Martin Luther Biography, Part 17: The Death of Martin Luther
"In early January 1546, at the age of sixty-two, Luther returned to the town of his birth, Eisleben," (George, 102). Luther had been summoned to Eisleben in order to resolve a serious dispute between two counts concerning the division of some property. Luther answered the summons, though he was in extremely poor health. The weather and then the complicated nature of the dispute prevented Luther from returning home for rest and recuperation. After the dispute between the counts was finally resolved, as Luther was preparing to return home to his wife, he became seriously ill. At 1AM on February 18, 1546, Martin Luther woke from a fitful sleep in severe pain. He repeated in Latin Psalm 31:5, "In manus tuas commendo spiritum meum, redemisti me, domine Deus veritatis." "Into thy hand I commit my spirit; thou hast redeemed me, O Lord God of truth." His friend Justus Jonas, who had been keeping watch over him, asked, "Reverend father, will you die steadfast in Christ, and in the doctrine you have preached?" Luther responded-- loud and firm-- with a simple, "Yes." He died before the sun rose.
Timothy George notes:
Luther's body was placed in a tin coffin and returned to Wittenberg where it was laid to rest in the Castle Church on the door of which Luther had posted the Ninety-five Theses nearly thirty years before. (George, 103)