Two Popular stories about Luther

Luther and the 95 theses: It is a very widely held belief that Martin Luther, one of the leaders of the Reformation, had 95 theses printed up and that he subsequently nailed them to the cathedral door in Wittenberg, Germany on OCT-31. (Halloween)1517-. This action led to the creation of Reformation Sunday – a Protestant celebration of the Reformation. But the nailing of the theses apparently never happened. The first account of the quasi-event did not appear until after Luther’s death. Luther himself never mentioned it. In reality, Luther wrote a letter to his superiors on that day. In it, he denounced the sale of indulgences, asked that the believers receive their money back. He included 95 theses which he suggested as the basis for a discussion of the proposal. What a pity; the scene of Luther nailing his list to the cathedral door makes for great drama.

Luther throwing the inkwell at Satan: Luther, like most of his religious contemporaries and like many conservative Christians today, lived in an environment in which Satan was seen as a very important living entity with supernatural powers. He was seen as a raging lion, roaming the world looking for people to devour. A legend grew up that Satan had woken up Luther in the middle of the night, and that Luther had thrown an inkwell at him, in self defense. A stain on the wall of his room, visible up to the 19th century, was associated with this event. His actual statement was that he had “driven the devil away with ink.” This is generally attributed to his efforts at translating the Bible. Apparently the stain was painted on the wall after Luther’s death.

I read this on Religioustolerance.org and though hmm :hmmm: Now thats interesting I was told these things where true growing up (esp the one about the 95 thesis)

Actually the action of nailing articles on the church wall was a common catholic custom in the middle ages it could be anything, church bulletin, protest, complaints, announcements. We just think of Luther with the hammer as being a big visual sign of protest. It wouldn’t have been if it did happen. And it doesn’t appear to have happened.

Also the here "I stand I can do no other " appears to have been apocrpahl story as well that many historians can’t find any evidence for.

Luther the man and the myth. It turns out its mostly Myth.

Whether or not he nailed the Thesis to the door is uncertain, but I would say that it is an exaggeration. We do know for sure that he did put it in a letter to his superiors on Oct. 31 1517.

We do know almost certainly that he never said the exact words, “Here is stand I can do no other.” It is believe that this came about due to simplification. It was written in papers below a picture representation of the council meeting in question. They paper writers did not have enough space to type out all of what was conveyed by Luther in his defense.

He is about as much myth as George Washinton is myth.

[quote=Maccabees]Actually the action of nailing articles on the church wall was a common catholic custom in the middle ages it could be anything, church bulletin, protest, complaints, announcements. We just think of Luther with the hammer as being a big visual sign of protest. It wouldn’t have been if it did happen. And it doesn’t appear to have happened.

Also the here "I stand I can do no other " appears to have been apocrpahl story as well that many historians can’t find any evidence for.

Luther the man and the myth. It turns out its mostly Myth.
[/quote]

I look at the legends of Martin Luther much in the same light that the “peasantry” saw William Wallace in the movie Braveheart. He achieved legendary status and the proportionshis accomplishments were greatly exaggerated. Things he never did were attributed to him. To apply a quote, “Aye, I’ve heard the rumors, Martin Luther is seven feet tall, he refutes Romanist doctrines by the hundreds, and if Martin Luther were here, he’d slay the papists with fireball from his eyes, and bolts of lightning from his arse. I am Martin Luther, and I see a whole army of my fellow protestants.”

[quote=Shibboleth]He is about as much myth as George Washinton is myth.
[/quote]

George Washington is a myth???

What about the myth that he compared justification to “snow covering a pile of ****”?

Two more Luther stores – documented history, not mythical:

QUOTE . . . Martin Luther was originally a servant of the Church, though not out of a sense of fidelity or spiritual calling. He became a monk to escape and affront his abusive parents – both of whom beat him severely. Luther’s father was not a Catholic, but an occultist who believed in darker Germanic witches, hobgoblins, and demons. These would also haunt the imagination of Martin Luther who had visions, which he believed to be actual physical occurrences, of the devil hurling “[fill in the blank]” at him and his hurling it back. Indeed, in one of his many anal combats with the devil – in which Luther would challenge the devil to “lick” his posterior – Luther thought the best tactic might be to “throw him into my anus, where he belongs.” How one wishes for an exegesis by Dr. Sigmund Freud of that passage. Quoted in William Manchester, A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance (Little, Brown & Company, 1993, p. 140).

