On the Cross and in the Cradle: The Mystical Theology of Martin Luther
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This essays examines Luther’s conservative reformation of the mystical tradition which preceded him. Lehninger sets Luther’s mysticism into the context of the medieval tradition and explains Luther’s approach to the mystical experience as well as those characteristics which defined his approach to mysticism. Intimate experience with God is an important, but never overemphasized component of Luther’s theology. Luther saw the quest for religious experience with God not as a treasure only for a select few, but as belonging to all who have been justified by faith in Christ. Through the external means of grace alone the believer seeks the revealed, incarnate Word as opposed to seeking God where he has not chosen to reveal himself. This mystical experience does not consist in soaring high above the heavens, but in carrying our cross as we walk side by side with Christ, who carried his cross for us.