Roberts Liardon tells us that the papacy’s hatred for Luther continued to grow, and Emperor Charles V disliked him immensely after the Diet of Worms, though not for any particular conviction. It simply bothered him that one man should cause so much trouble for so many. Charles endeavored to enforce the Edict of Worms, but Lutheranism was too popular and escaped his attempts to quench it. Lutheran ministers were removed from their pulpits, but they took to the streets, preaching before throngs of people from the banisters of local inns. Entire German cities, like Strasbourg, Augsburg, Ulm, and Nuremberg, were turning into Lutheran strongholds.
Roberts Liardon says that congress upon congress was called to deal with this heresy that challenged the unity of Roman Catholicism. It all culminated in 1530 with the Diet of Augsburg. Luther was not allowed to go and was kept again in another castle during the three-month deliberation. The princes of the territories of Germany were all present. These men were the secular authority in the nation under the Emperor. They held the same rank as Frederick the Wise, who ruled over Luther’s territory and also was the man who hid Luther in Wartburg Castle after the Diet of Worms. These princes presented the Augsburg Confession, which was a Lutheran statement of faith. The Emperor did not receive it, demanded the stamping out of Lutheranism, and commanded the German princes to lead their country back into union with the Catholic Church. They refused; one prince knelt before the Emperor and said he would rather be beheaded than take the Word of God from his people. The princes’ bravery equaled Luther’s, and the conviction of the movement was not watered down in Luther’s absence. The Emperor would not give them the acceptance they sought but could do little to stop what was already taking over in Germany Lutheranism.