Legends About Luther: The 95 Theses He Never Nailed Up

Legends_About_Luther_the_95_Theses_He_Never_Nailed_Up_300 Legends About Luther: The 95 Theses He Never Nailed Up

Legends About Luther: The 95 Theses He Never Nailed Up

Every revolution needs legends to capture the imagination of its followers. It needs some act of defiance in which a major character charges into the mouth of the lion and plants his manifesto for all to see.

Such is the case of the October 31 commemoration of the five hundredth anniversary of Luther’s nailing of his 95 Theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg. All over the world, people are marking the day with portrayals and reenactments of the event. The only problem is that it appears that Luther never nailed the document to anything. The defiant act never happened.

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On October 31, Luther mailed, not nailed, his 95 theses to the Archbishop of Mainz and the Bishop of Brandenburg. Only one of the original two letters is still extant. The 95 theses, which he enclosed, have also faded into history since there are no existing copies of the original document (and therefore no verifiable nail holes). There is no record of any open and raging debate on the document in Wittenberg supposedly triggered by the non-event of its church-door nailing.

The legend of the nailing comes from an account of a disciple, Philipp Melanchthon, who could not have been an eyewitness to the event since he was not in Wittenberg at the time. His account was written well after Luther’s 1546 death.

It appears that the legend was embellished with time. Georg Roer, a friend of Luther, has him nailing theses, not to one but several church doors. Like Melanchthon, he also was not in Wittenberg at the time, and more than likely was drawing on Melanchthon in his account. The heresiarch Luther never mentioned this crowning act of defiance at any time during his lifetime.

Even the noisy act of nailing was uncertain. Willi Winkler, a Luther biographer, doubts the nailing took place but does acknowledge the legend. He noted that during the first centenary of the non-event in 1617, the instrument remembered was a simple feather pen which Luther used to write on the cathedral door. Apparently, the hammer was not part of the legend at the time and was added in later commemorations for dramatic effect.

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The legend of the nailing was brought to light by Catholic researcher Erwin Iserloh in 1961. He pointed to the lack of primary sources or eyewitnesses to the nailing claim. Since then, many scholars, including Lutherans, have admitted the improbability of the nailing.

While the debate still simmers, the real issue is the use of legend to promote a revolution.

Historical legends have always existed that tend to embellish reality or highlight qualities of major figures. Heroes often appear larger than life because of their great projection and impact upon a people. However, such portrayals are usually based on some elements of truth that become embellished with age. The legend of El Cid in Spain builds upon the historical figure and recounts his exploits. These legends tend to cultivate a love of virtue, social harmony and heroism.

With the dawn of the modern age, revolutionaries have always skillfully used legendary figures to pursue their goals. However, unlike heroic figures or epic tales, these depictions often consist of fabrications made to fit a narrative of class struggle. Such revolutionary deeds never happened, but they are made to capture the imagination of “the masses.” These myths are then repeated continuously and become part of popular history.

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Such is the case of Luther’s nailing of the 95 theses. Despite the lack of proofs, the story of the nailing is constantly repeated as a proof of Luther’s bold act of defiance to the Church. His disjointed and empty musings about the Church are elevated to the status of “theses.”

All this cloaks the real tragedy of the Lutheran revolt that split Christendom asunder. The non-event of October 31, 1517, was an empty and false gesture that marked the beginning of the catastrophic process of revolutions and divisions that would later follow.

  • nekoknight

    Thank you so much for this article.

  • chriscas

    Thank you! If I hear one more person talk about how great Marty’s reforms were for the “Christian” church and how he humanized it, set it free, etc. I’m going to scream!!!!!

  • Patrick O’Brien

    I wonder if bishop answered Luther’s dubia?

  • Donald Hennen

    This makes sense. Imagine anyone even expecting someone to stand by a door patiently reading 95, count ’em 95, theses while others wait to go in and out.

