Augsburg Confession

Augsburg Confession

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The Augsburg Confession, also known as the "Augustana" from its Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 name, Confessio Augustana, is the primary confession of faith of the Lutheran Church and one of the most important documents of the Lutheran reformation
Protestant Reformation
The Protestant Reformation was a 16th-century split within Western Christianity initiated by Martin Luther, John Calvin and other early Protestants. The efforts of the self-described "reformers", who objected to the doctrines, rituals and ecclesiastical structure of the Roman Catholic Church, led...

. The Augsburg Confession was written in both German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

 and Latin and was presented by a number of German
Holy Roman Empire
The Holy Roman Empire was a realm that existed from 962 to 1806 in Central Europe.It was ruled by the Holy Roman Emperor. Its character changed during the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period, when the power of the emperor gradually weakened in favour of the princes...

 rulers and free-cities at the Diet of Augsburg
Diet of Augsburg
The Diet of Augsburg were the meetings of the Imperial Diet of the Holy Roman Empire in the German city of Augsburg. There were many such sessions, but the three meetings during the Reformation and the ensuing religious wars between the Roman Catholic emperor Charles V and the Protestant...

 on June 25, 1530. The Holy Roman Emperor
Holy Roman Emperor
The Holy Roman Emperor is a term used by historians to denote a medieval ruler who, as German King, had also received the title of "Emperor of the Romans" from the Pope...

 Charles V
Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor
Charles V was ruler of the Holy Roman Empire from 1519 and, as Charles I, of the Spanish Empire from 1516 until his voluntary retirement and abdication in favor of his younger brother Ferdinand I and his son Philip II in 1556.As...

 had called on the Princes and Free Territories in Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 to explain their religious convictions in an attempt to restore religious and political unity in the Holy Roman Empire and rally support against the Turkish
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 invasion. It is the fourth document contained in the Lutheran Book of Concord
Book of Concord
The Book of Concord or Concordia is the historic doctrinal standard of the Lutheran Church, consisting of ten credal documents recognized as authoritative in Lutheranism since the 16th century...

.

Background




On January 21, 1530, Emperor Charles V issued letters from Bologna
Bologna
Bologna is the capital city of Emilia-Romagna, in the Po Valley of Northern Italy. The city lies between the Po River and the Apennine Mountains, more specifically, between the Reno River and the Savena River. Bologna is a lively and cosmopolitan Italian college city, with spectacular history,...

, inviting the Imperial Diet to meet in Augsburg
Augsburg
Augsburg is a city in the south-west of Bavaria, Germany. It is a university town and home of the Regierungsbezirk Schwaben and the Bezirk Schwaben. Augsburg is an urban district and home to the institutions of the Landkreis Augsburg. It is, as of 2008, the third-largest city in Bavaria with a...

 on April 8 for the purpose of discussing and deciding various important questions. Although the writ of invitation was couched in very peaceful language, it was received with suspicion by some of the Evangelicals. The far-seeing Landgrave of Hesse hesitated to attend the diet, but the Elector John of Saxony
John, Elector of Saxony
John of Saxony , known as John the Steadfast or John the Constant, was Elector of Saxony from 1525 until 1532...

, who received the writ March 11, on March 14 directed Martin Luther
Martin Luther
Martin Luther was a German priest, professor of theology and iconic figure of the Protestant Reformation. He strongly disputed the claim that freedom from God's punishment for sin could be purchased with money. He confronted indulgence salesman Johann Tetzel with his Ninety-Five Theses in 1517...

, Justus Jonas
Justus Jonas
Justus Jonas was a German Lutheran reformer.-Biography:Jonas was born at Nordhausen in Thuringia. His real name was Jodokus Koch, which he changed according to the common custom of German scholars in the sixteenth century, when at the University of Erfurt...

, Johannes Bugenhagen
Johannes Bugenhagen
Johannes Bugenhagen , also called Doctor Pomeranus by Martin Luther, introduced the Protestant Reformation in the Duchy of Pomerania and Denmark in the 16th century. Among his major accomplishments was organization of Lutheran churches in Northern Germany and Scandinavia...

