In 1502, Frederick III, Elector of Saxony, founded the University of Wittenberg, a university that would house a young Augustinian monk as a "Professor of Bible" named Martin Luther. Lutheran beliefs are expressed in numerous historical Lutheran confessions, most of which were penned by Luther himself or early Lutheran leaders. A series of theological controversies over the authentic understanding of Luther’s thought—some had already erupted during Luther’s own lifetime—began to divide Lutheran theologians and churches with increasing intensity. [25][26] In their discussion, Michael the Deacon also affirmed Luther's Articles of the Christian Faith as a "good creed". For the next several decades, the Roman Catholic Church attempted to stamp out Protestantism, but by then Henry VIII had established the Church of England and John Calvin had started the Reformed Church in Geneva, Switzerland. It reflected a development that was paralleled in other Christian traditions of the time, each of which jealously guarded its own identity in opposition to other traditions. What had started as a strictly theological and academic debate had now turned into something of a social and political conflict as well, pitting Luther, his German allies and Northern European supporters against Charles V, France, the Italian Pope, their territories and other allies. The LCMS was organized in 1847 at a meeting in Chicago, Illinois, as the German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Missouri, Ohio, and Other States (German: Die Deutsche Evangelisch-Lutherische Synode von Missouri, Ohio und andern Staaten), a name which partially reflected the geographic locations of the founding congregations. [23] In a letter to Melanchthon of 1 August 1521, he wrote: "[L]et your sins be strong, but let your trust in Christ be stronger, and rejoice in Christ who is the victor over sin, death, and the world. The Ninety-five Theses were quickly translated from Latin into German, printed, and widely copied, making the controversy one of the first in history to be aided by the printing press. The Gutenberg Bible was first printed in 1455, with subsequent editions of the Bible and other books quickly becoming available in wider distribution than ever before. 1517, written by Martin Luther and is widely regarded as the primary catalyst for the Protestant Reformation. Along with the spread of the book, universities were becoming the centers of a new academic culture that existed outside of the immediate control of the Roman Catholic Church. He began this protest against the Catholic Church in the 16th century. This figure miscounts Lutherans worldwide as not all Lutheran churches belong to this organization, and many members of merged LWF church bodies do not self-identify as Lutheran or attend congregations that self-identify as Lutheran. [15] Three of his best known works were published in 1520: To the Christian Nobility of the German Nation, On the Babylonian Captivity of the Church, and On the Freedom of a Christian. Because they were excommunicated and their churches outlawed, Luther, his followers, and their princely supporters were under threat of military action by Catholic forces, and in 1546 Emperor Charles V felt powerful enough to wage war against the major Lutheran territories and cities. Martin Chemnitz, Aegidius Hunnius, Leonhard Hutter, Nicolaus Hunnius, Jesper Rasmussen Brochmand, Salomo Glassius, Johann Hülsemann, Johann Conrad Dannhauer, Johannes Andreas Quenstedt, Johann Friedrich König and Johann Wilhelm Baier. It wasn't in Europe", Rise of the Evangelical Church in Latin America, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=History_of_Lutheranism&oldid=994449019, Wikipedia articles needing clarification from May 2017, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2009, Wikipedia articles needing page number citations from April 2017, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. In 1580, it was published with the Augsburg Confession, the Apology of the Augsburg Confession, the Large and Small Catechisms of Martin Luther, the Smalcald Articles and the Treatise on the Power and Primacy of the Pope. [43] Beginning in 1867, confessional and liberal minded German Lutherans joined together to form the Common Evangelical Lutheran Conference against the ever looming prospect of a legally binding union with the Reformed. New technologies came about to address labor shortages and the need to increase productivity, which in turn created new classes of society to support manufacture and trade. [9] "This one and firm rock, which we call the doctrine of justification," he wrote, "is the chief article of the whole Christian doctrine, which comprehends the understanding of all godliness".[10]. Asserted by Philipp Melanchthon in 1546, Luther also posted his Ninety-five Theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg that same day, as church doors acting as the bulletin boards of his era, an act now viewed as sparking the Protestant Reformation and celebrated each year on October 31st as Reformation Day. From then on, the Lutheran churches in these principalities were free to develop unhindered by political and military threats. [6] Others have countered that no such evidence is necessary, because this was the customary way of advertising an event on a university campus in Luther's day.[7]. [27] Martin Luther saw that the Ethiopian Orthodox Church practiced elements of faith including "communion in both kind, vernacular Scriptures, and married clergy" and these practices became customary in the Lutheran Churches. (ed. - He thought that Church should change and reform. [40] In Finland, a farmer, Paavo Ruotsalainen, started a reform movement when he took to preaching about repentance and prayer. The Lutheran Church was founded by Martin Luther in the 16th century and he is considered one of the most influential theologians in Christian history. Lutheran churches in North America, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean regions are ex… (eds. The unification of the two branches of German Protestantism sparked the Schism of the Old Lutherans. At first, the Nuremberg Religious Peace of 1532 granted religious liberty to members of the Schmalkaldic League. The theological heritage of Philip Melanchthon rose up again in the Helmstedt School and especially in the theology of Georgius Calixtus, which caused the Syncretistic Controversy. In the introduction to his New Testament — published in September 1522 and selling 5,000 copies in two months — he explained that good works spring from faith; they do not produce it. 3. Martin Luther founded the faith due to his disagreement with the fundamental beliefs of the Catholic Church. Over the next five days, private conferences were held to determine Luther's fate. Amen." Today, millions belong to Lutheran churches, which are present on all populated continents. "[17] He is also famously said to have added: "Hier stehe ich. Lutheranism soon became a wider religious and political movement within the Holy Roman Empire owing to support from key electors and the widespread adoption of the printing press. Flacius and the other Gnesio-Lutherans also saw in the Philippists’ understanding of the Lord’s Supper the influence of Calvinism, which stressed the real but spiritual presence of Christ in the sacrament. This document is known as the Formula of Concord. [22], In 1534, Michael the Deacon of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church travelled to Wittenberg to meet with Martin Luther, both of whom agreed that the Lutheran Mass and that used by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church were in agreement with one another. The Emperor presented the final draft of the Edict of Worms on May 25, 1521, declaring Luther an outlaw, banning his literature, and requiring his arrest: "We want him to be apprehended and punished as a notorious heretic". To articulate Christian theology, leading to ever-subtler analyses of argument and counterargument century is known as.! That Church should change and reform study, reading devotional writings, and it was Confutatio,. 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