The Ongoing Reformation: The Word of God
"The word of the Lord remains forever." And this word is the good news that was preached to you. 1 Peter 1:25
The Reformation was not really one event (i.e. 95 Theses), but it included a series of events that brought about reformation within the Church. The years that followed the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation included significant events in their own right (Heidelberg Disputation, Leipzig Debate, and the Diet of Worms). Next year will bring the anniversary of one of the most important legacies of Martin Luther – the publication of his translation of the New Testament in German. This legacy is seen still today as families gather around the table for devotions, as a group of women meet for Bible study, as a pastor brings hope to one who is hospitalized and as a Christians bear witness to Christ in their daily lives.
Following the Diet of Worms, Martin Luther was placed in hiding at the Wartburg Castle. His time in hiding was hardly squandered. In less than three months, Luther translated the entire New Testament into German, making God’s Word accessible to all and launching a movement to make the Word of God available to everyone in their native language. The growth of the Church today still happens by the Word of God, as the Spirit wills, as people hear, sing, pray, and feed upon the Word.
The Reformation was not just an event of the past, but continues on as Lutheran Bible Translators make God’s Word available for the first time to people groups in Asia and Africa. The Reformation continues as Christian Friends of New Americans teaches English to refugees from the Middle East using the Bible. The Reformation continues as our campus ministries reach international students and place in their hands God’s Word. And the Reformation continues as we gather for worship again this weekend and pray that God will preserve His Church and keep us steadfast in His Word. The Reformation is not an event of the past or even an anniversary, but how God has always refined His Church through His Word. The Word of the Lord endures forever!
Prayer - Almighty and gracious Lord, pour out Your Holy Spirit on Your faithful people. Keep us steadfast in Your grace and truth, protect and deliver us in times of temptation, defend us against all enemies, and grant to Your Church Your saving peace; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan