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date: 21 January 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Following Martin Luther’s lead, the Lutheran Reformation reduced the number of sacraments from seven to two: baptism and the Lord’s Supper. These two sacraments were vigorously affirmed and integrated deeply into the Lutheran vision for the good Christian life. Baptism was considered an abiding grace, to which the struggling Christian could ever return, not only as a perpetual symbol of the gift quality of saving faith itself, but also as a ready defense against spiritual despair. The Lutherans also vigorously affirmed the true presence of Christ in his body and blood in the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. They understood this as offering forgiveness of sin, the strengthening of faith, and a real communion with Christ. Both the cup and the bread, they argued, should be administered to all the gathered faithful, whom they considered worthy for participation through a lively faith.

Keywords: Martin Luther, Lutheranism, Marburg Colloquy, Wittenberg Concord, apocalypticism, Babylonian Captivity, Augsburg Confession, ubiquity, memorialism

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