a chapter in Latin from the Old Testament, or half a chapter, depending on the length. Another boy reads the same chapter in German, the Magnificat follows in Latin with an antiphon or hymn, the Lordís Prayer, said secretly, and the Collects with the Benedicamus. This is the daily week-day Service in the cities where there are schools.
THE SUNDAY SERVICE FOR THE LAITY
We allow the vestments, altars, and candles to remain in use until they are used up or it pleases us to make a change. But we do not oppose anyone who would herein do otherwise. In the true Mass, however, of real Christians, the altar could not remain where it is and the priest would always face the people as doubtless Christ did in the last Supper. But let that await its own time.
To begin the Service we sing a hymn or a German Psalm in the first Tone after this manner:
I will bless the Lord at all times: His praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: The humble shall hear thereof and be glad, etc. f240 Then follows the Kyrie Eleison in the same Tone, three times and not nine times: f241 Kyrie Eleison. Christe Eleison. Kyrie Eleison.
Thereupon the priest reads a Collect in F faut in monotone as follows:
Almighty God, Who art the protector of all who trust in Thee, without Whose grace nothing is strong, nothing is holy, increase and multiply upon us Thy mercy, that by Thy holy inspiration we may think the things that are right and by Thy power may perform the same, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen. f243 Thereafter the Epistle in the eighth Tone, in the same key as the Collect:
The rules for this are these:
Period is the end of a sentence.
Colon is the part of a sentence.
Comma is the subdivision within the colon.
Rules for this chant:
Beginning. Comma. Second Comma. Colon. Period. Question. Finale. f244 Example: Thus writeth the holy Apostle Paul to the Corinthians. Dear Brethren, Let a man so account of us as of the ministers of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of Christ, etc. f245 He should read the Epistle facing the people, but the Collect facing the altar. After the Epistle a German hymn is sting: Nun bitten wit den heiligen Geist or some other hymn by the full choir. Then he reads the Gospel in the fifth Tone, also facing the people.
The rules for chanting this are these:
Beginning. Comma. Second Comma. Colon. Period. Finale.
Voice of Persons:
Comma. Second Comma. Colon. Period. Question. Finale.
The Voice of Christ:
Comma. Colon. Period. Question. Finale.
Example: The Gospel of the Fourth Sunday in Advent would be chanted as follows: Thus writeth St. John in his Gospel. This is the witness of John when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou? Etc. f247 After the Gospel the whole congregation sings the Creed in German: Wir glauben all an einen Gott. f248 The sermon on the Gospel for the Sunday or festival day follows. If we had a German Postil for the entire year, I think it would be best to direct that the sermon for the day, in whole or in part, should be read for the people out of the book, not only for the sake of the preachers who could not do any better, but also to prevent the rise of enthusiasts and sects. The homilies read at Matins seem to indicate that once such was the custom. For unless spiritual knowledge and the Spirit Himself speak through the preachers (whom I do not wish hereby to limit, for the Spirit teaches better how to preach than all the postils and homilies), the final result will be that everyone preaches his own whims and instead of the Gospel and its exposition we shall again have sermons on blue ducks. f251 This is one of the reasons why we retain the Epistles and Gospels as they are given in the postils, ó there are so few gifted preachers who are able to give a powerful and practical exposition of a whole evangelist or some other book of the Bible.
After the sermon shall follow a public paraphrase of the Lordís Prayer and admonition for those who want to partake of the Sacrament, after this or a better fashion:
Dear Friends of Christ. Since we are here assembled in the Name of the Lord to receive His holy Testament, I admonish you first of all to lift up your hearts to God to pray with me the Lordís Prayer, as Christ our Lord has taught us and has given comfortable promise that it shall be heard.
That God, our Father in heaven, may look with mercy on us, His needy children on earth and grant us grace so that His holy Name be hallowed by us and all the world through the pure and righteous teaching of His Word and the fervent love of our lives; that He would graciously turn from us all false doctrine and evil living whereby His precious Name is blasphemed and profaned.
That His Kingdom may come and be enlarged; that all transgressors, the sin-darkened, and those in the bonds of Satanís kingdom be brought to a knowledge of the true faith in Jesus Christ, His Son, and the number of Christians be increased.
That we may be strengthened by His Spirit to do His Will and suffer it to be done, both in life and in death, in good things and in evil, ever breaking, offering, slaying our own wills.
That He would also give us our daily bread, preserve us from avarice and gluttony, relying upon Him to grant us a sufficiency of all good things.
