Freedom of a Christian – Episode 19

Karl von Miltitz wasn’t somebody who would easily give up. As the pope’s ambassador in the Lutheran controversy, he felt had the authority to make a difference in the ongoing theological issues stirring up Germany.

Miltitz was a little more humble about his capabilities in 1520, compared to when he first became enmeshed in the Lutheran dispute a year before. Back in the beginning, he thought he could tamp down all the issues by simply encouraging everybody to calm down. Now he realized that the theological differences were deeper than he first believed.

Now that he had an improved understanding, Miltitz adjusted his goals. He knew he was going to need to get a dialogue started between the pope and Luther. He knew there was no way the pope was going to extend an olive branch to Luther, but maybe he could get Luther to reach out to the pope. It was a long shot, but it was the only way out.

Karl von Miltitz had no way of knowing that he was initiating the writing of one of the greatest summaries of Evangelical theology, the Freedom of a Christian.

Freedom of a Christian was Luther’s response to his critics that his doctrine of freedom would create chaos. It’s built around two seemingly contradictory propositions from St. Paul:

  •  A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none.
  •  A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all.

Beer Break

Bam Biere by Jolly Pumpkin. It is named after Bam, the tenacious brewery dog.

This delicious farmhouse ale is named for their Jack Russell, who struck by a car, bounced back in fine tenacious Jack Russell fashion. This farmhouse ale is brewed for those of us who knocked down, have picked up, dusted off, and carried on undaunted.

Golden naturally cloudy, bottle conditioned and dry hopped for a perfectly refreshing balance of spicy malts, hops, and yeast.

Resources and Recognitions

A blog post by by Rev. Dr. Jonathan Mumme, https://lutheranreformation.org/theology/christian-freedom/

Thanks to Josh

Thanks to St. Paul Lutheran in Hamburg MI

James Kittelson – Luther the Reformer

Luther’s Works – volumes 31

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