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Monday, August 13, 2018

Warren Malach's Review of Volume I - The Sermons of Martin Luther

Norma A. Boeckler is a prolific artist with a number of her own books. She had artwork for each volume before it was done. How? She looked the sermons up online and planned the art for each sermon. 

Although I already mentioned above Dr. Jackson's additional volume GEMS MINED FROM THE SERMONS OF MARTIN LUTHER, it was only when I examined the individual volumes of the SERMONS that I learned that the GEMS MINED from each individual volume of the SERMONS are offered as an Introduction to each volume, an "appetizer" of what will be found in the SERMONS as well as an overview of the theology of Dr. Luther himself. Dr. Jackson introduces the GEMS with this challenging statement about Luther: "Luther is discussed too much, studied too little." This statement is an indictment of the state of Luther scholarship within the Christian Church, but especially within the Lutheran Church itself. The summary statements for the individual GEMS in this volume demonstrate how Dr. Luther challenges the orthodoxy of those claiming to be "Lutherans" regarding the fundamental doctrines of the Lutheran Church, e.g. "Not All Are Justified"--"Faithless Teachers"--"Where Do We Find Christ?--In the Scriptures." In "The Reason for the Church Postils," Dr. Jackson tells us the history of the Church Postils and how Dr. Luther himself regarded THE SERMONS OF MARTIN LUTHER as "the best of all his books."

GJ - As she read and edited the volumes, Virginia Roberts kept saying, "I found a gem!" and then "Another gem!" My wife and I did this years ago for volumes 1-4 and put them in Megatron, the Database. They were the heavy artillery - dropped on the foes of the efficacy of the Word in the Means of Grace. I said, "We have to feature the Gems in the front," and then "Let's also do a separate volume, full color."

Volume I of THE SERMONS OF MARTIN LUTHER contains the Sermons for the first part of the Church Year, from the First Sunday in Advent through the Festival of the Epiphany.  It includes the Sermons for the festivals of Christmas, Second Christmas Day, Third Christmas Day, St. Stephen's Day, the Day of St. John the Evangelist, and New Year's Day.  Helpful outlines are provided for each Sermon to guide the reader in his study.

I must mention the physical appearance of this large, softbound volume, with its fine illustrations by Norma A. Boeckler, especially the cover illustration of Luther writing the Sermons.  Once again, I must mention how comfortable the volume is to hold and read, with its ease of holding open and its large print.  The volumes in the set of THE SERMONS OF MARTIN LUTHER are designed for regular individual and family use, and not simply to be put on a library shelf in a pastor's office or church library.

What did Luther teach?  Rather, what does the Bible teach, as Dr. Luther explains?  Study THE SERMONS OF MARTIN LUTHER and you will not be misled by those claiming to be "Lutherans" but who do not teach what Luther taught from the Bible about such fundamental Christians doctrines as the Inspiration of Scripture and Justification by Faith Alone!  
--Warren Malach


GJ - One reader has already suggested publishing More Gems later.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Warren Malach - On Luther's Sermons, the Gems, and the Goldmine

A Lutheran pastor for forty-five years, the Rev. Dr. Gregory L. Jackson (STM Yale, PhD Notre Dame ) spent a year revising the Lenker translation of the CHURCH POSTILS of Dr. Martin Luther, written in the 1520s.  These sermons on the historic Epistle and Gospel Lessons for the Church Year fill eight large softbound volumes whose typesetting makes them as easy to read as the volumes are to hold open.  In addition, the volumes are profusely illustrated by renowned Christian artist Norma A Boeckler.  In re-introducing these volumes to the public, Dr. Jackson has performed a great service to the Christian Church by responding to the sectarianism and apostasy of our day with the pure Word of God as taught by Dr. Martin Luther to the members of his congregation.

In addition to THE SERMONS OF MARTIN LUTHER, as part of his long study of Dr. Martin Luther's writings Dr. Jackson has also compiled the additional volumes

 The color version of Gems is the one sent to everyone.
This black and white version was planned at the last minute as a good way to introducepeople to Luther's Sermons without selling the rose farm. This is often included free in orders.

GEMS is the fruit of Dr. Jackson's editorial work on THE SERMONS OF MARTIN LUTHER in which Dr. Jackson distills for the reader the contents of the eight individual volumes in quotations drawn from the sermons, for which Dr. Jackson has supplied titles which are included in the table of contents for easy topical reference.  The quotations drawn from the sermons are generally more extensive than those found in E. Plass' WHAT LUTHER SAYS, which traditionally was searched by students of Luther for useful quotations from Dr. Luther's vast writings, and therefore GEMS is a more comprehensive compendium of extracts from Dr. Luther's writings as a theologian who was also a pastor.

