Meine lieben Studenten!


Die siebte Lektion

The seventh Lesson


Studieren wir jetzt den zweiten Artikel des apostolischen Glaubens.

Study we now the second article of the apostolic faith/creed.


Note: this construction is equivalent to: "Let us study." The word order would be the same for the question: "Are we studying?" But the infleuction of the voice -- about the same as for a question in English -- would indicate in German that it was a question. In print, of course, there would be the question mark.


Der andere Artikel

The other Article.


ander -- other -- cognates -- used in Luther's day to mean "second." At Worms, Luther reportedly said: "Ich kann nicht anders" -- I can no [do] otherwise" with the verb "do" understood.


Von der Erloesung

Of the Redemption


von -- of or from -- preposition taking the dative case.

der -- the -- feminine singular dative definite article (yes, I know it's the same as the masculine singular nominative -- don't blame me -- I didn't make this up!

die Erloesung -- redempt -- "ung" denotes that it is a gerund, a noun made from a verb, as we use "ing." The verb is "erloesen," "to redeem," so that "Erloesung" is formed as we would for "the redeeming" (the gerund or noun, not the adjective or participle). Note: "erloesen" is used theologically as the exact equivalent of "to redeem" in English. It is ultimately from "los," "loose.' "Was ist los?"-- what's loose -- that is, what's the matter? But here it's positive --more like freeing the slave, loosing the bonds, etc. The "er" is an unaccented prefix: air-LAY-zen, air-LAY-zung. The "oe" or "o Umlaut" is not exactly like "ay" in pronunciation -- but you will get there by trying to say "ay" while pursing your lips (that is, pucker up -- so German can be an integral part of a romantic evening with your spouse. We all know that Germans are lovers, not fighters!

Und an Jesum Christum, seinen einzigen Sohn,

And in Jesus Christ, His only Son,


unsern HErrn, der empfangen ist von dem Heiligen Geist,

our LORD, Who conceived is by the Holy Spirit,


geboren aus Maria der Jungfrau, gelitten unter Pontio Pilato,

born out of Mary the Virgin, suffered under Pontius Pilate,


gekreuzigt, gestorben und begraben, niedergefahren zur Hoelle,

crucified, died and buried, went down to the hell,


am dritten Tage wieder auferstanden von den Toten,

on the third day again arisen from the dead,


aufgefahren gen Himmel, sitzend zur Rechten Gottes,

went up to heaven, sitting to the right [hand] of God,


des allmaechtigen Vaters, von dannen er kommen wird,

the almighty Father, from thence He come will,


zu richten die Lebendigen und die Toten.

to judge the living and the dead.


an -- on/in -- cognate to "on" -- preposition taking dative or accusative -- in this case, following the verb "glauben," to believe/trust -- understood from the first article -- it takes the accusative case -- "I believe in"

Jesum Christum -- German uses the LATIN endings for the name Jesus and the title Christus. It treats Jesus as a fourth declension noun and Christus as a second declension noun in Latin -- if you're into that sort of thing. In both declensions, the "um" is the masculine singluar accusative.

seinen -- His -- masculine, singular, accusative -- following "glauben an."

einzigen -- only -- cognate fron "eins," one.

der Sohn -- Son -- cognate.

unsern -- our -- cognate -- masculine, singular, accusative -- following "glauben an."

HErrn -- der HErr -- LORD -- Note: der Herr is the gentleman, the lord. der HErr, with two letters capitalized, is LORD as a divine title -- just as the KJV capitalizes all four letters when it translates YHWH, Jehovah. By writing it this way -- as Luther does also in the Bible -- Luther is stressing that Jesus is Jehovah. In Luther's German Bible (not the modern revisions), you will usually also find Jesus written as JEsus or even JESus.

der -- who -- the definite article "the" -- used as a relative pronoun, "who." empfangen -- conceived -- past participle of empfangen (yes, the same, I know).

ist -- is.

