The 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s March on Washington will be commemorated on August 24 and 28th with marches for jobs, justice, and freedom, as the nation reflects on the legacy of King's words, "Let freedom ring," from his "I Have A Dream" speech in 1963.

He was a pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia, from 1960 until his untimely death in 1968. Before that, he was pastor of the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama, and his religious background is reflected in his choice of words and commitment to humanity.

King is one of the most eloquent and inspiring speakers the world has ever seen. Read a selection of his quotes on faith here:

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  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step."

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "I just want to do God's will. And he's allowed me to go to the mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the promised land! I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the promised land."

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear."

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'"

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict."

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: 'If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?' But... the good Samaritan reversed the question: 'If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?'"

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    “Forgiveness is not an occasional act, it is a constant attitude.”

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    “Now there is a final reason I think that Jesus says, "Love your enemies." It is this: that love has within it a redemptive power. And there is a power there that eventually transforms individuals. Just keep being friendly to that person. Just keep loving them, and they can’t stand it too long. Oh, they react in many ways in the beginning. They react with guilt feelings, and sometimes they’ll hate you a little more at that transition period, but just keep loving them. And by the power of your love they will break down under the load. That’s love, you see. It is redemptive, and this is why Jesus says love. There’s something about love that builds up and is creative. There is something about hate that tears down and is destructive. So love your enemies."

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    “Science investigates; religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge, which is power; religion gives man wisdom, which is control. Science deals mainly with facts; religion deals mainly with values. The two are not rivals.”

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "You know my friends, there comes a time when people get tired of being trampled by the iron feet of oppression ... If we are wrong, the Supreme Court of this nation is wrong. If we are wrong, the Constitution of the United States is wrong. And if we are wrong, God Almighty is wrong. If we are wrong, Jesus of Nazareth was merely a utopian dreamer that never came down to Earth. If we are wrong, justice is a lie, love has no meaning. And we are determined here in Montgomery to work and fight until justice runs down like water, and righteousness like a mighty stream." <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/16/10-martin-luther-king-quo_n_809701.html" target="_blank">Address to the first Montgomery Improvement Association (MIA) Mass Meeting, at Holt Street Baptist Church, 1955</a>

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    “It is cheerful to God when you rejoice or laugh from the bottom of your heart.”

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    “The end of life is not to be happy, nor to achieve pleasure and avoid pain, but to do the will of God, come what may.”

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    “The early Christians rejoiced when they were deemed worthy to suffer for what they believed. In those days the Church was not merely a thermometer that recorded the ideas and principles of popular opinion; it was a thermostat that transformed the mores of society.” ― Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from the Birmingham Jail

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    “When I took up the cross I recognized it's meaning. The cross is something that you bear, and ultimately, that you die on.”

  • The Words Of MLK Jr.

    "The gospel at its best deals with the whole man, not only his soul but his body, not only his spiritual well-being, but his material well being. Any religion that professes to be concerned about the souls of men and is not concerned about the slums that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them and the social conditions that cripple them is a spiritually moribund religion awaiting burial." <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/16/10-martin-luther-king-quo_n_809701.html" target="_blank">Pilgrimage to Non-Violence, 1960</a>