WITTENBERG. TO GEORGE SPALATIN Luther wishes names of precious stones. March 30, 1522.
All hail! I send you the letter you were expecting, my Spalatin. I cannot remember what I wrote to Herzog John Frederick, except that I advised him not to introduce innovations unless it could be done without giving offense to the weak, and that all must be done in love. I wrote the same to Herzog Karl. I have not only translated the Gospel of St. John in my Patmos, but the whole of the New Testament, and Philip and I are now busy correcting it, and, with God’s help, it will be a splendid
work. Meantime we need your help, to find out proper words, therefore be ready to supply us with the common terms for some things we require, but not those used at Court, for this book is to be written in the simplest language that all may understand it; and so that I may begin at once, send the names of the precious stones mentioned in Revelation chapter 21, and would that you could get permission from Court to let us have the loan of some to see what they are like. I am busy with a treatise upon the gospel method of receiving the sacrament, and although it is a most troublesome piece of work, yet I am not afraid. Christ lives, and for His sake one must not only be a sweet savor in them that are saved, as well as in them that perish, but also be willing to be slain for Him. Farewell, and greet all at Court.
MARTIN LUTHER . WITTENBERG. (Walch, 5:15. 83.)