From the Mosaix website:
October 31, 1517, is traditionally considered the day that German priest and scholar Martin Luther posted his 95 Theses for consideration at All Saints’ Church (more commonly, Castle Church), in Wittenberg, Germany. Legend suggests that he did so by nailing them to the church door, although this cannot be proven. In so doing, Luther aimed to bring about reformation in the church by addressing widespread abuses in his day. Furthermore, his emphasis on justification by faith was never intended to abandon consideration of faithful witness, but just the opposite.
As Luther writes in The Freedom of a Christian, union with Christ by faith involves caring for our neighbors in love. To care for our neighbors, that is for those very different than us as defined by Christ (Luke 10:25-37), and thus to fulfill the whole Law beyond mere love for God (Matthew 22:40; Galatians 5:14), requires proximity (Ephesians 4:1-13f.).1 For Christians, fundamentally, this means walking, working, and worshipping God together as one in and through local churches beyond the distinctions of this world that so often and otherwise divide. In so doing we provide a credible witness of God’s love for all people on earth as it is in heaven.
Yesterday marked the 500 Year anniversary of this historic event. In this honor, the Mosaix Global Network has released its 95 Theses, calling for a new reformation and challenging the local church to work and worship together as healthy multi-ethnic and economically diverse congregations.
Continue reading the Mosaix Preamble, 21st Century Call to Reformation, and 95 Theses Concerning the Unity and Diversity in the Local Church.
You even have the opportunity to add your own theses to the list.
From Natasha’s heart:
Martin Luther posted his 95 Theses, it was not his desire to split or break away from the universal or Catholic church. He was simply calling church leaders to account for the ways they had gone astray and distorted the Word of God, thereby abusing the people of God. As a student of God’s Word and leader himself, he was asking for a meeting to discuss necessary changes. What resulted from this action was the universal church’s need for reformation. The word reform simply means to “change into an improved form or condition.”
Reformation Day celebrates the Protestant return to God’s Word as the primary authority for faith and life. This day changed church history forever.
The truth is, I didn’t care much for any history until I took an “Early Church History” Course while attending Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary Charlotte. My interest in history increased when I took the “From the Reformation to the Present” church history course. All of a sudden, a lot of information that I had packed and stored away in my mind started to make sense. Specifically, I began to understand how deeply early Christians believed in our faith, how committed they were to God’s Word, and I was comforted by their desire to honor God in their teachings and actions.
Were they all perfect? Certainly not. Did they get some things wrong? Absolutely! However, we are assured that God works through fallen and flawed people like you and me to bring glory to himself, and to accomplish his will on earth. God has chosen to engage this way throughout history. It is with this understanding that we remember the faithfulness of Martin Luther.
Martin Luther: A Guided Tour of his Life and Thought by Stephen J. Nichols.
2 thoughts on “500 Years after the Reformation”
My pastor, Bishop Kenneth Ulmer, had the honor of speaking at this anniversary back in October. A few Sundays before his trip, he introduced this history to us and I was intrigued. I remembered a mild curiosity I had about Christian history back in college. I also am a huge fan of Jonathan Jackson, an actor who loves God and has chosen the Orthodox church to further his relationship. He speaks heavily about Christian history as well. After all of this and now reading your post, my intrigue has been reignited. I think I’ll start with reading a few C.S. Lewis books first. Any suggestions?
Thank you for being a spark!
Hi Ruthenna, My interest in church history was really a result of having a fabulous early church history professor, Dr. Donald Fairbairn. I encourage you to add his book, “Life in the Trinity: An Introduction to Theology with the Help of the Church Fathers to Your List.” He also has one coming out later this year on the Creeds that I encourage you to look for. I’m about half way through the book, “How Africa Shaped the Christian Mind: Rediscovering the African See Bed of Western Christianity” by Thomas C. Oden. I’ll definitely be reading more of his stuff! Keep the fire burning.