Young Gerhard Koestler lived in Germany in the 1500s. He inherited money and a castle when his rich parents died. His uncle Frederic tried to talk Gerhard into becoming a monk so Frederic could claim the inheritance for his own.
But Gerhard had other ideas. In the castle library he found a book by Erasmus which fascinated him. He learned that Erasmus was a trained Catholic monk but believed his church was not following all the teaching of the New testament. He encouraged people to study the Bible for themselves.
After a series of adventures and narrow escapes, Gerhard arrived in Basel, Switzerland. To his delight he was able to live in the same house as Erasmus. Although Erasmus' enemies accused him of agreeing with Martin Luther, Erasmus said the Bible was his guide.
Gerhard smiled when people said, "Erasmus laid the egg that Luther hatched." Perhaps Erasmus had influenced Luther's thinking. Gerhard believed both men were trying to serve God according to the Scriptures.
In the end, Gerhard returned to his castle. Not sure whether he wanted to be known as a Catholic or a Lutheran, Gerhard said, "Call me a Christian." No other name was necessary.
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