Episode 14 – A Wild Boar in the Vineyard

This episode focuses on Exsurge Domine, the official papal response to Martin Luther. With the printing presses of Europe hard at work in the fall of 1517, the 95 Theses spread throughout Europe in a couple of weeks. Attention was drawn to the leadership of the church in Rome. In 1518 Cardinal Cajetan visited Luther in Augsburg, and Cajetan attempted to get Luther to recant. In the summer of 1519, John Eck debated Luther in Leipzig. Eck succeeded in getting Luther to admit that the issue was about more than reforming abuses. Luther admitted that the pope and a council could be wrong if they conflicted with Scripture.

In June of 1520, the pope signed Exsurge Domine, the papal bull that formally outlined Martin Luther’s errors. Cardinal Cajetan wanted a scholarly response to Luther that specifically outlined the errors of Luther. Eck wanted a response that was released quickly to address the issue of Luther before things got worse in Germany. Eck won and the papal bull lacks specifics against Luther but clearly labels him as a heretic dangerous to the church.

Exsurge Domine is a papal bull promulgated on 15 June 1520 by Pope Leo X. It was written in response to the teachings of Martin Luther which opposed the views of the Church.

The name of this document comes from the first phrase in Latin, “Arise, O Lord!” It goes on to say that the wild board from the forest seeks to destroy the Lord’s vineyard and it is time to put down the boar.

Lucas Cranach included in the altar piece he painted for the Town Church in Wittenberg a picture of Martin Luther preaching from a pulpit that is decorated with a wild boar running through a vineyard.

Martin Luther’s Sermon, detail from a triptych, 1547 (oil on panel) by Cranach, Lucas, the Elder (1472-1553); Church of St. Marien, Wittenberg, Germany.

Beer Break

We set aside our walk through beers from the Great Lakes region because we have found we have a consistent set of listeners from Japan. So this beer break features a beer form the Kiuchi Brewery. The beginning of this brewery is found when it was established in 1823 by Kiuchi Gihei, the headman of Kounosu village. The beer side of the business started in 1996 and named the beer “Hitachino Next Beer.” It has a unique owl character logo. This beer is a German style Hefe Weizen with banana, clove, and vanilla like flavors with a touch of toasty wheat malt and hops.

Recognitions and Thanks

  •  Thanks to Josh
  •  Thanks to St. Paul Lutheran in Hamburg Michigan
  •  Wikipedia
  •  John M. Todd book Martin Luther, a biographical study
  •  Hans Hillerbrand – several documents
  •  Catholic.com: A Catholic website set up to defend the Roman Catholic faith against protestant attacks.
  • Good place for us to make sure we are not mischaracterizing Catholic teaching, although we would welcome anybody shooting us an email with any corrections on our understanding of Roman Catholic doctrine.
  •  Vatican for a copy of Exsurge Domine

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Episode 13 – Sermons from 1519

In the fall of 1519, Martin Luther was concerned. His concern was for the souls of those that the Lord had placed near to him. His protector, Frederick the Wise, became very ill. The people were curious and seeking promise, but still finding in the rituals of the church a focus on works instead of faith. Luther offered to them consolation. He wrote a devotional for those approaching death called the 14 Consolations. He also wrote three sermons on the sacraments. Each sermon describing the action, the inner significance, and the role of faith in receiving these gifts.

His three teaching sermons on the sacraments infuriated the supporters of the people. Duke George of Saxony called the treatise containing these sermons, “full of heresy and scandal.” Luther responded by calling these complaints, “the trumpeting of a sterile pig.”

The three sermons are titled:

  •  The sermon on the Sacrament of Penance, 
  •  The Holy and Blessed Sacrament of Baptism
  •  The Blessed Sacrament of the Holy and True Body of Christ, and the Brotherhoods

Before we discuss the sermons we add to our discussion of the pastoral heart of Martin Luther by talking about the devotional 14 Consolations.

Beer Break

Arcadia Brewery was founded in 1996 in Battle Creek, Michigan, by Tim Surprise and his wife, Mary. In 2016, Jim Lutz came on board as Arcadia’s president. The majority of production now happens at the Kalamazoo location, which still has lots of room for more capacity. You can visit arcadiaales.com to learn more about this brewery.

Loch Down Scotch Ale is their tribute to the Scottish Highlands. This beer is garnet in color. The color is joined with aroma of ripe plums and freshly-baked biscuits. The texture reveals notes of roasted chestnuts and caramel in the smooth single-malt style brew.

Recognition of source materials

  •  David Whitford – Luther: A Guide for the Perplexed
  •  James Kittelson – Luther the Reformer
  •  Luther’s Works – volumes 35 and 42

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