Steven Ozment, Author, The Serpent and the Lamb: Cranach, Luther, and The Making of the Reformation
Thinking in Public
April 24, 2012
Mohler: This is Thinking in Public, a program dedicated to intelligent conversation about frontline theological and cultural issues with the people who are shaping them. I’m Albert Mohler, your host and president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.
Steven Ozment is an American historian. His specialty is in early-modern and modern history and taught for many years at Harvard University where he’s the McLean Professor of Ancient and Modern History. He’s the author of many influential books. His book, The Age of Reform: 1250-1550, won the Schaff History Prize in 1981. His latest work is The Serpent and the Lamb: Cranach, Luther and the Making of the Reformation.
Steven Ozment, welcome to Thinking in Public.
Ozment: Thank you.
Mohler: You know, you have written so much about Germany, so much about the Reformation, and back when I was doing doctoral work in Historical Theology, I first became acquainted with your research and writing and, yet, this new book brings something completely new to the table in terms of the influence together of Martin Luther and Lucas Cranach. But this has to be told in terms of a story. How did you come to write this book?
Ozment: Well, for many years I have had Cranach art on the jacket or in the pages of my books, and I became more and more interested in who this man was. I quickly found out that it was almost impenetrable to move in his direction because all we have of him really are his pictures. I thought, you know, I could do a book on him where I would have all kinds of letters and stuff, but there’s just absolutely nothing there. And so, I had to become a kind of art historian, which I’m certainly not, to do this. So my primary sources there were these paintings, and I think I’ve learned enough for historians to deal with it, but I think maybe it was just the challenge and just the beauty of his art that made me put seven years into writing this book.
Mohler: You know, even someone like the late Heiko Oberman pointed out that Luther was a man of his times and very much a man of his culture, and you can’t separate the two. And you brought a fascinating understanding to Luther’s role as a Reformer, in terms of the actual partnership that he had with Lucas Cranach. In order to set the tale, tell us who Cranach was.
Ozment: I could probably tell you more about him if I’d thought about making some comments about on what Cranach did for Martin Luther.
Ozment: If you’re interested in it.
Ozment:Well, Luther was very interested in the theological side of the Reformation, but he was almost equally, if not more, interested in the domestic front of the Reformation. And the domestic front was really the place where Cranach comes in. Cranach was not a person who was involved in or wanted to be involved in theological dispute and argument, but he was very interested—you know he had five children between 1513 and 1520 and that was before Luther had his brood. Of course the two families mix up down the way. But the first thing Cranach did for Luther is to make him famous. Cranach’s mass produced images made Martin Luther the most familiar face in the whole of Europe and it was all the more helpful that Cranach owned and operated the only publishing house in the area. And most of the books that we know about Luther, all of these things were coming out of Cranach’s publishing house. So that was the first thing he did is to give Cranach the gravitas that one can with the press.
Another thing he did that I think was not only brave, but really essential for Luther—this is something that Luther probably was very surprised about. Cranach actually, I believe, saved Luther from plunging into the iconoclastic controversy in 1519/1520. This controversy was a no-winner for Luther or anybody who would want to be associated with him. Had Cranach not intervened there—by that I mean, hadn’t gone and tapped his new friend Luther on the shoulder and said, “Look, it’s not a very good thing to join forces with this radical guy Karlstadt.” Because what Karlstadt was doing was an iconoclast. He wanted to get decorative art out of the churches and, at one point, Luther was very clearly tempted to do that, but had he done that. Cranach knew that if he succumbed to Karlstadt’s sweet siren call, he would have put himself on the wrong side of the greatest relic and image collector of the era—namely, the Saxon Elector, Frederick the Wise. And if he had gone in that direction, he would very quickly have joined Karlstadt in exile. So these were really very important things and in the process of working together—Cranach and Luther—that really settled something that was very important.
Cranach also was such a clever man. He knew how to co-op his enemies and he was very helpful to Luther in that regard. Cranach, ever wise, when he had a problem, like this problem with Karlstadt—his idea was to become a friend of this great iconoclast. Cranach actually became Karlstadt’s friend and a couple of years later after that, the two of them collaborated on the first Protestant broadsheet against Rome, that very famous piece called, “The Pope as Antichrist.”
