Reformation Day | 501 Years of Recounting God's Faithfulness
God calls his people to remember what He has done in history. Deuteronomy 15:5 reads, “You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm.”
And later Deuteronomy 7:18 God commands “you shall not be afraid of them but you shall remember what the LORD your God did to Pharaoh and to all of Egypt.”
How appropriate for us as a church to remember as we follow the story of the people of God in the book of Exodus! God is faithful to his people! How grateful we are that God was faithful to bring about even a better Exodus in His Son, our Savior! Let’s remember this!
But let us also remember how God has been faithful to his people and his word in the history of the church. Around this time, about 500 years ago, the Church had fallen under corruption of power and wealth and let those things influence their practices and doctrines--denying scripture as the ultimate authority. On October 31, 1517, Luther’s 95 theses were nailed to the door of the Wittenberg church. Driven by a desire to see God’s Word honored, Luther was set out to call the Roman Catholic Church to repentance. The people of God were hearing the word of God afresh for which they had been starved for centuries. This man, Martin Luther, was taking the Bible and translating it into German and the people of Germany were coming alive as they feasted on Scripture’s riches. As a result of God’s faithfulness through the life of Martin Luther, millions of believers all over the world embrace great doctrines like sola scriptura and the doctrine of justification.
The Reformation marked a time when God was faithful yet again to remember His people and raise up a preacher to open his Word to his people! This was a marvelous work of God that affects us now as we read our own Bibles in English. Praise God that we can understand our Bibles and that God has raised up preachers like Luther to preach it to us every Sunday. We stand indebted to the laborers known as the Reformers.
So let us remember the Reformation with our eyes fixed on the God of the Bible who does not leave his church to fend for herself. God is faithful, and he remembers us. “God heard… God remembered… God saw… and God knew.” - Exodus 2:24-25. We have reason to rejoice because our God does not leave us without his Word and the centerpiece of his word, the gospel of our Lord. Amazing love, how can it be!
Glory to God and Happy Reformation Day!
For further reading on the life of Martin Luther, we highly recommend these two books:
- Martin Luther: A Spiritual Biography by Herman Selderhuis
- Martin Luther: The Man Who Rediscovered God and Changed the World by Eric Mataxes