, and Philipp Melanchthon
Philipp Melanchthon
Philipp Melanchthon , born Philipp Schwartzerdt, was a German reformer, collaborator with Martin Luther, the first systematic theologian of the Protestant Reformation, intellectual leader of the Lutheran Reformation, and an influential designer of educational systems...

 to meet in Torgau
Torgau
Torgau is a town on the banks of the Elbe in northwestern Saxony, Germany. It is the capital of the district Nordsachsen.Outside Germany, the town is most well known as the place where during the Second World War, United States Army forces coming from the west met with forces of the Soviet Union...

, where he was, and present a summary of the Lutheran faith to be laid before the Holy Roman Emperor
Holy Roman Emperor
The Holy Roman Emperor is a term used by historians to denote a medieval ruler who, as German King, had also received the title of "Emperor of the Romans" from the Pope...

 at the diet.

This summary has received the name of the "Torgau Articles". On April 3, the elector and reformers started from Torgau
Torgau
Torgau is a town on the banks of the Elbe in northwestern Saxony, Germany. It is the capital of the district Nordsachsen.Outside Germany, the town is most well known as the place where during the Second World War, United States Army forces coming from the west met with forces of the Soviet Union...

, and reached Coburg
Coburg
Coburg is a town located on the Itz River in Bavaria, Germany. Its 2005 population was 42,015. Long one of the Thuringian states of the Wettin line, it joined with Bavaria by popular vote in 1920...

 on April 23. There, Luther was left behind because he was an outlaw according to the Diet of Worms
Diet of Worms
The Diet of Worms 1521 was a diet that took place in Worms, Germany, and is most memorable for the Edict of Worms , which addressed Martin Luther and the effects of the Protestant Reformation.It was conducted from 28 January to 25 May 1521, with Emperor Charles V presiding.Other Imperial diets at...

. The rest reached Augsburg on May 2. On the journey, Melanchthon worked on an "apology
Apology of the Augsburg Confession
The Apology of the Augsburg Confession was written by Philipp Melanchthon during and after the 1530 Diet of Augsburg as a response to the Pontifical Confutation of the Augsburg Confession, Charles V's commissioned official Roman Catholic response to the Lutheran Augsburg Confession of June 25, 1530...

", using the Torgau articles, and sent his draft to Luther at Coburg on May 11, who approved it. Several alterations were suggested to Melanchthon in his conferences with Jonas, the Saxon chancellor Christian Beyer
Christian Beyer
.Christian Beyer , a Saxon Chancellor and international lawyer. In documents partially different names and spellings ....

, the conciliatory Christopher von Stadion, bishop of Augsburg
Bishop of Augsburg
The Bishop of Augsburg is the Ordinary of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Augsburg in the Ecclesiastical province of München und Freising.The diocese covers an area of 13,250 km².The current bishop is Konrad Zdarsa who was appointed in 2010....

, and the imperial secretary Alfonso de Valdes
Alfonso de Valdés
Alfonso de Valdés was Spanish humanist, who became chancellor of the Emperor Charles V. He was the twin brother of Juan de Valdés....

.

On June 23, the final form of the text was adopted in the presence of the Elector John of Saxony, the Landgrave Philip of Hesse, the Margrave George of Brandenburg, the Dukes Ernest and Francis of Lüneburg, the representatives of Nuremberg
Nuremberg
Nuremberg[p] is a city in the German state of Bavaria, in the administrative region of Middle Franconia. Situated on the Pegnitz river and the Rhine–Main–Danube Canal, it is located about north of Munich and is Franconia's largest city. The population is 505,664...

 and Reutlingen
Reutlingen
Reutlingen is a city in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is the capital of the eponymous district of Reutlingen. As of April 2008, it has a population of 109,828....

, and other counselors, besides twelve theologians. After the reading, the confession was signed by the Elector John of Saxony, Margrave George of Brandenburg, Duke Ernest of Lüneburg, the Landgrave Philip of Hesse, the Prince Wolfgang of Anhalt, the representatives of Nuremberg and Reutlingen, and probably also the electoral prince John Frederick and Duke Francis of Lüneburg.

During the diet, the cities of Weißenburg in Bayern, Heilbronn
Heilbronn
Heilbronn is a city in northern Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is completely surrounded by Heilbronn County and with approximately 123.000 residents, it is the sixth-largest city in the state....

