499th Anniversary

499th Anniversary of what, you might ask?  On October 31st Protestants around the world will celebrate The Reformation.  Some of you may be saying and what is that?  In a nutshell, on that day in 1517, Martin Luther nailed a list of 95 points that the Church was ‘out in left field’ on, to the door of All Saints Church in Wittenberg, Germany.  I’ll include some of them below, but most importantly it launched the evangelical church as we know it.  In the years since the Resurrection, it is probably the most important and far-reaching event in Christian history.

Luther's theses are engraved into the door of All Saints' Church, Wittenberg. The Latin inscription above informs the reader that the original door was destroyed by a fire, and that in 1857, King Frederick William IV of Prussia ordered a replacement be made.

Luther’s theses are engraved into the door of All Saints’ Church, Wittenberg. The Latin inscription above informs the reader that the original door was destroyed by a fire, and that in 1857, King Frederick William IV of Prussia ordered a replacement be made.

There were some interesting practices in the Church during that time period.  And Luther’s 95 Thesis address them.  I’ve included some of the most interesting and applicable to my belief’s below.  If you want to read them all, in modern English, Check them out here. 

2. Only God can give salvation – – not a priest.

4. Sin will always remain until we enter Heaven.

37. Any Christian – dead or alive – can gain the benefit and love of Christ without an indulgence.  Indulgences are prayers and pay-offs to the Church for the person who has died.  The belief is that a person can be paid or prayed into Heaven.  Several of the Thesis Points cover this concept but I think 46 sums it up…  A Christian should buy what is necessary for life not waste money on an indulgence.

62. The main treasure of the church should be the Gospels and the grace of God.

94. Christians must follow Christ at all cost.

What is most interesting to me is that the Word of God then, and now, is interpreted in ways that benefit those who are ‘in leadership’.  Check out Paul’s words in 2 Peter 3:16

His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

Some will choose to distort the scripture to meet their own objectives and get others to do what they want or to believe as they do.  This is not acceptable in any way and Peter clearly says it will lead ‘to their own destruction’.  If our ‘treasure’ is truly ‘in the Gospel’ (see #62) then we have all we need when we know and keep ‘His Word in our heart’ (Psalm 119:11).

I truly hope that all of my readers understand that we cannot buy our way into Heaven through indulgences and the prayers of others. (see #37)  Eternal life is secured by our belief in Jesus, the One and Only Son of God.  And that is all that matters!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

 

 

Away In A manger

Away In A Manger is my favorite Christmas Carol.  Although many give the same message this is the one that resonates in my heart.  I have chosen an older melody for this video and love the Celtic Woman version.  Enjoy!

Away in a manger no crib for a bed, the little Lord Jesus laid down His sweet head;  The stars in the sky looked down where He lay, the little Lord Jesus, asleep on the hay.

The cattle are lowing the Baby awakes, but Little Lord Jesus no crying He makes;  I love Thee Lord Jesus!  Look down from the sky, and stay by my cradle till morning is nigh.

Verses 1 & 2 of this song first appeared in a children’s collection in 1885.  It is often attributed to Martin Luther but that is highly unlikely.  The author is unknown.

The third stanza was added by John Thomas McFarland around the turn of the century.  It is this verse that I love the most.  Think on these words:

Be near me, Lord Jesus I ask Thee to stay close by me forever, and love me, I pray;  Bless all the dear children in Thy tender care, and fit us for heaven to live with Thee there.

There is no greater desire in this Believer’s heart than to stay in His ‘tender care’ and when He is finally ready, to live with Him for all eternity.

Heavenly Father, this child is so blessed to know You and give You praise.  Forgive my sins and stay close.  Let me walk through the opportunities of this day with You.  I put all those reading this in Your ‘tender care’.  I lift this prayer before the throne in the precious name of Jesus.  Make it so!