Note: the meaning of "ist empfangen" is equivalent to "has been conceived." It is a passive construction.

von -- of/from -- preposition taking the dative case -- after a passive verb as in this case, it indicated agency -- that "by" in English.

dem -- "the" -- masculine, singular, dative after "von."

Heiligen -- holy -- cognate -- capitalized as part of the name or title.

der Geist -- ghost -- cognate.

Note: It is because English vocabulary is a hybrid of German (the basis or foundation) and Latin (an overlayer) that we have both "Holy Ghost" and "Holy Spirit" in the KJV. One could wish, today, that "Holy Spirit" had been consistently used in the KJV. It is probably because of the use of "Ghost" in Matt. 28:18-20 that the term "Holy Ghost" persists today.

geboren -- born -- cognate -- past participle (and therefore passive) of gebaeren, to bear, to give birth.

aus -- out of -- preposition taking the dative case.

Note: "aus" here exactly reproduces the Latin "ex." "Out of" is used to indicate motherhood -- in modern English, this usage persists, as far as I know, only in horse breeding.

Maria -- the name as given in Greek and Latin.

der -- the -- definite article, feminine singular dative after "aus."

die Jungfrau -- virgin.

Note: Jungfrau is a compound word -- "jung" is "young" and "Frau" is "lady." So OT scholar debating the meaning of "almah," "virgin," in Is. 7:14 could have an interesting time discussing this term. It is FROM the words for "young" and "lady," but it doesn't mean "young lady," It MEANS "virgin." Here is yet another case in point that etymology (word derivation) does NOT determine meaning -- the usage (usus loquendi) determines meaning. The way this word is used, it means technically "virgin." A Jungfrau may or may not be young -- she may or may not be a lady -- but she is a virgin. In the same way, "handeln," "to handle," may or may not involve the use of the hand, from which it is derived -- "I handle a baseball" implies actually holding it in the hand -- but "I handle stress" refers to coping with something emotionally. What is the point? Well, baptizo does come from a word that means "to dip," but it does not imply immersing -- its usage is "to wash" (Mark 7:14; Luke 11:38).


gelitten unter Pontio Pilato

suffered under Pontius Pilate


gelitten -- suffered -- past participle from "leiden".

unter -- preposition taking the dative case.

Pontio Pilato -- the name is used with the LATIN endings for masculine singular dative.


gekreuzigt, gestorben, und begraben

crucified, died, and buried


gekreuzigt -- crucified -- past participle of kreuzigen, crucify. These are cognates of a sort in that they are both derived from the Latin.

gestorben -- died -- past participle of sterben, to die. "Sterben," which in German refers to dying in any way, is a cognate to "to starve," which in English indicates dying in a particular way.

begraben -- buried -- past participle of begraben (yes, the same).

Note: in German, das Grab (neuter noun) means "grave" -- cognate. Der Graben (masculine noun) means "ditch, trench," Graben is the verb, to dig. Add "be" as a prefix, and one has "to bury." The "be" makes it a transitive verb, the kind that takes a direct object.

Note: in German, all past participles start with "ge" as an unaccented prefix unless the verb already has a prefix such as "be." So: gekreuzigt, gestorben, begraben.


niedergefahren zur Hoelle

went down to the hell.


niedergefahren -- went down -- past participle. The verb is niederfahren, to go down. "Nieder" is "down" as an adverb. "Fahren" is "to go, travel." The "ge" prefix which makes it a past participle is stuck in between the two parts of the compound word.

zur -- to the -- zu is a preposition that takes the dative case. Zur is a contraction zu der -- to the -- "der" being the feminine singular dative of "the."

die Hoelle -- hell -- cognates.

