Friday, October 13, 2017

Luther, the Great Heretic

Lutero, gran hereje

Luther, the Great Heretic

The thesis that stated that the moral decadence of the Church under the Renaissance Popes had reached an intolerable extreme, and that Luther led the Protestants against this situation, demanding a "reform", is false and no current historian is capable of holding it.

Next 31 October will mark a new anniversary of the 95 theses nailed, in 1517, by Luther to the door of the church of the Wittenburg palace. There are several recent publications on Luther, in which he is shown as a Bible enthusiast, as its propagator and as a reformer of a Roman Church corrupted in its time, etc. It therefore seems appropriate to make some clarifications.

He was not a reformer of manners, but of doctrines.- The thesis that states that the moral decadence of the Church under the Renaissance Popes had reached an intolerable extreme, and that Luther led the Protestants against this situation, demanding a "reform " is false and no current historian is capable of holding it. Among other reasons, because Luther himself dismisses this interpretation of his work in numerous explicit statements. "I do not dispute bad customs, but impious doctrines." And years later he insists on this: "I did not challenge immoralities and abuses, but the substance and doctrine of the Papacy." "Among us," he confessed openly, "life is rotten, as it is among the Papists; but we do not accuse them of immorality ", but of doctrinal errors. Indeed, "bellum est Luthero cum prava doctrina, cum impiis dogmatis" (Melanchton).

Reformer of the Catholic doctrine.- Luther, in fact, fought with all his forces against the doctrine of the Catholic Church. To begin with, he destroyed the Bible, by leaving it at the mercy of free examination, he changed the infallible and unique Divine Word for an innumerable and contradictory variety of fallible human words. He destroyed the Apostolic succession, the ministerial priesthood, the bishops and priests, the doctrine of the Fathers and Councils. He eliminated the Eucharist, as a sacrifice of redemption. He destroyed the devotion and worship of the Blessed Virgin and the saints, the vows and religious life, the charitable function of ecclesiastical law. He transformed the seven sacraments into one and a half. He affirmed, on the basis of the total corruption of man by original sin, that "reason is the devil's great whore, a whore eaten away by mange and leprosy" (etc., and five more lines). And for the same reason, and with equal passion, he denied the freedom of man (1525, De servo arbitrio), stating that "the most certain and religious" thing would be that the very term "free will" disappeared from the language. As a logical consequence, he also denied the need for good works for salvation. In short, with its "correct answers", as an author today writes, he practically destroyed all Christianity, destroying Christendom in passing.

Schizoid thinking.- The Catholic Church links reason with faith, understanding theology as "ratio fide illustrata" (Vatican I). It links the Bible with Tradition and the apostolic Magisterium (Vatican II, Dei Verbum 10). It links grace with the free action of the human will. Et et.

Luther's thought, on the other hand, is schizoid: Vel vel. Considering that "reason is the devil's great whore," he concludes: sola fides. Convinced that the mind and conscience of the Christian man are above the Fathers, the Popes and the Councils, he dictates: sola Scriptura. Affirming that man is not free, and that good works for salvation are not necessary, he declares: sole gratia.

The greatest offender of the Kingdom.- Luther writes that "the entire Church of the Pope is a Church of whores and hermaphrodites," and that the pope himself is "a furious madman, a forger of history, a liar, a blasphemer," a pig, a donkey, etc., and that all papal acts are "sealed with the devil's shit, and written with the farts of the donkey-pope." Countless pages could be filled with similar or worse phrases.

The Catholic theologians of Luther's time rejected his theses, earning from him the foreseeable qualifiers. The Faculty of Paris was "the condemned synagogue of the devil, the most abominable intellectual whore who has lived under the sun." And the theologians of Leuven, for their part, were "gross asses, cursed pigs, epicurean pigs, heretics and idolaters, damn broth of hell." It is not surprising that, thinking thus, Luther rejected Charles V's proposition in Worms to discuss his doctrines with the most prestigious Catholic theologians. Who can be interested in discussing with demon-possessed pigs?

In addition, Luther's insults had a universal extension: German women, for example, were "shameless slanders"; the peasants and bourgeois, "drunkards, given to all vices"; and of the students he said "there were scarcely one or two in a thousand he could recommend."

The perfect heretic.- "I, Dr. Luther, unworthy evangelist of our Lord Jesus Christ, assure you that neither the Roman Emperor [...] nor the pope, cardinals, bishops, saints, princes or knights will have anything against these articles, in spite of the whole world and all the devils [...] I am the one who affirms it, I, Dr. Martin Luther, speaking in the name of the Holy Spirit ». "I do not admit that my doctrine can be judged by anybody, not even the angels. Whoever does not listen to my doctrine cannot be saved."

Rough with the poor, weak with the powerful.- On the occasion of the uprising of the peasants, who demanded, first nicely and then not so much, what they considered their rights, writes Luther a harsh invective against the rapacious and homicide hordes of the peasants (1525). "The seditious must be thrown down, strangled and killed privately or publicly, for nothing is more poisonous, harmful and diabolical than a promoter of seditions, just as one must kill a rabid dog, because if you do not kill it, it will end with you and with all the country."

Luther, however, was very gentle with the powerful German princes, in order to win their favor. When, for example, Philip of Hessen, a great landgrave, married to Catherine, with whom he had seven children, demanded the approval of an additional marriage with a lady of the Saxon nobility, he obtained both Luther and Melanchton’s license, provided that it was kept secret. In this case of polygamy, consumed in 1540, they relied on the ancient Jewish Patriarchs.

Frightened of his own work.- The results of Luther's preaching were devastating in the morality of the people, and he himself recognized it. "Since the tyranny of the pope has ended for us, everyone despises pure and healthy doctrine. We no longer have the appearance of men, but of real brutes, a beastly species”. Of his followers he affirmed that "they are seven times worse than before. After preaching our doctrine, men gave themselves up to robbery, sham, drunkenness, and all manner of vices. We cast out a demon [the papacy] and there came seven worse."

Terrified, he wrote to Zwingli: "It is frightening to see how where at one time everything was tranquility and peace prevailed, now there are all kinds of sects and factions: an abomination that inspires pity [...] I am forced to confess it: my doctrine has produced many scandals. Yes; I cannot deny it; these things often terrify me. "And he still foresaw major disasters. One day he confided to his friend Melanchton: "How many different teachers will emerge in the next century? The confusion will come to an end”.

That's how it went. And so it has been in accelerated progression, until the great current apostasy of the old Catholic nations.

José María Iraburu, priest
Source: Infocatólica

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