What would you have done...(If you were Luther.)


#1

assuming you were in Luther’s position?

You have theological issues with purgatory and indulgences, you have seen the condition (morality) of Rome at the time, the poor are being robbed by the church ("a coin in the coffer, a soul…), and you receive: papalencyclicals.net/Leo10/l10exdom.htm


#2

I recognize that clerical abuse is a serious matter and that the Church is indeed trying to control it, but the war is taking a toll. I submit to the discipline that I have been ordered as a fulfillment of my vows and I pray harder for the end of the war and for a crackdown on selling indulgences. I pray for chastity. I read more theology and discuss issues I disagree about with my superiors.


#3

I do as Paul did, who didn’t split from Peter even when they passionately disagreed.

I do as the great saints of the Catholic counter-reformation did - St Pius V, St Ignatius of Loyola and so on. They achieved reforms on most of the issues that Luther had with things like indulgences, not to mention the corruption in Rome, but worked from the inside.

For mine, there’s no good reason to dump the idea of purgatory per se, as much as you can legitimately criticise the sale of indulgences which was linked with it. To do so you have to basically assume that humans are perfect while still on Earth, since nothing that is imperfect will enter heaven.


#4

I do as the great saints of the Catholic counter-reformation did - St Pius V, St Ignatius of Loyola and so on. They achieved reforms on most of the issues that Luther had with things like indulgences, not to mention the corruption in Rome, but worked from the inside.

Please elaborate? Catholic-counter reformation?

I read more theology and discuss issues I disagree about with my superiors

Would you recant at the threat of being burned alive?

Thanks,
Tim


#5

Certainly. The Counter-Reformation was a movement within the Catholic Church, culminating in the Council of Trent, which made efforts to respond to the criticisms Luther had made of the Church. The sale of indulgences was prohibited among other things.

The Council even invited Protestants to come and take part in discussing the issues. They chose not to attend (albeit out of safety concerns and not because they couldn’t be bothered).

You can find out more about it here


#6

luther was pretty well read, but we can always read more.

he tried to discuss with his superiors. that was the whole purpose of nailing the theses to the door. it would be like putting something on a bulletin board today. he put it up there so that there could be discussion. others printed them and spread them around. the church got angry and told luther to recant. he refused because there had been no discussion on the matter and he was thoroughly convinced on many of them. he was told to recant or be excommunicated. he offered to stop teaching and take a vow of silence for the rest of his life but the church refused and excommunicated him. this fired up luther’s (already a bit unstable) personality and he became more vehement in his views.


#7

yeah, they all had jan hus on their minds… lol.

the church: “oh jan, you think that the cup should be available to the people? well, come to us and we can discuss the matter. we will ensure you safety.”

hus: “oh, okay. i’d be happy to talk about this. i am pretty convinced on this matter and i love the church so please, let’s talk about this and see what we can do. i’ll be there in a few weeks.”

the church: “jan, welcome. okay boys, tie him to the stake and set it on fire!”

hus: “what the deuce??? uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuggggggggggghhhhh.”

yeah, i guess the protestant reformers would have some safety concerns… lol.


#8

Put it this way - Catholics believe the Church speaks on behalf of Christ, since He not only gave the Apostles (and by implication their successors) the power to bind and loose heaven and said ‘who hears you hears Me, who rejects you rejects Me’. That being the case, I’d no more think of a serious or prolonged disputation with the Church than with Christ Himself.

And I’m sure you can imagine doing that - ‘Take and eat, this is My body’ - ‘Uh, Lord, do you really think that’s such a good idea? Bread is awfully crumbly after all, and takes such a long time to cook! Why not a nice piece of steak instead? Much more appropriate, don’t you think?’


#9

step one: Remove the board from my own eye.
step two: Worry about the speck in my neighbors.
step three: Judge rightly and Lord help me, be spared the indignity of authoring Von den Juden und ihren Lügen.


#10

step one: Remove the board from my own eye.
step two: Worry about the speck in my neighbors.
step three: Judge rightly and Lord help me, be spared the indignity of authoring Von den Juden und ihren Lügen.


#11

That being the case, I’d no more think of a serious or prolonged disputation with the Church than with Christ Himself.

So the RCC church should never suffer a discussion with anyone?

Particularly considering that the RCC acknowledges Luther was right on some things?

Thanks,
Tim


#12

LilyM,

Thank you for the link.

Thanks,
Tim


#13

Since nothing that any member of the church does affects the truth she teaches in any way, you remain unified and trust God through prayer. If your faith is weak, you submit to your ego and enlist allies who will help you form your own church on your own ideas. It’s worked before. But Heaven weeps.

Obedience. It works. Give it time.


#14

Since nothing that any member of the church does affects the truth she teaches in any way, you remain unified and trust God through prayer. If your faith is weak, you submit to your ego and enlist allies who will help you form your own church on your own ideas. It’s worked before. But Heaven weeps.

Obedience. It works. Give it time

So when threatened you would have recanted? Even though you were right?

Thanks,
Tim


#15

Again, I’ll say that I respect Luther’s motives. But nailing something to a door, just as putting somethign on a bulletin board, is hardly comparable to having, or even starting, a conversation.


#16

Hey, I’m respectfully conversing with you, this is NOT needed. Both sides burned others, we don’t need to go here again.


#17

He was right about some of the abuses, you’re acting as if he didn’t come up with some very completely different theologies concerning revelation and salvation.


#18

He was right about some of the abuses

Should he have recanted those when told to by the church hierarchy?

Thanks,
Tim


#19

Discussion, yes. Brief discussion. Protracted debate? No. If Luther had been a bit more patient and less strident and argumentative, then most of the issues the Church eventually sorted out could have been handled much more quickly and without descending into a schism. He did no-one any favours by his attitude, least of all the Church he was claiming to try to help. :shrug:


#20

No, but should he have clung to a new theology on the topic of faith and morals? No. Like I’ve said in other threads, there have been many reformers that have reformed matters of discipline or personal abuses that have not had any problem with, or seen any need to change, official Church doctrine. They remained in the Church.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.