In THE LOST DUTCHMAN'S GOLDMINE Dr. Jackson presents Dr. Luther's doctrine of the Word of God as drawn directly from Luther's own writings, the Lutheran Confessions, and the writings of orthodox Lutheran teachers.  In an age in which the inspiration and authority of God's Word are under constant attack and false doctrine is rampant, Dr. Jackson in his Luther editorial work as well as in his own writings and online blog  (http://ichabodthegloryhasdeparted.blogspot.com) seeks to follow the mandate of Jude 3 to "contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints" and presented by Dr. Luther in these Sermons, especially the glorious doctrine of Justification by Faith.

These volumes are only the latest publications of Martin Chemnitz Press (martinchemnitzpress.blogspot.com) which also publishes the theological writings of Dr. Jackson covering a wide variety of subjects both of Christian doctrine and of practice.  You are warmly encouraged to search for these books online, and follow Dr. Jackson's Amazon author's page (https://www.amazon.com/Pastor-Gregory-L.-Jackson/e/B00MDC6S4U?ref_=pe_1724030_132998060). 
--Warren Malach

 All the covers and interior illustrations came from our
artist-in-residence, Norma A. Boeckler.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Luther Publishing News

I look at life this way. Things happened so I could learn a lot and experience what was happening in the synods. I am blessed to have reasonably good health, energy, and time to write and teach.

Apart from a few books sold retail on Amazon, everything is being distributed at cost or for free. The synods refuse to teach Luther's Biblical theology so someone has to do their job for them.

I will be sending out more Luther volumes very soon. Some have gone to Africa already, but America is also a mission field. How many Lutheran pastors have Luther's Sermons in their studies or on their computers? Precious few, I am sure.

One woman got multiple sets of all nine volumes for herself and her kin.

Some might consider getting the full color Gems book ($10), with selections from all eight volumes of sermons. Or, my very special promotional item for Luther - the black and white version of Gems, which costs only $2.40 each.

The color Gems is the one always sent when ordered. The black and white volume is only for people who want to give away some Luther at a very low price. No one should be worried about being caught with contraband, since each volume is all Luther, plus graphics from Norma A. Boeckler. Luther is not political, unless one wants to compare the Reformer with the deformers of today.

I have started a reader's verson of St. John's Gospel, plus some initial ideas for a new Lutheran dictionary.

More Luther is planned, plus a long essay on how Calvin ruined Protestantism.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Books Are Being Shipped

Below - Norma A. Boeckler, artist. Virginia Roberts, editor.
Above - Janie Sullivan, Christina Jackson, Gregory Jackson.
Out of space at the gallery - Terry and Lori Howell; a Lutheran pastor.

Eight people were the key to getting 9 volumes of Luther, 27 titles in all, out in public at the lowest possible price.

Someone Doubts 27 titles, But Observe

  1. The Lenker set of Luther's Sermons, illustrated in color by Norma A. Boeckler, 8 volumes, plus the Gems.
  2. Black and white, Economy Edition - The Lenker set of Luther's Sermons, illustrated by Norma A. Boeckler, 8 volumes, plus the Gems. Complete set, shipping and taxes, $70.
  3. Kindle Ebooks - The Lenker set of Luther's Sermons, illustrated in color by Norma A. Boeckler, 8 volumes, plus the Gems. Most titles are 99 cents.

 John N. Lenker, Hamma Divinity School graduate, translated and organized other translators to create the eight-volume set.

But Wait - There's More

If all goes well, God willing, there will be one master PDF with all nine volumes included, each volume paginated separately. That will allow for quick, easy searching. Copy and pasting sections would probably go better in Kindle, but this is a 3,000 page library of Luther.

Naturally, this PDF file will be full color. I will stow the Word version in various secure, undisclosed locations, for another generation to use.

Rogue Edition of The Gems Mined from Luther's Sermons

When people want The Gems, they will get the full color edition, which is only $10. However, to promote the Sermons and the full color Gems, I had a black and white edition published for $2.40.

CPAs understand why. If a congregation wants to generate interest in Luther and give people an introduction to Luther, they can get 10 Gems for $24 in black and white. Otherwise, that number would cost $100.

"Why So Many Links?" Someone Forgot To Ask
One of my graduate students taught me Search Engine Optimization. When people click on links, the URL rises on the search engine results.

Also, reviews do the same for book titles. Even if someone checks in at that book's page and says, "This is a good book to read," that will count.

Monday, June 4, 2018

The Gems Volume Is in Print. The Sermons of Martin Luther, Lenker Edition -
Are Now Complete - Surprise Coming!

Gems Mined from Luther's Sermons is now in print at Amazon. This volume is a collection of the best quotations from all eight volumes. Of course, not all of the best could be included. However, they represent great Biblical insights unequaled today, after the plague of Fuller Seminary chatterboxes.

I will start sendingout  expected volumes today.

No wonder the synodocrats hate Luther.

 Christina E. Jackson

I often read the Lenker edition of Luther’s Sermons to my wife Christina, especially in Columbus. We were constantly struck by the way the Reformer addressed the issues of life and the carcinogens of Fuller’s Church Growth Movement. That pattern turned into a plan to put the best quotations into a database nicknamed Megatron. Four of the eight volumes were filled with inked exclamations about the topic addressed. Many more resources were added from various denominations and programs of Enthusiasm.

