Reformation Day 2017 and the New Apostolic Reformation

Originally written in Latin by Martin Luther in 1517, the Ninety-Five Theses, which Luther posted on the door of the Cathedral at Wittenburg, are regarded as a primary catalyst for the Protestant Reformation.

The last day in October is special for many Christians who recognize and celebrate Reformation Day. Today marks the 500th Anniversary of one of the most significant events in Western Christian history when Martin Luther nailed his “95 Theses” to the door of the Wittenberg Church in Germany, igniting the Protestant Reformation on October 31, 1517. Luther and other reformers who preceded him, such as John Wycliffe, John Hus, and William Tyndale, were not only concerned with what the Scriptures taught, but they also wanted the common people to have access to read the Bible in their own language. The conditions were perfect, as the truths declared by Luther set most of Europe ablaze with the biblical doctrines of grace.

From the Protestant Reformation emerged five phrases that summarized the movement. Using the word Sola, the Latin word for “alone,” these basic theological beliefs stood boldly in opposition to the prevailing teaching of the Roman Catholic Church at the time.

  • Sola scriptura (“by Scripture alone”) teaches that the Bible is the only inspired and authoritative Word of God, the only source for Christian doctrine, and is accessible to all and that the Bible requires no interpretation outside of itself.

 

  • Sola fide (“by faith alone”) teaches that justification, the act of “being declared right by God”, and assumed to mean exactly “salvation”), is received by faith only, without any mixture of or need for good works, though in classical Protestant theology, saving faith is always evidenced by good works.

 

  • Sola gratia (“by grace alone”) teaches that salvation comes by God’s grace or “unmerited favor” only. This means that salvation is an unearned gift from God through faith in Jesus Christ.

 

  • Solus Christus or Solo Christo (“Christ alone” or “through Christ alone”) Teaches  that Christ is the only mediator between God and man, and that there is salvation through no other.

 

  • Soli Deo gloria (“glory to God alone”) Teaches  that all glory is to be due to God alone, since salvation is accomplished solely through His will and action — not only the gift of the all-sufficient atonement of Jesus on the cross but also the gift of faith in that atonement, created in the heart of the believer by the Holy Spirit.

With Scripture alone as the sure foundation, the Reformers affirmed that justification is by grace alone, received through faith alone because of Christ alone — for the glory of God alone. Today Christians around the world give thanks to God for Martin Luther’s bold proclamation which occurred 500 years ago and for the unfolding of God’s design for Church.

New Apostolic Reformation

In reviewing the history of the Christian Church, some historians recognize that the Protestant Reformation was actually the Second Apostolic Reformation, with the very first movement occurring in the 1st Century with the launching of the New Testament Church in the Book of Acts. The Protestant Reformation transitioned the Church from the “Dark Ages” to beginning the period of the restoration of the Church, described in Acts 3:21 as the “restitution or restoration of all things.” The underlying purpose of the second reformation was to restore and build the Church to another new level of maturity through the ministry of Christ Jesus.

A number of church historians indicate that the Third and Final Apostolic Reformation is underway. One of the largest, broadest and most powerful movements within Christianity today is The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR).  Described by Gary Gilley as “a loose coalition of mostly Pentecostal and charismatic Christians, organizations and churches,” one of the focal points of the movement is the restoration of the five-fold gift ministries spoken of in Ephesians 4:11-13. Central to the NAR is the belief that beginning with the apostles and prophets, signs, wonders and miracles be will be evident throughout the Body of Christ (Ephesians 2:20).

As we not only look back and rejoice, celebrating one of the most remarkable moves of God, we  also look to the future, recognizing God continues unfold his intent and purpose for the Church to rise triumphantly as the remarkable display of the multi-faceted wisdom and demonstration of the glorious power of God (Ephesians 3:10).  Christ will restore His Church to fulfill God’s original purpose and intent as the Kingdoms of this world become the Kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ. The beauty and splendor of the Church in its fullness is yet to be seen, as another mighty move of God is gaining momentum.

A new sound for a new movement:

Out of the Reformation, came forth a “new sound”, commonly called “the hymn.” We now recognize the distinctive nature of this musical form, as “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” became known as “The Battle Hymn of the Reformation.” Luther composed the song after reading Psalm 46 which became the text for this most popular and best known hymn.

Likewise, we note a “new sound” representative of the times in which we live. One of the tenets coming from Luther is Solus Christus or Solo Christo (“Christ alone” or “through Christ alone”).  Here is a contemporary worship rendition of “In Christ Alone.”

Tags: , , ,

One Response to “Reformation Day 2017 and the New Apostolic Reformation”

  1. Place for a fifth and sixth house in Christendom | Bijbelvorser = Bible Researcher Says:

    […] Reformation Day 2017 and the New Apostolic Reformation […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: