By D. F. Wright

Martin Bucer (1491-1551) used to be essentially the most vital 16th century Reformers, who turned chief of the Reformed church buildings in Switzerland and South Germany after the dying of Zwingli. To mark the five hundredth anniversary of his start, a global staff of experts on Bucer spotlight his contribution in inspiration and perform to construction the group of the Church in England and Europe. the problems addressed additionally elevate concerns of up to date value, resembling Church-state family, Protestant-Catholic harmony, and tensions among a church of real believers and a "people's" church.

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Extra resources for Martin Bucer: Reforming Church and Community

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21 Certainly this is to a great extent the task of the authorities. Together with the teachers and preachers of the church, they must take every measure to ensure that the truth of God is exalted, honoured and lived out with all one's strength. e. the revelation of the gospel as the message of God's unconditional and unmerited love toward humankind, the responsibilities and obligations of rulers, as of church leaders, were enlarged and raised. But the commitment to service, and thus submission to the Lordship of Christ, are by no means theirs alone but belong to every Christian in the city.

These accusations were not advanced indiscriminately, but at that time (in 1533) were aimed at specific personalities well known in Strasbourg. The fact that Bucer had previously been closely connected with most of these individuals, whom he now attacked as 'Epicureans' - people who believed in nothing and merely wanted to enjoy life - greatly intensified the conflict. Now in the dock were the learned former monk, Otto Brunfels; the clever previous head of the Latin School at Selestat, Hans Sapidus, on whose side Bucer found himself in his younger years; and the erstwhile suffragan bishop Anton Engelbrecht, through whom in 1521 he had been declared free from his vows as a monk in the Dominican order.

They must all, therefore, turn back, repent, and seek to follow the truth of the gospel anew with wholehearted sincerity and zeal. In this alone - and not in political considerations and negotiations - there still lay a chance actually to escape the catastrophe at the last minute. Bucer wrote likewise in February 1549 to the city council, after the majority of the citizens had agreed to the introduction of the Interim in Strasbourg: But unfortunately what now matters has so far been neglected much too much, not only in the time of peace but also thereafter.

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