You are on page 1of 30

Major Theological Current of the late Medieval Period

Coined by humanist scholars to describe ideas of Middle Ages, to discredit ideas of the period
Pejorative and imprecise
Hard to defend
Best regarded as the medieval system of organizing theology with emphasis on rational justification of
religious beliefs using logic and reason.
Period 1200-1500
The need to systematize and explain Christian theology
Demonstrate the inherent rationality of that theology
Ideas of Aristotle from 1270 became established as the best means of establishing a
developing Christian theology
Best known theologian Thomas Aquinas Proofs for the existence of God
To demonstrate the inherent rationality of theology by appealing to philosophy
Scholastic writing long and argumentative
Scholasticism influential mainly in the medieval universities

Two Types: Realism (1200-1350) and Nominalism (1350-1500)
Realism (Via Antigua) 1200-1350 universal concept of whiteness which two stones embody,
white stone exist in time and space; universal of whiteness exist on metaphysical plane
Approaches to the knowledge of God
Speculation about the essence of God (not only his moral character)
Two avenues to knowledge of God.
Reason even unaided by revelation, man can know about God; man on his own can know
Knowledge of God through reason
Dependence upon the universals
Universals (love, beauty, justice, etc) dwell in the mind of God and present in human
Universals = bridge which allow man to discover mind of God
Thus by using universals we can know about God
Dependence upon Aristotles logic (Magister dixit)
Dialectical approach to truth
Use of the syllogism
Theology = working out of it is rationally necessary
Approach to salvation
Man not totally depraved
Man remains a rational being, semi-Pelagianism
All powers of the soul distorted
Wound of ignorance (reason)
Wound of malice (will)
Wound of weakness (emotion)
Wound of flesh (concupiscience)
Divine infusion of grace through the sacraments
God so infuses the gift of justifying grace that at the same time He moves the free will to accept the gift of grace
Justification, a movement from state of sin to state of justice
Restoration of disposition to love and obey God (habitus)
Nominalism (via moderna) 1350-1500 universal concept of an object unnecessary; focus on
particulars just two white stones, two major roots
Voluntarism of Duns Scotus
Duns Scotus 1265-1305
Professor at Oxford
God is pure freedom and pure will; I cannot predict what God can do.
God is totally independent from any moral rule (the rule would be greater than God)

Incapacity of reason to provide any knowledge about God, since God is not reason but will;
man by reason cannot know God; I can know God only as he reveals himself

Terminism of William of Occam 1255-1349

Most influential thinker in time of Luther
Denial of reality of universals
Human origin of universals: they are creation of the mind
Universals cannot provide bridge into realm of God since they are mere human
Main ideas of Nominalism
God known as far as he wants to reveal himself.
Incomprehensible in his potentia ordinata
Revelation of his character
Revelation of conditions of salvation
Importance of divine-human covenant
Salvation dependent upon acquisition of merits; I can acquire merits; take the initiative
Duty to do what you can with your human capacities to do what is right (facere quod in se est);
= acquisition of merits
Natural ability to love and trust God
After you have done what you can, divine grace helps you get more merits; God offers you a
Impact of nominalism on spirituality
Multiplication of good works (pilgrimages, candles, rosaries, indulgences)
Great veneration for the saints (devotion to the whole family of Jesus St. Anne, mother of
German emphasis on sufferings of Jesus upon the cross
Great value of relics
Veneration for parts of body of Jesus, rather than Jesus himself.
Soteriology covenant between God and humanity; obligations of people to God; God to the people
Unilaterally imposed by God
God established the condition for justification
God has ordained that he will accept individuals who do their best
Facere quod in se est. Doing what lies within you or doing your best.
Refuted Pelagianism, using illustration lead coins used instead of gold based on promise of the king.
Human work was of no value but God treats them as if they were valuable; no inherent value but
imposed by the king.
A type of Nominalism
Schola Augustiniana Moderna
Main center
Morton College, Oxford University
Main Proponents
Thomas Bradwine and Gregory Rimini
Thomas Bradwine
The curse of God against Pelagius charged opponents with Pelaganism and return to
Augustinian view.
Gregory of Rimini
Augustinian monk continues Bradwines ideas; rejected universals
His soteriology reflected Augustinianism and focus on grace.


Definitions and Characteristics

Movement devoted to classical scholarship and study of languages, new philosophy of the Renaissance
Hostile to Scholasticism interested in applying the classics and Christianity to life; concern with ethics
rather than theology
A cultural and educational movement concerned with promotion of eloquence in its various forms;
appealed to classical antiquity as model of eloquence; Cicero, Virgil

Concerned with how ideas were obtained and expressed, rather than with actual content of ideas.
Humanist could be Platonist, Aristotelian, Skeptic, or believer.
Major slogan of Humanism Ad Fontes
Back to original source
Seeking to recover the intellectual and artistic glories of the classical period
Read sources with attitudes of expectation; to rediscover the experiences they reflected (NT books).
Two strands: Italian and Northern European but Northern influenced by Italian
Northern European scholars who move south to study in Italy who then return to their
Christopher Scheurl-Law at Bologna returned to university of Wittenberg.
Correspondence between Italian and Northern European scholars
Printed book from Italy, reprinted by Northern European presses
Characteristics of Northern Humanism three common ideals
Concern for written and spoken eloquence
Religious programs focus on corporate revival of church
Practical emphasis on morality and religion secondary importance of doctrine

Humanist Scholars and their Work

Most influential Erasmus of Rotterdam
Reflects Northern Humanism at its best (cosmopolitan)
Regarded himself as citizen of the world, shunned nationalism
Concentrated on eliminating nationalist ideas and values
Most influential work Enchiridion Militis Christiani handbook of the Christian soldier, first
published 1503, reprinted 1509, 23 editions in six years after 1515.
Thesis Church can be reformed by study of Scripture and early church fathers.
Laymans guide to study of the Scriptures
Philosophy of Christ practical morality, superiority of newer religion
Little spiritual value of rituals
NT is the law of Christ, which Christians are called to obey
Christians called to imitate Christ

Features of the book

Lay people are strength of the church not clergy
Story emphasizes an inner religion, no references to rituals, priests or institutions. People can have
direct relationship with Christ
Religion is a matter of individuals heart and mind
Monastic life not a superior form of Christianity
Major revolutionary idea lay people key to revival of the church; Scripture must be made available to

Study NT in original languages
Competence in Greek
Overcame by Erasmus Novum Instrumentum Omne 1516
Lorenzo Valle 15th century notes on Greek text of the NT
Differences with the Latin Vulgate
Eph. 5:31-32 translation of Greek word mystery instead of sacrament
Matt 4:17 do penance another sacrament external act
Greek word repent inward psychological attitudes
Lk 1:28 full of grace revision full of liquid grace
Greek favored one; one who has found favor.

Impact on the Reformation

Its impact was different on the two major strands of the continental Reformation
Impact on Swiss Reformation

Religion seen as something spiritual and internal. Primary purpose of religion to inculcate
believer with inner attitude of humility and willing obedience to God.
Emphasis on moral and ethical regeneration
Focuses on Jesus primarily as moral example
Certain early church fathers singled out Jerome and Origen, not Augustine.
Reformation focuses primarily on life and morals of the church rather than its doctrine.
Reformation educational/human process based on insight contained in NT and early church
Swiss reformation dominated by Humanism major intellectual forces of this reform

Impact on Lutheran Reformation

More limited
Zwingli saw morals of church in need of reform
Luther saw theology of church in need of reform
Set in academic setting and sought to refute scholastic theology, especially the doctrine of justification
Luther drew upon Scriptures and Fathers, especially Augustine used tools provided by Humanism.
Greek NT, knowledge of Hebrews and historical ideas
Luther rejected scholasticism because of its wrong theology, while Swiss reformers rejected it because
of its lack of eloquence, unintelligibility.
Both groups believed Scriptures held key to reform of the church
Humanist authority of Scriptures vested in its eloquence, simplicity, antiquity
Swiss reformers authority grounded in the concept word of God and provided source of moral
Lutherans word of God record of Gods gracious promises to those who believe
Humanists worship of fathers (eloquence and antiquity) equal value represented a comprehensive
form of Christianity
Swiss reformers certain fathers more important, Origen, Jerome
Wittenberg reformers Augustine pre-eminent
Theological criterion: how reliable interpretation of the NT are they


Definition: Effort to come close to God through a mystical experience.

A mystic is someone who seeks direct intimate, personal communication with God. Christianity has always contained an
element of mysticism. Christ indwells the believer and the Holy Spirit bears witness directly within him.

Three Basic Types

Pantheistic type:
Tends to merge personality with God
Meditative type:
Characteristic in monastic experience, holiness by isolation
Practical type:
Emphasizes imitating Christ. Holiness by the works of Christ.

Complexity of mystical current

Reliance upon special capacity of the soul that transcends reason and comes in contact with God
cognito experimentalis.
Superiority of cognito experimentalis over cognito rationalis
Mystical experience different from mere feeling.