  • Gary

    One could certainly look at it as causing disunity in the church, but I prefer the truth, as exposing the corruption of the existing Catholic Church. Martin Luther was very humble, not a revolutionary at all. He assumed his Bishop and the Pope would side with him and be thankful for the expose…when they turned out to be in on the scam, thats then Luther got a little passionate. Thanks be to God that he did, or else we may still be under the assumption we could buy our way to Gods mercy, grace, and forgiveness…

    • Peter

      He was humble? Who added “faith only” to the Bible to reject the “good work”? Who threw the letter of James for his purpose to reject the good work, threw away the books of Maccabee to reject the Purgatory?

      • David C

        Right Peter. Think of ‘good works’ going hand-in-hand with faith to bring salvation this way: Jesus commanded us to keep BOTH of His Commandments. Faith keeps the first one. ‘good works’ toward your neighbor keeps the second one. Both need to be kept to gain salvation. Why do you think Jesus gave us the Parable of the Good Samaritan to stress the point of ‘Love your neighbor’ and that EVERYONE, INCLUDING those you dislike, are your neighbor. When Protestants reject good works, they reject keeping Christ’s second Commandment. The ‘good works’ the Bible talks about are NOT the Jewish works of the Law. They are corporal works of mercy toward your neighbor. ALSO, if you read Matthew 25:31-46 where Jesus says what he will do when He comes back on the Last Day, notice what He judges mankind by (good works). We are personally judged right after our death on the other things (2 Cor. 5:10; Hebrews 9:27) which determine where we go in the next life.

        • BruceDeBrat

          Funny that Protestants brag of their “personal relationship with Jesus;” yet they reject Him in that which is the most intimate of relationship – the Holy Eucharist, the real body, blood, soul and divinity of Christ, present in the Holy Sacrament of the altar. Funny too how the Protestant mind rejects Christ on the Cross – the corpus. Why? Because they reject the notion of the suffering Christ, just as they reject the necessity of suffering for Christ in this life, through works of patience, mercy and charity. It all comes down to pride – the same pride demonstrated by Lucifer, in his rebellious “non servum.”

    • Henry Harding

      Thanks Gary, where on earth would the church be without Luther and many others who risked so much to proclaim the truth in the midst of spiritual darkness, delusion and outright duping of the people. Thanks be to God for such heroes of the true faith . . . and the issue is not whether Luther nailed his theses to the door . . . the issues is the necessity for the theses in the first place.

      • Prisca Ann

        What a swell guy.
        Wanna canonize him, too?

        • Cadfael

          I pray to God not man made saints.

          • Alma Lopez

            Catholics don’t pray to saints they ask for their intercession. You ask your friends for prayers and you don’t care if they are saints. Like Torn would say, any friend of Jesus is my friend too.

          • Robert Carballo

            I am astounded that there are persons on a traditional Catholic site defending the brutal heresiarch and anti-Semite that Luther was. Clearly, the Bergoglian disinformation about his beloved Luther is working—while the Bride of Christ, His only Church, is being calumniated.

          • NeoCrusader09434

            Sounds like you’ve created your own god, in your image, and lost touch with the One Holy Apostolic Church founded by Christ Himself, the Catholic Church. I’ll pray to Jesus, the Blessed Virgin Mary, and all the Saints, that you might see the Truth. God Bless.

      • BruceDeBrat

        Martin Luther soon came to regret the theological chaos he created:

        “There are as many sects and beliefs as there are heads. This fellow will have nothing to do with baptism; another denies the Sacrament; a third believes that there is another world between this and the Last Day. Some teach that Christ is not God; some say this, some say that. There is no rustic so rude but that, if he dreams or fancies anything, it must be the whisper of the Holy Spirit, and he himself a prophet.”

        Further, Luther’s students followed his “courageous” example of standing on “Scripture alone” against all human authority – and rejected his teaching in favor of their own interpretations of the Bible:

        “How many doctors have I made through preaching and writing! Now they say, “Be off with you! Go off with you! Go to the devil!” Thus it must be. When we preach they laugh…. When we get angry and threaten them, they mock us, snap their fingers at us and laugh in their sleeves (Facts, p. 207).”

