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standing this judicious counsel, LIFE OF LUTHER.
Melancthon began to counte. (Continued from page 9.)
nance them, attended their meets
ings, and even procured schol. ABOUT this period, that spirit ars for them. Carlostadt also of fanaticism which afterwards favoured their schemes ; and is raged with such violence, and said to have gone so far as to was productive of so much disor- burn every classical author which der and bloodshed in Germany, he possessed, declaring that hufirst began to appear. Stork, a man learning was unnecessary, clothier at Zwickaw, a town of and the Holy Spirit the only inUpper Saxony, as the leader of a structor who ought to be attended sect, chose, from among his fel. to. Luther determined to leave low-tradesmen twelve apostles his retreat, to correct, if possible, and seventy-two disciples, who these fatal mistakes of his friends all enthusiastically imagined that and fellow-citizens, and wrote the they had received clear and com- Elector that this was his determimanding intimations from God, nation. Accordingly, though the with whom they had familiar Elector dissuaded him in the communications, of their being most urgent terms, by stating called to preach the gospel. the probable effect which this Their pretended revelations, step might have on the reformtheir fantastic dreams, and celes- ation in general, he was firm tial visions, of which they talked to his resolution, trusting in the with great solemnity and appear- protection of the God of heaven. ance of veracity, not only im. « God,” said he, “calls and imposed on the ignorant and super- pels me; I will not resist the stitious, but startled Carlostadt call :--the consideration either and Melancthon, who knew not of your displeasure or of your what to think of them. In this favour, nay, the hatred and fury: perplexity, they wrote an account of the whole world are to be disof all the circumstances to the regarded, when the state of relig. Elector, and requested an inter- ion requires it." With confiview with Luther, in whose dis. dence, he added, “I am firmly cernment they had full confi- persuaded that my word, or the dence. The Elector, though beginning of the gospel preached prejudiced against these impos. by me, is not of myself, but of tors, listened to Melancthon's God. Nor shall any form of letter, and though he refused to persecution, or death, make me set Luther at liberty, he recom- think otherwise, if God stand by mended caution towards the fa
And I think, I natics, to prevent the spread of than conjecture when I say, that their opinions at Wittemberg. neither terror nor cruelty shall Luther, bowever, being consult- be able to extinguish this light of ed by letter, advised Melancthon life.”+ In pursuance of his purto distrust the high pretensions pose he left his retreat, which he of the fanatics, and to require the same proof of their divine mission which the apostles gave, Seckend. 5 118. Add.
* Beausobre, tom. ii. p. 205–216. by working miracles. Notwith
† Seckend. $ 120.p. 196.
used to call his Patmos, on the it, he only earnestly exhorted 4th of March, 1522 ; having been them to renounce their opinions concealed in it exactly ten as the illusions of frenzied minds, months."* To justify, in some or the suggestions of a lying measure, this conduct, at Freder- spirit. Their indignation was ic's request, who trembled for the raised almost to madness; they consequences of his enlargement, accused him of blasphemy, and he wrote a letter to him, in which left him with the most outrahe stated, that he had left his geous threatenings, and confi. confinement for three reasons : dence in their own miraculous because he was under the strong powers. To prevent the effects est obligation to carry on the re- of Carlostadt's rashness, he also formation which he had begun; published a small treatise, OR because the people over whom Communion under both kinds, with he was appointed to labour en- animadversions on the changes treated his presence; and be, which had been introduced, in cause he was anxious to check which he recommended, that, in the rising spirit of sedition, which the ordinary worship, the bread had appeared among these fa- only, should continue to be used, natics.t
but that the cup also should be He arrived at Wittemberg the given to those who wished it; 6th of March, and was received that confession should precede with great joy by the people. communicating, but that none He immediately declared his dis- should be compelled to confess satisfaction with Carlostadt's pre- that images should be allowed to cipitation in new modelling the remain, and priests have the libform of religious service, and a
erty of marrying. With whatbolishing images, as well as in ever moderation he wrote concountenancing the seditious and cerning the mode of communion, fanatical disciples of Stork. he shewed none to the Pope and Whether Luther adopted this Bishops, who did not cease, in measure from a wish to preserve the spirit of their furious bull, to moderation, and to please the do all in their power to persecute Elector, who had advised caution him, but published a small vol, and deliberation, or from jealousyume, entitled, Against the Misnaof the honour which Carlostadt med Spiritual Order of the Pope would derive from executing a and Bishops, in which he complan which had been pointed out pressed every argument which to him, is now difficult to be de- he could think of, to prove, that termined; both may, perhaps, they were any thing but messen. have been combined in giving gers of Christ, in a state of conthis direction to his conduct. demnation, and the cause of ruinHe, however, gave audience to ing the souls of the people. the fanatics in presence of This treatise, though agreeable Melancthon: and after hearing to the people, who saw, with in silence, their narrative, in- pleasure, the vices and authority stead of condescending to resute of those powerful prelates, whose
• Seck. $119. Add.
