Once upon 495 years ago, there lived a man named Martin Luther...

On a day when much of the world is occupied with celebrating Halloween (or the cultural equivalent), we think back 495 years to a man who nailed 95 revolutionary theses (statements) to a church door in Wittenberg, Germany.

 

Martin Luther (via) and the church door in Wittenberg upon which he nailed his 95 theses (via)

Martin Luther was not starting a revolution as we think of the term. He was not starting a physical war or inciting a political rebellion. By God's grace and guiding hand, Luther's theses started a reformation (or exposition) of the truth of the gospel, freeing it from the corruption of the Roman Catholic Church of the 16th century. Luther's 95 theses were "the spark that ignited the great Protestant Reformation of the 16th century, a spark that turned into a fire of gospel transformation, changing the church and changing the world" (in the words of Charles Terpstra, author of The Three R's Blog).

On this Reformation Day in the year 2012, we give thanks to God not only for Martin Luther and his zeal for the truth but for the many theologians and Reformers who have and continue to bring the truth to light according to God's word.

Want to learn more about the Reformation and the men that God has used to preserve the truth of His word? Herman Hanko's book Portraits of Faithful Saints and its companion volume, Contending for the Faith, are excellent resources, both giving short biographies of men, both faithful and heretical, whom God has used throughout history to preserve the truth.

Portraits of Faithful Saints             Contending for the Faith

Another excellent resource for information about the Protestant Reformation and the ways in which God has used it for the good of his church is the Standard Bearer archives. Search using the keywords "protestant reformation" to learn more about the history or "halloween" to learn more about a proper, Reformed view of this worldly celebration. Here are a few articles to get you started:

"The Protestant Reformation" by Herman Hoeksema (10/15/1961)

"The Protestant Reformation (2)" by Herman Hoeksema (11/01/1961)

"Happy Halloween" by Gise Van Baren (12/15/1977)



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