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Human Freedom, Christian Righteousness : Philip Melanchthon's Exegetical Dispute with Erasmus of Rotterdam - Timothy J. Wengert

Human Freedom, Christian Righteousness

Philip Melanchthon's Exegetical Dispute with Erasmus of Rotterdam

Hardcover Published: 1st December 1997
ISBN: 9780195115291
Number Of Pages: 254

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This book argues the provocative thesis that Philip Melanchthon, so often pictured as hopelessly caught in the middle between Erasmus and Luther, and more "Erasmian" than Lutheran in his thought, was, at least in his theological methods and views, not Erasmian at all, but in fact sharply opposed to Erasmus. Author Timothy J. Wengert builds his case largely on the basis of Melanchthon's Scholia on the Epistle of Paul to the Colossians, employing the critically important but seldom used second edition of 1528, which was produced in the aftermath of Luther and Erasmus's famous debate over the free will. Wengert also draws on a wide range of other contemporary sources, many of them well known but, as he argues, frequently misunderstood. Throughout this analysis he subjects a wide range of the secondary literature to sharp critical review.
From the vantage point of a relatively narrow exegetical dispute, the book deals with a number of important topics: the complicated and elusive relationships between humanism and the Reformation, Erasmus and Luther, Erasmus and Melanchthon, and Melanchthon and Luther; the theological issues of proper biblical interpretation, of free will, and of divine and human righteousness; and the hotly contested social problem of political order. Human Freedom, Christian Righteousness will be of interest not only to students and scholars of Reformation theology, but to a broader audience of those concerned with Renaissance and Reformation history and literature.

"This book should appeal to anyone who values a critical but appreciative interpretation of the life and work of the much maligned Melanchthon."--Word and World "This detailed exegetical study will be of interest to students of Melanchthon in particular and more generally to those concerned with the Reformation."--Choice "...this volume above all illustrates how the study of exegesis can be used to gain access to theological developments as well as the events of the time. This book is recommended for all college, university, and seminary libraries."--Religious Studies Review "an important addition to studies in the Reformation and in biblical humanism. It should be read by all who are interested in history, theology, philosophy, and the classics."--Sixteenth Century Journal "I cannot begin to comment adequately on the richness that comes through Wengert's meticulous following of one clue and another, especially in letters exchanged between Melanchthon and others, to make connections that are as sound in support of his argument as they are original. . . . Wengert's book clearly ranks with the very best studies of Melanchthon that we have in print."--The Journal of Religion "This book should appeal to anyone who values a critical but appreciative interpretation of the life and work of the much maligned Melanchthon."--Word and World "This detailed exegetical study will be of interest to students of Melanchthon in particular and more generally to those concerned with the Reformation."--Choice "...this volume above all illustrates how the study of exegesis can be used to gain access to theological developments as well as the events of the time. This book is recommended for all college, university, and seminary libraries."--Religious Studies Review "an important addition to studies in the Reformation and in biblical humanism. It should be read by all who are interested in history, theology, philosophy, and the classics."--Sixteenth Century Journal "This is not only an immensely stimulating book, but one that merits the highest rating and due recognition as a work of lasting value for a wide readership... A work of major importance." Journal of Theological Studies "I cannot begin to comment adequately on the richness that comes through Wengert's meticulous following of one clue and another, especially in letters exchanged between Melanchthon and others, to make connections that are as sound in support of his argument as they are original. . . . Wengert's book clearly ranks with the very best studies of Melanchthon that we have in print."--The Journal of Religion

Prefacep. vii
Abbreviationsp. xi
Background to the Dispute
Philip Melanchthon: Alien to or Ally of Erasmus?p. 5
The Current Debatep. 7
The Printing History of Philip Melanchthon's Lectures and First Commentary on Colossiansp. 14
Melanchthon's Relation to Erasmus, 1519-1524p. 21
Ground Rules for an Exegetical Debate
Text and Traditionp. 31
The Biblical Textp. 32
The Sourcesp. 36
Ratio seu Methodus Melanchthonisp. 48
The Pauline Grammarp. 49
Paulus Rhetorp. 50
Argumentum Magistri Paulip. 52
Contextus Pauli: The Locus communisp. 56
The Controversy Over Human Freedom and Christian Righteousness
Melanchthon's Controversy with Erasmus as Reflected in Their Correspondence, 1524-1528p. 67
Colossians against Erasmus on the Freedom of the Willp. 80
The Dissertatio on Col. 2:8: Origins of an Argumentp. 82
The Scholia of 1527: Undercutting Erasmus's Positionp. 87
The Scholia of 1528: Broadening the Attackp. 96
The Translated Scholia of 1529: Revealing the Opponentp. 101
Melanchthon contra Erasmump. 104
Luther neben Melanchthonp. 106
Colossians 2:23 as Melanchthon's "Politics"p. 110
The Text: Colossians 2:23p. 113
The Scholia of 1527: An Exegetical Debate over Romans 13p. 114
The Scholia of 1528: Melanchthon's Christian "Politics"p. 123
The Aftermath
Melanchthon at Erasmus's Funeral: 1528-1560p. 139
The Doctrines of the Will's Freedom and Civil Authorityp. 139
The Changing Assessment of Erasmusp. 148
After 1536: Not to Speak Ill of the Deadp. 153
The Origins of Melanchthon's "Erasmianism"p. 156
The Printing History of the Scholiap. 159
Notesp. 163
Select Bibliographyp. 219
Indexp. 227
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780195115291
ISBN-10: 0195115295
Series: Oxford Studies in Historical Theology
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 254
Published: 1st December 1997
Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 24.77 x 16.51  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.57