Når jeg nå leser en grundig framstilling av Martin Luthers liv og lære (se her) – og irriterer meg over at forfatteren uten videre ser ut til å være enig med Luther om at Den katolsk kirke på den tid stod for en gjerningskristendom (at man blir frelst av sine gjerninger) – oppdager jeg at det i dag er 470 år siden konsilet i Trent utga sitt viktige dekret om reffferidggjøreøsen. Der skriver konsilfedrene bl.a.:
CHAPTER VIII – HOW THE GRATUITOUS JUSTIFICATION OF THE SINNER BY FAITH IS TO BE UNDERSTOOD
But when the Apostle says that man is justified by faith and freely, these words are to be understood in that sense in which the uninterrupted unanimity of the Catholic Church has held and expressed them, namely, that we are therefore said to be justified by faith, because faith is the beginning of human salvation, the foundation and root of all justification, without which it is impossible to please God and to come to the fellowship of His sons; and we are therefore said to be justified gratuitously, because none of those things that precede justification, whether faith or works, merit the grace of justification.
For, if by grace, it is not now by works, otherwise, as the Apostle says, grace is no more grace.
CHAPTER IX – AGAINST THE VAIN CONFIDENCE OF HERETICS
But though it is necessary to believe that sins neither are remitted nor ever have been remitted except gratuitously by divine mercy for Christ’s sake, yet it must not be said that sins are forgiven or have been forgiven to anyone who boasts of his confidence and certainty of the remission of his sins, resting on that alone, though among heretics and schismatics this vain and ungodly confidence may be and in our troubled times indeed is found and preached with untiring fury against the Catholic Church. ….
For as no pious person ought to doubt the mercy of God, the merit of Christ and the virtue and efficacy of the sacraments, so each one, when he considers himself and his own weakness and indisposition, may have fear and apprehension concerning his own grace, since no one can know with the certainty of faith, which cannot be subject to error, that he has obtained the grace of God. …