The reformation; was a schism of the medieval Catholic Church, involving a major change in the political, social and religious life of Europe. Germany was the first European nation to undergo the reformation process. Martin Luther the symbolic and much wrote about leader was a humble, determined and obsessively Christian man, who attempted to correct the problems, he perceived, within the Catholic religion. Luther's and his supporters aided by the printing press were able to bring widespread reform.
Yet this would not have been possible; the move away from universalism, the abuses and excesses of the church, growing anticlericalism, ____ all of which prepared the way for reformation, Luther's significance in this process is two fold; he generated a great deal of anticlericalism which strengthened the push for reform and secondly played a role in guiding the process of reform, although his influence over this was often largest in his home and surrounding towns elsewhere other evangelical reformers as well as in many cities the city councils.
Although notoriously difficult to summaries, Luther's theology clearly represents a radical rejection of certain aspects of the Catholic faith, this is evident in three of his most fundamental assertions. His first principle 'justification through scripture' set out in the preface to his German Translation of the New Testament (1522), this is the idea that the Bible provides the only basis for faith, thus denying the divine authority of the Pope, and any Catholic law not present in scripture. Secondly 'Justification through faith' here it is argued that only through true belief in Christ's work can a person gain the 'grace of God' or salvation, good works alone will not surface. Luther third doctrine the Priesthood of All Believers, a doctrine established in Luther's To 'The Christian Nobility of the German Nation' (1520).