Wolfgang Musculus

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Wolfgang Musculus

Wolfgang Musculus, born "Müslin" or "Mauslein", (10 September 1497 in Dieuze, Lothringen – 30 August 1563 in Bern) was a Reformed theologian of the Reformation.


Born in the village of Duss (Moselle), in a German-speaking area (French-speaking, from the Thirty Years War), he foreshadows in himself in a prescient manner all his region's history. A lover of song and of knowledge, of languages, Humanism and religion, he was swept up, along with the rest of his countrymen into the tempests and tears of his age. His great skill has made him known all over Europe and the oral tradition of his songs still rings today in the churches of the Reformation.

In 1527, he left the Benedictine monastery at Lixheim (now in the area of Moselle), to serve as deacon of the Cathedral of Our Lady of Strasbourg (French: Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-Strasbourg) and preaching assistant to Matthäus Zell while studying under Bucer and Capito. He left for Augsburg in 1531, and after 17 years of service, he left the town after the introduction of the Augsburg Interim, and came to Switzerland, where he was the primary professor of theology at Bern from 1549. At Bern, he wrote several biblical commentaries and Loci communes sacrae theologiae (Common Places of the Christian Religion), a major systematic theology.[1]

J. S. Bach used Musculus' 1530 hymn, a paraphrase of Psalm 23, as the text for his chorale cantata Der Herr ist mein getreuer Hirt, BWV 112, which he first performed in Leipzig in 1731.[2][3]

Notes and references

  1. ^ Douglas, J. James Dixon; Comfort, Philip Wesley Comfort; Mitchell, Donald R. (1992). Who's Who in Christian History. Tyndale House Publishing. p. 496. ISBN 978-0-8423-1014-7.
  2. ^ Dürr, Alfred (6 July 2006). The Cantatas of J. S. Bach: With Their Librettos in German-English Parallel Text. Oxford University Press. p. 304. ISBN 978-0-19-929776-4. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
  3. ^ "Wolfgang Meuslin". Bach Cantatas. Retrieved 9 April 2013.


  • Ballor, Jordan (2012). Covenant, Causality, and Law: A Study in the Theology of Wolfgang Musculus. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht. p. 270. ISBN 978-3-525-55036-6.
  • Farmer, Craig (1997). The Gospel of John in the Sixteenth Century: The Johannine Exegesis of Wolfgang Musculus. Oxford University Press. p. 250. ISBN 0-19-509903-6.
  • McKim, Donald Keith; Wright, David Frederick (1992). Encyclopedia of the Reformed faith. Westminster John Knox Press. p. 248. ISBN 978-0-664-21882-9.
  • Musculus, Common places, Pædocommunion. The Validity of Children at the Lord's Table in the Words of an Early Reformed Theologian.
  • Musculus, Wolfgang (2008) [1551]. Introduction by Jordan J. Ballor, Translation by Todd M. Rester. "Commentary on Psalm 15". Journal of Markets & Morality. 11 (2). Includes appendices on oaths and usury.
  • Musculus, Wolfgang (2013). On Righteousness, Oaths, and Usury: A Commentary on Psalm 15. CLP Academic. p. 160. ISBN 978-1-938-94872-5..
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