, Kempten
Kempten im Allgäu
Kempten is the largest town in Allgäu, a region in the south-west of Bavaria, Germany. The population was ca 61,000 in 2006. The area was possibly settled originally by Celts, but was later overtaken by the Romans, who called the town Cambodunum...

, and Windesheim
Windesheim, Germany
Windesheim is a municipality in the district of Bad Kreuznach in Rhineland-Palatinate, in western Germany.-External links:*...

 also expressed their concurrence with the confession. The emperor had ordered the confession to be presented to him at the next session, June 24; but when the Evangelical princes asked that it be read in public, their petition was refused, and efforts were made to prevent the public reading of the document altogether. The Evangelical princes, however, declared that they would not part with the confession until its reading should be allowed. The 25th was then fixed for the day of its presentation. In order to exclude the people, the little chapel of the episcopal palace was appointed in place of the spacious city hall, where the meetings of the diet were held. The two Saxon chancellors Christian Beyer
Christian Beyer
.Christian Beyer , a Saxon Chancellor and international lawyer. In documents partially different names and spellings ....

 and Gregor Bruck the former with the plain German copy, the other in traditional Latin language, stepped into the middle of the assembly, and against the wish of the emperor. The reading of the German version of the text by Christian Beyer
Christian Beyer
.Christian Beyer , a Saxon Chancellor and international lawyer. In documents partially different names and spellings ....

 lasted two hours and was so distinct that every word could be heard outside. The reading being over, the copies were handed to the emperor. The German he gave to the imperial chancellor, the Elector of Mainz, the Latin he took away. Neither of the copies is now extant.


The first official publication (Editio princeps
Editio princeps
In classical scholarship, editio princeps is a term of art. It means, roughly, the first printed edition of a work that previously had existed only in manuscripts, which could be circulated only after being copied by hand....

) was edited by Philipp Melanchthon
Philipp Melanchthon
Philipp Melanchthon , born Philipp Schwartzerdt, was a German reformer, collaborator with Martin Luther, the first systematic theologian of the Protestant Reformation, intellectual leader of the Lutheran Reformation, and an influential designer of educational systems...

, a professor at the University of Wittenberg and a close colleague and friend of Martin Luther
Martin Luther
Martin Luther was a German priest, professor of theology and iconic figure of the Protestant Reformation. He strongly disputed the claim that freedom from God's punishment for sin could be purchased with money. He confronted indulgence salesman Johann Tetzel with his Ninety-Five Theses in 1517...

.

The 28 articles


The Augsburg Confession consists of 28 articles presented by Lutheran princes and representatives of "free cities" at the Diet of Augsburg that set forward what the Lutherans believed, taught and confessed in positive (theses) and negative (antitheses) statements. The theses are 21 Chief Articles of Faith describing the normative principles of Christian faith held by the Lutherans; the antitheses are seven statements describing what they viewed as abuses of the Christian faith present in the Roman church.

The chief articles of faith (theses)

Article Title Description Ref
I God
Trinity
The Christian doctrine of the Trinity defines God as three divine persons : the Father, the Son , and the Holy Spirit. The three persons are distinct yet coexist in unity, and are co-equal, co-eternal and consubstantial . Put another way, the three persons of the Trinity are of one being...

Lutherans believe in the Triune God and reject other interpretations
Nontrinitarianism
Nontrinitarianism includes all Christian belief systems that disagree with the doctrine of the Trinity, namely, the teaching that God is three distinct hypostases and yet co-eternal, co-equal, and indivisibly united in one essence or ousia...

 regarding the nature of God.
II Original Sin
Original sin
Original sin is, according to a Christian theological doctrine, humanity's state of sin resulting from the Fall of Man. This condition has been characterized in many ways, ranging from something as insignificant as a slight deficiency, or a tendency toward sin yet without collective guilt, referred...

Lutherans believe that the nature of man is sinful, described as being without fear of God, without trust of God and with concupiscence
Concupiscence
Concupiscence is often defined as an ardent, usually sensual, longing or lust. The concept is most commonly encountered in Christian theology, as the selfish human desire for an object, person, or experience...