Three main stages of the mystical experience

1. Required contemplation: experimental knowledge of God through ascetic mortification of senses and
Absolute necessity of receptive passivity
Gelassenheit Freedom from control of ego; entrusting oneself fully to God; soul integrated
into God

2. Infused contemplation extra contemplation through divine grace
German mystics: divine gift of discovery of real being of God
Latin mystics: knowledge of God as a person
3. Union: spiritual marriage and absorption into God, superior beauty of future age.

Mysticism tends to do away with intermediaries between believer and God

Church needs mysticism but it also threatens the church when popularity for it begins to do away with
the need for church ministers and services.
In extreme cases mystic dispenses with Scripture, even incarnate Christ himself and seeks to relate
directly with the uncreated

German Mysticism
Three great scholars; loyal to the church and its doctrines
Meister Eckart ca 1260-1327
John Taule ca 1300-1361
Thomas a Kempis

Meister Eckart
Strict ascetic. Dominion scholar
Possible to attain a state of sinless perfection and under the leading of the Spirit one can be perfectly
Deep within each person is a soul spark place where God encounters us and comes to dwell
His views influenced Luther
Low countries mysticism took new form called devotio moderna
Inspired by Gerard Groote 1340-1384
Former wealthy canon lawyer turned Carthusian monk
Devoted life to reforming clergy and teaching the young
His followers were called brethren of the common life

Brethren of the common life

Semi-monastic order of laymen who took no irrevocable vows but sought to lead lives of poverty
according to ethics of the Sermon on the Mount.
Best known member:
Thomas Kempis 1380-1471

Thomas Kempis
Wrote great classic Imitation of Christ
Sought salvation by loving God and imitating Christ
Personalized religion and minimized the importance of formal Christianity
Emphasized simplicity of life, peace of soul and purity of thought

Radical Theologians

Andreas Rudolff Bodenstein von Karlstadt

Pre-Reformation Career
Born in 1486 in Karlstadt, near Wzburg, Lower Franconia, died 1541 (compare Luther 1483-
Studied at University of Erfurt (1499-1503) and University of Cologne (1503-1505). Received
Th.D., University of Wittenberg, 1511.
At Rome, 1515-1516, earned doctorate in civil and canonical law, eyes opened to corruption in
the church.
1518, conflict with John Eck. Karlstadt prepared 405 theses for the Leipzig Debate

Seven points of agreement between Karlstadt, Mntzer, schwenkfeld, and Anabaptists
1. Letter + Spirit. The Bible must be read in the power of the Holy Spirit. Anyone who has the
Spirit can interpret the Bible.

2. Faith = conversion; not just belief, it includes a yielding to God so that the Holy Spirit makes
one a new creation (gelassen = to yield; Gelassenheit = yieldedness)
3. Anthropology
Non Pelagian (the teaching that sin can be overcome by human effort)
They did hold that the new birth, regeneration by the Holy Spirit, makes one a new
The Holy Spirit restores the possibility of free choice.
Thus they denied simil iustus et peccator, bondage of the will and predestination (200
years before Wesley).
Pneumatology (Doctrine of the Holy Spirit) They believed the Holy Spirit was the Agent who:
1. Revealed the meaning of Scripture
2. Transformed lives (conversion)
3. Restored moral freedom of choice
4. And all this to peasants as well as the privileged.
Baptism of Holy Spirit, water, and fire (persecution)
Supper is memorial; Christs body = community of believers
Priesthood of every believer means all are equal before God, hence there must be mutual aid and even
community of goods.

Karlstadt in Luthers Absence

Evangelical Lords Supper, Melanchthon leading
No veneration of pictures and images
No priestly celibacy, Karlstadt married Anna von Mochau on Jannuary 19, 1522

Zwickau Prophets, came to Wittneberg, Dec. 1521

Claimed direct inspiration; no need for Scripture
Attacked Wittenbergers immorality
Denounced infant baptism
Warned of approaching end of the world
Karlstadt did not support them

Karlstadt, the Orderly Reformer

Wittenberg City Ordinance, January 24, 1522
Authorized evangelical supper
Set timetable for orderly removal of images
Other reforms
Mobs and vandals began pulling down images
City Fathers, alarmed, appealed to Luther to return.

Luther returns, March 1522

8 sermons exalting personal salvation; but denouncing liturgical reform
Sided with conservatives and attacked Karlstadt
Stopped iconoclasm, restored Latin mass, restored elevation of the host, condemned
communion in both kinds.

Karlstadt in Exile
1523 Parish preacher at Orlamunde
1524 Banished from Saxony, met pioneers of Swiss Anabaptism in Basel
1525 Returned to Wittenberg: virtual house arrest
1530 Zwingli gave him pastoral work in Zurich
1534 Taught OT theology at the University of Basel till his death in 1541

Attacked infant baptism
Attacked Roman sacraments and soteriology
Attacked Luthers compromise with territorial church
Called for reform without waiting for anyone.
Source: Carlstadt, Whether We Should Go Slowly and Avoid Offending the Weak in Matters Pertaining to Gods
Will (1524), in E. J. Furcha, ed., The Essential Carlstadt (Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1995), 253 (247-268); see
also W. L. Emmerson, The Reformation and the Advent Movement (Washington: Review and Herald, 1983), 22.

The First Anabaptists

Conrad Grebel 1498-1526

Young nobleman; rather carefree university student of Swiss Brethren
1522 experienced conversion under Zwinglis ministry; became leader of Bible study groups.
Opposed Zwingli on infant baptism and doctrine of free confessional church.
1524 refused to bring infant daughter for baptism
1525 disputation on infant baptism. Lost. Baptized Blaurock at his home.
1526 Grebel sentenced to life imprisonment in Zurich. Escaped, traveled widely. Died of the plague in

Felix Mantz 1498-1527

Close associate of Grebel in Bible study
Proficient in Latin, Greek, Hebrew.
1525 disputed Zwingli and lost
1527 executed by drowning

George Blaurock
Roman Catholic priest; new in Zurich
Convert to Anabaptist faith
1525 Asked Grebel to baptize him
1527 Driven out of Zurich on day of Mantz execution
Burnt at the stake

Menno Simons 1492-1561

Early life/education
Born in Holland
1531-36 he was a Catholic priest
Renounced Roman Catholic doctrine through study of NT
Attempted to preach new truth from pulpit
Voluntarily relinquished pulpit; joined Anabaptist
Next 25 years; criss-crossed Netherlands and Germany; converting and organizing members
About his work Menno wrote:
God not only provides for our necessities, and bestows upon us as much as we need for the everyday purposes of life in
his goodness, he deals still more generously with us, by cheering our hearts with wine and oil. Nature would certainly be
satisfied with water to drink! The addition of wine is thus due to Gods overflowing generosity. RT, 194.
Wrote Books of Fundamentals 1539
Baptism only to those who expressed faith in Christ as their Redeemer
Advocated practice of communion of goods
Believed in soul sleep; dead know not anything
Insisted on freedom of will
Necessity of good works as fruits of faith
Emphasized following Christ pattern of life
Stressed disciplined lifestyle
Condemned licentious living, earthly comfort, personal advancement, social enjoyment and
amassing possessions.

Schleitheim Confession by Michael Sattler adopted February 24, 1527 by Swiss Brethren Conference

Concerning Baptism
Baptism only for those who have learned repentance and amendment of life and who truly believe their
sins are forgiven
Who walk in resurrection of Jesus Christ
All infant baptism excluded
Matthew 28, Mark 16, Acts 2, 8, 16, 19

Employed against baptized members who have fallen in error or sin.
Admonished twice in secret and third time openly disciplined or banned according to the command of
Christ in Matthew 18.

Breaking of Bread
Only baptized members can partake of the communion service.

No fellowship with the wicked
All baptized believers must separate themselves from all Catholic and Protestant works and church
services, meetings, church attendance, drinking houses, civic affairs.

Pastors in the church of God

Admonish, teach, warn, discipline, ban
Lead out in prayer for advancement of all brethren and sisters
Care for body of Christ that it may be built up and developed

Use of the Sword

Ordained by God to punish wicked and used by worldly magistrates
No use of sword by Christian for defense; protection of good or for sake of love; example of Christ
No involvement of Christians in passing judgment in worldly disputes.

Government Office
Not appropriate for Christians to serve in government
Citizens not of this world but of heaven
Christian armor Christian weapon

Concerning oaths
No oath or swearing by Christians according to the commands of Christ

Sattlers both martyred, May 1527 (see J.A. Moore, Anabaptist Portraits, pp. 116-119).
Schleitheim Confession gave doctrinal identity to Swiss Brethren, even though most were soon driven from Switzerland.

Radical Reformation Theology

Doctrine of the Church

Believers of church faith based on faith of instructed adult
Body of Christ
Monks of discipleship surrender to Christs will; obedience and actively following Christ
Conversion essential
Need to maintain purity of doctrine and conduct
True visible community

Doctrine of Salvation
Emphasis on grace and faith but disagreed with Luther that justification changed ones legal condition
before God, but did not change essential human condition
Argued that saving grace works in believers to transform them here and now; saving grace is not only
prevenient grace but also efficacious power to regenerate.