        Luther blamed the devil for this theological anarchy. But I consider the chaos the natural consequence of his own malicious ego; for, when he exclaimed – “I consider myself convicted by the testimony of Scripture, which is my basis. My conscience is captive to the word of God” – did he not expect that those who followed in his steps might also consider themselves convicted by the testimony of Scripture as their basis? Did he not think that their consciences might also be captive to the word of God?

      • Wm Layer

        The Bible itself never claimed Sola Scriptura and while Luther defied the Pope he condemned anyone who defied his interpretation of scripture. Resting on private interpretation the “Reformation” contained the seed of its own destruction in those who insisted on an unscholarly literalism which crashed on the shoals of the evolution having no way to discern the allegorical from the factual . Mr. Harding displays a historical ignorance of a period but of which one figure said what has been true for a thousand years we are now to discard because of Mr. Luther?

    • Prisca Ann

      Pope Saint Pius V woulda cleaned house. It didn’t take a monster with a foul mouth and a hatred for Scripture, for celibacy, the papacy, the Priesthood, the Sacraments, and worst of all the MASS to remedy the wrongs.
      Luther was no humble man. He was a raging lunatic obsessed with rectums and feces and had one too many conversations with a demon.

      • Cadfael

        You sound like a Jesuit, or at least one of their disciples. Time for an indulgence.

        • NeoCrusader09434

          She sounds like a devout well-informed Catholic woman to me.

    • Prisca Ann
    • Jim

      We are not, nor have we ever been under the assumption “we could buy anything from God,” this is disinformation. There was corruption in Luther’s time but it was just that. There is still corruption today. Luther said he never would have done what he did because of corruption. He did it for theological reasons, and it is obvious he was wrong in his theology. In Rom 3:28 “the works of the law” is a Jewish expression. It means the body of the mosaic law. It does not mean “anything you might do toward your salvation.” Luther misread scripture as he was a deeply troubled man. We can see all the division he caused today. Division is of Satan. We are “all supposed to believe the same thing.” Not after Luther. God help us.

    • Alma Lopez

      He was a revolutionary not a reformer. He did not reform the Catholic church. The Catholic church continues to reform itself. If you think there is not problems and corruption everywehre you are delusional. The Catholic church is holy because is the one founded by Christ, not because all the people are holy, there is not churches where everybody is holy and there are not evil people. The famous serial murderer BKT, was one of the important Lutheran people in his church, for example.

    • BruceDeBrat

      Humble? He was a foul-mouthed lunatic, a reprobate who had the hots for a nun. Typical of the Protestant temperament, we can “nail” his motives down to two of the seven cardinal sins: lust and pride. In the 500 years since, nothing has changed about Protestantism – it’s still the glorification of lust and pride.

    • Gary, Thank you so much for your comment! I am saddened that so many Catholics do not understand the history of corruption into the highest levels of the church through out the Middle Ages. Buying indulgences to get your grandma out of hell? Paying ahead so that you could commit adultury without guilt? Blackmail, extortion (& the type of corruption that would give it an R-rating if it were a movie) were rampant in the 1500s! I AM NOT SAYING THIS IS TODAY’s CATHOLIC CHURCH! But it was 5 centuries ago. The basic ideas from the reformation eventually shaped the Founding Fathers of our country! The notion that “all men were created equal by God & had the right to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness” has a direct correlation to the Reformation of the 1500s. What Luther’s actions were on that day 500 years ago… what he nailed, mailed or sailed to the church… ? Only God knows. However, Luther is yet just one more example of how our amazing God can use VERY imperfect & flawed people (ie – Jacob, David, Paul, Peter, etc.) to further His kingdom & shine light in areas that have become corrupt.

      • Wm Layer

        I’m afraid that this statement only shows an ignorance of Catholic doctrine and American history. Indulgence did not remove penance and there was no such thing as “paying ahead”. What is pernicious in certain Protestant (mis) interpretations is that if one is “saved” one gets a pass on sin.