Mohler: If I can just kind of set the story here, just so that our listeners can kind of follow where we are. Lucas Cranach was a famous artist before we come to know Martin Luther. He was the court artist to Frederick the Elector of Saxony, one of the most powerful royals in all of Europe and a central figure in the Holy Roman Empire. And it was as you said of Cranach. He helped to make, first of all, Luther famous and he also served as something of a mentor to Luther in terms of court intrigue and in terms of the culture. But let’s talk about that iconoclastic controversy because when Andreas Karlstadt wanted to remove all the altar pieces, he did so because he felt that they would lend themselves to idolatry. And how exactly did Luther settle that theologically in his mind? Because Luther became, basically, a great patron of the arts, including the arts inside the church, so how did that come about?
Ozment: Well, Luther believed that man was by nature an image-maker and so he was all for these images, especially under the guidance with Cranach. After the Reformation’s reforms were established on the theological front, Cranach led Luther to the major reforms on the domestic front and the art in the churches were very much a part of the domestic front.
Mohler: And you had, of course, all this art that we now are able to see that tells the story of the Reformation, and we would actually know far less of the Reformation without Cranach’s art. And, of course, Cranach’s art not only tells us the story of the Reformation, it became a part of that Reformation as he transformed the art from the Renaissance into far more of a Reformation understanding of perspective, of humanity, and you cover this in your book. Cranach was deeply thoughtful about his art and deeply committed to the Reformation.
Ozment: Yes. The church is filled with that and you had an artist here who was just as popular outside the church as he was within the church and that was certainly a major part of what this pair was trying to do. They were trying to put the gospel into both word and picture and I think the picture, some people argue that the pictures were more powerful than the sermons, and I think there’s a lot of argument one can make about that.
Mohler: Well, and one of those arguments is exactly what was made by Zwingli and that’s the reason why he became an actual iconoclast and there in Zurich took everything out of the churches. And, of course, the more Calvinist stream of the Reformation became iconoclastic all the way to the Puritans who in the Revolution actually toppled the heads off of statues and desecrated the churches. But Luther theologically settled this, as I understand it, by deciding that it is true, as Calvin would say, that the human heart is an idol-making factory, but Luther also said it’s a part of being made in God’s image that human beings are also image-makers and that needs to be put in the service of the gospel, rather than in opposition to the gospel.
Ozment: Well, that was certainly true and it was a major boost of—not that Luther needed to have a big boost—but it was a major boost, I think, to people who came to the church and were interested in following what was happening in the Reformation.
Mohler: Now, when it comes to the Reformation itself, you mentioned that Cranach was not only an artist, he was basically the publisher. He had in his own home—and one of the things that you detail in your book is what—to use a more contemporary word—what an entrepreneur he was. He had the only pharmacy in Wittenberg, he owned a great deal of real estate and he became one of the wealthiest men—you mentioned that he paid the largest property tax of anyone there in that city—but here’s a man also who in his art was continually calculating, making a point. And one of the things I appreciate about any art history and, frankly, that’s a least a part of what you’re doing in this book is that you take us into the paintings and show us what we otherwise might not see. In terms of Cranach and the Reformation, the things that, for instance, we might not see is Luther presented in action; Luther presented as kind of the prototypical German; Luther presented as the brave and heroic future. Do we owe a lot of what we associate with Luther’s heroism to Cranach the artist?
Ozment: Well, I mean, I think that Cranach was trying to keep both himself and Luther down to earth and I think with their feet flat on the ground they were a better team than those who were just getting a little flighty like they both thought Karlstadt was. Karlstadt’s wanting to strip decorative art from the churches was something that only Cranach could put an end to very quickly because he was such a clever and, you know, I call him the serpent. He knew how to put a stinger in Karlstadt and it was certainly his… was very high on the list of those who were moving Karlstadt out of Wittenberg.
Mohler: As human beings we are composite selves. We have ears in which to hear, eyes with which to see and we read and we hear, but we also see a great deal of the reality around us. And most of us, especially, as evangelical Protestants, underestimate the influence in our lives of the visual, of indeed visual art, such as the art of Lucas Cranach, about which Steven Ozment has already told us so much.
Most of us think of the Reformation in terms of a battle of doctrines, of theological systems and religious authorizes, but for the Reformation to become real, it had to become realized in local congregations and in local communities. And those communities were deeply embedded in culture. In his new book, The Serpent and the Lamb, Steven Ozment helps us to understand how culture became a driving force of the Reformation in the Lutheran world and how a singular artist became the major engine of that cultural revolution.