. The only "cure" for sin is to be reborn through Baptism and the Holy Spirit.
III The Son of God Lutherans believe in the incarnation, that is, the union of the fully human with the fully divine in the person of Jesus. Jesus Christ
New Testament view on Jesus' life
The four canonical gospels of the New Testament are the primary sources of information for the doctrinal Christian narrative of the life of Jesus. There is not a single New Testament "view" on the life of Jesus, the four Canonical gospels tell different but connected stories...

 alone brings about the reconciliation of humanity with God.
IV Justification By Faith Man cannot be justified before God through our own abilities; we are wholly reliant on Jesus Christ for reconciliation with God. (This is often described as the one article by which the "Lutheran church stands or falls".)
V The Office of Preaching Lutherans believe that to see to it that the gospel of Jesus Christ is proclaimed throughout the world, Christ has established His office of the holy ministry.hi
VI Of The New Obedience Lutherans believe that good deeds of Christians are the fruits of faith and salvation, not a price paid for them.
VII Of The Church Lutherans believe that there is one holy catholic church
Invisible church
The invisible church or church invisible is a theological concept of an "invisible" body of the elect who are known only to God, in contrast to the "visible church"—that is, the institutional body on earth which preaches the gospel and administers the sacraments...

, and it is found wherever the gospel is preached in its truth and purity and the sacraments are administered according to the gospel.
VIII What The Church Is Despite what hypocrisy may exist in the church (and among men), the Word and the Sacraments are always valid because they are instituted by Christ, no matter what the sins may be of the man who administers them.
IX Of Baptism Lutherans believe that Baptism is necessary for salvation, and that through Baptism is offered the grace of God. Children are baptized as an offering to them of God's grace.
X Of the Lord's Supper
Eucharist in the Lutheran Church
The Eucharist in the Lutheran Church refers to the liturgical commemoration of the Last Supper....

Lutherans believe that Christ's body and blood is truly present
Sacramental Union
Sacramental union is the Lutheran theological doctrine of the Real Presence of the body and blood of Christ in the Christian Eucharist....

 in with and under the bread and wine of the sacrament and reject those that teach otherwise
Sacramentarians
The Sacramentarians were Christians during the Protestant Reformation who denied not only the Roman Catholic transubstantiation but also the Lutheran sacramental union.They comprised two parties:...

.
XI Of Confession Lutherans believe that private absolution should remain in the church, though a believer does not need to enumerate all of his sins as it is impossible for a man to enumerate all of the sins for which he should be forgiven.
XII Of Repentance Repentance comes in two parts: in contrition for sins committed according to the Law and through faith offered through the Gospel. A believer can never be free from sin, nor live outside of the grace of God.
XIII Of the Use of the Sacraments The Sacraments (Baptism and the Eucharist) are physical manifestations of God's Word and His commitment to us. The Sacraments are never just physical elements, but have God's word and promises bound to them.
XIV Of Ecclesiastical Order Lutherans only allow those who are "rightly called" to administer the Sacraments.
XV Of Ecclesiastical Usages Lutherans believe that church holidays, calendars
Liturgical calendar (Lutheran)
The Lutheran liturgical calendar is a listing which details the primary annual festivals and events that are celebrated liturgically by various Lutheran churches...

 and festivals are useful for religious observance, but that observance and ritual is not necessary for salvation. Human traditions (such as observances, fasts, distinctions in eating meats) that are taught as a way to "merit" grace work in opposition to the Gospel.
XVI Of Civil Affairs Secular governments and vocations are considered to be part of God's natural orders; Christians are free to serve in government and the military and to engage in the business and vocations of the world. Laws are to be followed unless they are commandments to sin.
XVII Of Christ's Return to Judgment Lutherans believe that Christ will return to judge the world and all men; the "godly" will be given everlasting joy, and the "ungodly" will be condemned. This article rejects notions of the earthly kingdom of the godly
Millennialism
Millennialism , or chiliasm in Greek, is a belief held by some Christian denominations that there will be a Golden Age or Paradise on Earth in which "Christ will reign" for 1000 years prior to the final judgment and future eternal state...