Salvation continued:
Faith that leads to salvation is a faith that bears visible fruits of repentance, conversion, obedience and
Righteousness not just imputed, but becoming righteous by the power of the risen Christ

Doctrine of Man
Doctrine of Freewill-Salvation, gift of grace that humans can refuse or reject

Believers called to yield inwardly to the Spirit of God and outwardly to the community
Reject the doctrine of predestination, charges God with evil and robs man of the liberty to make choices
for or against God

Spirit of God in believers leads to life of discipleship
Connection between inner life of the Spirit and faith, rebirth, regeneration, and outer life of discipleship
and obedience.

Most kept Sunday
Few believed in the Bible Sabbath
See theology of Sabbath of Oswald Glaidt and Andreas Fischer

Second Advent
All were convinced they were living in the last days, differ in emphasis and specificity
Indentified Rome as antichrist and Babylon harlot
Coming of Jesus was imminent
Many studied the prophetic books to discover the signs of the end
Regarded their persecution and suffering as sign of the end

The Doctrine of Justification by Faith

Redemption through Christ: NT theme

Basic idea:
God has achieved the redemption of sinful humanity through the death of Christ on the cross
Greek word soteria salvation broad term which focuses on the redemption achieved
through the death and resurrection of Christ

Five broad components to this network of ideas are discernable

1. Images of victory
2. Images of changed legal status
3. Images of changed personal relationship
4. Images of liberation
5. Images of restoration to wholeness

Martin Luthers theological breakthrough

How was it possible for a sinner to enter into a relationship with a righteous God?
Church attempts to answer question: there was no authoritative statement from the church, but it was a
favorite topic of debate

Luthers early view (From lectures on Psalms 1513-1515)

Similar to via moderna. God had established a covenant with humanity by which he is obliged to justify
anyone who meets a certain minimum precondition.
God gives his grace to the humble that all who humble themselves before God can expect to be
It is for this reason that we are saved:
God has made a testament and a covenant with us, so that whoever believes and is baptized will be
saved. In this covenant God is truthful and faithful, and is bound by what he has promised.
Ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and it shall be opened to you. For everyone who asks
receives, etc. (Matt &:7-8) Hence the doctors of theology rightly say that God gives grace without fail to whoever
does what lies within them
( facere quod in se est). (Reformation Thought, 106)

Luthers early view

The sinner takes the initiative by calling upon God. The sinner is able to do something which ensures
that God responds by justifying him.

Luthers discovery of the righteousness of God
Early view
Righteousness of God refers to an impartial divine attribute.
God judges individuals with complete impartiality; shows neither leniency or favoritism;
judges solely on the merit; gives to us what we merit; nothing more, nothing less.
Difficulty with this approach troubled Luther in late 1514 to early 1515.
What happens if a sinner is incapable of meeting this basic precondition?
What happens if sinners are so crippled and trapped by sin that they cannot fulfill the demands which
are made of them? See Luthers dilemma.
It seemed that Luther could not meet the precondition for salvation. He did not have the resources
needed to be saved. There was no way God could justly reward him with salvation, only condemnation.
The righteousness of God meant punishment and condemnation to Luther
Promise of justification real but precondition attached to promise made fulfillment impossible
Precondition impossible to fulfill. It was as if God had promised a blind man a million dollars
provided he could see.
Righteousness of God not good news for sinners led Luther to despair of his own salvation;
Luthers central question on his personal agenda. Then it happened Luthers break through.
I had certainly wanted to understand Paul in his letter to the Romans. But what prevented me from
doing so was not so much cold feet as that one phrase in the first chapter: the righteousness of God is
revealed in it (Romans 1:17). For I hated that phrase, the righteousness of God, which I had been
taught to understand as the righteousness by which God is righteous, and punishes unrighteous
Although I lived a blameless life as a monk, I felt that I was a sinner with an uneasy conscience
before God. I also could not believe that I had pleased him with my works. Far from loving that
righteous God who punished sinners, I actually hated him . . . I was in desperation to know what Paul
meant in this passage
At last, as I meditated day and night on the relation of the words the righteousness of God is
revealed in it, as it is written, the righteous person shall live by faith, I began to understand that
righteousness of God as that by which the righteous person lives by the gift of God (faith); and this
sentence, the righteousness of God is revealed, to refer to a passive righteousness, by which the
merciful God justifies us by faith, as it is written, the righteous person lives by faith
This immediately made me feel as though I had been born again, and as though I had entered through
open gates into paradise itself. From that moment, I saw the whole face of Scripture in a new light . . .
And now, where I had once hated the phrase, the righteousness of God, I began to love and extol it as
the sweetest of phrases, so that this passage in Paul became the very gate of paradise to me.
(Reformation Theology, 108, 109)
Righteousness of God changed what was the nature of this change? God gives to the sinner God
himself meets the precondition, graciously gives sinners what HE requires if they are to be justified
The God of the Christian gospel is not a harsh judge who rewards individuals according to their merits,
but a merciful, gracious God who bestows righteousness upon sinners as a gift.
Luther moves from a Pelagian view to an Augustinian position. Point of change sometime in 1515 as
recalled by Luther in 1545.
1515-1519 Luther understood justification as a process of becoming in which the sinner gradually
conformed to the likeness of Jesus Christ through a process of internal renewal. Lecture on Romans
1515-1516 altered his view in mid 1530s under influence of Melancthons forensic approach
justification changed to view justification as an event which was complemented by the distinct
process of regeneration and interior renewal through the action of the Holy Spirit. Justification altered
the outer status of the sinner in the sight of God, while regeneration altered the sinners inner nature.

Nature of Justifying Faith

Luthers three points on faith
1. Faith has a personal rather than a purely historical reference.
2. Faith concerns trust in the promises of God.
3. Faith unites the believer to Christ.

Believing not just in the historicity of the gospel story but believing and trusting that Christ was born
for us personally and has accomplished for us the work of salvation.

I have often spoken about two different kinds of faith. The first goes like this: you believe that it is true
that Christ is the person who is described and proclaimed in the gospels, but you do not believe that he
is such a person for you. You doubt if you can receive that from him, and you think: yes, Im sure he is
that person for someone else (like Peter and Paul, and for religious and holy people)
But is he that person for me? Can I confidently expect to receive everything from him that the saints
expect? You see, this faith is nothing. It receives nothing of Christ, and tastes nothing of him either. It
cannot feel joy, nor love of him or for him. This is a faith related to Christ, but not a faith in Christ. . .
. . . the only faith which deserves to be called Christian is that: you believe unreservedly that it is not
only for Peter and the saints that Christ is such a person, but also for you yourselfin fact, for you
more than anyone else.
Faith Concerns Trust-- fiducia
Faith is not simply believing that a ship exists. It is about stepping into it and entrusting oneself
to it. But what are we being asked to trust? Are we being asked simply to have faith in faith?
Who are we being asked to trust? For Luther, the answer was unequivocal: Faith is being
prepared to put our trust in the promises of God and in the integrity and faithfulness of God
who made these promises. (Reformation Theology, 111)
It is necessary that anyone who is about to confess his sins put his trust only and completely in the most
gracious promise of God. That is, he must be certain that the one who has promised forgiveness to
whoever confesses his sins will most faithfully fulfill this promise. For we are to glory, not in the fact
that we confess our sins, but in the fact that God has promised pardon to those who confess their sins
in other words, we are not to glory on account of the worthiness or adequacy of our confession
(because there is no such worthiness or adequacy) but on account of the truth and certainty of Gods
promises. (Reformation Theology, 112)
In the third place, faith unites the believer with Christ 1520 Liberty of the Christian Man.
Faith unites the soul with Christ as a bride is united with her bridegroom. As Paul teaches us, Christ and the soul become
one flesh by this mystery (Ephesians 5:31-2). And if they are one flesh and the marriage is real-in fact, it is the most perfect
of all marriages, and human marriages are poor reflections of this one true marriagethen it follows that everything that
they have is held in common, whether good or evil
So the believer can boast of and glory in whatever Christ possess, as though it were his or her own; and whatever the
believer has, Christ claims as his own. Let us see how this works and how it benefits us. Christ is full of grace, life and
salvation. the human soul is full of sin, death and damnation. Now let faith come between them. Sin, death and damnation
will then be Christs; and grace, life and salvation will be the believers.
Faith, then is not an assent to an abstract set of doctrine. Rather, it is a wedding ring (Luthers
description) pointing to a mutual commitment and union between Christ and the believer. It is the
response of the whole person of the believer to God which leads in turn to the real and personal
presence of Christ in the believer. Faith makes both Christ and his benefits such as forgiveness,
justification and hope available to the believer.
God provides everything necessary for justification, so all the sinner needs to do is to receive it. The
justification of the sinner is based on the grace of God and is received through faith.

