During the sixteenth century, many Reformers echoed Erasmus’s claim that the Scriptures were clear, could be understood by even the lowliest servant, and should be translated into the vernacular and placed in the hands of all people. People did not require the magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church to correctly interpret the meaning of the Scriptures. However, within a few short years, the leade...
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Publisher: Pickwick Publications, an Imprint of Wipf and Stock Publishers (March 6, 2013)
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agisterial Reformers, Martin Luther and Huldrych Zwingli, had created their own Protestant versions of the magisterium.This work traces how the doctrine of the clarity of Scripture found expression in the writings of Balthasar Hubmaier, admirer of Erasmus and Luther, and associate of Zwingli. As Hubmaier engaged in theological debate with opponents, onetime friends, and other Anabaptists, he sought to clarify his understanding of this critical reformation doctrine. Chronologically tracing the development of Hubmaier’s hermeneutic as he interacted with Erasmus, Luther, Zwingli, and Hans Denck provides a useful means of more accurately understanding his place in the matrix of the sixteenth-century Reformations.“Scholars have long understood the ‘clarity of Scripture’ as a hermeneutic for Reformation figures in the sixteenth century. Until now, however, no one has exhaustively studied Scripture’s perspicuity in the writings of Anabaptism’s greatest early theologian. Graeme Chatfield has admirably rectified this oversight with this book while adroitly placing Hubmaier in the context of his Reformation contemporaries. Accessible and readable, this book helps us better grasp Hubmaier’s thinking, his influences, and his contributions to his church and to ours.”—Brian C. Brewer, Truett Seminary, Baylor University“Chatfield’s work adds to the list of recent monographs on this leader and scholar of the Reformation era. Interest in aspects of Hubmaier’s theology have grown, not least because he does not fit easily with the Swiss Anabaptists. Chatfield has explored Hubmaier’s approach to Scripture and comes to the persuasive conclusion that his approach is more akin to Zwingli and Luther than the Swiss Anabaptists. An excellent study that pays careful attention.”—Keith G. Jones, Rector, International Baptist Theological Seminary“The interpretation of Scripture was a major issue in the sixteenth-century reformations, separating Roman Catholic scholars, the magisterial reformers, and the radicals. A key theologian in this debate was Balthasar Hubmaier, whose contribution, and those of his friends and opponents, is skillfully and helpfully set out in a detailed study that chronologically follows the development and progression of his thought on this central doctrine for all Christian traditions and eras. Chatfield’s research is a valuable and welcome addition to scholarship.”—Anthony R. Cross, Faculty of Theology and Religion, Oxford UniversityGraeme Chatfield is Associate Dean of the Australian College of Theology, Sydney. He taught Church History at Morling College from 1996–2007, and since 2008 has taught intensive courses in Church History and Historical Theology with TCMII in Vienna, Austria.