Disputation of Doctor Martin Luther on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences
October 31, 1517
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.
Our Lutheran Heritage
On October 31, 1517, Luther wrote the church protesting the sale of indulgences. He enclosed a copy of his "Disputation of Martin Luther on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences," which came to be known as The 95 Thesis. †Luther had no intention of confronting the church, but saw his disputation as a scholarly method of objecting to church practices.
†† Luther insisted that, since forgiveness was God's alone to grant, those who claimed that indulgences absolved buyers from all punishments and granted them salvation were in error. Christians, he said, must not slacken in following Christ on account of such false assurances.
†† Luther nailed a copy of the 95 Theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg. During the time of Luther, church doors acted as the bulletin boards-- the customary way of advertising an event on a university campus. The posting of Lutherís thesis is now seen as sparking the Protestant Reformation, and is celebrated every October 31 as Reformation Day.
† Reformation Sunday is now celebrate on the closest Sunday prior to October 31.
† The Wittenberg Project and Wikipedia were reference materials for this publication, and are duly thanked for such resources.