        The Reformation did not preach equality as demonstrated by sumptuary laws which governed dress etc. in Calvin’s Geneva and amongst the Puritans of New England. Jefferson’s “All men….” had more to do with the Enlightenment than the Reformation.

      • NeoCrusader09434

        Right, right…the state of protestantism and all of “Christianity” (a term that has almost no meaning now since so many divergent groups claim it) is so good right now (sarcasm), owing greatly to the heresies of protestantism started by Luther. All protestant denominations are shrinking, Catholicism is shrinking, secularism/paganism/atheism is on the rise with our children, degeneracy is running amuck (same-sex “marriage, transgenderism, divorce, pirnography…). All this comes from protestantism. And “great” America? You mean the country with the most permissive abortion laws in the world? Where a million children a year are slaughtered. The nation that stomps on religious freedom (so long as its Christian religion, not the hallowed islamic or other pagan religions). Yes, the “great protestant experiment” known as America (having direct lineage to the anti-Christian French enlightenment) has become a cesspool of satanic degeneracy. Thankyou Martin Luther…

      • Eskimo man

        Remember the corruption within the Apostles that were selected by Christ Himself? There has been many Judas’s within the Church throughout the ages, I dare say less than 1 in 12 which was the result of Christ’s selection. The Church has never bought or sold indulgences, as we cannot buy or sell blessed sacramentals, images, or statues. And you cannot get anyone out of hell, hell is for eternity. What you fail to see is the fact that not one piece of good fruit has come from Protestantism, which was founded on the occult, heresy murder, and adultery. Protestants killed over a million Catholics in one year under Queen Elizabeth I, compared to between 3,000 and 5,000 put to death for their crimes against the state during 450 years of inquisitions. The founding fathers were all Masonic, serving the Zionist Jews and the British for their goal of world domination. Protestantism is just not Christian I’m sorry to say, because Christ left us with one Church, not a book.

      • Ginnyfree

        One man’s sin is no excuse for my own. It doesn’t matter what the other fella does. I won’t be judged on that. Only what I did. I get tired of hearing all about the supposed corruption that justified Luther’s revolt. Where you there? No.

    • Eskimo man

      If you read the 95 point Theses, you will see that even Luther did not know what he was complaining about. And if you do a little more research on him, you will find that he was financed by the antichrist Masonic Jews of the Synagogue of Satan, and that he was actually a Rosicrucian of the occult. The Church has never taught that we can buy our way to salvation, having said that, we also know that only the Church has the power to bind or loosen punishments knowing that it will be done in Heaven also Matthew 16:17-19, Matthew 18:17-18.

  • mister malted

    I do not understand the purpose of this article. It argues about the means of delivery rather than
    the significance of the document itself.
    Defiant act never happened? It likely took more courage for this priest to
    mail his thesis to the Archbishop and to the Bishop than to nail them to the
    door of his parish church.

    • Lou Soileau

      Agreed. Who cares whether Luther nailed or mailed? The bottom line is that he was objecting to the many abuses of the people by the clergy and felt compelled to put his objections in writing –
      probably because the bureaucracy would not listen or give his objections honest consideration. Were any of his objections against dogma? None that I have read. So, whether mailed or nailed Luther is responsible for the loss of many good souls and the brutal deaths of many good religious.

  • Rosech Levy

    My husband, a German, has said many times that Luther was forced by the Church and government to post his “complaints” and apparently this is the Germans’ take on Luther. Yes, he had complaints about some things, but not all that we have been told. Hmmm. Makes one wonder if it will continue a mystery.