Let’s talk about Cranach’s art. I think one of the most effective things you bring—and it was revolutionary in my understanding of Cranach’s art and work and of the Reformation—was that theme of the domestic, the domesticity, as so central to the Lutheran Reformation. And that’s tied to the fact that, of course, Cranach himself had a very happy marriage and a large family and so did Luther. And Luther, of course, giving up his role as an Augustinian Monk committed to celibacy, found his way to Katharina, the nun who had given up her vows, and they created just what history records as an incredibly happy family. Tell us the story of how that gets translated into Cranach’s art.
Ozment: Well if I could back up just a little bit. There is this theological front and it’s not completely separate from the, what I call, the domestic front. But for the success of the Reformation, I think the domestic front was more vital and it was on the domestic front that Cranach, you know, had all of the weapons. He was the father of five children, born between 1513 and 1520. He was the Protestant’s Dr. Spock in matters of parenthood and child-rearing. Those matters were greatly increased as the two of them came together as a team and both of them were intermixing their families. In 1525, Cranach stood as the Best Man at Luther’s wedding. In almost that quickly, he was godfather to Luther’s firstborn. And so you have a development, a reform development, that is really being carried along on the feet of children and of men who are not only geniuses, but quite capable of selling the message of there’s a—I don’t know whether this is quite proper to try to pick this out and pass it on, but there is that statement that was made by Heinrich Heine that “the loins of Cranach’s zenith were more substantial theses than those the German monk placed on the doors of the church in Wittenberg.” In a certain way that seems sacrilegious, but in another way that shows the attractive power and the new ways of sending the Reformation to its victory.
Mohler: Well Cranach had been under the employ at least in part to Cardinal Albrecht. In other words, he had served Catholic patrons. He was deeply trained in classical art and classical imagery and, yet, he’s most famous now for, not only some of those classical paintings, but also his paintings of the domestic scene of the family; his paintings of biblical scenes; and, of course, ultimately his altarpieces in cities such as Wittenberg and Weimar. Tell us how he changed the way that the human being or the human body is actually portrayed in art?
Ozment: And that’s very interesting. He is the counter to Durer in many ways. Durer has these great, large figures, but Cranach is very sparing in dealing with his artistic portrayals of women. And there’s all this talk about Cranach being a Renaissance man, but the Renaissance men painted women in ways that I think women today, and maybe women then, probably didn’t like—like the way there were. They were kind of enlarged.
Mohler: Exaggerated. Yes. That’s a way to put it. Yes.
Ozment: Cranach never did that. He flattered women. Cranach painted women as women see themselves today. There’s so much to be said about this, but that’s about I can say about it I guess.
Mohler: Well I think one of the things you say in your book is the fact that he brought sexuality and marriage, the domestic sphere, and children into kind of a proper realistic frame. He gloried in them, but he didn’t create superhuman figures. And you mentioned that he wanted to keep his feet and Luther’s feet on the ground. I mean, Luther comes across not as the most handsome human being. He’s there, literally, warts and all and even the women in Cranach’s paintings who can be very, very beautiful, are presented in a way that remarkably different than those who came before him in terms of the history of art.
Ozment: Yes. He was the master at that level.
Mohler: Now what about the marriage itself. One of the things you point out in your book is that one of the ways that both Cranach and Luther normalized marriage, and indeed the marriage of clergy, was through their art.
Ozment: Well art backed it up, but I think there was a hunger within the clergy, the Catholic clergy, before the Reformation to get rid of celibacy and Cranach and Luther had all of the weapons you could want in fighting that fight. So, I’m not so sure that it was, you know, that big of part, but it was certainly a major reform on what I would call the domestic front of the Reformation.
Mohler: Well in terms of Luther preaching and teaching the truths that shaped the Reformation, the revolutionary teachings concerning justification and the reform of the church, one of the central reforms that he pointed to was the elimination of celibacy, which he thought was not only unnecessary, but was dangerous. He saw in marriage and the conjugal union of the man and the women and in the experience of being a father, he saw that as a necessary grounding, not only just for, you might say, the pastor or the preacher’s humility, but for his understanding of the gospel.