QUOTE . . . Being, in the words of the historian William Manchester, “the most anal of theologians,” [ibid, p. 139] it is not surprising that . . . His “thunderbolt” idea that faith alone was sufficient for salvation came, in his own words, as “knowledge the Holy Spirit gave me on the privy in the tower.” END QUOTE (ibid).

From* TRIUMPH, The Power and the Glory of the Catholic Church – A 2,000-Year History*, H.W. Crocker III, Forum, Prima Publishing, Roseville, CA, 2001, p. 237

amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0761529241/102-2824388-5612160?v=glance

JMJ Jay

Martin Luther didn’t become a monk until age 22. His mother and father were strict disciplinarians, but Luther was at a Boarding School for most of his childhood and lived with other relatives.

Martin Luther’s father owned a copper mine and made a decent amount of money rising up from the peasant class. He made enough money for Luther to go to University and get his masters. I wasn’t till he was at University that he became overly pious.

[quote=Shibboleth]Martin Luther didn’t become a monk until age 22. His mother and father were strict disciplinarians, but Luther was at a Boarding School for most of his childhood and lived with other relatives.

Martin Luther’s father owned a copper mine and made a decent amount of money rising up from the peasant class. He made enough money for Luther to go to University and get his masters. I wasn’t till he was at University that he became overly pious.
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pious, pompous, or self-righteous. :smiley:

Martin Luther was originally a servant of the Church, though not out of a sense of fidelity or spiritual calling. He became a monk to escape and affront his abusive parents – both of whom beat him severely. Luther’s father was not a Catholic, but an occultist who believed in darker Germanic witches, hobgoblins, and demons. These would also haunt the imagination of Martin Luther who had visions, which he believed to be actual physical occurrences, of the devil hurling “[fill in the blank]” at him and his hurling it back. Indeed, in one of his many anal combats with the devil – in which Luther would challenge the devil to “lick” his posterior – Luther thought the best tactic might be to “throw him into my anus, where he belongs.” How one wishes for an exegesis by Dr. Sigmund Freud of that passage

WOW! :eek: :eek: :eek: How did THIS guys ever start his own religion with THAT kind of attitude?

[quote=Scott_Lafrance]pious, pompous, or self-righteous. :smiley:
[/quote]

You or him?

[quote=starrs0]WOW! :eek: :eek: :eek: How did THIS guys ever start his own religion with THAT kind of attitude?
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Hans Luder “the father of Martin Luder – later Martin Luther” was not, as far as I know, a Catholic. He may have believed in daemons, witches, and devils – few Germanic and Scandinavian individuals did not. Many, many Scandinavians are still very superstitious.

I assure you almost positively that Hans Luder was not an occultist as we consider them today.

The parents of Martin Luther would have been considered by today’s standards to be abusive but probably not by the standards of his day. He probably received worse at school, as it was very strict in Germany in his day.

Han’s Luder attended Luther’s first mass.

The remarks about Freud make me slam my nostrils. First, if the statement is a remark on anal retentiveness – this has to deal with Freud’s theories on potty training and has nothing to do with fecal snow ball fights. Luther’s compulsiveness may have come from his strict upbringing but not from potty training or any other instance dealing with expulsions.

Luther constantly dealt with feelings of not being worthy of God and Salvation. He would go to confession in the morning, usually for longer than an hour, and then beat himself up for the rest of the day because of sins that he forgot to confess. This feeling of unworthy most definitely came from his childhood – but it also made him a very dedicated.

In reference to the fights with daemons… As one person pointed out the ink stain very well could be false. We must also note that Luther was exhibiting some very dominate and unmistakable signs of organic brain disorder in his later years. These sorts of disorders bring with them dementia. Some people like to merge the later years of his life with Luther’s whole being in an attempt to discredit him.