, or that Christ's judgment will not be final.
XVIII Of Free Will Lutherans believe that we have free will in the realm of "civil righteousness" (or "things subject to reason"), but that we do not have free will in "spiritual righteousness". In other words, we are free to choose and act in every regard except for the choice of salvation. Faith is not the work of men, but of the Holy Spirit.
XIX Of the Cause of Sin God does not cause people to sin — sin is instead the work of the "ungodly and the devil" (i.e., our selfish concerns of this world).
XX Of Good Works The Lutheran notion of justification by faith does not somehow condemn good works; our faith causes us to do good works as a sign of our justification (or salvation), not a requirement for salvation.
XXI Of the Worship of the Saints Lutherans keep the saints
Calendar of Saints (Lutheran)
The Lutheran Calendar of Saints is a listing which details the primary annual festivals and events that are celebrated liturgically by some Lutheran Churches in the United States. The calendars of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod are from the...

, not as saviors or intercessors to God, but rather as examples and inspirations to our own faith and life.

Abuses corrected

Article Title Description
XXII Of Both Kinds In The Sacrament (Eucharist) It is proper to offer communicants the consecrated bread and wine, not just the bread.
XXIII Of the Marriage of Priests Lutherans permit their clergy to enter the institution of marriage, for the reasons that the early Church bishops were married, that God blesses marriage as an order of creation, and because marriage and procreation is the natural outlet for human sexual desire.
XXIV Of the Mass Lutherans retain the practice of the Mass, but only as a public gathering for the purposes of community worship and the receiving of the Eucharist. Lutherans reject the practice of using the Mass as a "work" for both salvation and worldly (monetary) gain.
XXV Of Confession Lutherans uphold the need for confession and absolution, but reject the notion that Confession should induce guilt or anxiety to the Christian. Absolution is offered for all sin, not just sins that can be recounted in a confession, as it is impossible for a man to know all of his transgressions.
XXVI Of the Distinction of Meats Human traditions that hold fasting and special observances with dietary restrictions as a means of gaining the favor of God are contrary to the gospel. While fasting and other practices are useful spiritual practices, they do not justify man nor offer salvation.
XXVII Of Monastic Vows Man cannot achieve purity in community or isolation from the rest of the world, and perfection cannot be attained by any vow taken or actions of man alone.
XXVIII Of Ecclesiastical Power The only power given to priests or bishops is the power offered through Scripture to preach, teach and administer the sacraments. The powers given to the clergy in issues of government or the military are granted and respected only through civil means; they are not civil rulers of governments and the military by divine right.

Conclusion


"That in doctrine and ceremonies nothing has been received on our part against Scripture or the Church Catholic." Signatures of several secular leaders in Saxony.


Influence of the Augsburg Confession


The Augsburg Confession became the primary confessional document for the Lutheran movement, even without the contribution of Martin Luther. Following the public reading of the Augsburg Confession in June 1530, the expected response by Charles V and the Vatican representatives at the Diet of Augsburg was not immediately forthcoming. Following debate between the court of Charles V and the Vatican representatives, the official response known as the Pontifical Confutation of the Augsburg Confession was produced to the Diet, though the document was so poorly prepared that the document was never published for widespread distribution, nor presented to the Lutherans at the Diet.

However, in September, Charles V declared the response to be sufficient and gave the Lutheran princes until April 15, 1531, to respond to the demands of the Confutation. In response, Phillipp Melancthon wrote a lengthy and sustained argument both supporting the Augsburg Confession and refuting the arguments made in the Confutation. This document became known as the Apology of the Augsburg Confession
Apology of the Augsburg Confession
The Apology of the Augsburg Confession was written by Philipp Melanchthon during and after the 1530 Diet of Augsburg as a response to the Pontifical Confutation of the Augsburg Confession, Charles V's commissioned official Roman Catholic response to the Lutheran Augsburg Confession of June 25, 1530...

 and was soon translated into German and was widely distributed and read throughout Germany.

The Lutheran princes at the diet concurrently agreed to a military alliance in the event of action by Charles V known as the Schmalkaldic League
Schmalkaldic League
The Schmalkaldic League was a defensive alliance of Lutheran princes within the Holy Roman Empire during the mid-16th century. Although originally started for religious motives soon after the start of the Protestant Reformation, its members eventually intended for the League to replace the Holy...

