Lutheranism: The Best Religion of its Time
Luther is one of the greatest reformers of all time. Western Europeans had little choice of religion at this time, since the Catholic Church was the dominant Christian religion. However, the Catholic Church had become corrupted, and Luther ended many of the Catholic corruptions. Many reforms in the Lutheran church were taken straight out of the Bible, which could not be corrupted by "sacred tradition" or word of mouth. Lutheranism also advocated equality and appealed to all classes.
The Catholic Church was extremely corrupt during Luther's time. Many of the clerics and popes were degraded, and didn't even follow church practices. Many church leaders had illegitimate children or concubines. They were excessively worldly, and were easily corrupted by money, land, and power. Indulgences were another shady custom of the Papacy, and Luther put an end to those and most of the other Catholic corruptions.
The Catholic Church advocated wars, and during the Crusades the Catholic armies slaughtered countless innocent civilians mercilessly.
Most of Luther's reforms were based on the Bible. Many of the Catholic corruptions were never mentioned as church practices in the Bible, so Luther distrusted "sacred tradition." One cannot blame him for distrusting "sacred tradition," since the church had numerous crooked popes who could bend church dogma to their own will. The adoration of saints, the use of sacred vessels and altar linens, church ornaments, priestly and clerical vestments, sacraments, and the esteem of relics were put into practice by Augustine of Hippo, who was raised a pagan. These rituals were derived from pagan customs, so Augustine was obviously influenced by his pagan past. The Christian church should not have anything to do with pagan customs. Augustine was not even an experienced Christian when Church leaders began asking him for advice.