I am sure Ronald Regan did some very strange things in his later years as his Alzheimer’s became progressively worse.

Lastly… Satan, Azazul, Lilith, and any other daemon can collectively kiss my *&^ also.

Do not fail to note, dear brothers and sisters, the beginning date and the circumstances of Luther’s doctrine of “Sola Fide” – Faith Alone – see my previous post, #7. :stuck_out_tongue:

From another historian: “It was in the winter months from 1512 to 1513, while studying in the tower of the Wittenberg monastery, that, as he [Luther] said, the great enlightenment came. In Romans 1:17 he believed he had found the key that would solve all his inner distress and all his torturing questions. This key was: justification through God by faith.” Christian Denominations, by Konrad Algermissen, translated by Joseph W. Grundner, B. Herder Book Co., London, 1945, reprinted 1957, p. 743.

Would it be too crass of me to opine that Christianity would have been spared so much pain if Sola Fide had been left in the privy where it originated?

JMJ Jay

:rotfl:

[quote=Katholikos]Would it be too crass of me to opine that Christianity would have been spared so much pain if Sola Fide had been left in the privy where it originated?

JMJ Jay
[/quote]

That’s a good one!!!

:rotfl:

Well according to the Joint Doctrine of Justification, Lutheran’s do not disagree all that much on Sola Fide and works. Perhaps Sola Scriptura would be a better target.

I don’t think that Sola Fide was the problem. I think we should perhaps put more emphasis or blame on the continuing disagreements between Germany and Rome, the fact that the Donation of Constantine turned out to be a huge fraud, and terrible Shepards in God’s church - to name just a few.

We must never forget that before the time of Luther there had already been a thousand schisms.

[quote=Shibboleth]You or him?
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Me, of course. Why would I be referring to Martin Luther? I never met the guy.

Name them, with dates, locations, and theological basis please.

[quote=Scott_Lafrance]Name them, with dates, locations, and theological basis please.
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Perhaps not quite a thousand if one simply includes ‘schisms’, but if one includes schismatic groups then over a thousand. Hense - the western schism is one schism but a 33,000 schismatic groups - anyways I assume you do not expect me to put up all places and names but here is a good start.

From the Catholic Encyclopedia - some of them are grouped
(1) Mention has already been made of the “schisms” of the nascent Church of Corinth, when it was said among its members: “I indeed am of Paul; and I am of Apollo; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.” To them St. Paul’s energetic intervention put an end.

(2) According to Hegesippus, the most advanced section of the Judaizers or Ebionites at Jerusalem followed the bishop Thebutis as against St. Simeon, and after the death of St. James, A. D. 63, separated from the Church.

(3) There were numerous local schisms in the third and fourth centuries. At Rome Pope Callistus (217-22) was opposed by a party who took exception to the mildness with which he applied the penitential discipline. Hippolytus placed himself as bishop at the head of these malcontents and the schism was prolonged under the two successors of Callistus, Urban I (222-30) and Pontianus (230-35). There is no doubt that Hippolytus himself returned to the pale of the Church (cf. d’Alès, “La théol. de s. Hippolyte”, Paris, 1906, introduction).

(4) In 251 when Cornelius was elected to the See of Rome a minority set up Novatian as an antipope, the pretext again being the pardon which Cornelius promised to those who after apostatizing should repent. Through a spirit of contradiction Novatian went so far as to refuse forgiveness even to the dying and the severity was extended to other categories of grave sins. The Novatians sought to form a Church of saints. In the East they called themselves katharoi, pure. Largely under the influence of this idea they administered a second baptism to those who deserted Catholicism to join their ranks. The sect developed greatly in the Eastern countries, where it subsisted until about the seventh century, being recruited not only by the defection of Catholics, but also by the accession of Montanists.

(5) During the same period the Church of Carthage was also a prey to intestinal divisions. St. Cypnan upheld in reasonable measure the traditional principles regarding penance and did not accord to the letters of confessors called libelli pacis the importance desired by some. One of the principal adversaries was the priest Donatus Fortunatus became the bishop of the party, but the schism, which was of short duration took the name of the deacon Felicissimus who played an important part in it.