Ozment: Yes. I certainly agree with that too. The way I see this is that, you know, he has these two fronts and to get into the domestic front, it was very important to have someone like Cranach who could paint children in ways they were just endearing. So there couldn’t have been a better pairing if you wanted to make this transition into family. What this means—Cranach led Luther in the major reforms on the domestic front. Unencumbered courtship and marriage, that’s one of the big issues on the domestic front; sex and progeny, both clergy and laity without any church interventions and kind of a freedom of the domestic front was the line that they were trying to build and, of course, it couldn’t have been better to have Cranach, the father of five children, there to join Luther’s battle on the domestic front. And that was the secret.
You know we think about Luther, salvation by faith alone and all of these theological things, but those theological things are—what he’s trying to do is to create a front, a domestic front there, that can take and build cities of Christians. And without that freedom, he really couldn’t go anywhere because he says things, you know, like women should have children and bear children and bear themselves out having children and when he says that, you know, it sounds kind of harsh for the modern people, but what he’s really saying is the awakening of sexuality; it was the awakening and creation of domestic households. I mean, his theology, as it is dealing with childbearing—and he makes these wonderful comments like, “What does a man need? A woman.” “What does a woman need?” A man.” These wonderful anecdotes he and Katie have celebrating their wedding vows and celebrating their children, all of that is the deep foundation of creating a community in which biblical principles are completely enveloped.
Mohler: So Cranach’s art is actually affirming what Luther is teaching because Luther clearly taught the normativity of marriage to the extent that a young man, as soon as he knows that awakening, should seek to get himself married to a wife and as soon as they are married, to receive the gift of children. Unless one was given the gift of celibacy or, as you pointed out in your book, was a eunuch, the expectation was he gets married and once married has children. And Luther saw this as one way of driving the reforming, as you said, literally by having godly progeny who are raised in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and in the teachings of the Reformation.
Ozment: Yep. I couldn’t agree more with you there. You know so much here; I don’t know why you need me on this telephone.
Mohler: You’re book is just so informative about Cranach’s role because most of us, especially in historical theology and church history, we’re aware of Luther. We’ve got paintings of Luther, by Cranach for that matter, hanging on our walls, but you really help us to understand how Cranach was his partner in this and, quite frankly, you make things visible to us that weren’t visible. Such as in the Wittenberg Altarpiece, you point out the one young woman who is staring out from the painting, and it affected me greatly when you pointed out that art historians believe that that might be Cranach putting in there Magdalena, the daughter of Martin Luther, the cherished thirteen year old who died. I’ll never look at that painting the same way.
Ozment: Yea, all of those paintings are just wonderful.
Mohler: Well if you had one favorite Cranach painting, and I know you’ve seen so many of them, what would that be and why?
Ozment: I like the Flight from Egypt. It’s a very early painting and it’s one of the most popular of his paintings. It’s a wonder because if you have it in color it just knocks your feet off and it’s always been, from the beginning, from its first sight, it’s been probably the most popular of his paintings. You got this beautiful picture of the Holy Family in flight to Egypt and they’re accompanied by little angels.
Now when Cranach in his work gets in trouble, he brings up the babes. You know when you want to cure melancholy, what do you do? You get some babies there, get some kids there, get some wine, get some food, and that melancholy won’t be there much longer. But this painting especially you have these other little people playing around and they’re going around picking up strawberries and giving strawberries because strawberries are the food of children in heaven who died before they could live and so it’s just a—I’ll open up my book here—it’s just a wonderful picture, but he had so many of these, I’d hate to…
Mohler: Well I kind of feel the same way. I know so much less about Cranach than you, but I’ll tell you, as much as I love the altarpieces and the paintings of Luther, the two paintings of his that I think affect me the most looking at them are his two on Melancholy, the Orange and the Red. And what I love about them is—and you pointed out the presence of the children, for instance in the Orange Melancholy of 1528—you have a mother, I presume, or a young women, looking at four little babies playing with a puppy. And they look so real and the look on her face is so much like a young mother looking at babies playing with a puppy—exactly what you’d expect—but in the background there’s cosmic warfare out the window. So even as that cosmic spiritual warfare is going on, there’s the real life of the domestic happiness of the home, which is so essential to understanding Luther and, for that matter, the Lutheran Reformation.