  • john

    Yes there was corruption in the Church..but Luther went about it all wrong.God gave us the example of how to act or respond to corruption in the Church through St Francis of Assisi.Jesus had given him a vision of a church in ruins and commended him to fix it.At first St Franscis thought he meant the church of Damiano which he was living in and was in disrepair..until he realized that God meant the state of the church that was corrupt.St Francis was obediant and helped confront and bring about change by allowing God to use him as the instrument of change..through obediance and trust.Luther decided to rebel and puffed himself up with pride.He did not consult God through prayer..nor was he obediant..instead he became like Judas..and because of him we now have a fractured kingdom which it’s fruits have lead to the state of the world as it is today..Jesus of course foresaw this and prayed that His people become like one as You and I are One.What is there to celebrate for Lutherans?that they and all protestant sects are still in open rebellion and apart from the One true church established by Christ?

  • Sam

    Isn’t there a prayer by Jesus, near the beginning of John’s Gospel, where He prays for Christians to be one, as He and God are one? If our aim is to vilify the other Christians, our church will appeal mostly to people who have that psychological orientation, of wanting to be the only ones who are right…

  • Lou Soileau

    Who cares whether Luther nailed or mailed? The bottom line is that he was objecting to the many abuses of the people by the clergy and felt compelled to put his objections in writing –
    probably because the bureaucracy would not listen or give his objections honest consideration. Were any of his objections against dogma? None that I have read. So, whether mailed or nailed Luther is responsible for the loss of many good souls, the brutal deaths of many good religious, and the destruction of many beautiful churches, monasteries, and convents.

  • Gary Disch

    The real story is that Luther did not want a split in the church but was trying to bring a worldly church back to what God’s Word says in the Bible. Salvation is a free gift, not earned by works. As Ephesians 2.8-9 says,” For it is by grace through faith that you are saved, not of yourselves. It is the gift of God, not by works, so that no one may boast”. Studying God’s Word is what what made me realize this is a free gift. Our works are a way to glorify God and share His Love,not salvation earned by what by we do.

    • Amen!

    • Wm Layer

      And faith without works is hollow.

  • Cheryl Vitali

    Well I was thinking about sharing this article, yet after reading the comments decided against doing so. Amazing as a Lutheran who joined the Catholic Church and has learned to love it and am very involved in my faith and community, I am utterly appalled by some of the discussion I read. Christians need to stop bashing each other like this. When we face our Savior in heaven what do we want to be accountable for? We were told not to judge and to love our neighbors as ourselves. Self righteous serves no one.

    • Eskimo man

      it is the Protestants that started the bashing, and they are not Christian. I am happy for you that you have found the way to the one and only true Church of Christ.

    • Ginnyfree

      Cheryl, have you encountered people in your parish who’ve bought the lies about Luther? Have you helped them un-learn this baloney? BTW, welcome to our Church. I’m a convert too. RCIA Class of ’96 and the Grand Slam at the Easter Vigil that year. Um, er, that is 3 Sacraments in one night. Sorry about that. God bless. Ginnyfree.

      • Cheryl Vitali

        Hi All,

        I hope this posts back to the thread. I wrote a thoughtful response and think it was lost.

        I was taken aback by one comment that shows a great deal of judgement against any Christian who isn’t Catholic. I view that type of belief as a travesty and tendacy of human nature not unlike the Pharasees and Scribes. We are not called to decide who makes it to heaven and casting stones at others who may not be Catholic is very wrong. History shows many perils in faith over the ages to try to pin our tendacy towards evil on one person or time period is naive. We are accountable for our actions each moment of every day and by the grace of our Redeemer and Christ alone, we have the ability to debate this.

        I had a priest and pastor at my wedding and when going through RCIA with a Priest, I would not have joined if such narrow-minded views we’re presented. Fact is no Priest I have ever talked to has taken such a stance. Why did I initially join, my husband was a cafeteria Catholic and not involved at all. What did I pray for? A marriage fully united in faith and God and that has been answered abundantly. Both of us are highly involved in our Parish and community. As I type this, I have been making arrangements to assist a family that just lost their son too soon, also helping someone else. We are called to live our faith each and every day and how we treat each other.

