What was the reason behind the Protestant Reformation?


And why was a simple question about this deleted 15 minutes ago? The question simply asked if the cause behind it was individualism or a theological revolution.

I hope my question will not offend Catholics, whom I respect. And I hope Christians will feel at liberty to express their views without fear of being…

The Reformation was unleashed after the power of the Bible had been discovered. after many years of more than ordinary devotion to the Catholic church and being a monk, Martin Luther, after moving to Wittenberg in 1511, felt great need of confession to his mentor, Dr. Staupitz. He confessed frequently, often daily, and for as long as six hours on a single occasion. Every sin had to be confessed if absolution was to be granted. This led Staupitz to exclaim, “Look here, if you expect Christ to forgive you, come in with something to forgive – parricide, blasphemy, adultery – instead of all these peccadilloes.”

Poor Luther – such a sensitive soul – so anxious to be right with God, and he gets slapped down with such crass advice! Luther’s question was not whether his sins were big or little, but whether they had been confessed! That was the Catholic system. Yet Luther knew there was something more drastically wrong with man than any particular list of offenses because the nature of man is corrupt. The penitential system fails because it is directed to particular lapses. Luther had come to see that the entire man is in need of forgiveness. To deal with this impasse, Luther tried the mystical way which Staupitz showed him.

This brought some wonderful uplifts but his sense of alienation from God would return – “the dark night of the soul”. Staupitz urged him to just love God, but Luther knew God to be a consuming fire and he was worthy only of God’s damnation. So Luther would flee from the angry Son to the merciful Mother. He would appeal to the saints – 21 of them – but to no avail if God remains angry! This led Luther to wonder if God was just. The learning of the Schoolmen had taught him that God is capricious and man’s fate is unpredictable, and Augustine had impressed on him that God has already chosen some vessels for honour and some for dishonour.

All of this combined to prepare Luther for ‘discovering’ the Bible when Staupitz said he should take over the chair of Bible at the university. The Bible was not the staple of theological education, but taking the chair of Bible would immerse Luther in studying it! In 1513 he gave lectures on the book of Psalms, in 1915 he lectured on Paul’s epistle to the Romans, and the epistle to the Galatians in 1516-17. Those studies were Luther’s ‘Damascus Road’. His contemplation of the cross had convinced Luther that God is neither malicious nor capricious; his grasp of Paul’s theology showed that God is just but also the justifier of those who have faith. Then he came to understand what “justification by faith” means! Here’s what Luther wrote:

“I stood before God as a sinner troubled in conscience, and I had no confidence that my merit would assuage him. Therefore I did not love a just and angry God, but rather hated and murmured against him. Yet I clung to the dear Paul and had a great yearning to know what he meant. Night and day I pondered until I saw the connection between the justice of God and the statement that ‘the just shall live by his faith’. Then I grasped that the justice of God is that righteousness by which through grace and sheer mercy God justifies us through faith. Thereupon I felt myself to be reborn and to have gone through open doors into paradise. The whole of Scripture took on a new meaning…”

That is the background to Luther’s 95 theses (see first link). Of course, he wasn’t the only one to see the need to question the standard Catholicism of the day. Wycliff’s legacy from the 1360s had gone before (see links 2-4). But after the pope eventually excommunicated Luther, the Reformation was inevitable. Freedom from the yoke of Rome certainly led to a plethora of individualism in the following centuries but the power of the Reformation came exclusively from the power of the unchained Word of God – the Bible.

Even I am raised Lutheran I guess I know less about Luther then most Catholics do. History can be enlightening seen with open eyes, and no prejudiced attitudes (if that is even possible). Still much depends on the writer of the past.

Was Luther a strong dedicated man in the faith, or did he just disagree with the Catholic church`s way to preform a Christian life? I am not sure these kind of questions need an answer at all. What I am sure of, is that God chose a man, by His will, to execute necessary changes. Leading the church away from works and into saved by faith alone, by the grace of God. God`s care for His people, is the reason for the Reformation.

I found one article that also gives some insight.

In understanding the history of Protestant Church and the Reformation, it is important to first understand that one of the claims that the Roman Catholic Church makes is that of apostolic succession. This simply means that they claim a unique authority over all other churches and denominations because they claim the line of Roman Catholic Popes back throughout the centuries, all the way to the Apostle Peter. In their view, this gives the Roman Catholic Church a unique authority that supersedes all other denominations or churches. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, this apostolic succession is only “found in the Catholic Church” and no “separate Churches have any valid claim to it.”

It is because of this apostolic succession that the Roman Catholic Church claims a unique authority to interpret Scripture and to establish doctrine, as well the claim of having a supreme leader in the Pope who is infallible (without error) when speaking “ex cathedra”—that is, in the exercise of his office as pastor and teacher of all Christians. Therefore, according to the Roman Catholic view, the teaching or traditions of the Roman Catholic Church as they come from the Pope are equally as infallible and authoritative as the Scriptures themselves. This is one of the major differences between Roman Catholics and Protestants and was one of the foundational reasons for the Protestant Reformation.

Of course, the Roman Catholics are not the only ones who try to claim unique authority through apostolic succession or by tracing the roots of their church back to the original apostles. The Eastern Orthodox Church also claims apostolic succession, although their claim is very similar to the Roman Catholic view. The split between Eastern Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism did not occur until the “Great Schism” in A.D. 1054. There are also some Protestant denominations or groups that will try to establish a “Trail of Blood” that can be traced back through the centuries to the first century church and the apostles themselves. While these Protestants do not hold to apostolic succession in order to establish the authority of a “Pope” as an infallible leader, they still look to that connection to the early church in at least some small degree to establish the authority of their doctrines and practices.