Ozment: Yea, it just shows the balance of Lutheran theology used as the contour—you know the dark side, the bad side and the good side of life in a theological way. All of the things you mentioned there in that regard, I think nobody else has done things like that. He was so challenging when I was working with him because I didn’t have anything except these dark pictures and so the more I looked at the pictures (that was the only thing I had because there was so little written materials there that he had left behind), I got so deeply involved in these pictures that I actually just kind of dream about some of these things. They were just so effective it’s made such an impact on my mind and eyes—I don’t know if you’ve gone quite that far.
Mohler: Well, I will tell you that I immediately feel like I understand Luther better by Cranach’s art.
Ozment: Yes. All these years when I was using these Cranach paintings in books about the Reformation, all of the sudden, I began to learn and see more about what the Reformation really was. This is coming from Luther, you know Luther says he’s got melancholy and here’s what you do. You get some grapes, get your wife, have a little sex and do this, and he just lays it out there and, all of the sudden, you almost—through his work you—almost get a kind of antidote to migraine or whatever. There’s healing in this kind of art that I never really—you know, you have a sermon from Luther, which are words, but you bring in the color in the art so those words suddenly puff up and get really powerful. I discovered so much and I still continue when I open Cranach’s books.
Mohler: You’re so right. I often tell people, my students in particular, that I wish I’d had the opportunity to study with Calvin, but to live with Luther. I would love to be a part of that household because Luther found such joy in his wife and in his children and it comes through in his preaching and it comes through in his last words. You know, in that last letter that he wrote to his dear Katie in which he said to her, “Grieve not for me for I am going to the only One who loves me more than thee.” And, you know, you just have in Luther such a warm, fully-human man and in your book on Germany, you point out that Luther just helped to normalize what it meant to be German. Not only to fix the German language by his Bible translation, but to make Germans think, “Okay, this is who we are.”
Ozment: Yea, those reactions—both men lost a child prematurely. Cranach had a son, I think at 24 he died (a very good artist himself) and Luther had a daughter at thirteen (that’s the daughter that you mentioned earlier) and when that happened they tried to really comfort each other. So these are two guys who work together against Rome and other great dangers, but they were always there to stand by the side of the other. That’s why we have so many occasions where Cranach is a godfather to one or another of Luther’s children and vice-versa. The two men’s kind of syncopated artistic and oratorical criticism that they created and kind of won the freedom of faith in the pluralism of religion I think in the Western world forevermore, but behind all of that is the way in which children and children who are talented and children who are dying—I mean, you get the whole world of religion and life in these art workings and you can pipe in some of these elegant sermons from Luther.
Mohler: The book is, The Serpent and the Lamb: Cranach, Luther and the Making of the Reformation, published by Yale University Press. Professor Ozment, I know that this book represents years of your life devoted in the research and writing of the book, what is your next project?
Ozment: Well, my next project—I write Western civ. and world civ. books because I believe deeply in these books. When youngsters go out to school for the first time, you know, they don’t know where they are, but if you’ve got a good Western civ. course or world civ. course at least they can see where they are. They can find their place in the world, so I revise these books in the summers and I’ll be doing that this summer too. It will be the—what is it?—the 33rd edition of the book.
Mohler: Wow. That says something in and of itself.
Steven Ozment is the McLean Professor of Ancient and Modern History at Harvard University. Professor Ozment, thank you for joining me for Thinking in Public.
Ozment: Well, thank you very much too and I look forward to seeing what comes of it.
Mohler: Steven Ozment is one of the world’s most influential scholars on the Reformation and in the history of Germany. And both of those particular fields of study would have a great investment and interest in Lucas Cranach and Martin Luther, but Steven Ozment is also a man with theological training and he cares deeply about the doctrine and theology of the Reformation. But in his new book, The Serpent and the Lamb, he makes very clear that those are inseparable from the artistic expression of the Reformation and the singular role that was played alongside Martin Luther by Lucas Cranach, the great artist.
Now one of the most fascinating parts of the conversation was when Professor Ozment tells us that Cranach is so historically inaccessible to us. We don’t have the kind of biographical materials. We don’t have the kind of letters that would give us the insight into the life and times of an individual and, so often, into his own thinking and his thought process as well. Instead, what we have is art and a huge body of art. A body of art that tells a story or even multiple stories, but you come to understand that the art of Lucas Cranach is then inseparable from the Lutheran Reformation and you could put that in reverse. The Lutheran Reformation is, thus, also inseparable from the art of Lucas Cranach.
