Martin Luther: A Life tells the dramatic story of the renegade monk whose heroic personal struggle ignited a revolution and shook Christendom to its foundations. Through vivid anecdotes and lively historical descriptions, Martin Luther: A Life captures the turbulent times and historic events through which Luther lived as well as his profound vision of God. A fast-moving narrative, it shows how his stinging criticisms of the Christian church struck a deep and liberating chord in the German people and led to the momentous change we know as the Reformation. For all who wish to understand Luther the man, the rebel, and the visionary, James Nestingen's account also offers insight into Luther's momentous contributions to the Western world and his personal encounter with God, the Christian scriptures, and the relentless demands of his own conscience.
Called ?The most influential interpreter of American religion? by Bill Moyers, renowned historian and Lutheran pastor Martin Marty portrays the religious reformer Martin Luther as a man of conscience and courage who risked death to ignite the historic reformation of the Church. Luther?s arguments, including his ?95 theses,? changed the destiny of Christendom, the shape of Christianity, and gave rise to new freedoms in church and state. Marty explores the records left by Luther of his inner struggles and his conflicts with the Holy Roman Empire to find a man engaged in a lifelong passionate search for not only the grace of God, but also for the assurance that it was directed toward each individual.
The sixteenth-century German friar whose public conflict with the medieval Roman Church triggered the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther was neither an unblemished saint nor a single-minded religious zealot according to this provocative new biography by Scott Hendrix. The author presents Luther as a man of his time: a highly educated scholar and teacher and a gifted yet flawed human being driven by an optimistic yet ultimately unrealized vision of “true religion.”
This bold, insightful account of the life of Martin Luther provides a new perspective on one of the most important religious figures in history, focusing on Luther’s entire life, his personal relationships and political motivations, rather than on his theology alone. Relying on the latest research and quoting extensively from Luther’s correspondence, Hendrix paints a richly detailed portrait of an extraordinary man who, while devout and courageous, had a dark side as well. No recent biography in English explores as fully the life and work of Martin Luther long before and far beyond the controversial posting of his 95 Theses in 1517, an event that will soon be celebrated as the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.
Combining biographical narrative and analytical essays, this book provides a new, comprehensive view of Martin Luther’s life and times, along with a new examination of the radical theology that sparked the Reformation and changed the Christian world forever. Drawing on sources new and old, the authors chronicle the fascinating, turbulent life of the Great Reformer from a historical point of view. Luther’s revolutionary thoughts on scripture and salvation are explored from a theological perspective, offering a fresh appraisal of the doctrine that irrevocably divided the Roman Catholic Church.
Accessible yet authoritative biography of the colorful character who instigated the Protestant Reformation
Martin Luther, the Augustinian friar who set the Protestant Reformation in motion with his famous Ninety-Five Theses, was a man of extremes on many fronts. He was both hated and honored, both reviled as a heretic and lauded as a kind of second Christ. He was both a quiet, solitary reader and interpreter of the Bible and the first media-star of history, using the printing press to reach many of his contemporaries and become the most-read theologian of the sixteenth century.
Thomas Kaufmann’s concise biography highlights the two conflicting “natures” of Martin Luther, depicting Luther’s earthiness as well as his soaring theological contributions, his flaws as well as his greatness. Exploring the close correlation between Luther’s Reformation theology and his historical context, A Short Life of Martin Luther serves as an ideal introduction to the life and thought of the most important figure in the Protestant Reformation.
Abingdon Pillars of Theology is a series for the college and seminary classroom designed to help students grasp the basic and necessary facts, influence, and significance of major theologians. Written by noted scholars, these books will outline the context, methodology, organizing principles, primary contributions, and key writings of people who have shaped theology as we know it today.
"Martin Luther would be shocked to hear that he is appearing in a series called pillars of theology. To be sure, the professor of biblical interpretation with a doctorate in theology was a theologian. In fact, teaching theology for thirty-four years at the University of Wittenberg brought into Luther's large household, managed by his wife Katharina von Bora, the only salary he ever earned. Still, like most theologians, Luther never thought of himself as having a theology. A theologian becomes a pillar of the discipline in the estimation of admiring readers, but they are not the focus of this book. My purpose is to lay the groundwork and identify the pieces that were later used to construct what is now called Luther's theology." From the book
The views set forth here are certainly one-sided, and purposely so, in order to form a conscious counter-argument to the accepted Protestant “mythology,” so to speak, of Martin Luther. His many commendable qualities are well covered in any Protestant biography (and some can be rightly classified as virtual “hagiographies”). The full, multi-faceted, complex truth concerning important historical figures is invariably more fascinating than the usual myths that circulate about. I aim to present Luther as he was: no more, no less: as fairly as I can, but “warts and all,” too. I do not regard Luther (like many Catholic biographers and critics throughout history) as an essentially “evil” or “bad” man. I don’t deny his good intentions and sincerity at all. Part Two: the “praise” section of this book, runs 83 pages, or about 34% of all the material from Chapter One to the Bibliography.
Table talk with Martin Luther is an intergenerational two week dialogue between the author and Martin Luther. The setting is at the author’s lakeside home. Dr. Luther appears in the morning for informal discussions with the author, each giving their perspectives on the reformation and current church practice. The discussions are diverse and engaging on topics ranging from justification, indulgences, the papacy, church councils, and the issues that gave rise to the reformation. It is a work everyone interested in ecumenical dialogue should read.
Brecht provides a comprehensive study of the consolidation of the Reformation in the middle period of Luther's active life. He treats both Luther's personal life and the development of Lutheran doctrine and practice exhaustively. The reader is left with great admiration for Luther's talents as a theologian, translator, and church builder.
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