by Robert Booth
He wrote 151 theses and nailed them to the door of Castle Church on April 26, 1517, six months before Luther did. But little came of the nailing of his theses.
There were a number of misunderstandings between Luther and Karlstadt who clashed repeatedly. In 1524, Luther started to campaign against Karlstadt, denying his right to publish and preach without Luther’s authorization. Luther later published the Letter to the Saxon Princes, in which he argued that Thomas Muntzer and Karlstadt agreed, and were both dangerous.
Later that same year, Luther preached in Jena, Germany. Karlstadt was in the crowd during Luther’s preaching, and wrote to Luther, asking to see him. This led to the confrontation at the Black Bear Inn. Luther was convinced that Karlstadt was in agreement with Thomas Muntzer (we will get to him at a later time) But the truth of the matter was, Karlstadt rejected Thomas Muntzer’s invitation to join the League of the Elect. Karlstadt didn’t believe in the violence that was coming from some of the radical reformers. Violence that eventually led to the German Peasants’ War.
Because of these reasons and others, Karlstadt eventually moved to Zurich and eventually Basel Switzerland, where he died in 1541 from the plague.
READ MORE FROM ROBERT BOOTH’S SERIES “PEOPLE OF THE REFORMATION”
About the Author
Robert Booth is husband to Arlene, father of three little girls, administrator and Bible teacher at Hobe Sound Christian Academy. He has an MAR from Evangelical Seminary in history and theology. He is also the creator of Kids Bible Travels, which teaches kids how to study the Bible. You can connect with him on Twitter @rwbooth and at kidsbibletravels.com.