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Martin Brecht’s Martin Luther: A Biography (3 vols.)



Discover the life and influence of Martin Luther in one of the most extensive biographies ever written about him. Martin Brecht walks you through Luther's life starting with his childhood and education, all the way through to his life after the Reformation. A work of immense and engaging scholarship, gracefully translated by James Schaaf, these volumes offer comprehensive and original interpretations of Luther's life, both public and private, and his lasting impact on the world.

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Key Features

  • Discover one of the largest and most complete biographies of Martin Luther ever written
  • Explore the details of Martin Luther's life, education, and impact
  • Get an indepth look at Martin Luther's later life, which is often glossed over by biographers

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In the Logos editions, these volumes are enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Martin Luther, Volume 1: His Road to Reformation, 1483-1521

  • Author: Martin Brecht
  • Publisher: Fortress Press
  • Publication Date: 1985
  • Pages: 573

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

This first volume in Martin Brecht’s three-volume biography recounts Luther’s youth and young adulthood up to the period of the Diet of Worms. Brecht discusses Luther’s education at the University of Erfurt, his monastic life, his canonical trial in 1519, the Leipzig debate, and his earliest contributions to the beginning of the Reformation.

Martin Luther, Volume 2: Shaping and Defining the Reformation, 1521-1532

  • Author: Martin Brecht
  • Publisher: Fortress Press
  • Publication Date: 1994
  • Pages: 559

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Brecht here describes the years in which the distinctive aspects of the Reformation took shape. During this time four difficult conflicts—the Peasants’ War, the interchange between Luther and Erasmus, debates on the Lord’s Supper, and the rise of Anabaptist groups—strengthened the need to fashion new orders for governing the church and the need to develop new patterns for worship and the instruction of youth. Luther the theologian was occupied with problems of politics, economy, law, and education. In addition, his own life was altered by his marriage.

Martin Luther, Volume 3: The Preservation of the Church, 1532-1546

  • Author: Martin Brecht
  • Publisher: Fortress Press
  • Publication Date: 1999
  • Pages: 529

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

The third volume of Brecht’s magnificent biography describes the final fourteen years of Luther’s life, beginning with the accession of Elector John Frederick in 1532. The period is often treated briefly because some Reformation developments continued without him, his Catholic opponents paid only partial attention to him, his personality displayed great tensions, and his judgment, errors. Yet the preservation of the church—those confessing the Reformation gospel being identical, according to Luther, with the true church—dominated Luther’s concerns.

A work of immense and engaging scholarship, this volume offers comprehensive and original interpretations of Luther’s private life, his congregation and the church in Saxony, his professorial lectures and theological controversies, Bible translation, Luther and the council of Trent, and his later writings about the Jews and Turks.

About Martin Brecht

Martin Brecht is a leading Luther scholar and professor of Reformation and modern church history at the University of Muenster. Until his retirement in 1997, he served as head of the Department of Medieval and Modern Church History of the Evangelical Theological Faculty of the university.


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  1. James B. Robinson