In this new book, Professor Ozment tells a tale and he tells it very well. As in so many of the best works on history, he opens a door into a room of knowledge that we otherwise would have no access to and in a book like this, he puts it in concise and very focused form. He does tell the story of the relationship between Luther and Cranach and, as a matter of fact, there’s more about Cranach in this book than about Luther and that’s probably the way it should be. We have so much access to Luther. Luther, as I have often said to my students, evidently never had an unarticulated thought and most of those seem to have made their way into a book or into a writing, if not one by Luther, then one about Luther. But when we look at Cranach, he is more distant from us and that requires a more careful investigation. That’s the kind of investigation that produces the kind of work that we have in The Serpent and the Lamb by Steven Ozment.
When I think about the meaning of all of this, I think it gets back to the fact that we as human beings, as Luther affirmed, made in the image of God, are image-makers and that can so quickly turn to idolatry. And that’s why the iconoclastic kind of impulse that came with the Reformation was rightly concerned with the fact that there was idolatry and there was idolatrous confusion in the churches. In order to get rid of that temptation, Karlstadt and others, especially Zwingli in Zurich, were ready to just get rid of all the images, but Luther took a middle way, as he did in so many other issues as well. He took an uncompromising stand for justification by faith, for the authority, the final authority of Scripture alone, and for so many others of the prized doctrines of the Reformation, but Luther was living the Reformation, not just leading it. And in the process of living it, he was also living life. He was discovering the joys of marriage; he was discovering the inexpressible joys of fatherhood and also the sorrows of losing a child. He wanted to normalize all of this in such a way that he would lead the church into an embrace of the domestic sphere as well as of the church as the arena where the Reformation would be won or lost; whereby the begetting and the raising of godly progeny, the Reformation would be furthered. Luther was “a man in full,” as Thomas Wolfe would later say. He was a man who in his multi-dimensionality was living right on the edge of one of the great turning points in human history. Now we look back and see it as the great Reformation of the 16th century, but we need to remember that those who were living it at the time knew what a close-run thing it could be. Luther knew what it was like to be on the winning side of an argument, but he also knew what it was like to hide in Wartburg Castle against a threat against his own life by the very power of the Holy Roman Empire and of the Roman Catholic Church. And also in the man Lucas Cranach, you had a very real man, who was making his way in the 16th century, not only, as it turned out, as an artist, but also as a reformer.
What does it say to us today? Well it reminds us that culture is all around, that we are all more acculturated than we might even want to think and that the issues that Luther and Cranach were dealing with in the Reformation of the 16th century are still with us. All of the theological issues are still with us and all of the church issues are still with us and all of the domestic issues are still with us. I especially appreciated the part of the conversation with Steven Ozment when we were talking about our favorite paintings. And I go back to those two paintings on Melancholy and to the fact that what you have in this is Lucas Cranach depicting the cure for melancholy being, well, just looking at what God gives us in children, in babies, in puppies. I also appreciate the honesty of Cranach in that in both of these paintings, outside the window in the heavens, you can see, visibly, artistically portrayed there, spiritual warfare. That spiritual warfare is real and we would be helpless against it, but for Christ. But Christ has also given us the delights of home: children, wives, husbands, mothers, fathers. And we should embrace those joys as a part of His gift to us in the gospel as well.
Perhaps the best way to end this conversation is with one of those mottos that came out of the Reformation. Semper reformanda—the Reformation must continue and, of course, as the reformers have made very clear, the church must be continually reformed according to the word of God.
Thanks again to my guest, Professor Steven Ozment, for thinking with me today. Before signing off, I want to encourage you to begin making plans now to attend D3, a special conference for high school students taking place on the campus of Southern Seminary, June 25 through 28 of this year. Now in its third season, D3 will be an action-packed summer opportunity, complete with worship and life-shaping opportunities and deep, biblical knowledge. Join Dan Dumas, Eric Bancroft and join me as we seek to develop students’ understanding of leadership, worldview and missions. For more information, visit sbts.edu.
Thanks for joining me for Thinking in Public. Until next time, keep thinking. I’m Albert Mohler.