Brentius or Brenz, Johann

Brentius Or Brenz, Johann, one of the German reformers, was born at Weil, in Suabia, June 24, 1499. He received his education at Heidelberg, and was led by the perusal of Luther's writings, and especially by the impression made on him by Luther at the Heidelberg disputation of 1518, to espouse the Reformation. He became a very popular preacher, and was appointed pastor at Halle in his twenty-third year. In 1530 he attended the Diet of Augsburg. The emperor Charles V having declared that he would destroy the city of Halle if Brentius were not given up to him, he was compelled to seek safety in flight. He found an asylum with duke Ulrich of Wurtemberg and his successor Christopher at Stuttgart, and at the request of the latter drew up the Confession of Wurtemberg. In 1557 he attended the conferences at Worms, and died at Stuttgart, Sept. 11, 1570. He taught the doctrine of the ubiquity of the body of our Lord; hence his followers were called Ubiquitarians (q.v.). His opinions, in the main, agreed with those of Luther. Brenz was a man of immense capacity for work, as preacher, reformer, administrator, and author. His works were printed at Tubingen in 1576-1590 (8 vols. fol.), and again at Amsterdam (1666). They consist chiefly of commentaries on the 0. and N.T. in the form of lectures or sermons, and are still held in great esteem. See Hartmann and Jager, Joh. Brenz (Hamb. 1840-42, 2 vols. 8vo); Hartmann, Joh. Brenz, Leben u.alsge. Schrifaen (Elberfeld, 1862); D'Aubigne, Hist. of Reformation, i, 11; Gieseler, Ch. Hist. per. 4:pt. ii, § 37.

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