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Luther: Gospel, Law, and Reformation | [The Great Courses]

Luther: Gospel, Law, and Reformation

How did one man-a humble monk and Bible professor-spark a religious rebellion that changed the course of history? What made Martin Luther's theology so explosive in 16th-century Europe? How did this late-medieval man launch the Protestant Reformation and help create the modern world? And how should we think of him: hero or heretic, rebel or tormented soul? Find out the answer to these questions and more in this series of 24 engaging lectures.
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Publisher's Summary

How did one man - a humble monk and Bible professor - spark a religious rebellion that changed the course of history? What made Martin Luther's theology so explosive in 16th-century Europe? How did this late-medieval man launch the Protestant Reformation and help create the modern world? And how should we think of him: hero or heretic, rebel or tormented soul? Find out the answer to these questions and more in this series of 24 engaging lectures.

You'll approach Martin Luther as someone who is so interesting to study precisely because he is so controversial. This is an opportunity to understand why Luther's thinking had such a volatile impact on his and our times and why his life continues to be a subject of vigorous religious and historical debate.

Professor Cary explores in depth Luther's subtle, challenging, and sometimes disturbing theology. After examining the genesis of Luther's great theological breakthrough - the doctrine of justification by faith alone - Professor Cary traces the full evolution of Luther's thought, from his early and frightening concept of justification through self-hatred to his later and equally unsettling notion of unfree will and predestination.

You will gain insight into this inspiring religious thinker who presented the Christian gospel as a message of comfort, joy, and freedom; an exceptional writer who did for German what Dante did for Italian; and a prominent theological and intellectual leader who appealed to ordinary Christians by sharing their most cherished values: marriage and everyday family values.

Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.

©2004 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2004 The Great Courses

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    George R. Murray Boise, ID USA 10-25-13
    George R. Murray Boise, ID USA 10-25-13 Member Since 2013

    It kills me to think of how many years I've wasted driving around in my car and doing house/yard work when I could have been learning.

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    "Painful but necessary; like eating your brocolli."
    Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor Phillip Cary?

    After listening to two of Prof. Cary's courses, I respect and appreciate his style, enthusiasm and knowledge of the material, though I cringe at his frequent usage of seemingly unconscious prompts of, "Right?" after making a point. Most speakers will let slip an occasional 'um,' 'uh,' or in this case, "Right?" but Cary uses the third early and often, which for me at least, proved detrimental to the course as a whole. For this reason alone, I don't think I could endure another of his courses.


    What other book might you compare Luther: Gospel, Law, and Reformation to and why?

    Not surprisingly, this course reminded me of the type of things I heard in Cary's "Augustine," course, which was often difficult to listen to as well because of all the, "we're unworthy...predestination...sin...heretic...Satan...hellfire and damnation types of messages from both Augustine and Luther. I feel both courses were similar to those classic books which so many find excruciating to read, yet will (at least one day) admit he or she is better for having done so. Cary's 'right?' usage aside, my primary lack of enthusiasm for each course is more "the message" than the messenger.


    What three words best describe Professor Phillip Cary’s voice?

    Passionate, occasionally playful


    What else would you have wanted to know about The Great Courses’s life?

    I don't understand this question. Whose life? Luther's or The Great Courses? If Luther, I would want to know how he could approach his life's mission with the idea of rooting out corruption in a corrupted institution (which was a good thing) but then end up spewing so much self-loathing and castigation of others to the extent that the 3rd Reich enthusiastically embraced his opinions and suggestions on how the Jews and their synagogues should be treated. What went wrong, Martin? What part of Jesus' teachings were you following here?


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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    Chris Midvale, UT, United States 08-21-13
    Chris Midvale, UT, United States 08-21-13 Member Since 2011
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    "Loved it!"
    What did you love best about Luther: Gospel, Law, and Reformation?

    I really loved this audible. Learned so much about christanity and feel like I sat down and learned alot about Martin Luther from someone who knows him well. Never bored and I get bored easy.


    What about Professor Phillip Cary’s performance did you like?

    Perfomance was great! Very informative and Phillip Cary has alot of emotion involved in the story of Martin Luther. Very good


    Any additional comments?

    Recommend to all - Christians, Lutherans and non believers.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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