Yo, yo, YO!!! Back again with part two of Martin Luther. I hope you all enjoy this episode, I know I did. Of course, I enjoy them all - even the ones I'm doing research for now. Having said that, we have some new music, some iTunes reviews and a small peek into what happens when I create a podcast. Enjoy the show!
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On October 31, 1517, Martin Luther nailed what became known as the 95 Theses and these theses disagreed completely with what the church was doing. This sparked a revolution that swept through Germany like a firestorm. Unlike most knowledge passed by form of mouth, the theses were passed throughout Germany by the first printing press. Although the 95 theses were originally written in Latin, they were quickly translated into German, French and English (amongst other languages) to give this influential work a wider spread audience. As a result, Luther and his ideas became widely known much to the displeasure of the religious leaders of the time.
At first they ignored the German monk and his ideas until he wrote another, more controversial work entitled The Resolutions, which attacked the power of the pope and incurred the wrath pope himself. At one point, he was told to recant his beliefs. he simply told the religious leaders that "...Unless I am convinced by the testimony of Scripture and evident reasoning, I am convinced by the Sacred Scriptures I have cited- For I believe neither solely the pope or the councils for it is often evident that they erred and often contradict one another. My conscience is captured by the word of God. Thus, I cannot and will not recant." Then martin Luther walked out of the hall, firm and confident in the belief that what he had done was right. Shortly after this, he disappeared from under the church's watchful eye for a time.
In 1524, Luther again gained notice by the church when he began courting and eventually marrying a former nun by the name of Katherine Von Bora. This shocked everyone everybody including prominent members of the religious order, for not only did he challenge the Pope's power but he broke his monasterial vows and married a woman who was considered to be an outlaw of the church. Despite the controversy, Luther and his wife had a happy and loving marriage and raised six children.
Although Luther was looked at as a hero by many and still is, he was not a saint. In his later years, he spoke very ill of the Jews and their religion saying at one point, "We must exercise harsh mercy with fear and trembling in the hope that we could could save some (of the Jews) from the flames and embers... They are under God's wrath a thousand times worse then we could wish it upon them..." Luther went so far as to threaten to burn down their schools, synagogues, etc.and take their prayer books away from them because, in his opinion, "blasphemies" were taught in them. The question is, why did Luther turn against the Jews? The answer remains a mystery even today.
On February 17, 1546, martin Luther's life came to an end in his childhood hometown. He died of natural causes and his funeral was held in Wittenberg shortly after. Luther's wife died in 1552.
Martin Luther's teachings and rebelliousness live on to this day and he will continue to live on as long as those who have the ability to do so stand firm to what they believe, no matter the consequences.