What advice does Luther give rulers (princes)?

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Martin Luther urged rulers to denounce Jews for their failure to accept Christianity and to eject them from Germany, even accusing them of being "thieves and robbers."

For Martin Luther, Christ's sacrifice remained the key to salvation. After the Reformation, in which the corruption that had come to Catholicism had been rejected, Luther felt that Jews should now embrace his revised Christianity. But, when they did not do so, Luther uttered many vituperative charges against them; furthermore, he urged the rulers of Germany who had supported him to reject the Jews as blind and misleading for the people of Germany who believed in Jesus Christ as their Savior, and the worship of Him as a pathway to their salvation. In short, he urged rulers to be rid of them. He writes in his 1543 book, On the Jews and Their Lies,

I brief, dear princes and lords, those of you who have Jews under your rule­­... find better advice, so that you and we all can be rid of the unbearable, devilish burden of the Jews lest we become guilty sharers before God in the lies, blasphemy, the defamation, and the curses which the mad Jews indulge in so freely and wantonly against the person of our Lord Jesus Christ, this dear mother, all Christians, all authority, and ourselves.

Luther, thus, urged the rulers to not afford Jews any protection or interaction with Christians because he found them deceitful and blinded to the true path to salvation. This strident language against Jews of Luther's was certainly unfavorable, and there are those who feel that it contributed to Germany's hatred for these people in more modern times.

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