Note: Hoelle/hell is used in Nordic mythology just as Hades is used in Greek mythology. Each one must be filled with different content to be used in the Bible.


am dritten Tage

on the third day


am -- on the -- contraction of an dem, an being a preposition taking the dative case, dem being the masculine singular dative for "the."

dritten -- third

Tage -- der Tag -- the day -- cognates. The "e" is an archaic ending used with masculine and neuter nouns of one syllable in the dative singular.


wieder auferstanden von den Toten

again having stood up from the dead


wider -- again -- adverb.

auferstanden -- arisen -- past participle of auferstehen.

Note: Aufstehen is the German verb for "to stand up" "to get up." The "er" prefix sort of intensifies it -- resurrection is more than just getting up. Because of the "er" there is no "ge" prefix.

von -- of/from -- preposition taking the dative case.

den -- the -- dative plural.

Toten -- dead -- the adjective "tot" used as a noun with the dative plural ending. It is capitalized because it's used as a noun -- and all nouns are capitalized in German.


aufgefahren gen Himmel

went up to heaven.


aufgefahren -- having gone up -- past participle of auffahren -- the "ge" prefix indicates the past participle -- it is inserted between "auf" "up" and "fahren" "go, travel."

Note: the Ascension is called die Himmelfahrt -- the heaven trip -- die Fahrt, from fahren, is a trip or journey. Yes, it sounds inelegant in English -- too bad.

gen -- to, toward -- prepostion taking the accusative case.

Note: "gen" is archaic -- today used only in old things such as the creed. It is related to the preposition "gegen," which can mean "toward" but most often means "against" in modern German.

der Himmel -- heaven.


sitzend zur Rechten Gottes

sitting to the right of God.


sitzend -- sitting -- present participle -- the "end" is equivalent to our "ing" in this usage.

zur -- to the -- see above

Rechten -- right hand -- "recht" is the adjective, used here as a noun -- and therefore capitalized. The word "hand" is understood in this case -- as it is in Latin and Greek.

Gottes -- der Gott -- of God -- masculine singular genitive.


des allmaechtigen Vaters

the almighty Father

see First Article.


von dannen er kommen wird

from thence He come will


von -- from -- preposition taking the dative case.

dannen -- thence -- archaic word.

er -- He -- German does not capitalize pronouns referring to God (unless the pronoun starts a sentence, of course).

kommen -- come -- cognate

wird -- will -- helping verb forming the future.


Note: The German future is formed by using the verb "werden" "to become" as an auxiliary or helping verb and the infinitive (dictionary) form of the verb. "I will come" is "Ich werde kommen." "He will go" is "Er wird gehen." What becomes confusing is that German has another helping verb, "wollen," "to want to," which looks like the English "will" but expresses one's willingness. So "Ich will kommen" is "I want to come" and "Er will gehen" is "He wants to go."


zu richten die Lebendigen und die Toten.

to judge the living and the dead


zu -- to -- used before the infinitive verb -- to judge.

richten -- to judge (der Richter, the Judge).

die -- the -- accusative plural

Lebendigen -- living -- plural of adjective "lebendig" "alive" (cognates).

Toten -- see above.

The two words are adjectives but are capitalized because they are used here as nouns.


Was ist das? Antwort.

What is that? Answer.


Ich glaube, dass JEsus Christus,

I believe that Jesus Christ


wahrhaftiger Gott, vom Vater in Ewigkeit geboren,

true God, of/by the Father in eternity born,


und auch wahrhaftiger Mensch,

and also true Human Being,


von der Junfgrau Maria geboren,

of/by the Virgin Mary born


sei mein HErr,

is my LORD


der mich verlornen und verdammten Menschen

Who me lost and damned human being


erloest hat, erworben und gewonne von allen Suenden,

redeemed has, gained and won from all sins


vom Tod und von der Gewalt des Teufels,

from the death and from the power of the devil


nicht mit Gold oder Silber,

not with gold or silver,


sondern mit seinem heiligen, teuren Blut

rather with His holy precious blood


und mit seinem unschulding Leiden und Sterben,

and with His innocent suffering and dying


auf dass ich sein eigen sei

so that I His own may be


und in seinem Reich unter ihm lebe

and in His kingdom under him may live


und ihm diene in ewiger Gerechtigkeit,

and Him serve in eternal righteousness


Unschuld, und Seligkeit,

innocence, and blessedness


gleichwie er ist auferstanden vom Tode,

just as He is risen from the death


lebt und regiert in Ewigkeit.

lives and rules in eternity


Das ist gewisslich wahr.

