I did some impromptu surveys on some folks asking what they knew about the Reformation? Nearly every person couldn’t connect the dots regarding people, places, times, reasons, etc. from the church event that changed history on Oct. 31, 1517. So this past week I went on a tear and read more about those series of events than I ever had before. There was a determination to get some info on the subject out to our CRBC family. I had never done a “Reformation” sermon, or really heard one myself, so I gave it a shot.
For years I thought that church history began with Jesus, Peter, and Pentecost, there was a gap, and then, boom, Billy Graham. I wasn’t aware of all the stuff in between. Such naivete.
Synergistically, several components had to be in place for the reformation to occur. Those components culminated throughout Europe in many places. The Holy Spirit was speaking to men and women in lots of countries. Fortunately, they heard and responded. Who knows what the church would look like today had the events not gone the way they did. If it were not for the courage by a few interesting characters, a church promoting incredulous proposterosities (new word), and masses hungry for something real, the events of “the reformation” would not have taken place.
Here is a link to a pretty darn good article Matthew Barrett wrote on a blog for Credo the Magazine regarding the Reformation. I didn’t read this before my sermon Sunday. However, much of it is eerily familiar. Maybe we both read the same sources.
Another great article on the same website by author, pastor, and advisor in England, Michael Reeves. Good stuff.
Finally, a good short article from one of my favorite young authors, Jon Cook on the subject.
An attempt to preach on the subject of The Reformation can be found here.
If you are interested in church history or would like to know more about church history, THE BEST book on the subject is “Church History in Plain Language” by Bruce Shelley, Word Publishing, 1995. It is written just as the title states, in a fun, readable, engaging, relevant, life-giving way. It can be found hereon Amazon. Or there are ways to get free pdf downloads if you want to trust those sites. I didn’t check them too closely.