1483-1586AD Martin Luther: taught a 70-1070AD Millennium and a 1073-1739AD Satan's Release

"Luther struck the key-note of this anti-popery exegesis. He had at first a very low opinion of the Apocalypse, and would not recognize it as apostolic or prophetic (1522), but afterward he utilized for polemic purposes (in a preface to his edition of the N. T. of 1530). He [Martin Luther] dated the one thousand years (Revelation 20:7) with Augustin from the composition of the book [of Revelation], and the six hundred and sixty-six years from Gregory VII., as the supposed founder of the papacy, and understood Gog and Magog to mean the unspeakable Turks and the Jews. As Gregory VII. was elected pope 1073, the anti-Christian era ought to have come to an end A.D. 1739; but that year passed off without any change in the history of the papacy."

(Excerpted from Schaff's History of the Church, PC Study Bible formatted electronic database Copyright © 1999, 2003, 2005, 2006 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

Luther, with Augustin, dated Rev 20:1-10’s “1000 Years” from “the composition of the book [of Revelation] to the year 1073AD, when Gregory VII was elected Pope. Luther then expected an anti-Christian era (Rev 20:3 & Rev 20:7-9 period of Satan’s release) to extend from 1073AD to 666 years later. I do not see how Luther got 666 years for the period of Satan's release, but I can see how he might calculate 1073AD to be the end of the 1000 Year Millennium - that makes Augustin and Luther's Millennium from that last great defeat at Masada in 73AD to a literal 1000 years later when Gregory VII became Pope in 1073AD. Martin Luther had sound reasons for regarding Gregory VII as a harbinger of dark times. This Pope Gregory VII greatly vaunted papal claims to extraordinary heights, layed the groundwork for launching the Crusades, which in turn provoked foreign invaders, who brought Black Death Plague with them, etc., inaugurating the Dark Age that ended with the heavenly fires of the Reformation/Rennaissance/Discovery of the New World/Modern Era. I agree with Martin Luther, (1483-1546AD), that he was living at the end of the period of Satan's Brief Release that followed. Rev 20:1-10's "1000 years"

"Another important division of historical interpreters is into Post-Millennarians and Pre-Millennarians, according as the millennium predicted in Revelation 20 is regarded as part or future. Augustin committed the radical error of dating the millennium from the time of the Apocalypse or the beginning of the Christian era (although the seer mentioned it near the end of his book), and his view had great influence; hence the wide expectation of the end of the world at the close of the first millennium of the Christian church. Other post-millennarian interpreters date the millennium from the triumph of Christianity over paganism in Rome at the accession of Constantine the Great (311);"

(Excerpted from Schaff's History of the Church, PC Study Bible formatted electronic database Copyright © 1999, 2003, 2005, 2006 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)

["Radical error" or not is open to debate. (Philip Schaff went on to embrace historical Preterism, noting his own change of doctrinal position in later editions of this work.) But without argument, St. Augustin dated Rev 20:1-10’s “1000 Years” from the time of the writing of Revelation ("The Apocalypse" in Latin) or the beginning of the Christian era to the end of the first millennium of the Christian church. This view was so widely held during the Middle Age that there was wide expectation of the end of the world at 1000AD, the close of the first millennium of the Christian church. I agree with St. Augustin, (354-430AD), that he was living near the middle of Rev 20:1-10's "1000 years."

MILLENNIUM : Latin MILLE, thousand + Latin ANNUS, year

From: http://thekingdomcome.com/martin_luther

Martin Luther

What more can be said about Martin Luther? Many know him as the German monk who in 1517 supposedly nailed 95 points of contention to a church door in Wittenberg Germany, which would in turn be remembered as the spark of the Reformation. Or we could talk about Luther's hymn writing abilities, hymns which are even sung to this day (see here). We could talk about the various "catechisms" (instruction books) that Luther penned or helped to author. We could talk about his effect on the social & political structure of Europe which would in turn influence the "freedoms" much of the world currently enjoys. But perhaps we might recall Luther for his famous speech while on trial & told to recant or retract his teachings:

"Unless I shall be convinced by the testimonies of the Scriptures or by clear reason ... I neither can nor will make any retraction, since it is neither safe nor honourable to act against conscience." (Some accounts conclude the speech with: "Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me. Amen."). -- Luther before the "Diet of Worms"

Other people may also credit Luther for the bringing out the biblical concept of "justification by faith alone" but even that was not soley Luther's finding but was something that was clearly in Scripture & had been taught by others even before Luther.

Perhaps I could talk about little known quirks or Luther trivia but at this point I would rather the reader spend more time than would possible in an introductory article on Martin Luther. Please follow the various links & read up on this heritage of the Christian faith. Any non-Roman/Greek Orthodox Catholics should understand this heritage, for at one time to be a "Protestant" was synonmous with being a Reformed Christian.

Martin Luther is NOT the founder of Protestantism or Reformed Christianity anymore than we can say Paul is the founder of Christianity. We are NOT trying to urge men to say, "I am of Paul & I am of Apollos...or of Luther or of Arminius" -- however knowing one's heritage helps them to understand where they came from, why they have the culture they have. Our modern Christianity didn't just pop from a box but has gone through both good & bad formations. In that same way, while Luther contributed some great things to the Church he also gave us some bad things.

Spend some time getting to know the Martin Luther of history & not just the Luther of hype.