Letter To Our Children
by Pastor Joe | November 1, 2023 | Letters To Our Children
November 1, 2023
…and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Did you know different churches have special days marked off on their calendars beyond Christmas and Easter? They use those marked days to remind, remember, and reinvestigate important moments in Church history. November 1st is one of those days. The Bible does not necessarily instruct us to do this, but remembering is something the Bible teaches.
What has been traditionally called All Saints Day is November 1st. I was reminded of this while reading a great book a friend lent me on the King James Bible and how its translation changed a nation, language, and entire culture. I just finished a small section on Martin Luther (1483-1546). Martin Luther, like all of us was fallen. He did not live a perfect life. Nevertheless, in God’s mercy, he had a giant impact on Christianity.
His Story Part One
Do you get a little frightened when you hear thunder and see lighting? I do, and so did Martin Luther. Once, a lightning bolt struck the ground and he was thrown from his horse. At that exact moment, Luther pledged to leave his law studies and become a monk.
Now, Luther, like all men and women, was a child of his time. Because of this he did not have all his understanding about the Gospel, the afterlife, and God clear and true in his head. Learning theology can often be like a journey- it takes time, patience, and humility. We learn truth from the scriptures, hold on to it tightly, and then learn to apply it in our lives, and the applications can go so deep because God’s love is so deep.
This was the one thing that confused the very religious people of Jesus' day. They could not, for the life of them, understand why Jesus talked to sinners, ate with sinners, touched sinners, and even protected sinners. However, we know, don't we? It was because we are all sinners! Jesus came to die for sinners, taking our penalty in His body as He hung and died on the cross.
Luther lived in a context, much like every context, where bad people of corrupt conscience and evil intent used the Bible and the Gospel for their own gain. Unlike today, everyone did not own or at least have access to a Bible they could read to check to see if what they were learning was true. Translations, in the West, were only in Latin, and ordinary people could not read Latin. Only the wealthy and those who were well-trained to read Latin (which was very costly) could read or even own a Bible.
Can you imagine a life without a Bible to read, or if you had a Bible, you did not understand the language it was written in? God would not let this go on. It was here that God enabled men, like Martin Luther, to become convinced of two things. One, all people should have a Bible they can read. Two, they can decide for themselves freely with the Bible in hand if what they are learning is true.
There is much more to the story, but we will wait until our next letter.
God bless you with all you need and more besides.
Your friend and brother in Christ,