More on http://www.gotquestions.org/Protestant-R…

Individualism was more of a consequence of modernity which had the Protestant Reformation as one of its precursors than the reason behind it.

Corruption of the clergy in the Catholic Church, the poor education of the clergy, and despair of reform by remaining in the Church can be seen by reading the history of the times and subsequent events.

It need not have happened. There were men (at that time mostly men) who strove to prevent it and reform the Church from the inside. They were only partially successful. The schism occurred and internal reform was delayed till reunification was impossible.

Seriously, where do some of you people get your information???

A simple search from Wiki (not exactly pro-Catholic) will atleast give you a better description… it was mainly over the Churches selling of indulgences… something that was not condoned by Church teaching but was being done by a few. Martin Luther nailed his complaints to the door of the Church in hopes of reform… but his issues were deeper and more radical… as he gained a following he became more radical and started to push for even crazier ideas… also wanted to remove several books from the New Testament canon. He didn’t initially set out to split the Church, but his damage was done and the influx of personal opinions into denomination splits began… and continues to divide to this day.

By the way he pushed for “sola fide”… which is faith alone, not faith through grace, which we all believe it is only through God’s grace that we are ever able to be saved. Faith alone goes against so much of what the Bible says it’s amazing that some people that claim to be Bible experts still try to use it.

In understanding the history of Protestant Church and the Reformation, it is important to first understand that one of the claims that the Roman Catholic Church makes is that of apostolic succession. This simply means that they claim a unique authority over all other churches and denominations because they claim the line of Roman Catholic Popes back throughout the centuries, all the way to the Apostle Peter. In their view, this gives the Roman Catholic Church a unique authority that supersedes all other denominations or churches. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, this apostolic succession is only “found in the Catholic Church” and no “separate Churches have any valid claim to it.”

It is because of this apostolic succession that the Roman Catholic Church claims a unique authority to interpret Scripture and to establish doctrine, as well the claim of having a supreme leader in the Pope who is infallible (without error) when speaking “ex cathedra”—that is, in the exercise of his office as pastor and teacher of all Christians. Therefore, according to the Roman Catholic view, the teaching or traditions of the Roman Catholic Church as they come from the Pope are equally as infallible and authoritative as the Scriptures themselves. This is one of the major differences between Roman Catholics and Protestants and was one of the foundational reasons for the Protestant Reformation.

Read the rest at http://www.gotquestions.org/Protestant-R…

I laughed out loud when I read Mopar Mike’s answer. Luther was far from devout. He got caught in a lightening storm and swore to God if he was spared he would become a priest. He was rushed quickly through seminary because the black plague took so many clergy.

Again, he was FAR from devout. He was simply poorly informed about the faith.

My opinion is formed from stories I have heard from converts. Those who go sincerely looking for God, end up converting to Catholicism or Orthodoxy. Those who want Christian entertainment, are neither.

That is not to say a revolution was not needed during Luther’s time. Through the history of the church, God has raised up revolutionaries to put his church back on track. Francis of Assisi, Theresa of Avila. Luther started out righteous. The church discovered a lot of wrongs going on in Germany and put a stop to them. But then he got self-righteous and people started dying.

He used a free hand in editing the bible, to push his own ideas. NOT theological ones.

Wycliffe is considered the Morning Star of the Reformation. He opposed the Catholic rule in England and their abuses. They took all the money out of the country and offered nothing in return—they did this to every country.

Wycliffe was born just after the black plague–which is why they were not able to persecute them like before–because the plague wiped most of them out. But the Pope was in France at this time–which was a big controversy. He called for a pilgrimage (Pilgrims always brought him gifts and he wanted money), many died because of the trip and the plague going on.

Jan Huss was a contemporary of Wycliffe and though he doesn’t say he got his ideas from Wycliffe, many Czech students were in England under Wycliffe.

Luther had questions he wanted answered. And the Catholic Church reacted like they always did when someone questioned their erroneous beliefs and practices. They tried to kill him.

I guess people just got sick the tyranny of the Catholic Church and all their inquisitions.

Way before Wycliffe and Luther, the Catholic Church persecuted the Waldenses. Ran them out of their homes into the mountains in the middle of winter–where many died. All that because Peter Waldo was given permission to translate the Bible into French and then they changed their mind about the permission, because now everyone was able to think for themselves.

I did a question recently and found that many have no clue about what Protestantism means. To many it just means you are not Catholic.

Our faithful fathers of the past, suffered much under the hand of Rome so that we could have the Truth–For most Christians they died in vain. Tyndale was hunted and burned at the stake for translating the Bible into English. Yet we want to cozy back up to the Roman Catholic Church–like they have changed or something. They have not changed and are getting read to seize power once a gain.

Prophecy shows us that they will get it. The Beast of Rome will wear out the saints this time. Are you ready not to take the Name, Number, or Mark?

If we have no clue what Protestantism stands for, we will be deceived like the rest of the world. We have the assurance that it is only the Elect (the Little Flock) who will not be deceived–that means everyone else will.

The Protestant Reformation started with the Bubonic Plague. This plague came along and killed off many of the Catholic priests, as well as wiping out entire villages. Since there was a shortage of priests, the church had to hire new priests.

Most of these priests were illiterate and were excessive drinkers.

The Pope himself also had mistresses.

A man named Martin Luther recognized that the church was corrupt.

Generally it was discontent with the practices of the Roman Catholic Church, including the sale of indulgences, corrupt priests, the gaining of wealth etc.

The corruptions of the Catholic Church, especially as Simonism was concerned. Simonism was the selling of indulgences. Hence the slogan: “As the penny in the bottom of the coffer rings, a soul from Purgatory springs.” That helped the Catholic Church make a lot of money and Luther to go berserk.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Ninety-…

Also gives me a chance to say,
“have a nice reformation day” when people tell me “happy halloween”

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