        • Paul Bojorquez

          Amen! It probably wasn’t lost, but buried. I posted a comment this morning & it was immediately moved behind 3 day old comments. God Bless!

        • Ginnyfree

          Cheryl, extra Ecclesiam nulla salus is something we all believe. It is dogma. It isn’t jugement. “a great deal of judgement against any Christian who isn’t Catholic.” Then you judge everyone who doesn’t agree with you with this: “I view that type of belief as a travesty and tendacy of human nature not unlike the Pharasees and Scribes.” Then you try some emotional blackmail with this: “I would not have joined if such narrow-minded views we’re presented.” Let me get this straight, if you are coddled and treated with kid gloves, you’d leave because someone tells you the truths of the Catholic faith. All this says to me is your still Protestant at heart and if one person gets you mad enough, you’ll abandon Christ and His ONLY Church. While I’m happy for you that your marriage has lasted and that you are still acting in Christian ways towards others in your community, you still seem to think you can judge everyone else around you because you do a good turn or two. Um, let’s see, some of them Pharisees you seem to think the rest of us are, did plenty to be seen and used what they did to judge others whose works they failed to see, including Jesus’. Now, have fit over this observation and blast away. I don’t walk on eggshells around anyone. God bless. Ginnyfree.

  • Toni Tippin

    Christians have debated these same questions, thousands of years.
    Instead of arguing,’ why not get along?
    Did Jesus not say, Love thy Neighbor?

    I was born and raised Catholic. We Catholics do not pray to saints, but ask for their intercession. Mary, is the Mother of Jesus. Why would we not thank her? Ask for her intercession? Love her?

    Arguing and worse belittling ones Faith is wrong.
    It’s possible some want to ‘debate’ for the sake of arguing. Well, we can go at it the next 10-years; nothing will change.

    God Bless everyone.

    • Gary

      Amen, Toni…some of the comments blaming Luther for destroying the Catholics are ludicrous. I grew up and went to catholic schools thru 12th grade, and remember the nuns telling me they were not allowed to read the Bible in 2nd grade. You folks saying Luther was a Jew, Satan, a Drunk, had the hots for a nun, etc…so what? the guy was human…heck, I had the hots for a few nuns in my day, including a Flying one on TV! Calm down and rely on Christ…lest it be said of you, “depart from me, I never knew you…”
      If you are relying on membership in some official church alone, you are toast. Where and when did Christ say there was to be ONE official church (really say it, not the catholic version). Just as how you forgive it will be forgiven you, you all best watch that how you prescribe, it will be prescribed you. I used to argue vociferously in defense of Catholicism, but after reading some of these wacked out postings, I may just smile and stay silent going forward…
      Of course, half of you may be anti-catholic Trolls…

      • Toni Tippin

        Gary, I assure you, I am not a troll.
        I haven’t read all the comments, but degrading goes on both sides. Yes, Catholics do not agree with other Christian Faiths, and vise-versa.
        It isn’t right, whatsoever. It’s immature. Degrading goes against God’s word. Jesus said, Love they Neighbor…
        One day, we will all know.
        As long as were alive living in borrowed bodies, we should respect each others faith, even if we disagree. God Bless you.
        BTW, I am a proud Catholic.

      • Ginnyfree

        Gary, the most common falsehood I hear as a convert to Catholicism is that Catholics were told not to read the Bible. We read the Bible each and every time we open the Missalette in the pew we occupy. Catholics have always been encouraged to read Scripture. Always. What Catholics get told to not interpret the Scriptures for themselves in ways contrary to the rest of the Magisterium.
        Luther was a vulgar man who married a nun who he seduced away from the Church.
        Now for this last. “Where and when did Christ say there was to be ONE official church” Um, having read my Bible, I know exactly where he said this exact thing: Matthew 16:18 “Thou aren’t Peter and upon this rock I will build my church………………..” Now if you believe that Jesus is Lord, and that His Word is eternal, then why haven’t heard yet that he really did build a single church and he also promised that even the gates of Hell would not prevail against her. It takes a whole bunch of denial to ignore this famous quote from Matthew.
        One little itty bitty detail about your comments. “the nuns telling me they were not allowed to read the Bible in 2nd grade” I was 7 years old in 2nd Grade. I wasn’t capable of reading a Bible just yet. Maybe memorizing one or two verses with some help, but really. Just sayin’. God bless. Ginnyfree.

