Ulrich Zwingli: The Swiss Reformer

While Martin Luther remains the special focus of this 500th anniversary of the Reformation, let’s take a moment to give a special nod to Ulrich Zwingli with this guest post from John Bishop for Preaching.com.

After young Zwingli graduated from the University at Berne he was ordained a priest. He served two churches for fourteen years, then was appointed to the Cathedral in Zurich in 1518. His early preaching there was devoted to expounding the words and miracles of Jesus and he came to see a contrast between the Gospel and the rules of the Roman Church.

Not by the path of religious experience as was Luther, but by his studies of the Scriptures and the Fathers, Zwingli was led to revolt against the tyranny of Rome over the human reason and conscience. After 1518 he exercised his gifts as a preacher in the interests of reform.

In 1523, a meeting of clerics and citizens was called in Zurich to consider the sixty-seven theses of Zwingli which proclaimed the Gospel as the only source of truth and denied validity to any practice not specified in the New Testament. The meeting drafted a resolution in his favor and within two years the Latin Mass was replaced by a German Eucharist and the minister faced the congregation across an ordinary table.

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About Nelson Searcy

Nelson Searcy is an experienced church growth strategist, pastor, church planter and coach, consulting with churches around the world. As founder of Church Leader Insights and the Renegade Pastors Network, he has personally trained more than 3,500 church leaders in over 45 denominations through live events, seminars and monthly coaching. Nelson is also the Founding and Lead Pastor of The Journey Church, with locations across New York City and in Boca Raton, FL. Nelson and his church routinely appear on lists such as “The 50 Most Influential Churches” and “The 25 Most Innovative Leaders.” He is the author of over 100 church growth resources and 18+ books, including The Renegade Pastor: Abandoning Average in Your Life, Ministry and The Difference Maker: Using Your Everyday Life for Eternal Impact, and At the Cross with the People Who Were There. He and his wife, Kelley, have one son, Alexander.

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