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Reformation Day 2009

October 31, 2009

While the rest of the country is celebrating ghosts, goblins, vampires, and generally scaring the pants off each other, I sincerely hope that there are some Christians out there who join me in celebrating another holiday commemorating an event that took place on October 31st -Reformation day. 492 years ago (1517 to be exact) in the town of Wittenberg, Germany a Franciscan monk by the name of Martin Luther posted his 95 Thesis on the door to the church in Wittenberg. Thus striking the match of the reformation and setting the gospel free from its Roman imprisonment.

I am not a Lutheran (the denomination that sprung from Luther’s reformation) but even as a Baptist I can appreciate the way God used this man. To be fair, Luther never intended to spark a reformation. He was severely displeased with the practice of selling indulgencies and wrote the Thesis as a scholarly objection to this practice and others. He sought to truly reform the church rather than break from it. Time does not permit me to recount the whole story but after some time Luther was excommunicated from the Roman Catholic church and he, along with others helped to bring about the Protestant Reformation.

Where would we be without men like this? The gospel would still be tied to the Roman system of works, penance, and indulgencies. While I am in no way attempting to exalt Luther, I must acknowledge the contribution he made and the way he was used by God. May we all spend a few minutes today apart from the silliness that is Halloween and thank God for men like Luther, Calvin, Knox, and many other Reformers. Thank Him for giving these men the courage and conviction to stand up against the only system they knew and embrace the God-breathed Scriptures and the freedom of the Gospel. Thank Him for reviving the gospel.

But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it– the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.

(Romans 3:21-25 ESV)

 

Sola Scriptura (Scripture Alone), Sola Fide (Faith Alone), Sola Gratia (Grace Alone), Solus Christus (Christ Alone), Soli Deo Gloria (Glory to God Alone)

Semper Reformanda

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