The studies in this volume illuminate the thought and life of Philip Melanchthon, one of the most neglected major figures in Reformation history and theology. Melanchthon was one of the most widely published and respected thinkers in his own day, who authored some of the sixteenth-century's most important books on Latin and Greek grammar, rhetoric, dialectics, and history, to say nothing of his theological output, which included the first overview of Protestant theology, the first Protestant commentaries on Romans, 1 & 2 Corinthians, and John. He was also the chief drafter of the Augsburg Confession and wrote its defense, the Apology. These essays, written over the past twenty years, commemorate the 450th anniversary of Melanchthon's death in 2010. The articles provide a wide-ranging picture of Melanchthon's thought and life with topics including his view of free will, approaches to biblical interpretation, his perspective on the church fathers and world history, and comparisons to other important figures of the age, including Calvin, Luther and Erasmus.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction; Part 1 Philip Melanchthon's Theology; Beyond stereotypes: the real Philip Melanchthon; Philip Melanchthon's 1522 annotations on Romans and the Lutheran origins of rhetorical criticism; 'Qui vigilantissimis oculis veterum omnium commentarios excusserit': Philip Melanchthon's patristic exegesis; Philip Melanchthon and Augustine of Hippo; Philip Melanchthon on time and history in the Reformation; Philip Melanchthon's contribution to Luther's debate with Erasmus over the bondage of the will; The day Philip Melanchthon got mad; Luther and Melanchthon on consecrated communion wine (Eisleben 1542-43); Philip Melanchthon and a Christian Politics. Part 2 Philip Melanchthon and His Contemporaries: Melanchthon and Luther / Luther and Melanchthon; 'We will feast together in Heaven forever': the epistolary friendship of John Calvin and Philip Melanchthon; Famous last words: the final epistolary exchange between Erasmus of Rotterdam and Philip Melanchthon in 1536; 'Not by nature Philoneikos': Philip Melanchthon's initial reactions to the Augsburg interim; Index.
'... an accessible handbook of exceptional studies...' Religious Studies Review '... much of Wengert’s further work has been scattered in essays in a variety of venues. This collection brings together thirteen of those essays, demonstrating his effectively focused, finely crafted way of approaching historical theology. Each adds in some way interesting and significant detail to our understanding of Melanchthon.' Lutheran Quarterly 'Drawn from thirty years of research and writing on Melanchthon, Wengert’s essays survey the Reformer’s fascinating career and offer profound insights into his impact on the Reformation.' Catholic Historical Review '... a handy collection of useful Melanchthon articles gathered together in one place ... Wengert’s exacting research is a necessary point of call for any modern researcher of Melanchthon.' Ecclesiastical History 'Wengert is a Lutheran scholar in very high standing, and the contributions here are first rate, covering aspects of Melanchthon's theology.' Churchman