Week 13

WIKIPEDIA: "Martin Luther, 1483– 1546, was a German professor of theology, priest, author, composer, Augustinian monk, and a seminal figure in the Reformation. Luther was ordained to the priesthood in 1507. He came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church; in particular, he disputed the view on indulgences. Luther proposed an academic discussion of the practice and efficacy of indulgences in his Ninety-five Theses of 1517. His refusal to renounce all of his writings at the demand of Pope Leo X in 1520 and the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V at the Diet of Worms in 1521 resulted in his excommunication by the pope and condemnation as an outlaw by the Holy Roman Emperor. Luther taught that salvation and, consequently, eternal life are not earned by good deeds but are received only as the free gift of God's grace through the believer's faith in Jesus Christ as redeemer from sin. His theology challenged the authority and office of the pope by teaching that the Bible is the only source of divinely revealed knowledge, and opposed sacerdotalism by considering all baptized Christians to be a holy priesthood. Those who identify with these, and all of Luther's wider teachings, are called Lutherans, though Luther insisted on Christian or Evangelical as the only acceptable names for individuals who professed Christ. His translation of the Bible into the German vernacular (instead of Latin) made it more accessible to the laity, an event that had a tremendous impact on both the church and German culture. It fostered the development of a standard version of the German language, added several principles to the art of translation, and influenced the writing of an English translation, the Tyndale Bible. His hymns influenced the development of singing in Protestant churches. His marriage to Katharina von Bora, a former nun, set a model for the practice of clerical marriage, allowing Protestant clergy to marry."


Chronology of the 15th century
Chronology of the 16th century
Biography of Martin Luther


Steven Ozment,

A Mighty Fortress: A New History of the German People,

Harper Perennial,

ISBN 0060934832

Gordon A. Craig,

The Germans,


ISBN 0452010853


The Ninety-Five Theses


The biography of Luther that everyone should own is the one book on Luther that has dominated all studies of Luther in the United States for the last fifty years. It is the work of Roland Bainton, the Titus Street Professor of Ecclesiastical History at Yale for almost half a century. Bainton was the professor of my professor, Lewis Spitz. So I am his academic "grandson." Bainton's biography of Luther is still in print fifty five years after its first publication. It's a complete bargain in hardcover, at $14.

Roland Bainton,

Here I Stand,

Hendrickson Publishers (April 2009),

ISBN 1598563335


Eric Metaxas,

Martin Luther: The Man Who Rediscovered God and Changed the World,

Viking; First Edition edition (October 3, 2017),

ISBN 110198001X