Luther on Psalm 51:10

Grace is the continuous and perpetual operation or action through which we are grasped and moved by the Spirit of God so that we do not disbelieve His promises and that we think and do whatever is favorable and pleasing to God.

The Holy Spirit is never idle in the pious, but is always doing something that pertains to the Kingdom of God.  I am warning you to get used to understanding these theological terms so that when you hear the word “create,” you do not think of one momentary work, but of the continuing rule, conservation, and growth of spiritual actions in the faithful heart…

When the heart feels that God is wrathful, then idolatry immediately follows,

by which we either persuade ourselves that God is different from the way He is by nature and seek other remedies prohibited in the Word, or else despair utterly.  A clean heart prays against these pollutions of the heart, believing correctly about God and loving God as the Savior from sins and the Giver of life…

In everything we do or experience we should have a happy heart and know that for Christ’s sake we are in grace and that everything we do pleases God,

even the fact that out of the needs of the body we eat and drink and do our work.  Thus our heart should remain pure in the eternal and sound knowledge that

everything we are pleases God, not because of some merit or worthiness of ours, which is polluted, but because of the gift of faith, that we believe in Christ…

After we have come to a knowledge of his mercy, we should ask first for this, that this knowledge might remain sure, that our heart might not doubt about the mercy of God nor wander around in all sorts of thoughts, which hearts imagine for themselves or which wicked teachings produce.  For this gift we need creation and renewal, which takes place through the continuous exercise of spiritual struggles or temptations.”

LW Vol. 12 

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