Luther – Christopher Arciniegas

I enjoyed watching this movie and I thought it was very well made. It was very entertaining and informative. The acting was great as well; it really brought out the feelings and emotions felt toward the Roman Catholic Church back when they sold indulgences to make a profit from the poor. I also enjoyed how the movie made Luther look like the villain for a brief moment when his teachings were corrupted and the peasants began to pillage and murder everyone that claimed to be in a higher position. Some other movies might have left that out to only show how heroic and amazing Luther was but he indeed was human and made mistakes that cost people’s lives.

  • There was a negative reaction to Luther’s clumsiness during his first mass because in his time, people that held positions in the church, such as a priest, were seen to be above the common people. They were almost seen as perfect and to see someone in such a high position make a mistake, especially in the church, is just shocking and shows that maybe he is not as superior as everyone sees him. This is embarrassing for him and his mentor.
  • After Luther visits Rome, he starts to challenge his faith. In Rome he sees holy brothers in brothels and is even asked by a woman if he wanted to sleep with her. He also sees people paying to get years off their sentence in Purgatory or to get loved ones out of Purgatory. Luther realizes that the church is taking advantage of people and that he might not want to follow this religious path anymore.
  • The symbolism of saints and indulgences were corrupted by the church when they decided they wanted to make money off of everything. They charge people for indulgences and they charge them to see the bones of saints and other relics. People were now more focused on buying their way into salvation than living a good life through Christ’s teachings.
  • Luther was a rebel that never went with the flow. Every other student learned the teachings of the church and accepted them but Luther always challenged everything and brought up true issues that others could see but were too afraid or ignorant to do something about it. It came to the point that Luther would teach the classes himself since he always challenged the teachers.
  • Indulgences are a comfort for people because they do not know any better and they think that with that piece of paper they or a loved one will be saved. Ignorance is bliss.
  • The worst punishment that the Catholic Church can deliver is excommunication. Once you are excommunicated from the church, there is no hope for salvation and you may never return to God.
  • Luther’s message was revolutionary and really opened the eyes of many people that knew nothing of the bible except what was told to them by the pope. The people loved Luther and loved his teachings of a loving God that does not need to be bought through indulgences or worshiping of saints. He gave the people the strength to end the tyranny of the Catholic Church.
  • A person who commits suicide cannot be buried at the cemetery because murder is a mortal sin. If you commit suicide you die sinful and therefore will go to hell according to the teachings of the church. The cemetery is holy ground were only good practicing Catholic people can be buried, not someone who committed suicide.
  • Luther finds the merciful and loving God he was looking for through Christ. Christ died for everyone’s sins and therefore God must be merciful and loving or else he wouldn’t have sent his son to die for the sins of the world.
  • Indulgences are important for the Church because that is how they fund their projects and make their money.
  • It is dangerous to write the Bible in German because that is in the common tongue so everyone will be able t0 understand it. This means that anyone can interpret the meaning of the Bible and the control falls out of the hands from people like the pope. Once people have read the Bible for themselves, they will be able to challenge teaching and practices of the Catholic Church.
  • The Church is the center of the political world. The Church controls everything and is even more powerful than the emperor. If the Church is the only way to salvation, everyone is going to listen to them and do as they say or be threatened with excommunication and never reach salvation.
  • A pro of having one universal leader is that everyone is in unity whether the decision is good or bad and everyone is in it together as one big community. This also prevents many different people having different ideas on the same issues so that there is a certain right and wrong. The cons of this, however, are that this can easily lead to tyranny and abuse of power as well as people following mindlessly without having their critical thoughts.
  • It was important that Luther revoked his writings because this would crush the people questioning the Catholic Church. If Luther revoked his writings, that would show that not even he could stand up to the church so who can? Everyone would lose hope and the Catholic Church would regain full power again.
  • Orthodoxy is more important for Luther as you can see throughout the whole movie when he challenges the law and teachings of the church. A perfect example of this is when Luther buries the child that committed suicide in the cemetery. It is clearly taught that suicide is a mortal sin and that it is the devil’s work but Luther does not care about what the church teaches but what is morally correct and humane. The church, however, sees orthopraxy as more important because it does not stray from its teachings. Even when Luther tried reasoning with them and even brought up the Scriptures directly, the church ignored him and continued to defend the teachings and laws.
  • Christ is the source of religious authority over Luther. Luther teaches the way that Christ lived and loved and doesn’t listen to the church’s teachings of God being a fearful God.
  • Ritual serves as a form of catharsis because it relieves you of your stresses when you know exactly what to do for a problem. For example, people pray to help them though tough times and this releases them of their stress because they have a remedy for their problems that they believe works.
  • Luther was protesting against the corrupted practices of the church such as the selling of indulgences and worshiping of saints. He simply wants the unify the Catholic Church under the image of a loving and caring God that does not want your money or worldly possessions to make Him happy.
  • Luther was excommunicated for going against the practices of the Catholic Church and the pope. His writings and teachings were in direct conflict with those of the church.
  • Luther’s new interpretation was seen as a sign of disrespect to the holiness of God’s word in the Bible. Something so holy must only be written in the Latin language to preserve it original meaning and to keep its exclusive status. By rewriting it the common tongue, everyone could now read the Bible and read God’s words directly instead of through a filter. This caused the Catholic Church to banish the new bible everywhere.
  • Luther wrote his 95 theses to challenge the Churches corrupt practices and let others know that these practices are not mentioned in Bible. He wanted the people to know that they were being taken advantage of and that they did not have to participate in these practices.
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