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Reformation 500 Articles

Always Reforming

The Reformation: Still Shaping Futures

Posted on 1/8/2018 - 3 minute read

The Reformation transformed not only religion but education, in ways that are still shaping the world we live in.

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Always Reforming

Posted on 10/30/2017 - 2 minute read

Five hundred years ago, an Augustinian monk, reading Scripture, rediscovered Christianity’s central teaching. Salvation does not come from human works or efforts but is a free gift of God’s grace alone, received by faith alone, in Christ alone. Martin Luther was troubled by practices and teachings in his church that obscured this truth. So he tried to open a dialog about these issues, posting theses for discussion and debate. Those theses lit a fire that still burns. The core of the Reformation was simply the proclamation of the Gospel for all.

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Martin Luther Statue holding bible

Luther and Biblical Interpretation

Posted on 10/23/2017 - 1 minute read

The most famous event of 1517 is Luther’s posting of his 95 Theses. However, in the same year Luther reached a milestone that may be even more significant: when he finally abandoned the medieval method of interpreting the Bible.

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Bible sculpture of metal with a bible verse on it.

We are Beggars. This is True

Posted on 10/13/2017 - 1 minute read

His final word was a short note in which he wrote briefly about the riches of Holy Scripture. “Let nobody suppose that he has tasted the Holy Scriptures sufficiently unless he has ruled over the churches with the prophets for a hundred years” (AE 54:76). Having himself translated the Bible into German, taught numerous classes, preached many sermons, and written volumes expositing the Word of God, this was his conclusion. He had not tasted the Word sufficiently. There were still more riches and blessings to be discovered.

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Green Grapes on a vine

Producing Fruit

Posted on 10/2/2017 - 1 minute read

Faith or works? Reformation era debates about the distinction and place of faith and works continue today. The debate rears its head as some insist that Christianity must produce “results.” We see it in Bible studies and Sunday school lessons that confuse the Gospel of Jesus Christ with moral instruction. At its worst, Some Christians think that their salvation is based on their being a “good person.”

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Praying over a bible

Prayer

Posted on 9/21/2017 - 1 minute read

Martin Luther valued prayer. Once he wrote a short book for his barber, Peter Beskendorf, called “A Simple Way to Pray” (AE 43:193-211). In it, Luther described a pattern of devotions for his friend, noting that it was his own practice. He prayed the Lord’s Prayer, considering how each petition addressed his situation that day. Elsewhere, he demonstrated the same idea with prayers based on the Ten Commandments and the Creed. In these reflections, he looked to each teaching for instruction, thanksgiving, confession, and petition

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Christians and Vocations

Posted on 9/8/2017 - 1 minute read

The Medieval Church taught that Christians could gain a future reward from God by their own merit. Ordinary lay people could obtain very few merits because they engaged mostly in non-spiritual activities such as raising food or making clothes. Clergy, monks, and nuns, however, gained more merits by reciting the mass, renouncing property, and remaining celibate. Luther learned from the Bible that only the merit of Jesus Christ matters.

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Tags: faith, relationships


Always Reforming

Reflections on the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation

by Steven P. Mueller

The brief essays in this volume explore various aspects of Reformation theology and its implications. They were written by faculty of Concordia University Irvine in commemoration of the Reformation's 500th anniversary.

Available on Amazon
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