That is certainly true.


Ich glaube, dass JEsus Christus

I believe that Jesus Christ.


wahrhaftiger Gott

true God


wahrhaftiger -- true, genuine. "Wahr" is "true," "wahrhaftig" intensifies it -- as "really true, genuine, actual." The "er" is the masculine, singular, nominative ending -- for Jesus is the subject of the clause.


vom Vater in Ewigkeit geboren

from the Father in eternity born


vom -- of/from/by the -- preposition taking the dative case -- indicates agency.

in -- in -- preposition -- cognate

Ewigkeit -- eternity -- "ewig" is "eternal." The "keit" suffix makes it a feminine noun.

geboren -- born -- cognates -- past participle of gebaeren, to give birth.

Note: Technically, the use of "geboren" sounds like the Father is the Mother; that was obviously not Luther's intention -- but I still much prefer to translate as "begotten" here.


und auch wahrhaftiger Mensch

and also true Human Being


der Mensch -- human being -- masculine noun -- this word is gender non-specific like homo in Latin or anthropos in Greek. "The Son of Man" in the NT is "der Menschensohn" in Luther's translation.


von der Jungfrau Maria geboren

of/by the Virgin Mary born

see above, in the text of the creed itself.


sei mein HErr.

is my LORD.


sei -- is -- technically, "may be." From sein, to be.

Why is "sei" used instead of "ist"? Well, it is the subjunctive mood -- like English, "If I be here." Subjunctive is used to express something other than a definite assertion -- a wish, a hope, a prayer. German tends to use the subjunctive for indirect discourse -- instead of a direct quote: "He says, 'I am here.'" "He says that he is here" is "Er sagt er sei hier."

mein -- my

HErr -- LORD -- translates YHWH


der mich verlornen und verdammten Menschen erloest hat

Who me l ost and damned Human Being redeemed has.


der -- who -- definite article (masculine singular nominative) used as relative pronoun.

mich -- me -- accusative -- direct object

verlornen -- lost -- cognate to English: "forlorn" -- past participle of verlieren, to lose.

verdammten -- damned -- cognates in that both are from Latin, damnare -- past participle of verdammen, to damn.

Menschen -- human being, accusative, direct object.

erloest -- see above

hat -- has.


erworben und gewonnen

gained and won


erworben -- gained, purchased -- past participle of erwerben.

gewonnen -- won -- past participle of gewinnen.


von allen Suenden

from all sins


von -- from -- preposition taking the dative case.

allen -- all -- cognate -- dative plural

die Suende -- sin -- cognates -- feminine noun; the "n" is plural.

Note: Feminine nouns, especially those ending in "e" as many do, often (but not always) form the plural simply by adding "n."


vom Tod

from the death


von -- from -- preposition taking the dative case.

vom -- contraction of von dem -- dem being the dative singular of "the" in masculine and neuter.

der Tod -- death -- masculine noun -- cognates.


und von der Gewalt des Teufels

and from the power of the devil


von -- from -- preposition taking the dative case.

der -- the -- feminine singular dative

die Gewalt -- power, force, authority.

des -- of the -- masculine singular genitive.

der Teufel -- the devil -- cognate

Note: by a long process of derivation, both "Teufel" and "devil" come from the Greek word "diabolos," the devil -- literally "slanderer, accuser." Latin uses the Greek word with a Latin ending: diabolus. That also yields Spanish: el diablo, and French: le diable, as well as our word "diabolical."


nicht mit Gold oder Silber

not with gold or silver


der Gold, der Silber -- obvious cognates.


sondern mit seinem heiligen, teuren Blut

rather with His holy precious blood


teuren -- from teuer -- precious, cognate to "dear."

