Martin Luther

 

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Nov 10, 1483 – Feb 18, 1546

Friar, Theologian, Professor of Bible Studies, Religious Reformer

German

“The whole being of any Christian is faith and love. Faith brings the man to God, love brings him to men.”

“If I rest, I rust.”

In some writings, Luther insulted rivals such as: “Your book . . . struck me as so worthless and poor that my heart went out to you for having defiled your lovely, brilliant flow of language with such vile stuff.”

Martin Luther came from a family of small, but free, landholders. His father owned a copper mine and wished for his son to have more than a peasant life. He sent Martin to the big machine, and there Martin received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. Martin went on to study law, but, after only a few months and what seemed to be a sudden religious experience, he left the big machine and entered a monastery. When Luther became a friar, the Roman Catholic Church controlled Europe and had more power than even the Kings and Queens. Numbers who spoke against the Church or its practices were called heretic and burned at the stake. Luther saw the corruption within the Church and couldn’t remain silent. He wrote papers and spoke out publicly against the abuses of power and false doctrines which were being taught. One of Luther’s most controversial teachings was that Christ, and not the pope, was the mediator between man and God. He also translated the Bible into German for the peasants to read and understand. Luther faced execution fearlessly throughout his life. Influential friends in Germany protected him. Luther’s influence divided Western Christians into Catholics and Protestants and weakened the power of the Roman Catholic Empire. Although Martin Luther’s life was constantly in danger, he continued his work. He was eventually stopped for the things he said and wrote.