    • Cheryl Vitali

      Beautifully stated Toni.

  • GeorgeKocan

    As John Cardinal Newman, a convert to the Catholic Church from the Anglican Church, observed, “To know history is to cease being a Protestant.”

  • reginaldon

    I have whole-heartedly endorsed so many of your protests against the inroads being made by Satan and his followers to our once-proud Christian heritage.
    This attack on the faith of countless millions of protestants throughout the world shows you in your true colours – you can forget my support in the future, and you have given ammunition to the enemies of the Cross.

  • Ginnyfree

    Praise the Lord! Finally! Another Catholic who agrees with me about the 95 Theses being a myth, a legend. I think I’m going to save this article for my next conversation with a Catholic who believes the legend of Luther as a golden moment in history. I got called some really nasty names over this and thereafter treated as if all my facts were wrong because I didn’t promote the legend of Luther. Jamnia is also a myth. That one is also hard to convince some Catholics of. They prefer buying into Lutheranism and its legends at peril of their immortal souls. But try and tell them the truth…………It is frustrating, especially when some of the Catholics promoting the myths and legends are PhDs and notable Catholics and I’m a pipsqueak laywoman with a bad attitude. Yeah. I’m very grateful for your article. God bless. Ginnyfree.

  • TGG

    Dr. Peter Kreeft is a philosopher, theologian, and famous Catholic convert from Calvinism.
    He has this challenge for protestants.

    Go into a Catholic Church during Eucharistic Adoration. That’s when a Communion wafer, miraculously changed into the Body of Christ, is exposed at the front of the church, on the altar, for Catholics to worship. It might sound strange to non-Catholic ears, but bear with me…

    Kreeft says go, sit in the front row, and pray. Pray that if Christ is really present in that Eucharistic wafer, if what the Catholic Church says is true, that God will draw you in to Catholic fellowship.

    That God will make you a Catholic.

    Because, says Kreeft, if what the Church says about the Eucharist is true then God will—because He’s been waiting this whole time. And if the Catholic experience of Christianity is the most authentic and closest experience to what God intended, then He will. And if that little weird wafer, and all the weird little Catholic pieties are really the best way to get to know and be in relationship with Christ, then He will surely draw you in.

    Try it, says Kreeft, because what do you have to lose?

    • Paul Bojorquez

      You are aware that Luther also believed that the Eucharist miraculously turned into the actual body of Christ, aren’t you? He adamantly proclaimed that to be true. He even carved into a table the words “this is my body”. Like I stated in a previous post (that got buried), Luther never wanted the church to split. He wanted serious issues, corruption and false teaching to be addressed. He wanted ALL people to have direct access to God’s Word (which they did not have). It was the Catholic Church which refused to listen that caused the split.

      I take no issue with my Catholic brothers & sisters if they believe in God’s Word as written and that we are saved by Grace through faith, which is a gift from God, not of works, so NO MAN shall boast. If they don’t believe that, I pray that God opens their eyes.

      Jesus died to tear the veil so we would once again have direct access to The Father; to have a relationship with Him, to have prayers answered, to confess our sins and be forgiven. Christ is our Great High Priest, the only intercessor needed on our behalf. There is no need for any other, Priest, Saint or otherwise. Why pray to Mary or the Saints when we have direct access to God Himself through Christ Jesus? That’s like going to see the maintenance man for something when you have direct access to the CEO!

  • Paul Bojorquez

    With all due respect, I don’t think that an “empty and false gesture” could have split the most powerful entity of its time…the Catholic Church. I do not know whether Luther nailed or mailed his theses, but how they were delivered is not nearly as relevant as the issues that were addressed. Those issues were very real and very relevant and it was those issues and true accusations that split the church, not the manner in which they were delivered.

