Forgetting the Reformation
On the 31st of October, 1517, a German monk, armed with ferocious conviction, righteous fury, and an ink well, sat down to pen a manifesto. The document, which according to historians was later that day tacked to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, was Martin Luther’s cry against the atrocities of the church and the abuses of those in positions of religious supremacy. His manifesto was entitled The 95 Thesis Against the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences. This treatise, penned five centuries ago, ignited a movement that would forever alter the face of Christianity: the Protestant Reformation.
However, that was a long time ago, in a place far away, when churchmen wrote in Latin, and papal authority presided over the rule of government. We now live in the 21st century. Latin is an antiquated language for historical linguists and indulgences aren’t sold over the counter at Whole Foods. Therefore, what went down in Wittenberg (and across Europe) five hundred years ago carries little if any weight today.
Tragically I fear that many Christians today are nodding their heads in approval of the above determination. Meanwhile, we find ourselves in the midst of cultural decay, where the truly radical message of grace has been purposefully shelved, conveniently ignored, or grotesquely altered. Countless believers don’t own a Bible – or if they do, rarely read it – and churches are using religious prominence once again for monetary profit. In other words, we find ourselves five centuries removed from the first Reformation and desperately in need of another!
The faithful can ill-afford to forget the Reformation. Beginning August 13 at BLDG 28 we will journey through not just a moment in history, but rather a movement of God Himself. We will look back at how the unadulterated Gospel swept Europe and what the Holy Spirit used to ignite and stoke the flames of revival. We will see the colossal need in our day, and by His grace, we will rise, in our generation, armed with Scripture and clothed in the graciousness of Christ to protest that which discredits the supremacy of God and the single-handedness of His salvation.