Martin Luther’s Papal Intentions

95-theses lutherMartin Luther was the chief catalyst to the eruption of the Protestant Reformation. His 95 Theses, which were published in 1517, was the document in which the movement truly began to take shape. In the Theses Luther attacks the buying and selling of the Catholic indulgences. Let it be known that Luther raises excellent points, however, as someone reads the Theses they will notice a number of problems with his arguments. Among illogical contradictions and a stern belief in Christianity being a works based religion, Luther believed that the Pope was unaware of the acts performed by the indulgence salesmen. In Luther’s opinion the Pope was a bystander and he would be on his side if he knew of the selling indulgences. Now, the question arises did Luther truly believe that the Pope was completing unaware of the indulgence situation. Could it be that he did not attack the Pope because he did not want to raise too much controversy in his first written document? My opinion is that Luther was just breaking away from Catholicism and he had not had his theology fully flushed out at that point. I believe he thought the Pope would have been on his side. Luther would realize how wrong he was in about a year. And as he progressed in his theology he would correct most of his previous opinions from the 95 Theses.

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