Explanation of Luther's Small Catechism - Harald Ulrik Sverdrup

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Ken McGuire | Forum Activity | Posted: Mon, Nov 12 2012 1:16 PM

Luther wrote his Small Catechism in 1529.  Since then various things have been added to it by various Lutheran groups.  During Luther's life the exact content varied a bit, with various sections being supplemented and added to the core that was in the posters.  Since we have no central authority world-wide, different communities eventually added different "explanations" - commentaries in the form of many more questions than Luther himself asked.

One influential explanation was that of Erich Pontoppidan, a Danish Church leader.  It became the official one for the church of Denmark.  Since Denmark ruled Norway for a while, it became the official one for Norway as well.  In the middle of the 19th Century, Harald Sverdrup, a pastor and politician in Norway produced a version of this which became the official version for the Church of Norway.  At the end of the 19th century it was abbreviated, and to the best of my knowledge, this work is a translation of that catechism produced for the United Norwegian Lutheran Church of America in 1900.  Main source for this edition is http://archive.org/details/explanationoflut00sver .

A few years later (1906) the Lutheran Free Church produced a different version.  This is available via Project Gutenberg.  Perhaps I will eventually create a personal book version of that later, but other Catechisms will come first (Dietrich, Loehe, Schwan, and Stump all come to mind)

Notes about THIS edition - I have tagged it with BookOfConcord references and have personally compiled it as a "Commentary" instead of a "Monograph".

SDG

Ken McGuire

The Gospel is not ... a "new law," on the contrary, ... a "new life." - William Julius Mann

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Martin Horn | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Nov 12 2012 2:20 PM

Thank you! This is the catechism I grew up with. 

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Martin Horn | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Nov 12 2012 2:24 PM

I should alsso mention that the Lutheran Free Church version differs from the United Church Version in only six questions, and those six questions have to deal with the doctrine of the church.

Marty Horn

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