Re: The word alone in Romans 3:28

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Mon Aug 24 1998 - 10:56:42 EDT

At 9:46 AM -0500 8/24/98, Christopher Hutson wrote:
>Matthew and David,
>The text you present of Luther's translation of Rom 3:28 seems like a
>straightforward rendering of the Greek to me.
>"So we conclude that a person is justified through faith alone without
>works of the law."
>I see nothing in Luther or in the Greek about "word only," and I am
>confused really about the original question. What exactly was the
>proposal in your Sunday School class yesterday? Was this an idea
>expressed in his commentary on Romans? I have only an abridged
>edition of that at hand. Perhaps you can check Luther's commentary on
>Romans and see if he made some such point.

I remember many years ago seeing a film that showed Luther reading this
text in the Vulgate, where it is:

        "arbitramur enim iustificari hominem per fidem sine operibus legis"

and he penned in the word "solam" above "fidem." I don't know whether the
film had any historical or biographical authenticity, but certainly thaat
version of the Latin 'per fidem solam' is reflected in his translation
"allein durch den Glauben."

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314) 935-4018
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649 OR

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