. By 1535, the League admitted any city or state to the alliance that gave official assent to the Augsburg Confession and the Apology. Significantly, the Confession was translated into English in 1536, and King Henry VIII
Henry VIII of England
Henry VIII was King of England from 21 April 1509 until his death. He was Lord, and later King, of Ireland, as well as continuing the nominal claim by the English monarchs to the Kingdom of France...

 was given opportunity to sign the confession and join the league, but theological and political disputes would prevent the English church from joining. The English translation of the Augsburg Confession and German Lutheran theologians would influence the composition of the first of the Anglican Thirty-Nine Articles
Thirty-Nine Articles
The Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion are the historically defining statements of doctrines of the Anglican church with respect to the controversies of the English Reformation. First established in 1563, the articles served to define the doctrine of the nascent Church of England as it related to...

 in the latter 1530s.
In Scandinavia the Danish-Norwegian king Christian III marched into Copenhagen on 6 August 1536 and six days later he carried out a coup that established the Reformation in Denmark
Reformation in Denmark
The Reformation in Denmark–Norway and Holstein was the transition from Roman Catholicism to Lutheranism in the realms ruled by the Copenhagen-based House of Oldenburg in the first half of the sixteenth century...

 and Norway. The three bishops who dwelt in Copenhagen were arrested and the rest were tracked down and likewise arrested. The official reason was their hesitation to elect Christian as king and other alleged criminal acts. The real reason was, however, that Christian wanted to kill two birds with one stone: carrying through a Lutheran Reformation and confiscating the bishops' properties, the profits from which was needed to cover the expenses of the recently ended civil war.

In 1540, Philipp Melanchthon
Philipp Melanchthon
Philipp Melanchthon , born Philipp Schwartzerdt, was a German reformer, collaborator with Martin Luther, the first systematic theologian of the Protestant Reformation, intellectual leader of the Lutheran Reformation, and an influential designer of educational systems...

 produced a revised edition, the Variata
Augsburg Confession Variata
The Altered Augsburg Confession is a later version of the Lutheran Augsburg Confession that includes substantial changes in the teaching of holy communion and the presence of Christ in bread and wine....

, which was signed by John Calvin
John Calvin
John Calvin was an influential French theologian and pastor during the Protestant Reformation. He was a principal figure in the development of the system of Christian theology later called Calvinism. Originally trained as a humanist lawyer, he broke from the Roman Catholic Church around 1530...

. Many Lutheran churches specify in their official documents that they subscribe to the "Unaltered Augsburg Confession", as opposed to the Variata.

The political tensions between the Schmalkaldic League
Schmalkaldic League
The Schmalkaldic League was a defensive alliance of Lutheran princes within the Holy Roman Empire during the mid-16th century. Although originally started for religious motives soon after the start of the Protestant Reformation, its members eventually intended for the League to replace the Holy...

 and the forces of Charles V and the Vatican eventually led to the Schmalkaldic War
Schmalkaldic War
The Schmalkaldic War refers to the short period of violence from 1546 until 1547 between the forces of Emperor Charles I of Spain and V of the Holy Roman Empire, commanded by Don Fernando Álvarez de Toledo, Duke of Alba, and the Lutheran Schmalkaldic League within the domains of the Holy Roman...

 in 1546–1547, which was won convincingly by Charles V. The war, however, did not resolve the religious and political situation. Eight years later, the Lutheran princes and Charles V agreed to the Peace of Augsburg
Peace of Augsburg
The Peace of Augsburg, also called the Augsburg Settlement, was a treaty between Charles V and the forces of the Schmalkaldic League, an alliance of Lutheran princes, on September 25, 1555, at the imperial city of Augsburg, now in present-day Bavaria, Germany.It officially ended the religious...

, which granted Lutheranism legal status within the Holy Roman Empire.

Theological disputes within the expanding sphere of Lutheranism to other territories in the latter half of the 16th century led to the compilation of a definitive set of Lutheran Confessions in the Book of Concord
Book of Concord
The Book of Concord or Concordia is the historic doctrinal standard of the Lutheran Church, consisting of ten credal documents recognized as authoritative in Lutheranism since the 16th century...

 in 1580. The Book of Concord includes the Augsburg Confession and the Apology of the Augsburg Confession
Apology of the Augsburg Confession
The Apology of the Augsburg Confession was written by Philipp Melanchthon during and after the 1530 Diet of Augsburg as a response to the Pontifical Confutation of the Augsburg Confession, Charles V's commissioned official Roman Catholic response to the Lutheran Augsburg Confession of June 25, 1530...

 as the foundational confessions of the Lutheran faith.

