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500th Reformation Anniversary

   Contrary to the chaos of modern gender-politics, in his treatise of 1522, "On the Estate of Marriage," Martin Luther asserted that God intentionally made two kinds of people: men and women. Luther said: "Each one of us must have the kind of body God has created for us. I cannot make myself a woman, nor can you make yourself a man; we do not have that power."

   On that basis, he said that we are to honor one another as male and female and see it as good, just as God saw it as good at creation. Luther went on to cite Genesis 1:28 and the command of God to "be fruitful and mutiply." God gives us, man to woman and woman to man, as a gift. He blesses us with one another and deems it a "natural and necessary thing."

   As a monk, Luther had been faithful to his vow of chastity, and had never planned to be married. But circumstances intervened. When nine nuns escaped from their cloister to Wittenburg in a fish barrel, Luther did his best to provide for the women, find homes for them, and even did some match-making. He referred to the situation as "truly a blessed robbery, just as Christ was also a robber when his death stole from the princes of this world their armor and fortress and he cast them all into prison... We wish to provide an example for pious rulers and people so that they will also help other nuns to be released without fear of conscience or consequence." ("That Maidens May Honorably Leave Their Cloisters," 1523)

   So it was that one of the escaped nuns, Katherine von Vora, became Luther's own wife. God was working his Reformation in Luther's life in ways that even he did not predict!

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