Doctrine of indulgences

Quotations from the writings of Ellen G. White with the phrase . . .

               D o c t r i n e    o f    I N D U L G E N C E S        (  3  RELATED  PHRASES )                  

                  The  phrase  'doctrine of indulgences'  appears  xxx  times in the published writings of EGW               See page on Original site                                              Related Phrase:   hurtful indulgences  ( 55 )

By these theses the doctrine of indulgences was fearlessly opposed. It was shown that the power to grant the pardon of sin, and to remit its penalty, had never been committed to the pope, or to any other man. The whole scheme was a farce, an artifice to extort money by playing upon the superstitions of the people, a device of Satan to destroy the souls of all who should trust to its lying pretensions. It was also clearly shown that the gospel of Christ was the most valuable treasure of the church, and that the grace of God, therein revealed, was freely bestowed upon all who should seek it by repentance and faith.  {ST, June 14, 1883 par. 14}

 

 
Still another fabrication was needed to enable Rome to profit by the fears and the vices of her adherents. This was supplied by the doctrine of indulgences.  Full remission of sins, past, present, and future, and release from all the pains and penalties incurred, were promised to all who would enlist in the pontiff's wars to extend his temporal dominion, to punish his enemies, or to exterminate those who dared deny his spiritual supremacy. The people were also taught that by the payment of money to the church they might free themselves from sin, and also release the souls of their deceased friends who were confined in the tormenting flames. By such means did Rome fill her coffers and sustain the magnificence, luxury, and vice of the pretended representatives of Him who had not where to lay His head. (See Appendix.)  Great Controversy, page 59.1

 

The doctrine of indulgences had been opposed by men of learning and piety in the Roman Church, and there were many who had no faith in pretensions so contrary to both reason and revelation. No prelate dared lift his voice against this iniquitous traffic; but the minds of men were becoming disturbed and uneasy, and many eagerly inquired if God would not work through some instrumentality for the purification of His church.  Great Controversy, page 128.2
 

As Tetzel continued his traffic and his impious pretensions, Luther determined upon a more effectual protest against these crying abuses. An occasion soon offered. The castle church of Wittenberg possessed many relics, which on certain holy days were exhibited to the people, and full remission of sins was granted to all who then visited the church and made confession. Accordingly on these days the people in great numbers resorted thither. One of the most important of these occasions, the festival of All Saints, was approaching. On the preceding day, Luther, joining the crowds that were already making their way to the church, posted on its door a paper containing ninety-five propositions against the doctrine of indulgences. He declared his willingness to defend these theses next day at the university, against all who should see fit to attack them.  Great Controversy, page 129.2

 

The doctrine of indulgences had been opposed by men of learning and piety in the Romish Church, and there were many who had no faith in pretensions so contrary to both reason and revelation. Yet no bishop dared lift his voice against the fraud and corruption of this iniquitous traffic. The minds of men were becoming disturbed and uneasy, and many eagerly inquired if God would not work through some instrumentality for the purification of his church.  {4SP 103.2}
 
Still another fabrication was needed to enable Rome to profit by the fears and the vices of her adherents. This was supplied by the doctrine of indulgences. Full remission of sins, past, present, and future, and release from all the pains and penalties incurred, were promised to all who would enlist in the pontiff's wars to extend his temporal dominion, to punish his enemies, or to exterminate those who dared deny his spiritual supremacy. The people were also taught that by the payment of money to the church they might free themselves from sin and also release the souls of their deceased friends who were confined in the tormenting flames. By such means did Rome fill her coffers and sustain the magnificence, luxury, and vice of the pretended representatives of Him who had not where to lay His head. {SR 333.2}

 

On the 31st of October, the day preceding the festival, a monk went boldly to the church, to which a crowd of worshipers was already repairing, and affixed to the door ninety-five propositions against the doctrine of indulgencesThat monk was Martin Luther. He went alone; not one of his most intimate friends knew of his design. As he fastened his theses upon the door of the church, he proclaimed himself ready to defend them the next day at the university itself against all opposers.  {ST, June 14, 1883 par. 12}
 
In the third interview, Luther submitted his answer, in which he showed that his position was sustained by the Scriptures, and firmly declared that he could not renounce the truth. The legate treated Luther's declaration with little short of contempt. He scolded and thundered on incessantly, leaving Luther, as at the preceding interview, no opportunity for reply. With vehement assertions and repeated reference to the papal constitution, he continued to maintain the doctrine of indulgences and to call on Luther to retract:  {ST, July 12, 1883 par. 17}

 

                                                            doctrine  of  indulgences  ( in the Appendix )                                               

 

PAGE 59. INDULGENCES. -- FOR A DETAILED HISTORY OF THE DOCTRINE OF INDULGENCES SEE MANDELL CREIGHTON, A HISTORY OF THE PAPACY FROM THE GREAT SCHISM TO THE SACK OF ROME (LONDON: LONGMANS, GREEN AND CO., 1911), VOL. 5, PP. 56-64, 71; W.H. KENT, "INDULGENCES," THE CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA, VOL. 7, PP. 783-789; H. C. LEA, A HISTORY OF AURICULAR CONFESSION AND INDULGENCES IN THE LATIN CHURCH (PHILADELPHIA: LEA BROTHERS AND CO., 1896); THOMAS M. LINDSAY, A HISTORY OF THE REFORMATION (NEW YORK; CHARLES SCRIBNER'S SONS, 1917), VOL. 1, PP. 216-227; ALBERT HENRY NEWMAN, A MANUAL OF CHURCH HISTORY (PHILADELPHIA: THE AMERICAN BAPTIST PUBLICATION SOCIETY, 1953), VOL. 2, PP. 53, 54, 62; LEOPOLD RANKE, HISTORY OF THE REFORMATION IN GERMANY (2D LONDON ED., 1845), TRANSLATED BY SARAH AUSTIN, VOL. 1, PP. 331, 335-337, 343-346; PRESERVED SMITH, THE AGE OF THE REFORMATION (NEW YORK: HENRY HOLT AND COMPANY, 1920), PP. 23-25, 66.  {GC 683.7}

ON THE PRACTICAL OUTWORKINGS OF THE DOCTRINE OF INDULGENCES DURING THE PERIOD OF THE REFORMATION SEE A PAPER BY DR. H. C. LEA, ENTITLED, "INDULGENCES IN SPAIN," PUBLISHED IN PAPERS OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF CHURCH HISTORY, VOL. 1, PP. 129-171. OF THE VALUE OF THIS HISTORICAL SIDELIGHT DR. LEA SAYS IN HIS OPENING PARAGRAPH: "UNVEXED BY THE CONTROVERSY WHICH RAGED BETWEEN LUTHER AND DR. ECK AND SILVESTER PRIERIAS, SPAIN CONTINUED TRANQUILLY TO FOLLOW IN THE OLD AND BEATEN PATH, AND FURNISHES US WITH THE INCONTESTABLE OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS WHICH ENABLE US TO EXAMINE THE MATTER IN THE PURE LIGHT OF HISTORY."   Great Controversy. page 684.1   Appendix

 

 

   

 

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Related Information

Indulgence Hurtful indulgences Pernicious indulgences Self-indulgence