Posts tagged ‘Martin Luther’

November 1, 2017

November Spotlight! Martin Luther: The Man and His Work (The Reformation Trail Series #19)

Martin Luther Man And His Work CoverBook Description

“Luther’s marriage raised a great hue and cry. the union of a renegade monk with an escaped nun, violating as it did their own personal vows, and ecclesiastical and civil law as well, seemed to many to throw a sinister light upon the whole reform movement. Now, they declared, the significance of the Reformation was revealed to all the world, and it was clear what Luther had had in mind from the beginning. Satirical attacks appeared in great numbers. Slanderous tales were spread about him and his bride. Even many of his friends were thrown into consternation, and feared he had dealt a death-blow to the cause. The lawyer Jerome Schurf, when he heard the rumour that Luther was contemplating marriage, remarked: “If this monk takes a wife, the whole world and the devil himself will laugh, and all the work he has accomplished will come to nothing.” Others, though wishing to see him married, regretted he had chosen Kathe rather than some woman of wealth and position. The time, too, seemed to almost everybody particularly inopportune. His prince and supporter, the Elector Frederick, had died only a month before, and all Saxony was still mourning him, as Luther was, too, for that matter. Moreover, the peasants’ war was not yet ended, and the whole country was in an uproar.”

About the Author

Arthur Cushman McGiffert

Arthur Cushman McGiffert (1861-1933)

Arthur Cushman McGiffert (March 4, 1861 – 1933), American theologian, was born in Sauquoit, New York, the son of a Presbyterian clergyman of Scots-Irish descent.

He graduated at Western Reserve College in 1882 and at Union Theological Seminary in 1885, studied in Germany (especially under Harnack) in 1885-1887, and in Italy and France in 1888, and in that year received the degree of doctor of philosophy at Marburg. He was instructor (1888-1890) and professor (1890-1893) of church history at Lane Theological Seminary, and in 1893 became Washburn professor of church history in Union theological seminary, succeeding Philip Schaff. He became the 8th president of Union Seminary in 1917.

His published work, except occasional critical studies in philosophy, dealt with church history and the history of dogma. His best known publication is a History of Christianity in the Apostolic Age (1897). This book, which sustains critical historical eminence to this day, by its independent criticism and departures from traditionalism, aroused the opposition of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church; though the charges brought against McGiffert were dismissed by the Presbytery of New York, to which they had been referred, a trial for heresy seemed inevitable, and McGiffert, in 1900, retired from the Presbyterian ministry and retained his credentialed status by eager recognition from a Congregational Church. Likewise he retained his distinguished position at Union Theological Seminary.

A History of Christian Thought constituted a two volume work (1932, 1933) which established an American standard in theological studies and is still cited regularly by scholars. Among his other publications are: A Dialogue between a Christian and a Jew (1888); a translation (with introduction and notes) of Eusebius’s Church History (1890; part of Philip Schaff’s Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers series); and The Apostle’s Creed (1902), in which he attempted to prove that the old Roman creed was formulated as a protest against the dualism of Marcion and his denial of the reality of Jesus’s life on earth.

Source: Wikipedia

460 pages
Paperback
Inheritance Publications
Publication Date: 1911, 2017
ISBN: 9781772980189

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March 21, 2016

The New Perspective on Paul

NT Wright

N.T. Wright, leading proponent of the New Perspective on Paul. HT: Pastor John Keller Blog

On Sunday, January 31, 2016, Pastor Joe Troutman introduced to the adult Sunday School class the recent theological movement among some modern liberal theologians called the New Perspective on Paul and how it pertains to the doctrine of justification.

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.(Romans 5:1-2 ESV)

Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith–just as Abraham “believed God and it was counted to him as righteousness”? (Galatians 3:5-6)

Westminster Shorter Catechism, Q&A #33:

Q. What is justification?

A. Justification is an act of God’s free grace, wherein he pardoneth all our sins, and accepteth us as righteous in his sight, only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us, and received by faith alone.

The New Perspective on Paul and the Federal Vision are two theological movements, the former a liberal movement and the latter a conservative movement, which share a few common emphases. Firstly, they share a common emphasis on “justification by faithfulness.” The orthodox Protestant doctrine of justification is that faith is the instrument by which one receives justification which is grounded on the faithfulness (i.e., the perfect righteousness) of the Lord Jesus Christ. Another common emphasis shared by the two movements is a lack of distinction between what the Reformed Confessions and Catechisms call the “visible church,” comprised of all, whether elect or non-elect, who profess faith in Christ and their children, and the “invisible church,” comprised of “the whole number of the elect.” Finally, the idea of “keeping covenant” is another shared emphasis between the heresies of the Federal Vision and the New Perspective on Paul.

The most well-known scholars who developed the New Perspective on Paul are Bishop N.T. Wright, James D.G. Dunn, and E.P Sanders. These assert that the Protestant understanding of Justification by Faith Alone is the result of Martin Luther’s reading his personal experience in sixteenth century Roman Catholicism back into his reading of Second Temple Judaism. They say he did this by projecting Roman Catholic legalism back onto the Jews and the Christian Judaizers in his reading of the books of Romans and Galatians. Sanders, Wright and Dunn counter the great Protestant Reformer’s reading of Romans and Galatians by asserting that Second Temple Judaism held to a view which the scholars have called “Covenantal Nomism.” Their definition of “Covenantal Nomism” is that one demonstrates that he is in the covenant by keeping the law. By this definition, they deny Luther’s application of this idea to soteriology (the doctrine of salvation), asserting that it only applies to ecclesiology (the doctrine of the church).

To learn more about the New Perspective on Paul, please read the Report on Justification, which may be found at the website for the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.

Listen to “The New Perspective on Paul” at mcopc.org.

October 1, 2015

Luther on the Christian Life: Cross and Freedom (Theologians on the Christian Life)

Luther on the Christian Life CoverStatus: Checked Out

Book Description

Martin Luther’s historical significance can hardly be overstated. Known as the father of the Protestant Reformation, no single figure has had a greater impact on Western Christianity except perhaps Augustine. In Luther on the Christian Life, historian Carl Trueman introduces readers to the lively Reformer, taking them on a tour of his historical context, theological system, and approach to the Christian life. Whether exploring Luther’s theology of protest, ever-present sense of humor, or misunderstood view of sanctification, this addition to Crossway’s Theologians on the Christian Life series highlights the ways in which Luther’s eventful life shaped his understanding of what it means to be a Christian. Ultimately, this book will help modern readers go deeper in their spiritual walk by learning from one of the great teachers of the faith.

Dr. Carl Trueman

Dr. Carl Trueman

About the Author

Carl R. Trueman (PhD, University of Aberdeen) is the Paul Woolley Professor of Church History at Westminster Theological Seminary and pastor of Cornerstone Presbyterian Church (OPC) in Ambler, Pennsylvania. He was editor of Themelios for nine years, has authored or edited more than a dozen books, and has contributed to multiple publications including the Dictionary of Historical Theology and The Cambridge Companion to Reformation Theology.

Book Details

224 Pages
Publisher: Crossway/Good News Publishers
Publication Date: February 2015

Source: WTS Books

Library patrons who have read this book are invited to share their comments, reviews, questions or criticisms for discussion in the comments below this post.