A Propaganda Campaign of Godly ProportionA key to any revolution, in any time period, is spreading the keypoints within theideology of the revolution in an efficient and effective manner.

The ProtestantReformation, which is accredited chiefly to the efforts of the German monk MartinLuther, involved a very large group of people splitting from the Catholic church, aninstitution present for 1500 years before the reformation. A task as large as this splitcries out for a method of spreading ideals rapidly, also present was the need to grab theemotions of the intended targets of the message. In the following the ideals the leadersof the Protestant used to attract converts, the use of the innovative printing press in allowfor mass distribution of pamphlets, and the effects the reformation had on all will beFrom early middle ages to the Sixteenth Century, the Catholic Church evolved todominate all sectors of European life, as the church grew, so to did the power of thehierarchy within the institution.

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With this power surge, many church leaders went awayfrom the teachings of humility, charity, and faithfulness that Jesus prescribed,and slowly began to give way to an unbridled lust for money. One method the church used toappropriate funds was the paying of indulgences. Indulgences were pieces of paperissued by the church, that people purchased in exchange for forgiveness. Many inEuropean society felt alienated by this practice. Especially the poor and merchant class. These classes saw a church collecting large sums of money, while inflation and othereconomic factors hurt their own cause.

1 By the time Martin Luther undertook his effortto reform the church, their was enough seeds planted in these classes to facilitate aBesides indulgences, their were many theological points that the leaders of theReformation sought to reiterate into the Church. In a sermon Luther gave in 1521, hestates that the Church overstepped its Biblical authority by claiming the right to atonesins, Luther indicates that Jesus, and only Jesus has such authority, he statesGod haschosen a man, the Lord Jesus Christ, to crush death, destroy sin, and shatter hell…

But thepapal dominion treats us altogether differently. It makes rules about fasting praying andbutter eating, that whosoever keeps the commandments of the pope will be saved(290),Luther goes on to add that Christians should rely on faith in Christ, not a Church that isnot doing what the Bible prescribes. Luther also criticized the priests within the Church,he believed the priest had succumbed to the teachings of pagan philosophers, and had fellin line with a corrupted, money hungry papacy.

Luther sought to return the focus of theChurch, to the teachings of faith, charitable works, and humility as Jesus had originallyThe ideals indicated by Luther appealed to broad spectrum of people. The liftingof the finiancial burden encompassed in indulgences appealed to the poor, the return tooriginal Biblical doctrine spurred the interests of educated and rich. But the question ofhow to go about spreading these ideas remained. The leaders of the reformation took twodistinct approaches. First the ideals of the Reformation were recorded in the simplestwritten forms, so that all could understand. Secondly, a series of wood cuts depicted thechurch as doomed, and showed the holiness of the originally biblical intent for thechurch.

Both of these approaches, coupled with the ability to reproduce in large quantity,thanks to the innovative printing press, allowed the leaders of the Reformation to spread their message in a efficient manner that was never before possible.The simplified ideals of the church were often put in poetic verse, and thenapplied to music, so that the ideals the leaders wanted to convey were present in hymnform. This approach allowed the uneducated, who couldnt read the printed versions ofLuthers sermons, a chance to have the themes of the Reformation imprinted in theirminds. As we see in the opening lines of Luthers hymn, Lord Keep Us Steadfast in ThyWord, Luther did not go lightly in his approach, he wrote Lord, keep us steadfast in thyword, and curb the Turks vile sword, Who seek to topple from the Throne, Jesus Christthine only son.

In one verse, Luther takes a blatant attack at the Church, when this is set music, this verse would remain in an individuals mind, and keep that person motivated to keep fighting for the cause.(296) Other hymns ,while not as powerful asthe preceding, incorporated the ideals of the reform, in a similar fashionThe formentioned pamphlets that depicted the evil doings of the Church, theDevil like qualities of the pope, and Jesus allowing faithful servants to remain in heaventook the simplification of ideals and their presentation even farther. The first printobserved shows the Cardinals and the Pope, depicted as devils, taking part in issuingindulgences These church leaders are consumed by hellfire, while heavenly figuresparticipated in baptism and communion. Another woodcut uses contrast to show thefallacies within the church. One image shows the disciples bowed around Jesus feet.Directly next to this picture is the pope, with the cardinals bowed in similar manner.

The bottom half depicts Jesus chasing the money changes from the temple, while thepope accepts indulgences. Both of these cuts show Luthers perceived wrongs of thechurch. The contrast in particular showed the pope trying to emulate Jesus, a sin itself, and the church bowing to money, while Jesus rids the temple of those, who exploit thepoor for the sake of money.(299-300)These images were widely dispersed. They were highly effective in showing the exactmessage of the reformation, in simple fashion.

This campaign by the Protestants created two distinct reactions. In the lowerclass a series of rebellions by the poor against the ruling class took place, against thewishes of Martin Luther. The higher classes assimilated these ideas in their lives, andeventually founded a separate branch of Christianity. The Protestant Reformation is possibly one of the best propaganda campaigns ever. The leaders of this effort usedsimple ideas, catchy jingles, and visual appeal to transform the whole religious landscapeBibliography:Justin ChaffinHistory 1199:15-10:15Essay #3A Propaganda Campaign of Godly ProportionA key to any revolution, in any time period, is spreading the keypoints within theideology of the revolution in an efficient and effective manner.

