St. John's Windish Evangelical Lutheran Church
Martin Luther's Seal

Martin Luther


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A cross on a heart, resting on the center of the Messianic Rose and surrounded by a circle to symbolize eternity, was adopted by Martin Luther as his own Coat of Arms and as an expression of trust in God.

"The Christian's heart is resting on roses
E'en while beneath the cross it reposes."

The colors are usually gold for the circle; the outlines of the petals, red; the background for the rose, a heavenly blue; the heart, red; and the cross, black.

While a professor at Wittenburg, Luther devised this seal which he declared was meant to be "expressive of his theology".  The following explanation is the gist of a letter written to his friend, Herr Spengler, town clerk of Nuremberg, and is taken from an information sheet by the Lutheran Brotherhood ....

"The first thing expressed in my seal is a cross, black, within the heart, to put me in mind that faith in Christ crucified saves us.  'For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness.'
♦♦♦ Now, although the cross is black, mortified, and intended to cause pain, yet it does not change the color of the heart, does not destroy nature - i.e., does not kill, but keeps alive.  'For the just shall live by faith', - by faith in the Savior.
♦♦♦ But this heart is fixed upon the center of a white rose, to show that faith causes joy, consolation, and peace.  The rose is white, not red, because white is the ideal color of all angels and blessed spirits.
♦♦♦ This rose, moreover, is fixed in a sky-colored ground, to denote that such joy of faith in the spirit is but an earnest and beginning of heavenly joy to come, as anticipated and held by hope, though not yet revealed.
♦♦♦ And around this groundbase is a golden ring, to signify that such bliss in heaven is endless, and more precious than all joys and treasures, since gold is the best and most precious metal.  Christ, our dear Lord, He will give grace unto eternal life."

Reformation Day is October 31