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1032 [1032]

K. Henry. 8. The historye and actes of Doct. Martyn Luther.

MarginaliaLuther and Zuinglius agree in the presēce: only in the maner of the presence they differ.asked whether Christ be there present: they will both cōfesse his true presence to be there, only in þe maner of presēce they differ. Again, aske whether þe materiall substance layd before our eyes in the Sacrament, is to be worshipped: they will both denye it, & iudge it idolatrie. And lykewise for trāsubstantiatiō, and for þe sacrifice of the Masse, they both do abhorre, and do denye the same: As also the Communion to be in both kyndes administred, they do both assent and graunt.

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MarginaliaHow and wherin Luther and Zuinglius dissent in doctrine of the Lordes Supper.Onely their difference is in this, concernyng the sense and meanyng of the wordes of Christ: Hoc est corpus meum: Thys is my body. &c. MarginaliaLuthers opinion in the Sacrament.Whiche wordes Luther expoundeth to be taken nakedly and simply, as the letter standeth, without trope or figure, and therfore holdeth the body and bloud of Christ truly to be in the bread, and wyne, and so also to be receaued with þe mouth. MarginaliaZuinglius opinion in the Sacrament.
Ex Ioan. Sled. lib. 5
Vldricus Zuinglius, with Ioan. Oecolampadius and other moe, do interprete these wordes otherwise, as to be taken not litterally, but to haue a spirituall meanyng, and to be expounded by a trope or figure, so that the sense of these wordes: This is my body, is thus to be expounded: this signifieth my body and bloud. Ex Ioan. Sled. lib. 5. With Luther consented the Saxons.  

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I.e., the Lutherans, who were from the duchy of Saxony.

With the other side of Zuinglius, went the Heluetians. And as time did grow, so the diuision of these opinions encreased in sides, and spread in farther realmes & coūtryes: MarginaliaLutherians.the one part being called of Luther Lutherians: MarginaliaSacramētaries.the other hauyng þe name of Sacramentaries. Notwithstandyng in this one vnitie of opinion, both the Lutherians, & Sacramentaries do accorde and agree, that the bread and wyne there present is not transubstantiate into the body and bloud of Christ (as is said) but is a true Sacrament of the body & bloud.

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MarginaliaEx Paralip. Abb. Vrsp.But hereof sufficient, touchyng this diuision betwene the Lutherians and Zuinglians. In which diuisiion, if there haue bene any defect in M. Luther: yet is þt no cause why either þe Papistes may greatly triumph, or why the Protestantes should despise Luther. 

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Now Foxe is advising English Protestants not to disown Luther because they did not share the same theology of the Eucharist.

For neither is the doctrine of Luther touchyng þe Sacrament, so grosse that it maketh much with the Papistes: nor yet so discrepant from vs, that therefore he ought to bee exploded. And though a full reconciliation of this difference can not well be made (as some haue gone about to do) yet let vs geue to Luther a moderate interpretation, and if we wil not make things better, yet let vs not make them worse then they be, and let vs beare, if not with the maner, yet at least with the time of his teaching: MarginaliaLutherians and Zuinglians differ more in charitie thē in doctrine.and finally let it not be noted in vs, that we should seme to differ in Charitie more (as Bucer sayth) thē we do in doctrine. But of this hereafter more (Christ willyng) when we come to the history of Iohn Fryth.

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They which write the lyfe of Sainctes, vse to describe and to extoll their holy life and godly vertues, and also to set forth such miracles as be wrought in thē by God: Wherof there lacketh no plentye in M. Luther, but rather tyme lacketh to vs and oportunitie to tary vpon them, hauyng such hast to other things. 

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This section is a very interesting attempt by Foxe to grapple with one of the major challenges to Protestant martyrology: why miracles did not occur to support the sanctity of Protestant martyrs? And how could Luther be regarded as a divinely inspired teacher when he did not buttress his message with miracles? Foxe explains this by describing the 'miracles' performed by Luther.

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MarginaliaA notable miracle of God to ouerthrowe the pope by a poore fryer.Otherwise what a miracle might this seme to be, for one man, and a poore Frier, creeping out of a blind cloyster, to be set vp against the Pope, the vniuersall Byshop and Gods mighty vicare in earth: to withstand all his Cardinals: yea and to susteine the malice & hatred almost of the whole worlde, beyng set agaynst him: and to worke that agaynst þe sayd Pope, Cardinals and Churche of Rome, which no king nor Emperour could euer do, yea durst neuer attempt, nor all the learned men before hym, could euer compasse. Whiche miraculous worke of God, I recounte nothyng inferiour to the miracle of Dauid ouerthrowyng great Goliath. Wherfore if miracles do make a Sainct (after þe Popes difinition) what lacketh in M. Luther but age & time onely to make him a Sainct? who stāding openly against the Pope, Cardinals, & prelates of the Church, in nūber so many, in power so terrible, in practise so crafty, hauyng Emperours, & all the kinges of the earth against him, who teaching and preachyng Christ the space of 29. yeares, could without touche of all his enemies so quiet-lye in hys owne countrey, where he was borne, dye and slepe in peace. MarginaliaThree miracles noted in M. Luther.In the whiche M. Luther, first to stand agaynst the pope, was a great miracle: to preuaile against the Pope, a greater: so to dye vntouched, maye seeme greatest of all, especially hauyng so many enemyes, as he had. Agayne, neither is it any thyng lesse miraculous, to consider what manifold daungers he escaped besides, 
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We have been unable to find the source for the stories of of these two interesting 'miraculous' escapes of Luther from death. Foxe may have heard them from an oral source; perhaps a sermon.

as when a certein Iewe was appointed to come to destroy him by poyson, yet was it so the will of God, that Luther had warnyng therof before, and the face of the Iewe sent to hym by picture, wherby he knewe hym, and auoyded the perill.

