It’s surprising that Huldrych Zwingli isn’t better known. Zwingli, a contemporary of Martin Luther’s, was an important figure in the Swiss Reformation.
Zwingli believed that faith was a personal experience that didn’t require sacraments and ceremonies to sustain itself. His work and his regular, exegetical preaching led to sweeping reform in Switzerland.
Zwingli spoke out publicly against
- Lenten fasting
- Veneration of the saints
- The damnation of unbaptized children
- Church corruption
- And many other important issues
As opposition from Catholic Cantons grew, a Christian Civic League which included Zwingli’s city of Zürich was formed. Tensions grew between the two factions, and Protestant encouragements to evangelize within Catholic Cantons only inflamed tempers further. Swiss and German reformation movements sought to unify their efforts against the Pope but Zwingli and Luther fell out over theological issues relating to communion.
On October 9, 1531, the Cantons declared war on Zürich. With internal squabbling at a high, the Zürich forces were unprepared for the size of the army mobilized against them. On today’s date, October 11, 1531, Zwingli, along with 500 members of the Zürich army, was killed. The battle that took Zwingli’s life lasted less than one hour.
The Works of Zwingli (7 vols.) includes the powerful writings that propelled Zwingli to the forefront of the reformation movement in Switzerland. The addition of Samuel Jackson’s and Samuel Simpson’s works on Zwingli bring important historical context to Zwingli’s life and work. Get your copy now!