Martin Luther: The Protest Is Not Over | Episode 42 | Lineage

What was at the heart of the Reformation? Was it a location?
Was it Augsburg, Geneva, Wittenberg, or Edinburgh? Or was it something more than that? The focal point was that the Bible was written for
and could be interpreted and understood by the common man. The result of this focus
was a discovery of who the Antichrist was and who Jesus Christ was
and that He was freely accessible to all. [music] On October the 31st 1517, Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses
to the door of Wittenberg Castle Cathedral, oblivious of the ramifications of his actions. Luther was 34, and throughout the rest of his life
he would be the engine that drove the Reformation, inspiring countless generations to come. At the time, Luther was responding to John Tetzel who was traveling through Germany selling indulgences–essentially a fast ticket to heaven– in order to fund the building of St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. [music] Based on Romans chapter 1 verses 16 to 18,
Luther believed in salvation through faith by grace, while the papacy believed that salvation
required some action on our behalf which in this case
was the purchasing of indulgences. [music] In 1999 the Catholic Church
signed a joint declaration with the Lutheran Church which was hailed by many as a step in bridging the divide
and reaching a consensus on justification. However the Catholic Church still affirmed
the view of the Council of Trent on justification which declared upholding justification by faith alone as anathema. [music] The Roman Catholic Church’s basic view of salvation
is still dependent on the mediation of the church; the distribution of grace by means of the sacraments, the intercession of the saints, and purgatory,
even after the joint declaration of 1999. Jesus prayed in John 17 that His people may be one
as He and the Father are one. In the Bible at the end of time
it says there will be one flock and one Shepherd, however truth must never be sacrificed for unity
and peace cannot be attained through compromise. [music] Today unity is often secured through shallow statements
and a minimization of historical events and a reinterpretation of those same events
to suit current agendas. Martin Luther was not a saint
nor were his beliefs completely without error but his understanding and conviction
that the Bible could be understood by the common man and that salvation was available through direct communion
between the believer and Jesus Christ still stands today. [music] The issues that gave birth to the Reformation 500 years ago
are still relevant to the church at large today. While we should welcome all opportunities
for clarification and cooperation, we should also affirm, as did the Reformers,
that the Bible is our final authority and that salvation is through faith alone. [music] Luther famously said, ‘Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, I do not accept the authority of popes and councils,
for they have contradicted each other. My conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not recant anything
for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I cannot do otherwise. God help me. Amen.’ [music] Today it will be well for the church at large
and each one of us individually to take this at our guide. It is neither right nor safe to go against conscience, and Scripture, accompanied by sound reason
and the Holy Spirit, needs to be our teacher. Let us be faithful to God’s Word,
gracious in how we share it, firm in our understanding of its truths,
and immovable in our convictions.


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