Reformation 500: Day Seven: How to Celebrate Reformation 500 Tomorrow
Tomorrow is the day!!!
It was October 31, 1517 when Martin Luther tacked his 95 Theses to the Wittenberg Cathedral ushering in the Protestant Reformation and reshaping Christianity. Today, Protestants number over 560 million worldwide—more than one out of every three followers. Yet many who fall into the category of “Protestant” no longer know what they believe—or why they should believe at all. Perhaps tomorrow could be a great day to sow some seeds by asking people how they would reform the church of 2017 some 500 years after Martin Luther?
How to Share Reformation Day with Your Friends…
- Wish Them a “Happy Reformation Day” and let them know that 500 years ago a man named Martin Luther cared so much for Jesus Christ and so wanted others to know him that he risked his life. Send them this You Tube clip that tells in 4 minutes what Luther did 500 years ago:
- Send Out Luther’s 95 Theses with a note saying, “This was what everyone was reading 500 years ago—and this message changed our lives!” Explain that Luther was not trying to break from Catholicism but clean up abuses that had come into the priesthood. In the 95 Theses (click here) Luther laid out his objections to indulgences and also took aim at a priesthood that had grown lax, shallow and corrupt.
- Create Your Own Virtual Doors and Let Your Friends Critique the Church by placing on one door Luther’s 95 Theses. On the other door ask your friends what they would write to critique the church some 500 years later. What do your friends think are the abuses of the church today, and how would they go about correcting them? This question will open up hours of important conversation.
- Remind Others That a Concern for the Poor drove Luther’s critique of the church. He was concerned the church had lost the passion of Jesus Christ for those on the margins. Remind people of statements Luther made like:
“He who gives to the poor or lends to the needy does a better work than buying pardons.” . . . “Christians are to be taught that he who sees a man in need, and passes by him, and gives his money for pardons, purchases not the indulgences of the Pope, but the indignation of God.”
- Create Your Own “Reformation 500 for Dummies” where you summarize the importance of the Reformation in a paragraph or two. Use the past few days (especially Day Two) to get you started.
QUESTION: What would you write and tack on the doors of Wittenberg Cathedral some 500 years later to reform the church of today?
Let me hear from you…