| Beausob. tom. ii. p. 227, Ś Seckend. 5 122.
lyranny they felt without daring sus Christ. It reached into to complain, reprehended and re- places where the name of Luther pressed, roused the indignation, was unknown, carried salvation not only of the bishops, but of all into the meanest dwellings, spake the nobilitywho had any interest in the truth to kings and princes; ecclesiastical benefices.* Much and testified to all to whom it injury was also, about this time, came, that a general reformation done, by the licentiousness of ma- was more necessary than ever. ny of the monks, who had embrac- Emser wrote a criticism on it, ed Luther's doctrine respecting and began another version which vows, not from conviction, but as was not printed till 1527 ; but he a cloak for their sins. Luther, discovered such ignorance both to discountenance this threaten- of the original Greek, and of his ing evil, composed a second own language, that Luther, occuwork on monastic vows, in which pied with more important affairs, he denounced the licentious as resolved to oppose him only with well as the lazy monks as ene- silence and contempt. In conmies of the cross of Christ, and a sequence, however, of Emser's disgrace to the religion which misrepresentations, several of the they professed. I
princes of the Empire, particuBut the translation of the Bi- larly the Archduke of Austria, ble into German, which Lu- the Duke of Bavaria, George ther had begun, during his con- Duke of Saxony, Henry of Brunscealment in the castle
of Wart- wick, and some time afterwards, burg, the first part of which, con
the Elector of Brandenburg, ord taining the New Testament, was
dered Luther's translation to be published in Sept. 1522, gave a suppressed, and all the copies blow to the interests of Rome far that could be got committed to more decisive and fatal than any the flames. The reformer, with which it had yet received. He his usual boldness, and with even revised it with the assistance of more than his usual virulence, Melancthon ; and, on finishing attacked these imprudent prinit, immediately commenced a ces, in a treatise, On the Secular version of the Old Testament, in Power ; which established the which he was assisted by Justus authority of magistra:es on the Jonas, and several other of his foundation of Scripture, and the learned friends. It instantly conditions of men ; lut denied spread throughout the whole of the lawfulness of tie power Germany. The elegance of the which they usurped ov:r the faith style recommended it to the well and conscience of their subjects ; informed ; and its cheapness to and exhorted the inhibitants of the lower orders of the people. Bavaria, Misnia, and BrandenThose who had favoured the re. burgh, not to destroy the Scripformation, saw, in its truths, the tures ; though, at the same time, authority of God, and from being he commanded them not to asthe adherents of Luther, were sault the officers who might be led to become the disciples of Je- appointed to search for them.
His sentiments respecting per• Seckend. 5 123 Ibid § 124.
S Seckendorf, § 125, 121.
secution deserve to be recorded. in which they had for ages been * Heresies ought to be resisted involved. But Henry, having ear not with fire or sword, but with ly imbibed the principles of Pope the word of God. If this does ry, and viewing Luther as the ennot remove them, in vain will vi- emy of all who supported these olence be resorted to. The earth principles, determined not only to may be deluged with blood; but exert all his influence to check heresy, being an error of the the progress of his opinions, but mind, can be destroyed neither to refute them with all the acuteby fire nor by water; nay, it is ness which he possessed. He increased by every sort of resist- accordingly wrote a Latin treatise ance, except by the Scripture. in defence of the seven sacra. The tongue may be restrained, ments, against Luther's work, On men may be forced to be silent, to the Babylonish Captivity of the dissemble, or to lie; but heresy, Church ; “ a performance,” says residing in the heart, can be ex- Hume, “which, if allowance be pelled only by the influence of made for the subject and the age, the word of God, enlightening does no discredit to his capacity. the understanding, and persuad- He sent a copy of it to Leo, who ing the judgment."
