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Roots of the Reformation Paperback – June 1, 2008

4.8 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

I guaruntee [this book] will lead you to a deeper understanding of your own faith heritage, if not challenge it. --Marcus Grodi, President, The Coming Home Network

One of the great Catholic theologians of the twentieth century, Karl Adam, shows us the engaging force of history. --Kenneth J. Howell, Ph. D.

About the Author

Aeterna Press: Low-cost, high quality Christian Paperbacks and E-Books. Spanning the genres of Christian Bibles, Commentaries, Theology, Mariology, History, Devotionals, Meditations, Prayers, Monasticism, Sermons, Biographies, The Catholic Church, Church Fathers to Collections, Fiction, Philosophy, History, Literary Collections, References, Critiques and Poetry. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Coming Home Resources (June 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0970262108
  • ISBN-13: 978-0970262103
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.2 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #305,154 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is a brilliant and inspiring classic on the root causes of the Reformation and the devastating affects it has had on Christendom. It is short yet direct. Direct yet avoiding vindictive polemic. A charitable conveyance of truth. All the while never losing site that truth is not relative and that, "For [the Church] there is only one true union, reunion with herself...she is bound to reject absolutely the opinion put forward by certain Protestant theologians that being a Christian is simply a question of accepting the 'fundamental' articles of the faith, even simply of accepting Christ, and not receiving in faith all the truths expressly or implicitly included in our Lord's teaching."

There is no middle ground of unity. Unity without objective truth is no unity at all.

Included in this new edition from The Coming Home Network is an update and summary from Dr. Kenneth Howell, former Presbyterian minister and theologian.

A well-reasoned and heart-wrenching appeal that should not go unnoticed. Well worth the short time it takes to read this concise but intellectually packed work. Very highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback
Karl Adam gives an unsparing rendition of the corruption in the Catholic Church that required reform, but argues persuasively that Martin Luther's break from the Church proceeded from his universalization of his personal religious experience rather than from a reaction to the filth in the Church. "The abuses in the Church were not the real cause but only the occasion of the Reformation."

Adam believes Luther would have become a saint if he had reformed the Church from within, but that in dividing the Body of Christ he committed one of the greatest wrongs possible. "The tragedy of the Reformation and of German Christianity - he let the warring spirits drive him to overthrow not merely the abuses in the Church, but the Church itself." Even so, Luther remained closer to Catholic belief and practice than did his Lutheran successors. Adams argues that Luther reacted against Ockhamist teaching on works which he mistakenly thought was Catholic teaching.

With the reforms of the Council of Trent, the corruption was corrected, and some of the dogma that was debatable when Luther first came to prominence took on definite form. Adams believes the differences between Luther and the Catholic Church are largely - with the exception of the role of the pope - over matters that are practices and accidents (not dogma or morals) and thus changeable.

The Roots of the Reformation is not a recent book: it received its imprimatur in 1951. Its focus is on Germany and Luther rather than on other countries and other reformers.
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This book is a tremendously useful resource for the thoughtful Christian who wishes to understand the many varied events and practices that fomented the reformation. I believe it is principally a text for Catholics. Most of the devoted protestants in my acquaintance would probably toss the book shortly after they began reading the 2nd chapter. If they did then they would miss a great opportunity to better understand Catholic teaching.

The forces that influenced Luther's actions were extremely powerful. Some have speculated that other centrifugal forces would have split Christianity had Luther not come to the forefront. I'm more inclined to accept that speculation after reading this text.
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This book tells all the facts, distressing as they are to read, which caused the Reformation. It is part of a bigger History by Karl Adams. He does not agree with what happened in the Reformation, but he points out without subterfuge what brought it about. In that sense it is very revealing. He does not 'put down' the Catholic Church, but nor does he hide distressing things.
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Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed this book. I'm a Roman Catholic and this book seemed to be very honest with the shamefull behavior of some of the Catholic hierarchy at and prior to Luthers time. It was very revealing in that if Luther had a problem with the Church then that should have been what he wanted to change. But that wasn't the case. This book explains how he used this unfortunate time to use as a catalyste to perpetuate his own theology and religion. If Luther and other protostants have a problem with the "infalability" of the Church and the Pope, how can they think Luther was infalible?
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I am reading this book now, and, as a Catholic convert of many years, I find it both enlightening and surprising. It affirms for me, once again, that Holy Mother Church is guided by the Holy Spirit. Otherwise, given all the weaknesses and scandals of some of her leaders, she would have fallen into oblivion centuries ago. An excellent read!
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Very clear, informative, and objective. Recommend to Catholics and Protestants alike.
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