In music


Felix Mendelssohn's
Felix Mendelssohn
Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Barthóldy , use the form 'Mendelssohn' and not 'Mendelssohn Bartholdy'. The Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians gives ' Felix Mendelssohn' as the entry, with 'Mendelssohn' used in the body text...

 Symphony No. 5
Symphony No. 5 (Mendelssohn)
The Symphony No. 5 in D major/D minor, Op. 107, called the Reformation Symphony, was composed by Felix Mendelssohn in 1830 in honor of the 300th anniversary of the Presentation of the Augsburg Confession. This Confession was a key document of Lutheranism and its Presentation to Emperor Charles V in...

 (actually his second symphony in order of composition) was composed to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the Augsburg Confession and thus bears the title The Reformation Symphony. The symphony, however, was not commissioned for the celebrations, because of either the composer's Jewish origins or the inappropriateness of a symphony for the celebrations. Instead, Eduard Grell's work for four men's voices a capella was commissioned.

Further Reading

  • Reu, Johann Michael
    Johann Michael Reu
    Johann Michael Reu , was a German Lutheran theologian. Born in Diebach, Germany, Reu attended mission institute founded by Wilhelm Loehe in Neuendettelsau. He was ordained a pastor at age 20, and emigrated to the United States in 1889. In 1899, he joined the faculty of Wartburg Theological Seminary...

    , The Augsburg Confession: A Collection of Sources with an Historical Introduction. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1983.

External links

  • The Augsburg Confession (1530) in Latin
    Latin
    Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

     with a parallel English translation and with notes on the differences in the 1540 edition (Articles I — VII); from Philip Schaff
    Philip Schaff
    Philip Schaff , was a Swiss-born, German-educated Protestant theologian and a historian of the Christian church, who, after his education, lived and taught in the United States.-Biography:...

    's Creeds of the Evangelical Protestant Churches at the Christian Classics Ethereal Library
    Christian Classics Ethereal Library
    The Christian Classics Ethereal Library is a digital library that provides free electronic copies of Christian scripture and literature texts....

  • Augsburg Confession (1530), including articles XXII — XXVIII
  • The Roman Confutation (1530), in an English translation, compares each articles of the confession to Catholic beliefs.
  • Audio recording of the first part of the Augsburg Confession in Latin with text
  • A Chronicle of the Augsburg Confession by Charles Porterfield Krauth
    Charles Porterfield Krauth
    Charles Porterfield Krauth was a pastor, theologian and educator in the Lutheran branch of Christianity. He is a leading figure in the revival of the Lutheran Confessions connected to Neo-Lutheranism in the United States.- Education and parish ministry :He was born in Martinsburg, Virginia...

    , Philadelphia: J. Fredrick Smith, 1878.
  • Augsburg Confession in The Lutheran Cyclopedia (1899) edited by Henry Eyster Jacobs
    Henry Eyster Jacobs
    Henry Eyster Jacobs was an American educator and Lutheran theologian.-Biography:Jacobs was born in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the son of professor Michael and Juliana M Jacobs. He graduated from Pennsylvania College in 1862 and from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg in 1865...

  • Augsburg Confession in the Concordia Cyclopedia (page 1)(page 2)
  • Augsburg Confession in the Christian Cyclopedia
    Christian Cyclopedia
    Christian Cyclopedia is a one-volume compendium of theological data, ranging from ancient figures to contemporary events. It is published by Concordia Publishing House. It should not be confused with The Lutheran Cyclopedia , edited by Henry Eyster Jacobs and Charles A.W...

  • An Orthodox Response – Summary of Orthodox Patriarch Jeremias II's letter of 15 May 1576, in which he compares each article of the confession to Orthodox Christian beliefs
  • The Roman Catholic Reception of the Augsburg Confession by Robert Kress (JSTOR
    JSTOR
    JSTOR is an online system for archiving academic journals, founded in 1995. It provides its member institutions full-text searches of digitized back issues of several hundred well-known journals, dating back to 1665 in the case of the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society...

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