received so magnificent a present The light of reformation had with great testimony of regard, dawned on the British isle as ear- and conferred on him the title ly as the middle of the 14th cen- of Defender of the Faitb." tury, when Wickliffe stood forth Though Luther believed this to as the champion of divine truth be the work of Edward Lee, afand spiritual liberty, against the terwards Archbishop of Cantererrors and tyranny of Rome; bury, he replied as if it had been and though it became gradually Henry's own composition, and obscured, and was almost entire treated him with such indig. ly extinguished when the 8th nity, and used respecting him so Henry ascended the throne, ma- many opprobrious and contemptny individuals throughout the uous expressions, as to shock country were waiting for the even his best friends.
Nor was consolation of Israel. The cler: this the effect of a momentary sy had nerer obtained the same burst of passion ; for, in his corinfluence and respect which they respondence at this period, he enjoyed, frevious to Wickliffe's justified his conduct in appearance and the people were inost expressive terms. Nay, in ready to embrace a change of the answer itself, he vindicated religion, whenever it should be the extraordinary severity of his presented. The astonishing rev- language, by saying, “ If, for the olution of sentiments which was sake of Christ, I have trampled so rapidly pervading the provin- under foot that Idol of Romish ces of Germany, accordingly abomination, which had usurped made a dep impression in Enge the place of God, and tyrannized land ; andled multitudes to im- over kings and the whole world ; bibe the doctrines which Luther who is this Henry a new Thoma had elicite from the darkness ist, or at least a disciple of that
Seckend s 127, p. 212.
Hist. of England, Chap. 29.
trifling monster, that I should pay tion of the papal court. He therehomage to his virulent blasphe- fore resolved to reform these mies? He may be a defender of abuses, expecting that their rethe church, but it is of a church, moval would bring back the peothe mother of harlots, of drunken- ple to the bosom of that church ness and fornication. I having whence they had been driven by án equal abhorrence of the church the vices of its governors. He and her defender, will attack accordingly repealed the order them with the same weapons. which had been issued for the My doctrines will stand, but the preaching of indulgences to dePope will fall, though the gates fray the expense of completing of hell, and the powers of air and the Vatican; but, at the same earth and sea were against me. time, gave authority, by a new They provoked me to war, and bull, to the doctrine of the church they shall have it ; they despised concerning that nefarious traffic. peace when offered them, and His sentiments on inany points they shall not now obtain it. differed essentially from those of God shall see whether the Pope his cardinals, who warned him so or Luther will be the first to strongly of the danger with which yield.”+ George Duke of Sax- his proposed reformation would ony, irritated at this treatise, soli- be followed, that he was heard to cited the Elector to have Luther say, that “ the condition of a Pope immediately punished ; but this is the most unhappy that can be prince declined interfering, and conceived, because he is not at proposed the convocation of a liberty to do what is right, though free council.
he has the inclination, and can Leo X. died in the beginning find the means.” He then imagof Dec. 1521, and was succeeded ined that his presence and auby Adrian VI., originally of an thority might have the effect of obscure family of Utrecht, a man quieting the commotions of Gerof scholastic erudition, and un- many ; and to prepare the minds polished manners, but of a mild of the disputants for his visit, he temper, and irreproachable mor- wrote to Frederic, then attending als.' When he arrived at Rome, the diet of the Empire met at Nufrom Spain, where he was at the remberg, exhorting him,in genertime of his election, he immedi- al terms, to exert all his influence ately applied himself to establish to preserve the safety, tranquillithe peace of the church. But the ty, and holy faith of the church, measures which he adopted, without so much as mentioning though salutary in themselves, Luther's name or heresy. But ultimately defeated the end pro- the brief which he sent to the posed by them. Luther's opin- diet by a nuncio, amply compen. ions appeared to him so extrava- sated for this political neglect, gant, that he could not persuade and made such an impression on himself but they
the bishops, that they almost sioned by the abuses and extor- unanimously exclaimed that Lu
ther must perish.
The secular t'Contra Henric. Reg. Angliae, princes, however, discovered apud, init. Luth. Oper. tom.ü. greater moderation, and were
Seckend. Sect. 46, 47. $$ 112, 114. soon imitated by many of the Vol. II. No. 3.