That He would forgive our debts as we forgive our debtors so that our heart may have a calm and joyful conscience before Him and no sin may frighten us nor make us afraid.
That He would not lead us into temptation but help us by His Spirit to subdue the flesh, despise the world and its ways and overcome the devil with all his wiles.
And finally, that He would deliver us from all evil, bodily, and spiritually, in time and in eternity.
All those who earnestly desire these things, will say, from their very hearts, Amen, believing without doubt that it is yea, and answered in heaven as Christ hath promised: Whatsoever things ye desire when ye pray, believe that ye shall receive them, and ye shall have them. Amen. Secondly, I admonish you in Christ, that ye look upon the Testament of Christ in true faith, above all having confident assurance in your hearts in the words by which Christ grants us His body and blood for the forgiveness of sins. That ye remember and give thanks to His boundless love, of which He gave proof when He redeemed us by His blood from Godís wrath, sin, death, and hell, and thereupon take to yourselves externally the bread and wine, that is, His body and blood, as your guarantee and pledge. In His Name therefore, and according to His command, let us proceed by the use of His own words to the observance and administration of the Testament. f252 Whether such paraphrase and admonition should be read in the pulpit immediately after the sermon, or at the altar, I would leave to everyoneís own decision. It seems as if the ancients did so in the pulpit, so that the custom still obtains to read General Prayers or to repeat the Lordís Prayer in the pulpit, but the former admonition has now become a Public Confession. But in this way the Lordís Prayer together with a short exposition of it would be current among the people, and the Lord would be remembered, even as He commanded at the Supper.
I want to stress this point, however, that the paraphrase and admonition be made in previously determined and prescribed words or be formulated in some definite manner for the sake of the common people. We cannot have one man do it one way today and tomorrow another do it some other way, everybody showing his art and confusing the people, so that they can neither learn nor abide by anything. What chiefly matters is the teaching and guiding of the people. Here it is necessary therefore to limit our freedom and keep to one form of such paraphrase and admonition, particularly in one church or congregation by itself, if, to retain its liberty, it will not follow the form used by another.
The Office and Consecration follows in this wise: Example: Our Lord Jesus Christ, in the night in which He was betrayed, took bread; and when He had given thanks, He brake it and gave it to His disciples, saying, Take, eat; This is My Body, which is given for you; this do as oft as ye do it, in remembrance of Me.
After the same manner also, He took the cup, when He had supped, and said, Take and drink ye all of it, this is the Cup, a new Testament in My Blood, which is shed for you for the remission of sins: this do, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of Me. f253 It seems to me that it would be in accord with the institution of the Lordís Supper to administer the Sacrament immediately after the consecration of the Bread, before the Cup is blessed, for both Luke and Paul say: He took the cup after they had supped, etc. During the distribution of the Bread the German Sanctus could be sung, or the hymn, Gott sei gelobet, or the hymn of John Hus: Jesus Christus unser Helland. Then shall the Cup be blessed and administered; while the remainder of the hymns mentioned are sung, or the German Agnus Dei. Let there be a chaste and orderly approach, not men and women with each other but the women after the men, wherefore they should also stand separately at allotted places. What should be the attitude in respect to secret Confession, I have indicated in other writings and my opinion can be found in the Betbuechlein. f260 We do not want to abolish the Elevation but retain it because it goes well with the German Sanctus and signifies that Christ has commanded us to remember Him. For as the Sacrament is elevated in a material manner and yet Christís body and blood are not seen in it, so He is remembered and elevated by the word of the sermon and is confessed and adored in the reception of the Sacrament. Yet it is all apprehended by faith, for we cannot see how Christ gives His body and blood for us and even now daily shows and offers it before God to obtain grace for us.
THE GERMAN SANCTUS F262
Isaiah, in a vision, saw the Lord Enthroned, amid a heavenly light outpoured, His garmentís edge filled all the temple space, The prophetís soul was filled with awe and grace.
Above the throne there stood two seraphim; Each had six wings, his view disclosed to him.
With two they kept their faces veiled from view And covered modestly their feet with two, While two served them in flight. To praise His name They sang this hymn to God with loud acclaim:
Holy is God, the Lord of Sabaoth, Holy is God, the Lord of Sabaoth, Holy is God, the Lord of Sabaoth, His glory hath gone forth oíer all the earth.
The clamor of their voices shook the place, With haze and smoke the temple filled apace.
