Friday, December 12, 2008

Quick Survey of Luther's and Lutheranism's Historic Scandals and "Skeletons in the Closet"

[ source ]

Limmat River in Zurich, where Felix Manz, the first Anabaptist martyr in the town, was drowned in January 1527 at the behest of the "Reformer" Zwingli. Luther and Melanchthon advocated the same practice. It ain't just Catholics who killed people for heresy. Don't believe the myth!

A Catholic woman wrote about her Lutheran husband, on the CHNI forum:

Past bad decisions and actions made by certain popes and bishops have rendered Roman Catholicism an impossible choice for many Christians like my husband.

Is he really that ignorant about Lutheran history, to think it has any better record than the Catholic Church? Does he not know that Luther advocated drowning for "sedition" of even peaceful Anabaptists? That is no secret. Even his famous biographer Roland Bainton writes about it at great length and decries it:

Luther's Attitudes on Religious Liberty (Roland H. Bainton; edited by Dave Armstrong)

Luther Favored the Death Penalty for Anabaptists

Martin Luther: The Civil Government Ought to Put Frigid Wives and Adulterers to Death

Martin Luther's Reactions at the News of the Death of Zwingli, and the Martyrdoms Under Henry VIII, of St. Thomas More and St. John Fisher

His successor, the mild-mannered Philip Melanchthon, was even more intolerant:

Philip Melanchthon's Advocacy of the Death Penalty For Denial of the Eucharistic Real Presence and His Later "Crypto-Calvinist" Eucharistic Position[s]

Dialogue on Melanchthon and the Death Penalty for Denial of the Real Presence (+ Part II) (Dave Armstrong vs. Dr. Edwin Tait)

Lord Acton on Melanchthon and Persecution of Heretics for Denial of the Real Presence and Various Other Crimes

Has he not heard of Luther's responsibility to a large extent for the carnage of the Peasants' Revolt? He's never heard Luther's lame excuses for wholesale theft of Church property, either?

Is he proud of the famous scandal of the bigamy of Philip of Hesse: expressly sanctioned by both Luther and Melanchthon?

Where does he get this notion, then, that Catholics were far more wicked than everyone else, whilst Lutherans were supposedly perfect, holy angels? It's just not true, which is why this objection is no argument at all against Catholicism. It's almost invariably built upon myths and ignorance of the actual historical facts.

Lastly, Luther himself stated that Protestants were no more holy or righteous than Catholics. Sin can be found anywhere. I agree with Luther that the issue is comparative doctrine, not seeing who has the most sin or scandal in their past. I present the facts on both sides so as to defeat this "argument from sin" and show how it is irrelevant in deciding anything. It's a wash, and, well, downright stupid to compare historical sins when trying to judge doctrinal systems side-by-side.

Lots more along these lines on my index page:

Protestantism: Historic Persecution and Intolerance

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