Page:The letters of Martin Luther.djvu/167

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fear, although our opinions might differ from yours, or that we should despise those you hold.

Still, it is almost unbearable for me to hear that our differences have been the topic of conversation, especially when such perfect unanimity of spirit reigns among us. This is specially trying to me, for I gladly conceal and overlook, as much as I can, any difference of opinion among ourselves; hence how much less dare I put up with these suspicions which are thrown upon our Christianity and spiritual peace? Therefore, if I were not so much occupied, I would, through the public press, expose such lies, and prove that in the things pertaining to Christ we are at one.

I am delighted to hear of the marriages of the priests, monks, and nuns among you; and that the former are now husbands in defiance of Satan, and am pleased when they get livings. What more shall I say? Am sorry I have heard nothing further of you. Go on and prosper, for all bear witness to your wonderful teaching; the people being struck down under it amid the enemies of the King.

I think, hitherto, too much consideration has been allowed for the weak; so, as they are daily becoming more hardened, one must speak plainly to them.

For some day I shall cast aside the cowl, which I have hitherto worn, to strengthen the weak, and turn the Pope into ridicule. They are blind leaders of the blind.

I believe the report of our dissensions has arisen out of my letters to you translated into German. It is enough to terrify me from writing when they are immediately borne away to the printers against my will; for among close friends one writes more confidentially than it would be advisable to spread abroad.

But then you were a different man, and a courtier, while now you are Christ’s freeman, and a servant of the gospel, and belonging to me, and I to you. Greet M. Bucer from me in Christ, with his dear wife and children, and all the recently made husbands, especially Hedio. Our Church greets you. Grace be with you. MARTIN LUTHER.