(6) With the dawn of the fourth century Egypt was the scene of the schism of Meletius, Bishop of Lycopolis, in the Thebaid. Its causes are not known with certainty; some ancient authors ascribe it to rigorist tendencies regarding penance while others say it was occasioned by usurpation of power on the part of Meletius, notably the conferring of ordinations outside his diocese. The Council of Nicæa dealt with this schism, but did not succeed in completely eradicating it; there were still vestiges of it in the fifth century.

(7) Somewhat later the schism of Antioch, originating in the troubles due to Arianism, presents peculiar complications. When the bishop Eustathius, was deposed in 330 a small section of his flock remained faithful to him, but the majority followed the Arians. The first bishop created by them was succeeded (361) by Meletius of Sebaste in Armenia, who by force of circumstances became the leader of a second orthodox party. In fact Meletius did not fundamentally depart from the Faith of Nicæa, and he was soon rejected by the Arians: on the other hand he was not recognized by the Eustathians, who saw in him the choice of the heretics and also took him to task for some merely terminological differences. The schism lasted until about 415. Paulinus (d. 388) and Evagrius (d. 392), Eustathian bishops, were recognized in the West as the true pastors, while in the East the Meletian bishops were regarded as legitimate.

(8) After the banishment of Pope Liberius in 355, the deacon Felix was chosen to replace him and he had adherents even after the return of the legitimate pope. The schism, quenched for a time by the death of Felix, was revived at the death of Libenius and the rivalry brought about bloody encounters. It was several years after the victory of Damasus before peace was completely restored.

(9) The same period witnessed the schism of the Luciferians. Lucifer, Bishop of Calaris, or Cagliari, was displeased with Athanasius and his friends who at the Synod of Alexandria (362) had pardoned the repentant Semi-Arians. He himself had been blamed by Eusebius of Vercelli because of his haste in ordaining Paulinus, Bishop of the Eustathians, at Antioch. For these two reasons he separated from the communion of the Catholic bishops. For some time the schism won adherents in Sardinia, where it had originated, and in Spain, where Gregory, Bishop of Elvira, was its chief abettor.

(10) But the most important of the fourth-century schisms was that of the Donatists (q. v.). These sectaries were as noted for their obstinacy and fanaticism as for the efforts and the writings rather uselessly multiplied against them by St. Augustine and St. Optatus of Milevis.

(11) The schism of Acacius belongs to the end of the fifth century. It is connected with the promulgation by the emperor Zeno of the edict known as the Henoticon. Issued with the intention of putting an end to the Christological disputes, this document did not satisfy either Catholics or Monophysites. Pope Felix II excommunicated its two real authors, Peter Mongus, Bishop of Alexandria, and Acacius of Constantinople. A break between the East and the West followed which lasted thirty-five years. At the instance of the general Vitalian, protector of the orthodox, Zeno’s successor Anastasius promised satisfaction to the adherents of the Council of Chalcedon and the convocation of a general council, but he showed so little good will in the matter that union was only restored by Justin I in 519. The reconciliation received official sanction in a profession of Faith to which the Greek bishops subscribed, and which, as it was sent by Pope Hormisdas, is known in history as the Formula of Hormisdas.

(12) In the sixth century the schism of Aquilea was caused by the consent of Pope Vigilius to the condemnation of the Three Chapters (553). The ecclesiastical provinces of Milan and Aquilea refused to accept this condemnation as valid and separated for a time from the Apostolic See. The Lombard invasion of Italy (568) favoured the resistance, but from 570 the Milanese returned by degrees to the communion of Rome; the portion of Aquilea subject to the Byzantines returned in 607, after which date the schism had but a few churches. It died out completely under Sergius I, about the end of the eighth century.

(13) The ninth century brought the schism of Photius, which, though it was transitory, prepared the way by nourishing a spirit of defiance towards Rome for the final defection of Constantinople.