The Collect follows with the Benediction.
We give thanks to Thee, Almighty God, that Thou hast refreshed us with this Thy salutary gift; and we beseech Thee, of Thy mercy, to strengthen us through the same in faith toward Thee, and in fervent love toward one another; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen. f263 The Lord bless thee and keep thee.
The Lord make His face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee.
The Lord lift up His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.
Exercitation or Practice for the Intoning In order to increase proficiency in intoning and greater familiarity with the colons, commas, and similar pauses, I add another illustration. Some one else may choose another.
Thus writeth St. Paul, the holy apostle of Jesus Christ to the Corinthians:
Let a man so taunt of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.
Hear the Holy Gospel. Thus saith Jesus Christ to His disciples: No man can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. f265 This is what I have to say concerning the daily Service and the teaching of Godís Word, which is primarily for the training of the young and the encouragement of the simple-minded; for they who come out of curiosity and the desire for new things will soon tire of it and become indifferent.
This has been the case with the Latin services; there was singing and reading in the churches every day and yet the churches remained bare and empty. It is beginning to be so in the German services, too. Therefore, it is best to plan the services in the interest of the young and such of the simpleminded as may happen to come. With all others, neither law nor order, admonition or urging will help: let them go, so that they may grant and consent to the things in the service, which they dislike and are unwilling to do. God is not pleased with forced service; it is hopeless and in vain.
On festivals like Christmas, Easter, Pentecost, St. Michaelís Day, Purification, and the like, we must continue with the Latin services until enough German hymns become available for them. This work is only in its beginning: not everything required for it is ready. But it is needful to know how we should and could have a uniform usage, so that the differences in usage may be regulated and restrained.
Lent, Palm Sunday and Holy Week are continued, not to force anyone to fast, but to retain the Passion History and the Gospels appointed for that season. Not in such fashion, however, that we still have the Lenten Veil, Throwing of Palms, Veiling of Pictures, and whatever else of such trickery there is; nor do we continue the singing of four Passions, or preaching on the Passion for eight hours on Good Friday. Holy Week shall be like any other week save that the Passion History be explained every day for an hour, throughout the week or on as many days as may be desirable, and that the Sacrament be given to everyone who des/res it. For among Christians the whole service should center in the Word and Sacrament.
In short, this or any other Order shall be so used that whenever it becomes an abuse, it shall be straightway abolished and replaced by another, even as King Hezekiah put away and destroyed the brazen serpent, made by command of God Himself, because the children of Israel made an abuse of it. The Orders must serve for the improvement of faith and love and not cause any injury to faith. If they no longer serve their purpose, they are already dead and gone, of no value whatever; just as a good coin, when counterfeited, is cancelled and changed because of the abuse, or as new shoes become old and uncomfortable and are worn no longer but are thrown away and new ones bought. An Order is an external thing, no matter how good it is, it can be abused. Then it is no longer an Order but a Disorder. No Order exists, therefore, or is of any value, in and by itself, as the Papal Orders were held to be until now; but the life, worth, power and virtue of any Order is in its proper use; otherwise it is utterly worthless and good for nothing.
Godís Spirit and grace be with us all. Amen.
THE ORDER OF BAPTISM TRANSLATED INTO GERMAN
Das Tauff Buchlin Verdeutscht
THE ORDER OF BAPTISM NEWLY REVISED
Das Taufbuechlein Aufs Neue Zugerichtet
HOW ONE SHALL PROPERLY AND INTELLIGIBLY BAPTIZE A PERSON INTO THE CHRISTIAN FAITH
Wie Man Recht Und Verstaendlich Einen Menschen Zum Christen- Glauben Taufen Soll
Das Tauff Buchlin Verdeutscht Durch Mart. Luther
Very soon after the publication of the Von ordenung gottis diensts ynn der gemeine Luther issued Das Tauff Buchlin verdeutscht, The Order of Baptism translated into German. This was nothing other than a translation of the customary Roman Order used at Wittenberg at that time with but few changes. The Exorcism of the original Order was abbreviated; the Credo immediately preceding the Lordís Prayer was omitted at this place, thus giving the Lordís Prayer its true character, prayer: the Creed appearing later again in the questions; and instead of the Collect Deus patrum nostrorum Luther inserted the so-called Sindflutgebet.
The reasons why this Order was translated and issued, and why he did not make any radical changes in it, are stated quite explicity in the statement appended at first by Luther to the Order and later printed as a Preface.
