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The prevalent Christian theological view of free will is not unlike any other view of free will that the majority of people have today especially in this generation that emphasizes finding your own independence The belief today is that people doing good works are continually contributing to their salvation and rewarded with heaven with the help of God while the great sinners are put in hell This view though has not changed for many years even surviving through numerous reformations The most famous of all being the Protestant Reformation In the late 15th century the free will of man theologically was put into question by non-other than the leader of the Protestant Reformation himself Martin Luther He proclaimed that the free will of mankind as it relates to everyones salvation is completely nonexistent This blunt statement went against the all the teachings of the Church and led to many accusations of heresy throughout Rome Although he had been preaching these views from around 1519 it was not until 1524 after the Reformation was in full effect that Luther finally found a writing worthy enough to take up the pen in defense of his view on free will This writing was the Discussion concerning Free Will authored by the great humanist Desiderius Erasmus Appealing completely to scripture Erasmus put up the best argument he could muster while being forced to write against Luther This defense of mankinds free will in theological terms not only challenged Luther but led to one of his self-proclaimed greatest works The Bondage of the Will In this work Luther was able fend off almost every argument that had been put against him in the past and created a great reference work for future Lutherans Had it not been for Erasmus brief and non-committed writing on this matter Luthers great work may not have held as much weight and strength as it is now known to holdThe history leading up to the
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