Forensic Justification
Central tenets of Luthers doctrine
Since we are incapable of self-justification; God is the one who takes the initiative on
Providing all resources necessary to justifying the sinner
Righteousness given to him by God
Alien righteousness located outside the believer
God reckons His righteous as if it is part of the sinners person
Given righteous status while we work with God towards attaining righteous nature
The sinners are always sinners in their own sight, and therefore always justified outwardly. But the hypocrites are always
righteous in their own sight, and thus always sinners outwardly p 119, 120

Simul Iustus et Peccator

At once righteous and a sinner
Semper iustus et peccator
Always righteous and a sinner
We are in truth and totally sinners with regards to ourselves and our first birthas Christ has been
given us we are holy and just totally, from different aspectswe are just and sinners at one and the
same time.

Sinner in reality, righteous by imputation promise
I use the term inwardly to show how we are in ourselves, in our own sight, in our own estimation,
and the term outwardly to indicate how we are before God in Gods reckoning. Therefore, we are
righteous outwardly when we are righteous solely by the imputation of God and not of ourselves or our
own works.
Believers are accounted righteous on account of the alien righteousness of Christ., imputed to them-that
as if it were theirs through faith.

Luthers two kind of Righteousness

First : Infinite and primary
Basis, cause and source of all actual righteousness
Given in place of & opposite original sin
Accomplish more than original righteousness
Alien righteousness instill in us without works, grace alone
Not instilled at once, but progressive, perfected at death.

Second kind: Our proper righteousness working with first kind.

Life spent profitable in good works
Slaying flesh, crucifying the desires.
Love for ones neighbors
Meekness and fear towards God.
Product of first righteousness, fruit of Spirit
Strives against Old Adam, destroy body of sin
Follow Christs example
Set opposite actual sins Roms 6:19

Zwingli and Justification

1. Focused on Reformation of life and morality
2. Justification by faith; conspicuous by its absence
3. Emphasis on the moral consequences of the gospel
4. Unlike Luthers focus on the individual and his relationship to God, Zwingli focused on reformation of
the community affecting church and society rather than the individual moral in character; concerned
with moral and spiritual regeneration of society along NT lines; not concerned with how individuals
found a gracious God
5. Christ was moral example rather than personal presence within believer
6. Priority of moral renewal over forgiveness
7. During 1520s Zwingli became influenced by Luthers idea. Luther Scripture focuses on Gods
promises; what He has done for sinful humanity.
8. Zwinglis Scripture sets out the moral demands which God makes of believers. It is primarily concerned
with what humanity must do in response to the sacrifice provided by Christ.

Calvin and Bucer on Justification

Central Issue
Role of Christ in justification and the relationship between Gods gracious acts of justification
and human obedience to the divine will.

Justified sinner not obligated to perform moral actions; opposite responses to Gods grace; not a cause
of justification

Bucer double justification Two Stages

Stage 1 Justification of the ungodly Gods forgiveness of human sin (later Protestant theology called
this justification)
Stage 2. Justification of the righteous (godly). Obedient human response to the moral demands of the
gospel (later Protestant theology called this regeneration or sanctification). Casual link justification
and moral regeneration unless both took place the sinner could not be said to be justified. Absence of
moral regeneration implied a person had not been justified.

Calvin faith unites believer to Christ in mystic union; leads to grace

First the believers union with Christ leads directly to his justification through Christ; believer declared
to be righteous in the sight of God.
Major thesis: As long as we are separated from Christ, all that he has achieved on the cross is
meaningless for us.
Role of Faith: Means of availing ourselves of the divine promises. Thru faith Christ engrafts into his
body and makes us not only partakers of his benefits but of himself.

Justification defined
Remission of sins
Imputation of Christs righteousness
Reckoned not as sinner but as righteous
Accepted on account of Christs righteousness
Grasps the righteousness of Christ thru faith and clothed in it appears in Gods sight righteous

Justification and Sanctification

Issue of Christs involvement in justification: Justification comes as consequence of insertion into
Issue of Justification and demand for holy life: (a) Those whom He justifies, He also sanctifies. (b)
Unity of justification and regeneration 1. Free acceptance before God 2. Resulting duty of obedience
Second on the amount of believers union with Christ and not on amount of his justification;
the believer begins the process of becoming like Christ through regeneration.
Bucer justification causes regeneration.
Calvin justification and regeneration; results from union with Christ.

Radical Reformers on Justification

Karlstadt : Saving grace remake & regenerate sinners
Lead sinners to life of discipleship and obedience
Grace is efficacious
Faith results in overcoming sin
Grace frees human will to choose or reject salvation
Sin is volitional can be conquered by yielding to Gods will
Life must show visible conformity to Christ
Disagreement with Luther.
Luther: Forensic justification change in legal status
No change in essential human condition as sinner
Saving grace works in believers to transform them here and now.
Transformed believers participate someway in salvation process

Council of Trent on Justification

Defended the Augustinian view that justification involves the event and the process of regeneration and
renewal within human nature which brings about a change in both the outer status and the inner nature
of the sinner.
The justification of the sinner may be briefly defined as a translation from that state in which a human
being is born a child of the first Adam, to the state of grace
The adoption of the sons of God through the second Adam, Jesus Christ our Savior.
According to the gospel, this translation cannot come about except through the cleansing of
regeneration or a desire, as it is written, unless someone is born again of water and the Holy Spirit, he
or she cannot enter into the kingdom of God. John 3:5
Justification includes the idea of regeneration.
Not only remission of sins but sanctification and renewal of the inner person through reception of grace
and gifts by which an unrighteous person becomes righteous.
Not solely imputation linked to sacraments of baptism and penance.
Sinner justified initially through baptism
Can lose justification on account of sin but can be renewed by penance;
maintain medieval definition of justification event and process
Nature of Justifying Righteousness

The only direct cause of justification is the righteousness which God (infuses) graciously
imparts to us.
The single formal cause (of justification) is the righteousness of God-not the righteousness by which
God is righteous,
but the righteousness by which God makes us righteous, so that when we are endowed with it, we are
renewed in the spirit of our mind (Eph. 4:23)
we are not only counted righteous but are called and are in reality righteous. . . Nobody can be righteous
except God communicates the merits of the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ to him or her and this takes
place in the justification of the sinner. (Nature of Justifying Faith. See Cannon 12)

Assurance of Salvation
Nobody can know with a certainty of faith, which is not subject to error, whether they have obtained the
grace of God.
Trent accused the reformers of making human confidence or boldness the grounds for justification, so
that justification rested upon a fallible human conviction rather than on the grace of God.

Instrumental Causes of Justification

Baptism initial cause can be forfeited by sin
Penance secondary cause can be renewed thru penance
Those who through sin have forfeited the received grace of justification can be justified again when moved by God, they
exert themselves to obtain the sacrament of penance by the merits of Christ

The Doctrine of Predestination

Considered the central feature of reformed faith.

Identified with Calvinism
Relationship to Gods sovereignty

Greek words on Predestination

Pooridzw to predesigned; predetermine,
Rom. 8:28, 29 Eph. 1:5, 11
Portithemi: to predetermine, Rom. 3:25, Eph. 1:9
Prothesis: noun a predetermined plan,
Rom, 9:11, Eph. 1:11, 3:11, 2Tim. 1:9
Proginoskw: to foreordain, 1Peter1:20; Rom: 29, 11:2
Prognosis: noun, foreknowledge; a predetermined purpose, Acts 2: 23, 1Peter1:2

Zwingli on Divine Sovereignty

Shaped by Zwinglis experience of the plague
Accepted it as Gods will
Do as you will for I lack nothing, I am your vessel to be restored or destroyed.
Gods sovereignty developed into doctrine of providence
Famous sermon De Providentia
Salvation or condemnation totally matter of God
Divine omnipotence vs human impotence
Shaped by Paul - Seneca
Focus on Law of God
Demands made by a sovereign God of his people law and gospel the same.

Principles of Gods providence

Creator rather than creatures
Providence rather than chance
Holy Scriptures rather than human tradition
True religion rather than ceremonial piety
External kingdom rather than privatized morality.
Focus on Gods sovereignty led to break with humanism
Began reformation as education process failure

Reformation determined by divine providence
Pamphlet: Commentary on True and False Religion attacked
The Idea of free will
Educational methods to reform corrupt, sinful humanity, similar to Luthers work
On Bondage of the Will.

