Martin Luther was a German priest, theologian, author and hymnwriter. A former Augustinian friar, he is best known among Christians as the leading figure in the Protestant Reformation and as the namesake of Lutheranism.
He is also known for espousing significant Antisemitic rhetoric, with the prevailing view among historians being that his anti-Jewish rhetoric contributed significantly to the development of Antisemitism in Germany and the Nazi Party.He was ordained to the priesthood in 1507. He came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church; in particular, he disputed the view on indulgences. Luther proposed an academic discussion of the practice and efficacy of indulgences in his Ninety-five Theses of 1517. His refusal to renounce all of his writings at the demand of Pope Leo X in 1520 and the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V at the Diet of Worms in 1521 resulted in his excommunication by the pope and condemnation as an outlaw by the Holy Roman Emperor.
Luther taught that salvation and, consequently, eternal life are not earned by good deeds but are received only as the free gift of God’s grace through the believer’s faith in Jesus Christ as redeemer from sin. He argued that only by having faith in Jesus man could be able to save his soul without having any need to do good works during his existence. His theology challenged the authority and office of the pope by teaching that the Bible is the only source of divinely revealed knowledge,and opposed sacerdotalism by considering all baptized Christians to be a holy priesthood.
Those who identify with these, and all of Luther’s wider teachings, are called Lutherans, though Luther insisted on Christian or Evangelical as the only acceptable names for individuals who professed Christ.
His works do not deal with strictly religious topics but they also concern many aspect of daily life, among which work, that is considered as something tha ennobles man. His 95 thesis concern the sale of indulgences and the role and powers of the Pope and the relation between man and God.
His Reformation changed Europe.