    I am a devout Christian and I desire, just as my Lord Jesus desired, that our church would be one as He and the Father are One. However, we must be united in Spirit and truth. We must be united by our adherence to God’s Word as it is written; with nothing added or taken away. Sadly, at the time of Luther, the Catholic Church had become decadent and corrupt at the highest levels. They were denying the truth of the Gospel, that is, that we are saved by Grace through faith and not of works, that no man shall boast. At the time, the Catholic Church was denying this truth to much of the flock and inserting “saved by good works” in place of “saved by Grace through faith”. They were in fact selling “indulgences” to sinners of all sorts for the forgiveness of their sins to the extent that there was actually a listed cost for each particular sin! Where is the grace in that?? Where is the truth in that?!?

    To be sure, Luther, like all men, was not perfect. In fact he never wanted to split the church, he just wanted the church to return to preaching the Gospel in truth and stop what he saw to be corruption deeply embedded in the church. Sadly, the church would not listen and the result was a fracture that continues to this day. To blame Luther solely for this is not telling the unabashed truth. If the Church had adhered to every aspect of God’s Word, the split would never have taken place.

    I still pray that one day, all of God’s people can stand united under God’s Word, in Spirit and Truth. That is a topic much more worthy of discussion than the manner in which Luther delivered his theses.

  • noblesniper

    Please cover and expose the chaotic, contradictory, conceited, quarreling, narcissistic, and even murderous so-called protestant reformers of the 16th century.

    Contrary to protestant propaganda masquerading as “documentaries” and reformation history books that I read, the first protestants contradicted each other biblically and theologically and have accused each other of perverting the bible which continues today.

    Also, some protestants such as Melanchthon later on had misgivings about their so-called reformation due to the chaos and division and animosity it created among the protestants themselves.

    • Ginnyfree

      Huguenot Wars – 3,000,000 dead Thirty Years War – 8,000,000. How long was Catholicism outlawed in England and her colonies? Hmmmmm…….Celebrate the legend? And this is just some of it. I don’t think so. God bless. Ginnyfree.

  • Cheryl Vitali

    Ginny, I am afraid your comments are way off mark. I am not still Protestant in my heart and nothing could be further from the truth. I thoroughly understand and respect how people like Thomas Moore and others were willing to die for their faith rather than be swayed by the politics of their time. I am not judging you or anyone else in regards to your belief. I am merely stating it is not something that we can do. That is for our Lord and Savior alone. Sorry I joined the conversation to be quite honest. I am merely trying to say we are called to love each other and follow God. I am very Catholic in my beliefs and love the Catholic Church, it isn’t superficial. That said, I have strong Christian friends who I truly believe I will see in heaven and share the beauties of the Catholic Church with them, have invited them to attend with me, and always corrected misconceptions about Catholicism with someone in the Protestant Churches. Nor do I think my good turns are what is going to lead to salvation that is by Grace and grace alone. It is too easy to misunderstand what is stated this way. When I encounter something theological that I question, I have called and talked to Priest and Pastors and humbly admitted if I was wrong. I had a question with a friend who is a very strong Catholic about the Eucharistic, which I firmly believe is the body of Christ, there is no doubt there. As a child I recalled being taught that in my Confirmation classes in the Lutheran Church. Turns out that although they believe that they also have a slightly different stance I was never aware of. I believe as a Catholic, not a Lutheran on that. I have no desire to return to the Lutheran Church so sorry if you misunderstood what I was saying. That wasn’t my intent.

    Think about the tragedy that just took place in Texas. What words can suffice for such a terrible action? All those families belong in our prayer and were in the Mass I attended this morning. They were Baptists, not Catholics, yet who are we to say what God chooses to see? God bless and have a great day.

  • SovereignAmerican

    After reading the comments, one thing came to mind: if you get to heaven, your Catholic!