Calvin on Predestination
Doctrine of predestination Calvinism, not Calvin. Institutes p. 140-143 human sinfulness not divine
Augustine: humanity corrupt and impotence requires grace to some (those who are to be saved) and
posses one, omits others. Focuses on divine decision to save, not on and of abandoning others.
Calvin: God chooses to actively save or to condemn. He is active and sovereign; not default. He wills
salvation to those to the elect and he damns the lost. Predestination: eternal decree of God on all.
Reflects graciousness of God for He saves sinners, regardless of their merits. Book 3 of 1559 edition,
aspects of doctrine of redemption. Chapter 21-24. Decretus Horrible not horrible but awe inspiring or
terrifying decree.
Context of Predestination
1. Follows exposition of grace
2. Mystery of divine revelation
3. Begins with observable facts; some believe and some do not
4. Attempts to explain various responses to the gospel
5. Posterior reflection upon human experience rather than deduced a priori on the basis of
preconceived ideas of divine omnipotence
6. Not an article of faith in its own right
7. Not a new idea; Augustines
8. Salvation outside control of the individual
9. Other areas of life; some born to poverty; others to wealth
10. Example of general mystery of human existence
Predestination and notion of Gods goodness, and justice
1. Gods relationship to his creation; capricious? Is his action bound to any law or order?
2. Calvin: God is outside of law; His will is the foundation of morality.
3. Rest in the inscrutable judgment of God. Book 3, chapter 21.1. We can never know why God
does what he does; he is not obligated to justify his actions.

Calvins evidence for Divine Election

Christ chosen from the womb before he had done anything meritorious, clearest image of election
Eph1:4-6 Chosen us in Christ before the foundation of the world
John 6:37, 39, 45. John 17: 6, 12
Church Fathers, including Augustine.
Dealing with objections
It is unfair to be angry with men before they have offended
If God rejects some and elects others, there is no point in preaching
Prayer is unnecessary

Predestination in later Calvinism

Post Calvin
Concern for systematic organization and coherent deduction of ideas because of opposition
used Aristotelian methods
Four Characteristics:
Human reason assigned major role in explanation and defense of Christian theology
Christian theology presented as logically coherent and rationally defensible system derived
from syllogistic deduction based on known axioms.
Theology grounded in Aristotelian philosophy
Theology concerned with metaphysical and speculation questions, especially as it relates to the
nature of God

Contrast with Calvins theology which centered on and derived from events of Jesus Christ. Concerned
now with establishing a logical starting point for theology; focus on predestination.
Beza: Divine decrees of election; starting point for his theological systematization. Rest of theology
concerned with explanation of the consequences of those decisions. Doctrine of predestination
controlling principle.
Consequence: doctrine of limited atonement; heightened interest in election.

Luther on Predestination
Based on Augustines view
Augustines doctrine of grace as expressed in the doctrine of justification by faith alone was the article
articulus stantis et cadentis ecclesiae, the article by which the church stands or falls

Luthers bondage of the Will

The will of man is bound in sin and is therefore unable to cooperate with God. Therefore the sovereign
will of God must be the sole determining factor in the salvation of man

Gods sovereignty vs. human will

Erasmus: Gods will should not be emphasized to the point that the freedom of mans will is usurped
Luther: God has surely promised grace to the humblebut man cannot be humbled till he realizes that
his salvation is utterly beyond his powers, counsels efforts, will and works and depends absolutely on
the will, counsel, pleasure and work of Another.---God alone

Sola Scriptura

Scripture in the Middle Ages

Tradition 1
Single Source Theory of doctrine-based on Scriptures traditional way of interpreting
Tradition 2
Dual source doctrines based on two distinct sources, scriptures and unwritten tradition going
back to apostles and passed down from one generation to the next.

Textus Vulgatus
1276 Paris version was the standard version
Vernacular versions were based on the Latin vulgate.
Wycliffes translation continued the errors and the weakness of the vulgate.

Humanists and the Bible

Scripture to be read directly in original languages - Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek rather than Latin
New tools for studying the Scriptures
Development of textual techniques

The Bible and the Reformation

Doctrine institution or regulation of both church and society must be grounded in Scripture
Scriptures as teacher
Scriptures as a pair of spectacles
Scriptures as better help
Scriptures as nurse using baby language

Calvin and authority

Authority does not rest on any external basis
Scripture is autopista, self authenticating, needs no outside proofs
In scriptures confronted by mysteries, only those illuminated by the Spirit can understand.

On Clarity and Certainty of the Word of God
Foundations for religious Scriptures

Luthers method
Interpretation of Bible to establish natural sense of scriptures, not identical to literal
Example Matt 26; 26
Scripture exegete to uncover the contour to allow the scripture to act as an ethical guide guiding
believers through the moral maze of life.

Luther continued
The biblical principle
In the Bible there is the word of God, the message of CHRIST, His work of atonement, forgivingness of
sin and the offer of salvation.
Distinctions among the books of the Bible
Books which deal with Christ most centrally are the Gospel of John, Epistle of Paul and I Peter
Books of Esther and Revelation do not really belong in the scripture
Gospel of John excels the synoptic in value and power
Epistle of James has no evangelical character
Scripture most important source of Christian doctrine.
Difference between reformers and medieval theology is how is Scripture defined and interpreted.

Canon of Scripture
Authority of Scripture
The Role of Tradition
Methods of Interpreting Scripture

Canon of scripture
Medieval theologians works included in the vulgate.
OT works in Greek and Latin eliminates distinction between Hebrew bible and apocryphal works
Reformers,- only books found in Hebrew bible, no apocryphal works

Authority of Scriptures
Absolute identity-scriptures was word of God
Scriptures contained word of God
Calvin-authority grounded in the fact that bible writers were secretaries,
Bullinger- Word of God has authority in itself and of itself
Reformers- authority of popes, councils, theologians subordinate to scriptures
Catholic- authority of pope and church over scriptures

Role of Tradition
Tradition I- magisterial reformers, interpretation of scriptures with new tools, eg. Language
Tradition 0 Radical reformers, every individual has right to interpret scripture subject to the guidance of
the Holy Spirit, private interpretation of individual above corporate judgment of church
Rejects infant baptism as unscriptural
Rejects Trinity, , inadequate scripture
Tradition 2, Catholic, Council of Trent 1546 reaffirms two source theory: Scripture and Tradition

Medieval method of Interpretation

4 senses of Scripture
1. Literal- scripture taken at face value
2. Allegorical- scriptures interpreted to produce doctrinal statements
3. Tropological or moral- scriptures interpreted to produce ethics for Christian conduct
4. Anagogical-scriptures interpreted to indicate the grounds of Christian hope, pointing towards
future fulfillment of divine promises in New Jerusalem

Erasmus method

Enchiridion distinction between the letter and the spirit between the words of Scripture and their real
The task of the exegete is to uncover the deeper meaning.
Erasmus concern:
Biblical interpretation to establish hidden meaning not the letter of scripture.

Interpretation of Bible to establish nature sense of Scripture; not identical to literal.
Matthew 26:26
Scripture exegete to uncover contour to allow Scripture to act as an ethical guide guiding believers
through the moral maze of life.

Zwingli and Scriptures: three pivotal moments

Clarity and Certainty of the Word of God sermon 1522, led by the word and the Spirit to learn doctrine
of God directly from the scriptures
New Pattern of preaching at Zurich abandoned lectionary in favor of chapter by chapter exposition of
the word of God
Acceptance of scripture principle by city authorities to preach the divine scriptures in 1520

Radical Reformers and the Scriptures

The Spirit and the Letter belonged together-scriptural questions not to be automatically decided by
theologians and preachers
Without the baptism of the Spirit there is no understanding of the scriptures
The true interpreter of scripture is known by outward witness of the interpreters life

Radicals Reformation views

Basic rule for reformation: Reformation of church and Christian life must be governed by what the
scriptures command; whatsoever has not been expressly commanded in scriptures is forbidden
Emphasis of NT over OT, the bible is not flat, the OT has been superseded by the NT
Accepted apocryphal writings as cononical

The Catholic Response

The fourth session of the Council of Trent 1546
Scripture is not the only source of revelation, tradition is a vital supplement.
Protestant list of canonical books was deficient.
Vulgate edition of Scripture affirmed to be reliable and authoritative.
Only the Church has authority to interpret Scriptures.
No Roman Catholic was allowed to publish any work relating to the interpretation of the Scriptures
without approval from the church.

