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Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Ninety-Five Theses

Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed at Wittenberg, under the presidency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology, and Lecturer in Ordinary on the same at that place. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to be present and debate orally with us, may do so by letter.

In the Name our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

1.Our Lord and Master Jesus Christ, when He said Poenitentiam agite, willed that the whole life of believers should be repentance.

2.This word cannot be understood to mean sacramental penance, i.e., confession and satisfaction, which is administered by the priests.

3.Yet it means not inward repentance only; nay, there is no inward repentance which does not outwardly work divers mortifications of the flesh.

4.The penalty [of sin], therefore, continues so long as hatred of self continues; for this is the true inward repentance, and continues until our entrance into the kingdom of heaven.

On October 31, 1517, Dr. Matin Luther posted these sentances and 91 more on the door of the castle church in Wittenberg. Germany. His call for a formal debate of these theses was never answered and today the document is largely unknown. But it set off a chain of events which eventually came to be known as the Reformation.

To continue reading the other 91, click here.


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