Rainer Stahl retired general secretary of Martin Luther Bund (Habichtstrasse 14 A, Erlangen. Germany, D-91056), firstname.lastname@example.org
Stahl R. Martin Luther inspiriert und regt zum Widerspruch an. Teil 1, Religiya. Tserkov’. Obshchestvo. Issledovaniya i publikatsii po teologii i religii [Religion. Church. Society: Research and publications in the field of theology and religious studies], Saint-Petersburg, 2017, vol. 6, pp. 18–43.
In the article «Martin Luther inspires and stimulates contradictions», that is based on the report read 11. April 2017 in Tscheboskary, Luther’s understanding of freedom is examined. With the change of his name from Luder to Luther in the publication of the 95 Theses in 1517 the reformer raised the issue of freedom. He elaborated it in «On the Freedom of a Christian» (1520) and propagated no political freedom, but existential freedom, the freedom of faith. In the social realm, a Christian according to Luther is a servant of his fellow men. Here Luther developed the idea of the «two ways of God» with humans being God’s collaborators in the field of social coexistence (left hand) and in the realm of final salvation (right hand). The article focuses on the Luther’ position for the Peasants’ War. He understood this revolutionary movement as a danger to the positions of the freedom of belief. So he called on the peasants to end the revolt and the authorities to crush it. Later he realized that as a theologian he had taken far too much position in political conflicts. The second example in the social sphere is collaboration of worldview and faith. At that time, the thesis of the center of the sun in our solar system was known, but was not generally represented. Therefore, it is not surprising that the Reformers also put their faith in the old world view of the earth’s center position. However, the author notes that Luther saw the consequences of the new world view for understanding the biblical statements.