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The Influence of Martin Luther on the Modern Church - Essay Example

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The Influence of Martin Luther on the Modern Church

While here, his greatest aim was to grow to be a saint and to secure himself a place in heaven. For that reason, he lived a very ascetic life following the minutest discipline details as well as learning the rules of mystical meditation and prayer. He spent his days praying and fasting, reading and studying, in night watches and in self-mortifications. His fellow monks, who envied his abstemiousness, saw him as a model of holiness (Hyatt, para2&3). Despite his many religious works and his leading this kind of austere lifestyle, Luther did not get any peace with God. Hannah explains that the more he strenuously sought out peace and forgiveness, the more they eluded him. In the year 1507, Luther was ordained as a priest and he celebrated his first mass. In the year 1511, he went to teach at a newly founded university in Wittenberg and, in the same year, he got his degree of doctor of theology. He started lecturing on Bible books in vernacular and in order to be in a position to do this astutely, he started studying the Bible in the initial languages. As Luther taught through the scriptures, especially Galatians, psalms and Romans, he realized that his attempts to gain peace through his own effort were hopeless. He started perceiving the validity of justification via faith in Jesus only (Hyatt, para4 and Hannah, 12). On 31 October 1517, Luther posted his 95 theses on the church door of Wittenburg seeking to debate the selling of ‘indulgencies’ (release from the temporal sin penalties in exchange for cash). People used to obtain forgiveness/absolution through carrying out good works. Moreover, the system permitted people to purchase indulgences for sins not yet committed in advance. In fact, sinners could ‘shop around’ for the priest who offered the greatest bargains. Moreover, the money obtained did not necessarily help the needy and the poor – it could mostly go to paying the personal needs of the priest (MacArov, 183). Luther’s proposition turned out to be the opening bombardment of the Protestant Reformation. A war of debates and pamphlets brought Luther into greater realms of influence and eventually, the pope excommunicated him officially and in October 1520, it was publicly announced to have the force of law. There was an order that all his tracts and books be taken away and burned (McKim, 11). Hyatt further explains that he was later on declared a heretic at the Diet of Worms. Anybody who knew his whereabouts was supposed to report to the nearest authorities in order that he could face apprehension. However, Luther’s writings became so popular with the masses such that the pope and the emperor never dared to apprehend him. Luther prepared a translation of the New Testament in Germany, under the cover of his friends at Wartburg Castle. As McKim explains, Luther’s German Bible translations outshone all translations before him by far in their theological precision, spiritual authority as well as linguistic power and beauty. His new testament was released in September 1522 with three thousand copies and a somewhat high retail price and within a few days, it was out of print. Between the years 1522-1533, his New Testament was 85 editions (12). By the year 1534, Luther, together with other collaborators had also translated their first edition of the Old Testament In the year 1522, Luther went back to Wittenberg where he led the movement officially known as Evangelical Church (known informally as Lutheranism) ...Show more

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Name: Course: Instructor: Date: Introduction Martin Luther was born in a poor, peasant German family and his parents taught him about reverence for the church as well as priests and praying to God and the saints. They also told him dreadful stories about witches and the devil…
Author : reingermarquise
The Influence of Martin Luther on the Modern Church essay example
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