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Renewing America, with David Lane
Sunday, May 28, 2023
Like Martin Luther, Today's Believers Must Destroy Golden Calves


The German Augustinian monk and religious reformer Martin Luther (1483-1546) was the catalyst and seminal figure of the 16th-century Protestant Reformation. In the fall of 1517, he drafted a set of propositions for the purpose of conducting an academic debate on a particular well-known Catholic method of exploitation in the Middle Ages, the practice of selling indulgences.

This practice involved a monetary payment of penalty that supposedly absolved one of past sins and/or released one from post-death purgatory.

Claiming the sale of indulgences was unbiblical, Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the Castle Church door in Wittenberg, Germany. Luther's objections were particularly directed toward what he deemed as 1) the heresy of the purchase and sale of salvation, 2) aggressive marketing practices of German Dominican friar Johann Tetzel [(1465-1519) and 3) the scandalous conduct of 'pardoners.'

Friar Tetzel, the inquisitor for Poland and Saxony, was purported to have coined the jingle, "As soon as a coin in the coffer rings, a soul from purgatory springs."

Unbeknownst to himself, the small-town monk Luther had just lit the fuse of a religious reform movement that swept Europe in the 1500s. Known as the Protestant Reformation, the movement resulted in the creation of a branch of Christianity called Protestantism, a name used collectively to refer to the many religious groups that separated from the Roman Catholic Church due to differences in doctrine.

The term "Protestant" originates from the Latin word "protestari," meaning "to declare publicly, testify, protest."

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