As God through His Word launched Luther on to the public stage Luther brought the message of the Gospel to the everyday person, to church bureaucrats, the classroom and of course to many pulpits! In so doing a tidal wave swept much of the world as Luther challenged the faulty theology of the church and the Pope himself!
It wasn’t that Luther wanted to be so dramatic, but what the Scripture taught he believed and he preached. He was not alone of course! We all know about the Alter Martinus (Martin Chemnitz) who followed Luther as he worked with Jacob Andrea in bringing together the many Luther factions in Germany. We have the Formula of Concord as one of the many blessings that arrived after Luther’s death. It was important for him to explain and define what the real presence truly means in Christendom.
And here we are today following in the steps of the Reformer with the understanding that we must always speak the truth of the Scripture in, through and to the church and the world! The in-depth study of God’s Word and Christian theology is never done and should not be done. While everyone is not a scholarly theologian everyone will benefit from a daily study of God’s Word. It is for that reason that the Lutheran Church has always seen the importance of teaching God’s Word to every age! Our day school, Sunday Schools, youth ministries, high schools, colleges and seminaries grow out of a baptismal faith that hungers for God’s Word.
As you celebrate this 500 anniversary of the Reformation I pray that it is more than thinking back to 1517 for a while! It is a great time to look, study and think deeper about God’s Word, your faith and you! The resources abound and the available materials are an absolute spiritual feast!