The English Reformation

King Henry
Justification by Faith in the English Reformation
Augustine: Justification is an internal act of making righteousness, in which the righteousness of Christ
is imparted to us
Melanchthon: Justification is an external event of being declared righteous in which the righteousness
of God is imputed to us.
Early English Reformation: Augustinian
During the reign of Edward VI slight shift

Views of the Sacraments

Thomas Cranmer
Most significant English theologian
Prayer book mans instrument of consolidating the Reformation
No notion of real presence; took on more Zwinglian position

Cranmers work
Defense of True and Catholic Doctrine of the Sacrament 1550
Lords Supper serves three functions
Memorial of Christs sacrifice
Represents sacrifice for praise for that sacrifice
Stresses importance of spirituality feeding upon Christ

Cranmer rejects doctrine of transubstantiation

Prefers Zwinglis position rather than Luthers on the meaning of phrase this is my body
Interprets the Eucharist as a memorial of Christ saving death
Cranmers argument to support his sacramental view same as Zwingli
Supper is beneficial only to His faithful

The Impact of the Reformation on the Western World

Remarkable change of attitude to the secular order, affirmation of the world- monastic Christianity
repudiated as superior form of spirituality
New views of spirituality, to be lived and experienced in the real world; not in isolation. Centers of
Christian shift from monastery to market place.
New emphasis on affirming Gods creation
Recovery of Christian calling
Ended pre-eminence of Roman Catholic hierarchy and divided western Christianity into two rival
ecclesiastical organizations
Doctrine of justification cut deeply into the theory of salvation by good work as man became acutely
aware of personal responsibility before God.
New forms of worship appeared and return to the simplicity and purity of apostolic period even though
reformers retain vestiges of Roman Catholicism some sects claim to NT form Anabaptist, Separatists
Catholic Reformation

New reverence for work
Birth of Protestant work ethic
Rise of New form of capitalism
Increased wealth of frugal and hard working

Elevation of family life to new level of respectability
Emergence of new social class which encouraged shift from the static medieval class system
Masses began to recognize the obligation of tolerance

Acceptance of need for change in the political order
Birth of natural human rights
Rise of national governments
Rejection of papal intervention in national affairs

Birth of civil liberty and religious freedom rose from religious war
Secularization of government which assumed many of the activities and functions formerly regulated by
the Catholic church.
Democratic principles born of the Reformation caused the development of colonies in the new world

Reformation broke monopoly of Catholic church in learning
Reason became companion of truth and undeviating submission to priestly authority gave way to
intellectual liberty
Founding of public school system credited to Reformation work of Colet, Luther, Melanchthon.
Expanding use of local languages in education
Reformation made contribution to hymnology and other forms of music

Doctrine of
Church and state relations

Late Medieval
Christian citizen obligated to submit
Divine rights of the king
King accountable only to God
Reformation Era
Protestant rule over the believers
Conscience and crown
Legality of citizens resistance
John Knox
Ulrich Zwingli
Role of Church in State Matters
Enforce two tables of the law
Legal resistance to state

Luthers Doctrine of two kingdoms

Luthers Doctrine
Demolishes medieval view of temporal and spiritual estates through doctrine of priesthood of all
believers on account of baptism
Although we are priests, this does not mean that all of us may preach, teach and exercise authority.
Certain ones from within the community must be elected and set apart for such office. Anyone who
holds such an office is not a priest by virtue of that office, but is a servant of all the others, who are just
as much priests as he is.

Luthers Alternative Doctrine

Kingdom of the Spirit affected through the Word of God and guidance of the Holy Spirit.
True believer needs no other direction; will naturally act morally and responsible
Gods worldly government affected through kings, princess and magistrates through the use of the
sword and civil law
No authority in matters of doctrine

Christian Society Two Kingdoms

Kingdom of the Spirit
Christian ethics reflecting rule of love embodied in Sermon on the Mount
God governs the church by Holy Spirit through the Gospel
Persuasive concerns of persons soul
Kingdom of the Sword
Public morality based on coercion in which citizens obey law out of fear

God governs the world by sword of secular authority. Use of sword justified
to enforce law because of human sinfulness.
God establishes political order to restrain human greed and wickedness
Coercive: concerns persons body and goods

Summary of Luthers View on the State

It is the Fall that leads to mans self-destruction. It produces a centrifugal tendency which
drives men apart from one another, witness the fratricide of Cain and the dispersion at Babel.
God puts a stop to this self-destruction in order to give man a kairos, a space in which to
Institutional form of this preservation is the state: the state is not an order of creation but an
emergency order evoked by the Fall.
Even so, the state is an awful remedy by which harmful limbs are cut off that the rest may be preserved. Thus the
state is to be understood theologically in terms of its function within salvation history, and hence as an ordinance of God.
The state is entrusted to human reason
The state musts be limited against violating Gods orders

How Should Christians Deal with Oppressive Rulers?

Preferred oppression to revolution.

Five Central Premises Underlying Luthers Political Ideology.

Christian ethics, but not human morality, is grounded in the doctrine of justification of faith
All Christians have a civic and social responsibility to perform. Some Christians may
discharge these responsibilities by holding public office.
The morality of the Sermon on the Mount applies to the life of every Christian, but not
necessarily to every decision which Christian may make if they hold public office
The state has been divinely ordained to achieve certain purposes, which the church cannot, and
should not attempt to achieve.
In other words, their spheres of influence and authority are different, and must not be confused.
God rules the church through the Gospel, but is obligated to rule the sinful world through law,
wisdom, natural law and coercion.

Zwingli on the State and Magistrates

City Council Derived its Authority from God under the authority of God. Allowed city council to be
interpreter of Scripture.
Three political systems:
Monarchy arbitrary degenerates into tyranny, too much power
Democracy authority in peoples hand but degenerate into chaos
Oligarchy possess representative element and accountability to the people, via
media, best way.

Calvin on Church-state relations

Church and state closely linked role of state is to maintain
Role of state is to maintain political and ecclesiastical order and the provision of the
teaching of right doctrine
Political authority is essential for and maintain external worship of God
Defend sound doctrine and the condition of the church
To adopt or conduct to human
From manners to civil justice
To reconcile us to one another
To cherish peace and common tranquility
Magistrates and ministers committed to same task.

Difference lies in tools available to them and their respective spheres of authority
Both agents of God, complementary not competitive
Distrusted monarchy as form of government.
Proved to be tyrants and motivated by self-concerns rather than well-being of the

The Radicals on Church and State

Doctrine of two kingdoms (similar to Luther)
Kingdom of Christ
Kingdom of the World
Government given because of mans sin
Belonged to the law
Church given by grace, belonged to the Gospel

Kingdom of Christ
Characterized by peace, forgiveness
Nonviolence and patience

Kingdom of the World

Satan, strife, vengeance, anger, the sword that kills
Government belongs to this kingdom
Appointed by God to perform divine function, benevolent or tyrannous
Function to reward good and punish evil
Keeps order by force because of disobedience in heart of man
Because its instituted by God acts in Gods stead and should be obeyed. Taxes due
should be paid for without resistance
Gods authority exceeded the government and if conflict arises He should be obeyed
without question.

Luther argued:
Christians participate in government out of love for their neighbor
Could do it with a good conscience because he was carrying out a divine

Anabaptists argued:
Christians may not participate in government out of love for neighbor
A servant of Christ has no liberty to use coercion and vengeance or kill
contrary to commandments of Christ.

Doctrine of the Church

Reformation considered the triumph of Augustinian doctrine of grace over Augustines
doctrine of the church
Reformers challenged by two different views of the church
church was a visible, historic institution possessing historical continuity with
apostolic church
no earthly institution; merited name church of God, true church in heaven
Magisterial reformers tried to take middle ground
leaned more towards the Catholic definition
Luther on the Nature of the Church
The church cannot exist without the word of God.

The visible church is constituted by the preaching of the word of God.
No human assembly may claim to be the church of God unless it is founded on this
Now, anywhere you hear or see [the Word of God] preached, believed, confessed, and acted upon, do
not doubt that the true ecclesia sancta catholica, a holy Christian people must be there, even though
there are very few of them. For Gods word shall not return empty (Isaiah 55:11), but must possess at
least a fourth or a part of the field. And even if there were no other sign than this alone, it would be
enough to prove that a holy Christian people must exist there, for Gods word cannot be without Gods
people and conversely, Gods people cannot be without Gods word. For who would preach the word, or
hear it preached, if there were no people of God? And what could or would Gods people believe, if
there were no word of God?
Legitimacy of the church is based not on historical continuity but theological continuity.
Faithfulness to the Word of God
New understanding of the role of individual Christians universal priesthood of all believers.
It is an invention that the Pope, bishop, priests and monks are called the spiritual estate
(geistlich stand), while princes, lords, craftsmen and farmers are called the secular estate
(weltlich ssand). This is a spurious idea, and nobody should fear it for the following reason. All
Christians truly belong to the spiritual estate, and there is no difference among them apart from
their office (ampt) . . . We all have one baptism, one gospel`, one faith, and are all alike
Christians, in that it is baptism, gospel and faith which alone make us spiritual and a Christian
people . . . . We are all consecrated priests through baptism, as St. Peter says: You are a royal
priesthood and a priestly kingdom (1 Peter 2:9) . . .
Therefore someone who bears the status of a priest, is nothing other than an officeholder. He
takes priority for as long as he holds this office; when he is deposed, he becomes a peasant or
citizen like all the others . . . It follows from this that there is no basic true difference between
lay people, priests, princes and bishops, between the spiritual and the secular, except for their
office and work ( ) and not on the basis of their status (stand). All are of the spiritual estate,
and all are truly priests, bishops and popes, although they are not the same in terms of their
individual work. RT 203, 204.
Luthers community as gift and as task
Community rests upon the fact that Christs sacrifice of love makes believers one
Self ceases
Full sharing of life through love
Participation in this community involves every member in a simultaneous gift, or
task, grace and calling
Christs righteousness atones for mans sins and Christ and His saints intercede for us
before God
Task of love
Each takes burden of Christ and his church upon himself as his own burden
Each Christian should:
struggle for truth
fight against injustice
work for renewal of the church
use possessions for the poor
give his life for the sick
intercede before God for the sinner
Priesthood of all believers when we
share in Christs priesthood
when we stand before God
pray for others
intercede with God
sacrifice ourselves to God
proclaim the Word to one another
Forgiveness of sins
Part of the community
Indispensable part of Gospel
Gift we cannot do without