(14) This took place less than two centuries later under Michael Cerularius (q. v.) who at one stroke (1053) closed all the churches of the Latins at Constantinople and confiscated their convents. The deplorable Greek schism (see GREEK CHURCH), which still subsists, and is itself divided into several communions, was thus consummated. The two agreements of reunion concluded at the Second Council of Lyons in 1274, and at that of Florence in 1439, unfortunately had no lasting results; they could not have had them, because on the part of the Greeks at least they were inspired by interested motives.

(15) The schism of Anacletus in the twelfth century, like that of Felix V in the fifteenth, was due to the existence of an antipope side by side with the legitimate pontiff. At the death of Honorius II (1130) Innocent II had been regularly elected, but a numerous and powerful faction set up in opposition to him Cardinal Peter of the Pierleoni family. Innocent was compelled to flee, leaving Rome in the hands of his adversaries. He found refuge in France. St. Bernard ardently defended his cause as did also St. Norbert. Within a year nearly all Europe had declared in his favour, only Scotland, Southern Italy, and Sicily constituting the other party. The emperor Lothaire brought Innocent II back to Rome, but, supported by Roger of Sicily the antipope retained possession of the Leonine City, where he died in 1138. His successor Victor IV two months after his election, sought and obtained pardon and reconciliation from the legitimate pontiff. The case of Felix V was more simple. Felix V was the name taken by Amadeus of Savoy, elected by the Council of Basle, when it went into open revolt against Eugenius IV, refused to disband and thus incurred excommunication (1439). The antipope was not accepted save in Savoy and Switzerland. He lasted for a short time with the pseudo-council which had created him. Both submitted in 1449 to Nicholas V, who had succeeded Eugenius IV.

(16) The Great Schism of the West is the subject of a special article (SCHISM, WESTERN); see also CONSTANCE, COUNCIL OF; PISA, COUNCIL OF.

(17) Everyone knows the shameful origins of the schism of Henry VIII, which was the prelude to the introduction of Protestantism into England. The voluptuous monarch was opposed by the pope in his projects for divorce and remarriage, and he separated from the pope. He succeeded so well that in 1531 the general assembly of the clergy and the Parliament proclaimed him head of the national Church. Warham, Archbishop of Canterbury, had at first caused the adoption of a restrictive clause: “as far as Divine law permits”. But this important reservation was not respected, for the rupture with the Roman Court followed almost immediately. In 1534 the Act of Supremacy was voted according to the terms of which the king became the sole head of the Church of England and was to enjoy all the prerogatives which had hitherto belonged to the pope. Refusal to recognize the new organization was punished with death. Various changes followed: suppression of convents, destruction of relics and of numerous pictures and statues. But dogma was not again attacked under Henry VIII, who pursued with equal severity both attachment to the pope and the doctrines of the Reformers.

(18) In the article JANSENIUS AND JANSENISM are described the formation and vicissitudes of the schism of Utrecht, the unhappy consequence of Jansenism, but which never spread beyond a handful of fanatics. Subsequent schisms belong to the end of the eighteenth and the nineteenth century.

(19) The first was caused in France by the Civil Constitution of the clergy of 1790. By this law the national Constituent Assembly aimed at imposing on the Church a new organization which essentially modified its condition as regulated by public ecclesiastical law. The 134 bishops of the kingdom were reduced to 83, according to the territorial division into departments; the choice of curés fell to electors appointed by members of district assemblies; that of bishops to electors named by the assemblies of departments; and canonical institution devolved upon the metropolitan and the bishops of the province. All benefices without cure of souls were suppressed. A later ordinance made obedience to these articles a condition of admission to any ecclesiastical office. A large number of bishops and priests, in all, according to some sources, about a sixth of the clergy, and according to other documents nearly a third, were weak enough to take the oath. Thenceforth the French clergy was divided into two factions, the jurors and the non-jurors, and the schism was carried to the utmost extreme when intruders under the name of bishops claimed to occupy the departmental sees, during the lifetime and even in defiance of the rights of the real titulars. The condemnation of the Civil Constitution by Pius VI in 1791 opened the eyes of some, but others persisted until their “Constitutional Church” declined shamefully and disappeared irrevocably in the Revolutionary turmoil.

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