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The 95 Theses

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When Martin Luther posted the 95 theses, his intention was to discuss and debate the misuse of indulgences, but it was interpreted by the church heirarchy as an attack on the power of the papacy.


The 95 Theses

Luther, the Pastor: Psalm 118:5, Psalm 141:2

I. Precipitating Circumstances

A. Vagueness of the doctrine of indulgences

B. The monetary problems of Albert of Mainz

C. The preaching practices of Johan Tetzel

D. The 95 Theses


II. Analyzing the Theses

A. Heinrich Bornkamm

B. Scott Hendrix

C. Aspects of the Theses

1. Radical understanding of repentance in the New Testament

2. View of salvation

a. Indulgences rarely discussed

b. Papal authority

c. Place of the church

3. Underneath the Theses


III. Summarizing Thoughts

A. At this time Luther still holds beliefs in certain doctrines.

B. Luther's intention to discuss and debate was interpreted as an attack on the power of the papacy.

C. The Theses were a crucial ecclesiastical step forward for Luther.

D. The Theses struck a blow at the misuse of indulgences and simultaneously called into question a central position of Catholic piety.

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