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Karlstadt and the Origins of the Eucharistic ControversyA Study in the Circulation of Ideas$
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Amy Nelson Burnett

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199753994

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199753994.001.0001

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Prelude to the Eucharistic Controversy

Prelude to the Eucharistic Controversy

Luther, Karlstadt, and the Wittenberg Movement

(p.10) 1 Prelude to the Eucharistic Controversy
Karlstadt and the Origins of the Eucharistic Controversy

Amy Nelson Burnett (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter summarizes Martin Luther's earliest discussions of the mass and describes the unrest in Wittenberg between 1521 and 1522 caused by efforts to reform the mass. The reforming party acted quickly to suppress the claim that adoration of the host was idolatry, a position understood as an attack on Christ's corporeal presence, but it was divided over the pace and extent of liturgical change. Andreas Karlstadt celebrated the first evangelical Lord's Supper at Christmas, but on his return to Wittenberg in March Luther abolished several of Karlstadt's liturgical innovations. Although there was substantial agreement between Luther and Karlstadt concerning the Lord's Supper, they disagreed over whether liturgical change was required by divine law or was subordinate to Christian freedom. Their disagreement first raised the question of authority: How were evangelicals to decide between competing interpretations of Scripture?

Keywords:   Martin Luther, Andreas Bodenstein von Karlstadt, Wittenberg, mass, Lord's Supper, adoration, liturgy, authority

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