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MarginaliaM. Luther miraculously preserued.An other time as hee was sittyng in a certaine place vpon his stoole, a great stone there was in the vaulte, ouer his head where he did sitte, which beyng stayde miraculously, so long as he was sitting, as soone as he was vp, immediatly fell vpon þe place where he satte, able to haue crushed him all in peeces if it had light vpon him.

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And what should I speake of his prayers, which were so ardente vnto Christ, þt (as Melancthon writeth) 

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This is taken from Johannes Sleidan, A famouse cronicle of our time, called Sleidanes Commentaries, trans. John Daus (London, 1560), STC 19894, sig. G8v.

they which stode vnder his window, where he stode praying, might see his teares falling & droppyng downe. Againe, with such power he prayed, that he (as him self confesseth) had obteined of þe Lord, that so long as he lyued, the Pope should not preuaile in his countrey: after his death (sayd he) let them pray who coulde.

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MarginaliaM. Luther vehement and mightye in prayer.And as touchyng the meruelous workes of the Lord wrought here by men, if it be true whiche is crediblye reported by the learned, 

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Who these 'learned' sources were cannot be determined. There were numerous stories current in the sixteenth century of Luther's successful confrontations with the devil; this appears to be one of them. (Luther's inveterate adversary and first biographer, Johannes Cochlaeus, caustically referred to the prevalence of such stories: Historia de actis et scriptis Martini Lutheri (Paris, 1565), pp. 302-3). For a discussion of the contemporary legends of Luther and Satan see Robert Scribner, 'Luther Myth: Historiography of the Reformers' in Popular Culture and Popular Movements in Germany (London, 1987), pp. 301-22, esp. 304-5.

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what miracle can bee more miraculous, then that which was declared of a younge man about Wyttenberge, who beyng kept bare and needye by his father, was tempted by way of sorcery, to bargain with the deuill, or a familiare (as they call hym) to yeld him self body & soule into the deuils power, vpō condition to haue his wish satisfied with money: So that vppon the same, an obligation was made by the yong man, written with his owne bloud, and geuen to the deuill. This case you see, how horrible it was, and how damnable: now heare what folowed. MarginaliaA miraculous worke of the Lord in deliuering a young man out of the deuills daunger by Christian prayer.Vpon the sodeine wealth and alteration of this yong man, the matter first being noted, began afterward more & more, to be suspected, and at length, after long & great admiration, was brought vnto M. Luther, to be examined. The young mā, whether for shame or feare, long denyed to confesse, and would be knowen of nothing. Yet God so wrought, beyng strōger thē the deuill, that he vttered vnto Luther the whole substaunce of the case, as well touchyng the money, as the obligation. Luther vnderstāding the matter, and pytying the lamentable state of þe mā, willed the whole congregatiō to pray: and he him selfe ceased not with his prayers to labour, so that the deuil was compelled at last to throw in hys obligation at the windowe, and badde hym take it againe vnto hym. Which narration if it be so true as certainly it is of him reported, I see not the contrary, but that this may well seme cōparable with þe greatest miracle in Christes Church, that was since the Apostles time.

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Furthermore, as he was mighty in hys prayers: so in his Sermons God gaue him such a grace, that when hee preached, they whiche heard him, thought euery one hys owne temptations seuerally to bee noted and touched. 

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See Johannes Sleidan, A famouse cronicle of our time, called Sleidanes Commentaries, trans. John Daus (London, 1560), STC 19894, sigs. G8v-H1r.

Wherof when signification was geuen vnto him by hys frendes, & he demaunded how that could be: myne owne manifold temptations (sayd hee) and experiences are the cause therof. For this thou must vnderstād (good reader) that Luther, from his tender yeares, was much beaten & exercised with spirituall conflictes, as Melancthon in describyng of his lyfe, doth testifie. MarginaliaEx Phil. Melancth. in orat. funerbri.Also Hieronymus Wellerus, scholer & disciple to the sayd M. Luther, recordeth MarginaliaEx Hierony. Wellero.that he often tymes heard Luther his maister, thus reporte of him selfe: that he had bene assaulted and vexed with all kyndes of temptations, sauyng onely one, which was with couetousnes. MarginaliaLuther meuer in all hys lyfe tempted with couetousnes.With this vice he was neuer (sayd he) in all his lyfe troubled, nor once tempted. And hetherto concernyng the lyfe of M. Luther: who liued to the yeare of his age. 63. He continued wri-

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tyng
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