DAS TAUFBUECHLEIN AUFS NEUE ZUGERICHTET
No more could Luther remain completely satisfied with the Order of Baptism as time passed than could his friends and others who were sympathetic to the Reformation Movement. Dissatisfaction with the Order due to the espoused and thoroughly confessed Evangelical principles and to the presence of such a mass of ceremonies which only served to becloud the glory of the sacrament brought about independent efforts in revision in some localities. Some of Lutherís friends expressed opposition to the continuance of the Order in the form in which it was and hoped for a change that would not be so offensive. Nicolas Hausmann was one of the latter. At all events Luther undertook a revision, and revision it was! The result is this Order.
The revision amounted to a very thoroughgoing abbreviation of the original Order. Luther made the following changes. One can almost see him sitting with a copy of the old Order before him and marking out the changes.
The exsufflatio is omitted, although the words are retained; the two prayers, Omnipotens sempiterne dens and Deus immortale praesidium are combined to make one prayer; the giving of salt, ó datio salis, ó is dropped; only one of the forms of exorcism is retained, and the reason upon which the exorcism is based is omitted; the prayer, Aeternam ac justissiman pietatem is omitted; the salutation before the Gospel is omitted; the Hephata is omitted; the two anointings before and after the baptism are omitted; the placing of a lighted candle in the childís hand is omitted; the words said when the christening robe is put on the child are omitted and the words, The Almighty God and Father, etc., substituted.
Radical changes indeed, the majority dealing with the ďceremonies.Ē But there were no new additions in material or any revolutionary changes in the structure!
The new Order became extremely popular. Luther appended it to the Small Catechism and it was included in many of the contemporary Church Orders.
WIE MAN RECHT UND VERSTAENDLICH EINEN MENSCHEN ZUM CHRISTENGLAUBEN TAUFEN SOLL
Whether this brief Direction is a forgery or a genuine Luther writing is a question. It parallels the Baptismal Office in the Bamberg Agenda of and reveals no departures from the customary rite, so at least it is an authentic evidence of the Office at Lutherís time.
John Aurifaber printed it in his supplementary volume in 1564, evidently accepting it as genuine. It has been included in all of the large editions of Lutherís works since; but from time to time its authenticity has been questioned.
In the face of the objections to its genuineness enumerated in Weimar 12, p. 48, and of the very summary dismissal by Rietschel (Lehrbuch d. Lit. 2:64), it may seem bold to include it in our edition. But we are convinced that the objections start at the wrong place, and for that reason are open to question. No objection advanced seems to recognize the fact that Luther had to feel his way, pass through many marked transitions in liturgical matters, and as his natural inclinations were not in these directions (as exhibited quite often by vacillation and uncertain taste) he could well be expected to take just such a step as this little order exhibits, much in the nature of a trial, and one not well thought out! Then, too, the objectors do not give the burgomasters of that period very much credit when they insinuate that none of them would be interested in approaching Luther about such a matter. One can credit readily such interest on the part of many of these devoted and pious men; and it is not beyond probability that there might be a personal reason in the family life of one of these officials which would have moved him to make such a request of Luther. Is it unlike Luther to meet such a request in a way such as this?
The year 1523 marks the beginning of Lutherís expressions in writing concerning liturgical matters. He evidently met these matters as they arose and were forced upon him. This Direction, for it is that more than an Order, would quite naturally stand as a beginning and probably antedated both the Von Ordnung and the first formal Tauff buchlin. That it is a mere German exhibit of the Bamberg Agendaís Office is decidedly not against it, as the Bamberg Use was that to which Luther was accustomed.
The little writing has by no means been proven spurious on the arguments advanced by some critics.
Literature: Weimar 12:38ff ó text 42ff; 19:531ff ó text 537ff. Walch 10:2624f. Erlangen 22:157ff. Clemen 3:310ff. Richter , Kitchen Ordnungen, 1:7ff Sehling , Kitchen Ordnungen, 1:17f Daniel , Codex liturgicus, 2:185ff Hering , Hufsbuch, 143ff Hofling , Das Sac. d. Taufe, 2:150ff Jakoby , Liturgik d. Reformatoren, l:301ff Rietschel , Lehrbuch d. Lit., 2:63ff For comparison, Rituale Romanum, Ed. Ratisbon, 1906, p. 12ff. PAUL ZELLER STRODACH DAS TAUFF BUCHLIN VERDEUTSCHT