Saturday, July 31, 2010

Martin Luther and Disagreement with the Catholic Church

Martin Luther rediscovered the Biblical Gospel and conclusively broke away from the Roman Catholic Church due to strong disagreement over several things which he felt were anti-faith or anti-Christ. His chief difference of opinion with Catholic Church was over the question, “How one is saved and enters heaven?”

Martin Luther was convinced that man can surely attain redemption by dint of his unflinching faith in Jesus as a Savior. Faith alone saves. Whereas the Catholic Church maintained that mere faith in Jesus cannot save a man unless his faith is completed by love and good deeds. Now, how much love and goodness a man must have to qualify for salvation was unknown.

Another big disagreement that Martin Luther had with the Catholic Church was about the question, “Who is the highest authority in Christianity?” The Catholic Church believed in absolute authority and supremacy of the Pope of Rome. Martin Luther was totally convinced that Christ alone is the head of Christianity and the ultimate authority indeed.

Martin Luther rejected the claim of the Catholic Church that the Pope is divinely appointed head of Christendom. Luther was strongly opposed to pope Boniface VIII’s claim in the bull, "Unam Sanctum" that no one can be saved unless he submits to the Roman Pope. Arbitrary and unlimited powers had made the Catholic Church corrupt and morally bankrupt; Martin Luther strongly raised his voice against this corruption, much to the chagrin and anger of the Catholic Church.

He nailed his 95 theses on the gate of the Church of Wittenberg, accusing the Catholic Church of corruption and heresy. This bold action on his part is deemed as the real beginning of the Protestant Reformation. The Protestant movement spread quickly because people were sick and tired of the papal corruption and the idea that God could be realized through a direct communication arrested their imagination and gave them a lot of peace of mind that evaded them till now.


Michael Gormley said...

Okay, which way is it, by Grace, by Faith, or by Works, that brings us into eternal salvation?

How about all of the above?

For many non-Catholics, the answer to the question is one of 'Either - Or', but with Catholics, the answer is 'And'. (This is an example of Boolean Logic)

"Together we confess: By grace alone, in faith in Christ's saving work and not because of any merit on our part, we are accepted by GOD and receive the Holy Spirit, who renews our hearts while equipping and calling us to good works."

This is a Joint Declaration on Justification (Salvation) by faith, paragraph 15. This joint declaration was agreed upon by the Catholic and Lutheran Churches in 1999 after 33 years of discussion.

"Even so let your light shine before men, in order that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in Heaven." (Matthew 5:16)

"Make no mistake: GOD is not mocked, for a person will reap only what he sows, because the one who sows for his flesh will reap corruption from the flesh, but the one who sows for the Spirit will reap eternal life from the Spirit.

Let us not grow tired of doing good, for in due season we shall reap our harvest if we do not give up."
(Galatiansl 6:7-9)

"Work out your salvation with fear and trembling." (Philippians 2:12)

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