Note: "dear" actually means "precious, expensive." So calling your spouse "my dear" is to assert that your spouse is precious to you. "Teuer" can also be used in the same way in German. In another context, we have the archaic statement: "The cost was too dear" or "The item was too dear" in cost.

das Blut -- blood -- cognates.


und mit seinem unschuldigen Leiden und Sterben

and with His innocent suffering and dying.


mit -- preposition taking the dative case

seinem -- His -- dative singular for both masculine and neuter -- neuter here.

unschuldigen -- innocent -- literally "unguilty."


das Leiden -- suffering -- neuter noun -- just taking the verb "leiden" "to suffer" and using it as if it were a noun -- including capitalizing it.

das Sterben -- dying -- formed from verb "sterben" "to die" as das Leiden is.


auf dass ich sein eigen sei

so that I His own may be


auf dass -- so that -- a two-word conjunction -- after it, the verb comes at the end of the claus.


sein -- His

eigen -- own -- cognates

sei -- may be -- subjunctive, expressing purpose here. "So that I may be His own."


und in seinem Reich unter ihm lebe

and in His kingdom under Him live


in -- in -- preposition taking the dative case (when there is no movement)

seinem -- His -- neuter singular dative

das Reich -- kingdom (commonwealth)

unter -- under -- preposition taking the dative case

ihm -- Him -- dative case.

lebe -- may live -- subjunctive -- expressing purpose here. "Leben" and "to live" are cognates.


und ihm diene

and Him serve


ihm -- Him -- dative case because the verb dienen takes the dative for its object.

diene -- serve -- "dienen" is "to serve." Subjuntive -- expressing purpose here.


in ewiger Gerechtigkeit

in eternal righteousness.


ewig -- eternal -- used theologically as equivalents.

die Gerechtigkeit -- righteousness. "Gerecht" is the adjective "righteous." Used theologically just the same way.


Unschuld und Seligkeit

innocence and blessedness


die Unschuld -- the unguilt, non-guiltiness. "Un" and "un" as prefixes negating an adjective or noun are cognates.

die Seligkeit -- the blessedness, salvation. "Selig" is an adjective, used in the Beattitudes: "Blessed are . . . " "Selig sind . . ." So die Seligkeit (noun) often refers to salvation -- the state of having been saved.


gleichwie er ist auferstanden vom Tode

just as He is risen from the death.


gleichwie -- just as -- archaic conjunction.


lebt und regiert in Ewigkeit

lives and rules in eternity.


lebt -- lives -- third person singular, indicative -- "leben" and "to live" are cognates.


regiert -- rules -- third person singular, indicative -- "regieren" (meaning "to rule") is from Latin, as are most German verbs that end in "ieren."


Das ist gewisslich wahr

That is certainly true.


gewisslich -- certainly -- from "wissen" "to know."

wahr -- true -- die Wahrheit -- the truth.

Note: in Luther's German Bible translation, "Das ist gewisslich wahr" is how Luther translated what we have in English as "This is a faithful saying" (for example: 1 Tim. 1:15; 1 Tim. 4:9.


Hier endet die siebte Lektion.


Christo befohlen!


John M. "Herr Professor Pastor Doktor" Drueckhammer, Lakeview, Oregon

Previous Lesson

Deutsch Menu

CAT 41 Main Menu

Next Lesson
These lessons are a service provided by Confess And Teach For Unity ( and the Rev. Dr. John M. Drickamer, Th.D., for the benefit of Confessional Lutheran pastors and laity. Dr. Drickamer retains all rights to these lessons under applicable copyright laws. To subscribe/unsub: send a blank note to <> / <>. For more information, or if any of the links on this page don't seem to work, please contact the CAT 41 Web Administrator at <>. Posted 10/21/99. Last Modified 11/15/99.