This week I'm going to share a devotional with the ladies about the life of Martin Luther so I thought I would share a bit with you as well.
I know it's not about thrifting or creating,
but today it is about history and its influence for us today.
Today it is about God's wonderful gift of grace to us.
Luther is considered the leader of the Protestant Reformation.
He was born into Roman Catholicism in a small town near Berlin, Germany.
By age 21, Luther received a Master of Arts degree and then began
to pursue the study of law as his father had hoped.
But, while travelling through a terrible thunderstorm,
Martin narrowly escaped a lightening strike.
Martin cried out to God and vowed to serve Him if he survived.
Martin Luther honoured his vow.
He entered the Augustinian Order at Erfurt, much to his father's disappointment.
He was driven by the fears of hell, God's wrath, and a need to gain assurance of his own salvation.
In 1511 Luther moved to Wittenburg to earn his Doctorate of Theology.
Martin Luther (1483-1546)
As Luther pursued the study of the Scriptures,
especially the letter of the apostle Paul,
he received revelation and understanding that he was
"saved by grace through faith" alone.
He began to teach as a professor of biblical theology and couldn't help but teach this wonderful realization of salvation and forgiveness.
In 1514 Luther began to serve as a priest for Wittenburg's Castle Church. The people embraced this new theology and many came to listen to this preacher.
During this time, Luther became aware of the Catholic Church's
unbiblical practice of selling indulgences
(promise of reduced punishment for sins for themselves or loved ones).
Luther publicly disputed this dishonest practice and abuse of church power.
On October 31, 1517 Luther nailed his famous 95-Thesis to the Castle Church door.
This was a defining moment in Christian history.
Martin Luther refused to recant his beliefs and was therefore officially excommunicated by the Pope.
Luther escaped (through a planned kidnapping) to Wartburg Castle where he was protected by friends for almost one year.
During this time, Luther translated the New Testament into the German language, giving ordinary people the opportunity to read God's Word for themselves.
In 1529, Martin Luther penned the hymn "A Mighty Fortress is our God".
It was translated from German to English in 1853 by Frederic H. Hedge.
This is the actual handwriting of Martin Luther and his signature. It is public domain.
Martin Luther struggled with oppression while translating the Bible.
The last thing Satan wants is people having access to the truth thus exposing his lies.
Luther persevered and the words to his hymn reflect his struggle.
While Luther wasn't perfect, (who is!) I am grateful for his stance despite the powerful organization he was up against.
It is truly a wonderful truth to know
that we could never earn or pay enough for our sins.
It is a gift.
A Gift of Grace.
In the video below, Chris Rice sings this wonderful hymn,
"A Mighty Fortress is our God"