Help in research did not begin or end in Columbus. We turned the libraries inside-out in Waterloo Ontario, at Yale Divinity and Yale Medical, at Notre Dame and Augustana, at the Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, and the Vatican owned seminary near her work at an engineering firm. Sometimes I helped her in medical and engineering research, but she always helped in me theological research and publishing.

The decades of enjoyment in reading Luther led to consternation as the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation approached. The old Lenker set was hard to find and expensive. Christina encouraged me to reproduce it in an expensive edition, and the Kindle ebooks will be free. She cheered on the year’s work and helped in editing. The LCMS member who worked on all the volumes kept saying, “This paragraph is a gem!” and marked it. So Virginia Roberts’ exclamations turned into a new version of what Chris and I began together, 30 years ago – these Gems Mined from Luther’s Sermons.

If people wonder why so many books and articles have come from my cramped study, they only need to credit – or blame – Christina, who always encourages more projects and cheers them on. There are many ways to find gems –

Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
Proverbs 31:10-12 KJV

 Anniversary present - a real rose preserved in plastic and edged in gold.

The Surprise!

God willing, there will soon be a another way to have, to hold, and to study Luther's Sermons.

I have asked our finishing editor, the incomparable Janie Sullivan, to stitch together the nine volumes into one PDF. I will post that via Dropbox, so people have a free version to use and share.

Why the all-in-one volume? I found the PDF of Thy Strong Word was quite useful in finding and quoting sources for other books or booklets, especially Making Disciples.

A PDF is portable so it can be read on all digital devices.

The all-in-one can be shared freely. This old geezer is staggered that a set of books can be made available all over the world, simply by posting the DropBox link.

This PDF will help preserve a beautifully illustrated - the only illustrated one - set of Lenker.

Norma A. Boeckler designed all the covers and illustrated all nine volumes. Today she wrote, "I have a large collection for the Gospel of John Commentary."

Wait There's More!

I have asked Janie Sullivan to set the Kindle version of Luther's Sermons (all nine) as FREE for FIVE DAYS. They will go to 99 cents after that. I would keep them free at all times, but Kindle has  a base price of 99 cents.

I will be doing this with all the other books, and there will be a DropBox folder posted for all the free book files (PDFs).

Janie Sullivan finishes each volume for Amazon and Kindle publication.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Breaking News - Volume 8 of Luther's Sermons Is Finished at Amazon. The Gems Mined from Luther's Sermons Will Be Sent Today

When I see this Veterans Honor rose in the garden, I recall the funniest story told by my wife's cousin Peter. He was on KP duty for some reason, but was forced to keep potato peeling and cleaning for an extremely long day. Peter was short and about 110 pounds. The sarge came in and wanted to keep him working hours more. Peter got excited about that and began yelling and waving his little potato knife in the process.

The sarge reported him for attacking him with a knife. When Peter repeated the entire experience to the officer, the man could not help but laugh about Peter being a threat, waving a little potato peeler and yelling in frustration at this big muscular sargeant. Peter was judged innocent, and he had us doubled over in laughter about the whole story.

Publishing is like that, because there may be a jealous someone who wants to make something out of nothing. But nevertheless, the Sermons are done and the Gems are finishing today. Certain events have made me decide to make all the published books free online, although I am not sure about the platform. Q may need to liberate Kindle before this is all done, but there are many, many options for ebooks, including DropBox.

Rest in Peace, Peter Ellenberger, one of five family members born in Europe, but hserved in the US military.

Friday, May 4, 2018

Luther's Sermons - So Far

Volume 6 was tied up for a time by HAL - long story. The color version has been set free.

A Kindle issue is being addressed.

The Gems Mined from the Sermons of Martin Luther volume needs to have pagination added to each quotation - not a big job, really a fun and inspiring task.

Gems - selections from each of the eight volumes, designed to introduce people to Luther's Sermons. This is smaller in size so it will be full color only and Kindle.

Volume 8 is being prepared by Janie Sullivan for Amazon-Kindle.

If someone does not grasp this gem from Luther, he does not understand the Reformer, the Gospel, or the Scriptures.

Anticipated Results

When everything is done, the sermons in black and white will be about $40 TOTAL for all eight volumes - author's price. With sales tax and shipping for the whole set, that might be $60 - 70 or so. Sales tax varies quite a bit.

The Gospel Sermons - Volumes 1-5 - would be about $40 with taxes and shipping. Don't kid yourself, the Epistle Sermons are just as good.

Kindle ebook prices will be a little higher but I may run some specials, which will be noted here.

Gems will be $10-15 (author's price) and a good gift or library addition by itself.

Pastors who get stuck for sermon ideas should turn to Gems, or the complete set of Luther's Sermons, not to ELCA preaching books (yuk!), or Calvin's Commentaries (Why?) or the Pietistic Spoonfuls on Purpose.

 No, we saved a few titles.