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Written by Rev. B. Keith Haney for “The Light Breaks Through” @ https://revheadpin.org/
Original post @ https://revheadpin.org/2017/11/01/the-500th-reformation-500-years-later-is-still-about-grace/
This is the best write-up I have seen, on why Martin Luther started the Protestant Reformation… Read about it, and be blessed !! bruce
Today, we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. It was a world-shattering movement that began with Dr. Martin Luther and his 1517 work The Ninety-Five Theses.
Here is the reformation summarized by former Synod President Gerald Kieschnick.
In the late 15th century the Catholic Church was afflicted by internal corruption.
• The sale of “indulgences” raised money to build St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.
• Indulgences made people believe deceased loved ones could be released from purgatory.
• The slogan was: “When a coin in the coffer clings, a soul from purgatory springs.”
• Onto this scene arrived a troubled man named Martin Luther.
• Luther saw God as a God of justice and was tormented by unforgiven guilt and sin.
• In a thunderstorm during which Luther’s traveling companion was killed by a bolt of lightning, Luther exclaimed, “Save me, St. Anne. I will become a monk!”
• He survived, became a monk, but could find no peace with God through his own effort.
• Luther’s discovery of God’s grace came primarily from Ephesians 2:8-9: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”
• What happened next was an act of courage, motivated by what Luther had discovered.
• He boldly spoke biblical truth to the church’s power by posting his 95 theses, intended as an invitation for a debate on topics of faith and church practice.
• Pressure was placed on him to retract his criticism of church belief and practice.
• He refused to do so and was threatened with excommunication from the Catholic Church.
• Asked to retract his writings, Luther simply stated: “Unless I am convicted by scripture and plain reason, for I do not accept the authority of popes and councils because they have contradicted each other, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot, and I will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I cannot do otherwise. God help me. Amen.”
• Ultimately, Luther was excommunicated for refusing to retract his beliefs.