Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for November 1st, 2016

 

A close-up of the doors at the Castle Church, Wittenberg, Germany

 

The close up above is of the doors at the Castle Church.  On the previous wooden doors, Augustinian monk, Father Martin Luther, Professor of Scripture, posted the 95 Theses on October 31st,  for an academic discussion  on the practice and selling of indulgences. The current door was replaced with the bronze one above in 1858 with the Theses, in the original Latin, engraved upon them.

The name “Castle Church” is one most people know this church as, but it’s name is also, more officially, All Saints Church.  The Church’s doors were used as a kind of bulletin board for events in the city.  Luther chose October 31 because the next day, All Saints Day, many townspeople would be coming to All Saints Church for the Mass. All Saints Day, today, is the day to remember all the saints, living and dead, around the throne of the Lamb.  Those who knew Latin, especially the faculty, with everyone going to Mass, would have a greater opportunity to read the Theses. 

Luther’s nailing of the 95 Theses was a simple posting of an announcement.  What would Luther have done the next day,  on All Saints Day?  I do not know but I can guess. He would have gone to Mass.  He may have been the celebrant or even the preacher.  He would have seen inside All Saints Church stained glass windows, smelled incense, intoned the Mass in Latin, wearing vestments, while his fellow professors, brothers and sisters in Christ (servants, millers, bakers, the Elector Frederick) came to receive the Sacrament and hear the Word of God in this relatively new Church building, finished in 1511.  This would be a continuation of a history of the saints dating back to Christ on earth.  The Evangelical, or Lutheran, Reformers did not want to change the liturgy, only it’s abuses using the Mass as a re-sacrifice of Christ.  No need to, they said, He was sacrificed once and for all for us all and by that sacrifice we receive His benefits:  His Body and Blood for the remission of sins.

The Evangelical Reformers wanted to continue the “democracy of the dead” (G. K. Chesterton) in which the saints before have a say.  They wanted to keep the Mass. The Reformers put this into writing as Philip Melancthon put into words in The Apology of Augsburg Confession. Faithful Lutherans still confess this in Article 24 of the Apology:

At the outset we must again make the preliminary statement that we 1] do not abolish the Mass, but religiously maintain and defend it. For among us masses are celebrated every Lord’s Day and on the other festivals, in which the Sacrament is offered to those who wish to use it, after they have been examined and absolved. And the usual public ceremonies are observed, the series of lessons, of prayers, vestments, and other like things.

Let us keep the Faith!  The doors of Christ’s Church are open to keep the Faith for the Lord to keep us steadfast in His Word with All the Saints, in their labors and who from their labors rest!

Jude 3:

Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.

Read Full Post »

We are now in the year long build-up toward the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation, October 31, anno Domini 2,017.   Here at Concordia Lutheran Mission blog, we will be posting more articles to inform,  enlighten and teach the history of the Reformation and continue to teach the precious doctrines of the Reformation.  These doctrines are none other than the teachings of the Bible which are catholic (“universal”), orthodox, evangelical and sacramental,  since our Lord ascended into heaven to teach all things concerning the truth which sets us free (cf. Acts 1: 1), as recorded in the Bible. Pr. Schroeder

Jude 3

Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: