Book Notice: MARTIN LUTHER: A SPIRITUAL BIOGRAPHY, by Herman Selderhuis

Published on October 31, 2017 by Joshua R Monroe

Crossway, 2017 | 352 pages

Famous for setting in motion the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther is often lifted high as a hero or condemned as a rebel. But underneath it all, he was a man of flesh and blood, with a deep longing to live for God.

This biography by respected Reformation scholar Herman Selderhuis captures Luther in his original context and follows him on his spiritual journey, from childhood through the Reformation to his influential later years. Combining Luther’s own words with engaging narrative designed to draw the reader into Luther’s world, this spiritual biography brings to life the complex and dynamic personality that forever changed the history of the church.

Herman Selderhuis is professor of church history at the Theological University Apeldoorn in the Netherlands and director of Refo5OO, the international platform focused on raising awareness for projects related to the legacy of the Reformation. He also serves as the director of the Reformation Research Consortium, president of the International Calvin Congress, and curator of research at the John A. Lasco Library in Emden, Germany.


Praise for Martin Luther: A Spiritual Biography:

Joel R. Beeke, President, Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary; Pastor, Heritage Reformed Church, Grand Rapids:

The complexity of Luther is staggering, but Herman Selderhuis has given us a detailed portrait of the reformer that captures both his blemishes and the beauty of his faith in Christ. This book is a fascinating read about one of the most significant figures of history. Both students of Christian history and admirers of Reformation theology will find it helpful.

Michael A. G. Haykin, professor of church history and biblical spirituality, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary:

There have been more books written about Martin Luther than any other figure in the last millennium of church history. With such a Luther-glutted market, what more could possibly be said about him? Well, this latest volume from the hand of the gifted Reformation scholar Herman Selderhuis does indeed give us a fresh perspective on the German reformer. With his own translations of Luther’s writings and his comprehensive knowledge of Luther’s world, both theological and social, this new biography is both deeply instructive about the things that mattered most to Luther and a delight to read. This is how biography should be written!

Timothy George, founding dean, Beeson Divinity School; general editor, Reformation Commentary on Scripture:

Among the many new biographies of Martin Luther, this one stands out for its fresh engagement with Luther’s own assessment of his life and work. Well researched and engagingly presented.

Carl R. Trueman, Paul Woolley Chair of Church History and professor of church history, Westminster Theological Seminary; author, The Creedal Imperative and Luther on the Christian Life:

Herman Selderhuis is a fine scholar but also a churchman and a teacher. Thus, he writes with an enviable, conversational ease, which makes his teaching accessible to the nonspecialist audience. In this brief biography of Martin Luther, he brings the reformer alive, from his birth in humble circumstances to his death as the most (in)famous man in Europe. Those who have never encountered the narrative of Luther’s life before will find this an accessible and satisfying introduction that wears its learning lightly and points to the deep truths to which Luther’s life and thought testified.

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Martin Luther: A Spiritual Biography

Crossway, 2017 | 352 pages

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