Calvin on the Nature of the Church
The marks of the true church-Catholicism failed to conform to this; therefore, reformers were
justified in leaving it.
the word of God is preached
the Sacraments rights ministered
Wherever we see the Word of God purely preached and listened to, and the sacraments
administered according to Christs institution, it is in no way to be doubted that a church of
God exists. For his promise cannot fail: Wherever two or three are gathered in my name, there
I am in the midst of them (Matthew 18:20). . . .
If the ministry has the Word and honors it, if it has the administration of the sacraments, it
deserves without doubt to be held and considered a church. . . . When the preaching of the
gospel is reverently heard and the sacraments are not neglected, there for the time being no
false or ambiguous form of the church is seen; and no one is permitted to ignore its authority,
flout its warnings, resist its counsels, or make light of its chastisementsmuch less to break
away from it and wreck its unity. . . .
When we say that the pure ministry of the Word and pure mode of celebrating the sacraments
are a sufficient pledge and guarantee by which we may recognize as a church any society, we
mean where both these marks exist, it is not to be rejected, even if it is riddled with faults in
other respects. RT 208, 209.
Church organization
Ministerial government of the church is divinely ordained and laid down in Scripture
Church government: consisting of 12 lay elders
Maintained church discipline
Maintain religious orthodoxy
Role of the church
Divinely established body of God
Mass for the sanctification of the people
I shall begin then, with the church, into the bosom of which God is pleased to gather his
children, not only so that they may be nourished by her assistance and ministry while they are
infants and children, but also so that they may be guided by her motherly are until they mature
and reach the goal of faith. For what God has joined together, no one shall divide (mark
10:9). For those to whom God is Father, the church shall also be their mother. RT 213.
Two manifestations of the church
Visible: community of church believers; good and evil
Invisible: fellowship of saints and company of elect; known only to God
Which of the visible churches corresponds to the invisible churches
Criteria of where word of God is preached purely and the sacraments given according
to institution of Christ.
Radical view of the church
Church has ceased to exist
cannot be reformed
I maintain, against all the doctors, that all external things which were in use in the church of
the apostles have been abolished (abrogata), and none of them are to be restored or reinstituted,
even though they have gone beyond their authorization or calling and attempted to restore
these fallen sacraments (lapsa sacramenta). For the church will remain scattered among the
heathen until the end of the world. Indeed, the Antichrist and his church will only be defeated
and swept away at the coming of Christ, who will gather together in his kingdom Israel, which
has been scattered to the four corners fo the world. . .
The works [of those who understood this] have been suppressed as godless heresies and
rantings, and pride of place has instead been given to foolish Ambrose, Augustine, Jerome,
Gregory of whom not even one knew Christ, nor was sent by God to teach. Bu rather all
were and shall remain the apostles of Antichrist. RT, 204, 205.
True church is in heaven
Institutional parodies on the earth
True church instituted in radical reformers
Alternative society like NT church refused to conform to worlds standard
They are the true congregation of Christ who are truly converted, who are born from above of
God, who are of a regenerate mind by the operation of the Holy Spirit through the hearing of
the divine work, and have become the children of God, have entered into obedience to him,

and live without blame in his holy commandments, and according to his holy will all their
days, or from the moment of their call. RT 205.
Discipline and moral purity rigorously enforced within the church.
The Ban served to ensure purity of the church.
Rejected the sacramental Church of Rome.
Rejected the Peoples Church (Volkskirche of Protestantism).
Everyone in Europe belonged to Christ by virtue of infant baptism
Church identified as gathering congregation of believers who had voluntarily entered
it by baptism upon confession of faith
Members are those who are obedient to Christ
Love is the chief mark of the church
Expresses itself accordingly
Michael Sattler
In complete denial (meaning surrender of private property
Community of mutual aid in which nothing is held back from those in need
Lantern in a dark place; a beacon to light the way to those in darkness

Magisterial Radical

Territorial church Believers church

Corpus christianum Corpus Christi
Reformation Restitution
Magisterial church Gathered church
Sacramental church Sectarian church
Sacraments essential Conversion essential

Doctrine of the Sacraments

Visible signs of invisible graces
Channels of grace
Seven Sacraments
Extreme unction
Attacked number, nature and function of sacraments
Reduced the number to two (2)
Rejected concept of Mass
Disagreed on what to call Mass

Luthers View
Babylonian captivity of the church - 1520
Reduced sacraments to three (3)
Baptism, Eucharist, penance
Later only two (2)
Baptism and Eucharist

Characteristics of Sacrament
Outward sign
Word of God
Sacramental system elevated priest
Two rival theories on role of priest
Ex opere operantis
Through the work of the one who works
Efficacy of sacrament dependent on spiritual qualities of priest
Ex opere operato
Through the works that is worked
Efficacy of sacrament not dependent on spiritual and moral qualities of the
Luther attacked denial of wine to laity as sinful
Common people denied access to what wine signified
Was not Christs blood shed for the laity?
Rejected theory of transubstantiation as attempt to rationalize a mystery
Christ was present in the bread and wine not because the priest said so
Its a mystery; the Bible says so
Rejected view that priest performed a good work or sacrifice on behalf of the people
Sacrament primarily a promise of forgiveness of sins

Zwinglis View
Basic meaning of oath, baptism and Eucharist
Signs of Gods faithfulness to his people
Gracious promise of forgiveness
By 1525, retained initial idea of oath or pledge-- Switch from Gods faithfulness to us
to our pledge of obedience and loyalty to one another
Sacrament now meant allegiance to a community
Sacrament subordinate to the Word of God
Baptism visible entry and sealing unto Christ
Eucharist commemoration of historic event that brought the church into existence
Real presence. Influenced by Cornelius Hoens tract, On the Sacrament of the
Eucharist, Hoc est corpus meum is is not identical with but rather signifies
significant is used metaphorically.
Eucharist ring given by groom to bride to reassure her of his love.
Pledge commemoration of Christ in his absence.

Luther Versus Zwingli

Both rejected the medieval sacramental scheme; reduced from seven to two.
Luther felt Word of God and sacraments were inseparably linked. Both bore witness
to Jesus Christ
For Zwingli, the word and sacrament are distinct; the word being greater for it created
faith and sacraments which created faith publicly
For Luther, sacraments generate faith, thus baptism generated faith in the infant
For Zwingli, sacraments demonstrated allegiance to and membership of a community
Luther retained aspects of mass without concept of sacrifice
Zwingli abolished mass, no longer center of worship
Luther and Zwingli disagreed on a word hoc est corpus meum
Luther said est meant is while for Zwingli it meant signifies.
Both rejected transubstantiation but for different reasons
Luther accepted basic idea underlying it presence of Christ
Zwingli rejected both the term and the idea
Zwingli Christ now sits at the right hand of God; cannot be present anywhere else.
Luther Christ is present without limit to time and space.

Calvins View
Sacraments are identity; without sacraments there could be no Christian church
External symbol by which God seals on our consciences his promises of good will
toward us
Visible sign of a sacred thing visible form of an invisible grace
Gracious accommodations to our weakness by God; adoption to our limitation
Baptism is a public demonstration of allegiance to God.
Sign of initiation by which we are received into the society of the church
Encourage Christians to value creation
Elements signify the grace, generosity and goodness of God
Three aspects of spiritual truth in the Eucharist
Divine promises are included within the sign itself. Believers are reassured that the
sacrifice of Jesus Christ is for them
Sustenance or matter of the Eucharist concerns our reception of the body of Christ
Effect of the Eucharist are in the benefits Christ won for the believer through his

Radicals on SACRAMENTS
Rejects Roman Catholic Sacramentalism
Bread and wine-memorial symbols of Christs suffering and death
Mass: abomination spoken by Daniel
Infant baptism: bath to child
Priests or sacraments cannot convey grace.
Lords Supper: memorial of Christs death and sacrifice
Public sign and testimonial of love
Sign of obligation to brotherly love
Testimony of seriousness of love to neighbor
Public response and pledge to community of faith

Radicals on Baptism
Testimony of faith and forgiveness of sins thru Christ.
Accepting the fraternal responsibilities of membership in the church
Signifies inner surrender to Christ
Willingness to suffer for Christ and brethren
Moving from world to body of Christ
Outward mark of an inner change

Catholic Response
Decree on Sacraments
If anyone says that the sacraments of the new law were not all instituted by our Lord
Jesus Christ, or that there are more or less than seven, namely, baptism, confirmation,
Eucharist, penance, extreme unction, ordination, and marriage, or that any one of
these seven is not truly and intrinsically a sacrament, let them be condemned . . . .

