“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” Romans 1:16
There’s an old song by Sam Cooke that was popular in my younger days that had a line in it that goes: “Don’t know much about history…”
I think that pretty much describes our generation. We are close to being historically illiterate in our day. We know a little about the founding of our nation, we know something of our own family heritage, but when it comes to our collective religious roots, well that’s another story. For example, many know dates like October 12, 1492, and July 4, 1776, and certainly September 11, 2001. But how many of us know the significance of May 4, 1415 or October 31, 1517. We may know trivia tidbits like the names of 3 ships that Columbus sailed to the new world: the Nina, Pinta, and the Santa Maria.
But many if not most have never even heard of John Wycliffe, John Hus, Martin Luther, John Calvin, or John Knox. And yet, these names are far more important to our Protestant faith.
Well this is Reformation Sunday, commemorating the day 500 years ago when a monk named Martin Luther nailed those 95 Theses to the wooden doors of the Wittenberg Chapel, protesting the excesses of the Church. It was a world-changing moment in history that ultimately impacts the way we view and practice the Christian faith. John MacArthur states the following concerning the Reformation, “The power of the Catholic Church was stifled by Scripture itself, as God’s people came face-to-face with the truth of His Word. The pope and the priesthood, along with Catholic dogma and tradition, were exposed as untrustworthy and unbiblical intermediaries between God and man. In the light of God’s Word, their satanic lies were laid bare.
Today, we worship and serve in the long line of faithful believers who held to the authority, inerrancy, and sufficiency of Scripture. This line includes the heroes of church history who helped recover the gospel of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. If not for the work of those faithful servants, we might still be living under the dark dominion of Catholic lies today.”
May we remember the sacrifice that has been made by many so that we may enjoy the privilege of having our own personal copy of God’s Word to read, study and enjoy daily.