82. Such as: “Why does not the pope empty purgatory for the sake of holy love and the dire need of the souls that are there if he redeems an infinite number of souls for the sake of miserable money with which to build a church?” The former reason would be most just; the latter is most trivial.
This Thesis and the next few are written as questions that Luther was asking as if the people had already asked them. Probably they were the questions that were on Luther’s mind as he contemplated the practice of selling indulgences more than questions of the common people.
You don’t have to be a very deep thinker to figure where Luther was going with this question. If the pope was appointed by God to be His instrument to love and care for the souls of the people of the Holy Roman Church and if he had it within his power to release souls from purgatory. Why would he not release all the souls in purgatory out of love and concern for them, instead he was only willing to release those whose souls were bought and paid for by the purchase of an indulgence. One must come to the conclusion that the pope was more concerned about raising money to build the church than he was with the souls of his people.
Today we are God’s instruments here on earth to bring the story of His love in Jesus Christ to people who have not heard or have not believed that God does love them so much he would die for them. Yet we often are selective about who we are ready to tell of this good news. They need to be the right kind of people in the right place they need to be people like us. Sometimes we are reluctant to tell someone about Jesus and His love, because it makes us uncomfortable. Have we let our comfortable life become more important than job that God has given us to do?
Is it possible that like the pope at Luther’s time we are more concerned about our life than the lives of those who do not know Jesus?
Lord Jesus Christ, I humbly admit that I am often reluctant to share the good news that You have given me. Strengthen me for the tasks that are before me that I may live to honor You in all that I do. Amen.