The ProtestantReformation, which is accredited chiefly to the efforts of the German monk MartinLuther, involved a very large group of people splitting from the Catholic church, aninstitution present for 1500 years before the reformation. A task as large as this splitcries out for a method of spreading ideals rapidly, also present was the need to grab theemotions of the intended targets of the message. In the following the ideals the leadersof the Protestant used to attract converts, the use of the innovative printing press in allowfor mass distribution of pamphlets, and the effects the reformation had on all will belooked at.From early middle ages to the Sixteenth Century, the Catholic Church evolved todominate all sectors of European life, as the church grew, so to did the power of thehierarchy within the institution. With this power surge, many church leaders went awayfrom the teachings of humility, charity, and faithfulness that Jesus prescribed,and slowly began to give way to an unbridled lust for money. One method the church used toappropriate funds was the paying of indulgences.

Indulgences were pieces of paperissued by the church, that people purchased in exchange for forgiveness. Many inEuropean society felt alienated by this practice. Especially the poor and merchant class. These classes saw a church collecting large sums of money, while inflation and othereconomic factors hurt their own cause.1 By the time Martin Luther undertook his effortto reform the church, their was enough seeds planted in these classes to facilitate amajor change.

Besides indulgences, their were many theological points that the leaders of theReformation sought to reiterate into the Church. In a sermon Luther gave in 1521, hestates that the Church overstepped its Biblical authority by claiming the right to atonesins, Luther indicates that Jesus, and only Jesus has such authority, he statesGod haschosen a man, the Lord Jesus Christ, to crush death, destroy sin, and shatter hell..

.But thepapal dominion treats us altogether differently. It makes rules about fasting praying andbutter eating, that whosoever keeps the commandments of the pope will be saved(290),Luther goes on to add that Christians should rely on faith in Christ, not a Church that isnot doing what the Bible prescribes. Luther also criticized the priests within the Church,he believed the priest had succumbed to the teachings of pagan philosophers, and had fellin line with a corrupted, money hungry papacy. Luther sought to return the focus of theChurch, to the teachings of faith, charitable works, and humility as Jesus had originallytaught to his disciples.The ideals indicated by Luther appealed to broad spectrum of people. The liftingof the finiancial burden encompassed in indulgences appealed to the poor, the return tooriginal Biblical doctrine spurred the interests of educated and rich.

But the question ofhow to go about spreading these ideas remained. The leaders of the reformation took twodistinct approaches. First the ideals of the Reformation were recorded in the simplestwritten forms, so that all could understand. Secondly, a series of wood cuts depicted thechurch as doomed, and showed the holiness of the originally biblical intent for thechurch.

Both of these approaches, coupled with the ability to reproduce in large quantity,thanks to the innovative printing press, allowed the leaders of the Reformation to spread their message in a efficient manner that was never before possible.The simplified ideals of the church were often put in poetic verse, and thenapplied to music, so that the ideals the leaders wanted to convey were present in hymnform. This approach allowed the uneducated, who couldnt read the printed versions ofLuthers sermons, a chance to have the themes of the Reformation imprinted in theirminds.

As we see in the opening lines of Luthers hymn, Lord Keep Us Steadfast in ThyWord, Luther did not go lightly in his approach, he wrote Lord, keep us steadfast in thyword, and curb the Turks vile sword, Who seek to topple from the Throne, Jesus Christthine only son. In one verse, Luther takes a blatant attack at the Church, when this is set music, this verse would remain in an individuals mind, and keep that person motivated to keep fighting for the cause.(296) Other hymns ,while not as powerful asthe preceding, incorporated the ideals of the reform, in a similar fashionThe formentioned pamphlets that depicted the evil doings of the Church, theDevil like qualities of the pope, and Jesus allowing faithful servants to remain in heaventook the simplification of ideals and their presentation even farther.

The first printobserved shows the Cardinals and the Pope, depicted as devils, taking part in issuingindulgences These church leaders are consumed by hellfire, while heavenly figuresparticipated in baptism and communion. Another woodcut uses contrast to show thefallacies within the church. One image shows the disciples bowed around Jesus feet.

Directly next to this picture is the pope, with the cardinals bowed in similar manner. The bottom half depicts Jesus chasing the money changes from the temple, while thepope accepts indulgences. Both of these cuts show Luthers perceived wrongs of thechurch. The contrast in particular showed the pope trying to emulate Jesus, a sin itself, and the church bowing to money, while Jesus rids the temple of those, who exploit thepoor for the sake of money.(299-300)These images were widely dispersed.

They were highly effective in showing the exactmessage of the reformation, in simple fashion. This campaign by the Protestants created two distinct reactions. In the lowerclass a series of rebellions by the poor against the ruling class took place, against thewishes of Martin Luther.

The higher classes assimilated these ideas in their lives, andeventually founded a separate branch of Christianity. The Protestant Reformation is possibly one of the best propaganda campaigns ever. The leaders of this effort usedsimple ideas, catchy jingles, and visual appeal to transform the whole religious landscapeof the European continent.

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