I stoled this quotation from Justin Taylor who stoled it from some other dude. It’s Martin Luthur on the value of literature to prepare the way for good Theology –though not necessarily the way you think. I call it very true.
It sort of has some of the same themes from this post I did at the Rabbit Room about the spiritual value of imaginative literature. Me and Luther, you know…the um, er….top sources for this sort of thing. Ahem.
“I am persuaded that without knowledge of literature pure theology cannot at all endure, just as heretofore, when letters [literature] have declined and lain prostrate, theology too, has wretchedly fallen and lain prostrate; nay, I see that there has never been a great revelation of the Word of God unless he has first prepared the way by the rise and prosperity of languages and letters, as though they were John the Baptists. . . . Certainly it is my desire that there shall be as many poets and rhetoricians as possible, because I see that by these studies, as by no other means, people are wonderfully fitted for the grasping of sacred truth and for handling it skillfully and happily.”
Note: This is a repost from a few years ago.