John Calvin (1509-1564)

Career of John Calvin

Born in 1509 in Noyon, Picardy
Humanistic training and theological study in Paris
Law training in Orleans and Bourges
Calvins Sudden Conversion
probably sometime between his publication of a commentary on Senecas de
clementia [On Clemency] in the spring of 1532 and Nicholas Cops inaugural
address at the University of Paris in the autumn of 1533, an address reflecting

Erasmian and Lutheran sentiments and believed to have been partially drafted by
Flight from Paris by both Cop and Calvin after Cops address to the university of
Paris faculty
Calvins years of wandering until 1536
Refuge and research in south-central France; meeting with Lefvre
Resignation in 1534 of benefices he had received in 1521 and 1527 (retaining them
would have necessitated his becoming a Catholic priest)
some scholars date Calvins Sudden Conversion to this event
Visit to Duchess Rene in Italy in behalf of French Protestants
Return briefly to Paris, after which in 1536 he set out for Strassburg.
Since the way was blocked by imperial armies about to engage the French in
the 3d Hapsburg-Valois war, he turned to the south to go to Strassburg via
Calvins encounter with Farel, who begged him to stay and help in the reformation
work in Geneva. At first Calvin refused, wishing to go to Strasburg, where he
intended to live a quiet life in research and writing in behalf of the suffering
Protestant in France. When Farel threatened him with eternal loss of his soul, he
changed his mind.
After a quick trip to Basel, where Calvin finalized the details of publication for the
1536 edition (1st ed.) of his Institutes of the Christian Religion, returned to Geneva in
July of 1536 to work with Farel
Calvins First Geneva Period, 1536-38 (on political structure in Geneva
Attempted Reforms
The Ordinances
The Expulsion of Calvin and Farel
The CulminatioinThe Servetus Episode, 1553
this began to turn the tide in favor of Calvin (by 1557 his position as spiritual leader
in Geneva was once again firm)
The final edition of the Institutes, 1559
The Geneva Academy, 1559, and the work of Theodore Bza (1519-1605)
Calvins death in 1564; Bza becomes dominant religious leader in Geneva
Calvin as a preacher, writer, and administrator; and his presbyterial form of church governance

Luther (1483-1546)

Career until 1519

Birth in Eisleben, 1483
Elementary schooling in Mansfeld
Study under the Brethren of the Common Life in Magdeburg, 1497-98
University-preparatory schooling in Eisenach, 1498-1501
Arts training at University of Erfurt: B.A., 1502; M.A., 1505
Brief matriculation in Law School of University of Erfurt, 1505
Entry into Augustinian monastery at Erfurt, 1505
Ordained as priest, 1507
Lectures on Aristotle at University of Wittenberg, 1508-09
MDiv and Sententiarius in 1509 (the former gave basis for teaching introductory Bible
courses; the latter, for teaching systematic theology based on Peter Lombards 4 Books of
Lectures on Systematic Theology at Erfurt, 1509-11, interrupted by trip to Rome in 1510-11
Sent to Wittenberg in 1511 by John Staupitz, provincial head of the Augustinians in Germany
Licentiate in Theology and Th.D. at Wittenberg in 1512
Takes over Staupitzs exegesis classes at the University, probably lecturing first on Genesis.

Early significant lecture series: Psalms, 1513-15; Romans, 1515-16; Galatians, 1516-17;
Hebrews, 1517-19
Luthers gradual move away from the medieval fourfold mode of Bible interpretation (literal,
allegorical, tropological, anagogical) to the grammatical-historical, and other developments in
his Reformation approach and theology (e.g., the concept of priesthood of all believers,
break with Aristotle and with scholastic thought, use of the biblical languages, et al.)
The Indulgence Controversy and the 95 Theses of 1517
The Nature of Indulgences
The Specifics concerning the sale of this special indulgence, advertised as being for
the repair of St. Peters basilica, but specifically instituted to help defray the expenses
of Albert of Hohenzollren in receiving appointment by Pope Leo X to be Archbishop
of Mainz (after already holding the Archbishopric of Magdeburg and Bishopric of
Sales force headed by Johann Tetzel, a Dominican monk hired by the Fugger
Banking House, the financier for the loan to Albert
The Leipzig Debate, 1519
Special Topics:
Why did Luther enter the monastery rather than continuing a study of law?
What was Luthers monastic struggle, when did it occur, and how did he overcome
Luther from 1520-1525
The three Reformation Treatises of 1520 (see handout sheet)
The Papal Bulls of Excommunication of 1520 and 1521 (Exsurge Domine, and Decet
Pontificem Romanum)
The Diet of Worms in April, 1521, and Luthers being declared an outlaw in the Holy Roman
Empire (late in May)
Luthers abduction to the Wartburg Castle in early May, 1521; his stay and accomplishments
there in 1521-22
Luthers 1st and 2d editions of the German NTthe famous September Bible and
December Bible of 1522. His basic Greek text was the 2d edition of Erasmus Greek NT,
Jerome Emsers critique of Luthers NT in 1523 (with later editions, and with Emsers own
German NT of 1527, based largely on Luthers text, but having what Luther called poisonous
glosses and annotations)
Luther in relationship to the Peasants Revolt of 1524-25 ( main leader was Thomas Mntzer);
Luther wrote three treatises regarding the peasants complaints and then their taking up arms
Luthers wedding to Katherine von Bora in 1525
Luthers complete break with Erasmus and the humanists by publication of his On the
Bondage of the Will in 1525, a response to Erasmus On the Freedom of the Will of 1524
Synopsis of the defections from Luther in 1525
The death of Elector Frederick the Wise in 1525 (succeeded by his brother John the Constant,
1525-32, and John Frederick, 1532 and on)
Lutheranism until 1555
First Diet of Speyer, 1526; cuius regio eius religio (as the ruler so the religion of any given
territory) established, thereby creating Lutheran territories, including electoral Saxony
Development of Lutheran liturgy, preaching, preparation for pastors, etc.
Luthers Large and Small Catechisms of 1529
Second Diet of Speyer, 1529; cuius regio eius religio withdrawn, followed by Protestation of
the Lutheran princes
The Marburg Colloquy, 1529 (will be treated in connection with Zwingli)
Diet of Augsburg of 1530, and the Augsburg Confession prepared by Philipp Melanchthon
(contrast Luthers later, much-more-forceful Schmalkald Articles)
The Diets threat against Lutheran rulers, and the Lutheran military defensive Schmalkald
League (main leaders were Philip of Hesse and Elector John Frederick of Saxony)
The Wittenberg Concord, 1536
Luthers Schmalkald Articles, 1536-37
Bigamy of Philip of Hesse in 1540 and consequent damage to the Schmalkald League
Luthers advice for bigamy rather than divorce for Philip, and the consequent scandal
Luthers death at Eisleben in 1546; burial in Wittenberg

(1497 -1580)

Role and Achievements in Wittenberg

Melanchthon , Johann Reuchlins great-nephew, came to Wittenberg in 1518 as a Christian
humanist to teach Biblical Greek
became the foremost of Luthers chief colleagues and friends in Wittenberg, and like
Luther, he drew many students to the University.
Authored the Augsburg Confession and Apology of the Augsburg Confession; he never
ceased to hope for reconciliation with the Catholics
The systematic theologian of Lutheranism, with his Loci Communes (final ed. in 1555) being
the major Lutheran systematic theology of the Reformation era.
After Luthers death, Melanchthon became leader of one of the two major factions into which
Lutheranism split; those theologians who sided with him were dubbed Philippists
On his deathbed in 1560 he is reported to have said that he was glad that death would remove
him from the madness of the theologians

Zwingli (1484-1531)

Career of Huldreich Zwingli

Birth in 1484
Humanistic training
Chaplaincy with Swiss mercenary soldiers in service to the pope
His distress when numerous young Swiss soldiers lay dead in battlefields in northern
Italy; it was his task to break the bad news to the widows, fatherless, and parents.
His outcry against selling the blood of Swiss youth, stirring up antagonism from
powerful profiteers in the sale of Swiss mercenary-soldier service
Early Pastorates
Zwinglis Reform in Zurich
Becomes pastor of the Great Minster in 1519,
preaching Bible-based sermons similar to what Luther was doing in
Holds three Disputations, 1523 and 1524 with Catholic representatives
Zurich City council declared in favor of Zwingli (and thus against the Bishop
of Constance, who was nominally the religious head for Zurich as well as
Completes major reforms in 1525
abolition of the Catholic mass
substitution of a simple communion service
Begins attacks on the Swiss Brethren (early Anabaptists) in 1525
martyrdom of Felix Manz, et al.
Publishes Cornelius Hoens tract on the Eucharist, followed by a literary feud with Luther,
beginning in 1527 (see handout sheet on Hoens tract)
Debates the Wittenbergers in the Marburg Colloquy of 1529, with irreconcilable differences
between the reformer in Basel, also attended and debated in the Colloquy)
Serves as chaplain for Zurich troops in the first Battle of Kappel, 1529 (a rather peaceful
Serves again as Zurich chaplain, in the second Battle of Kappel of 1531 (a real war, with the
Death on the battlefield in 1531