447. Andrés Messmer on Spanish Protestantism

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Yes, there were Spanish Protestants! Andrew (Andrés) Messmer joins us to explain how they drew on humanism and philosophy to argue for their religious agenda.



Further Reading

• A. Messmer, “Hablando el lenguaje protestante con acento español: La Declaración, o confesión de fe de Casiodoro de Reina entre otras confesiones reformadas durante 1523-1561,” Cuadernos de Reflexión Teológica 1 (2020), 73-100.

• A. Messmer (ed.), Una introducción a la crítica textual de la Biblia (Barcelona: 2021).

• A. Messmer, “The Inspiration, Authority and Inerrancy of Scripture in the History of Christian Thought,” Evangelical Review of Theology 45 (2021), 294–315.

• A. Messmer (ed.), Casiodoro de Reina. Su vida, Biblia y teología. Ensayos en honor del 500 aniversario de su nacimiento (Barcelona: 2023).

• A. Messmer (ed.), Clásicos de la fe: Obras selectas de Casiodoro de Reina (Brentwood: 2023).

• A. Messmer (ed.), Credo. La confesión de fe de Casiodoro de Reina (Trujillo: 2023).


Paschal Scotti on 9 June 2024

Spanish Protestants

The great difficulty in Spain (as in every other place) is to define what Protestant even means, since the variety of those are in opposition to the Catholic Church is so varied. This is somewhat clearer among the Italians since they have received more attention and scholarship. Are anti-Trinitarians Protestants? After all, it was the Protestant Calvin who burned the Spaniard Servetus. Of course, there are those who consider themselves as true Catholics even if they are not seen as such by some others. I don't know if I would call Valdes a Protestant except by the broadest definition. I think it would cause confusion. Spain is particularly tricky because of the influence of the alumbrados. 

In reply to by Paschal Scotti

Peter Adamson on 9 June 2024

Spanish Protestants

Yes for sure. I think that came out of this conversation pretty clearly though, didn’t it? At least this is one of the main lessons I took from it (and from his writings).

In reply to by Peter Adamson

Paschal Scotti on 11 June 2024

It was an excellent episode …

It was an excellent episode (as they always are) but I did not get the same sense of the extreme variety of response to the Catholic Church as you did. Perhaps it is just me. What you do is incredible and I encourage everyone I meet to listen to these podcasts. History is the most difficult of disciplines, and you do a wonderful job with it. 

In reply to by Paschal Scotti

Spencer on 11 June 2024

The most difficult of disciplines

"History is the most difficult of disciplines"


You clearly have not taken a course in quantum mechanics.

Robert Le on 13 June 2024

Just got caught up

Hi Peter,

Recent but big fan of your work. I started listening to your podcast some time in December or January and with this episode I just caught up on western philosophy and just started on the feed for Indian, Africana, and Chinese philosophy. I’m from a medical background and I also really enjoyed Health: a History as well. Thinking of maybe creating a philosophy of medicine as an elective course at my institution.

Not really pertinent to the episode but one thing I think I noticed is that in the episodes covering antiquity, Buster Keaton was mentioned fairly often whereas I felt during the medieval episodes and I think the episodes covering Islamic philosophy, the Marx brothers tend to be predominant in appearing. Surely this can’t be a matter of convenience in terms of their utility in explaining philosophical concepts, so I’m wondering if you believe that the ancients would be big fans of Buster Keaton while Peter Abelard and Duns Scotus would be more inclined to watching Groucho. Alternatively wondering if you feel that Marx brothers were more scholastic in their thought while Buster would associate himself more with the peripatetics.

In reply to by Robert Le

Peter Adamson on 13 June 2024

Buster and the Marx brothers

Wow that is some dedicated listening! You must have done more than one episode per day. Glad you are enjoying the series!

I would like to claim some deeper theory matching running gags to periods of philosophy but it's more that after a while I figure it would make sense to stop bringing up the same thing over and over, just so listeners don't get sick of it (also at the beginning I had that catchphrase, "now I know what you're thinking" and people complained it was getting old, so I dropped it).

In reply to by Peter Adamson

Peter Weis on 18 June 2024


I am a long time listener, and I must admit that I miss both Buster Keaton and the giraffes after they went "extinct" from the podcast.

In reply to by Peter Weis

Peter Adamson on 18 June 2024


Oh sorry about that! I think there might be giraffes coming up in an episode soon though…

In reply to by Peter Adamson

Tarun G on 22 July 2024


Hoping to see giraffes and giraffe in China artwork in the China episodes🦒 Maybe in the animals and Zhuangzi one?

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