Martin Luther

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Summer Damra

11/1/12

Western Theological Traditions

Research Paper

Martin Luther’s fight for the poor

“Christians are to be taught that he who gives to the poor or lends to the needy does a better deed than he who buy indulgences- Martin Luther(25)”

The great German theologian Martin Luther is remembered throughout the world and Christian history as the man that challenged the papacy and dedicated his life to the clarification of Christianity for all people. He exclusively sought to reform the church because of its advocacy for the buying and selling of indulgences which then lead to further examination on a number of different topics in the Christian faith. Although Martin Luther's break with the Roman Catholic Church caused controversies and influenced war amongst Christian brothers, Martin Luther's teachings have positively impacted theological traditions. Martin Luther's teachings fought to include all Christians despite economic status as seen by his effort into translating the Bible into German for all common people to read, emphasizing the way to righteousness through the Word of God instead of indulgences, and creating hymns and catechisms to help all Christians understand the Bible. The fact that he disagreed with indulgences further symbolized his stand with the poor who did not have enough to eat let alone buy their way into Heaven and that they too can achieve salvation through the Word of God.

Martin Luther’s early life shows an immense dedication to the study of Christian faith, with achievement of priesthood in 1507 and a doctorate of theology in 1512(pg 5-7 cambridge companion). He was no ordinary citizen that challenged the Roman Catholic Church; he by all means was qualified to argue his research, which was his 95 Theses or Disputation on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences. This very document criticized multiple powers that the Pope believed he had and went against teachings of the Roman Catholic Church such as the...
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