Earlier this week one of the young people, my daughter, came to me wanting to do something special for some of the children who came to our main services. These children are between upper primary level and first year in high school. Halloween was coming up and she wanted to do something with them concerning dressing up for Halloween.
To me Halloween is an American festival. I have never had much experience with it but I was not overenthusiastic about a theme of evil spirits and dead ghosts. I had read somewhere that Halloween had been superimposed upon a special day in history for us Christians. I’m the sort of person who remembers Christmas and Easter. These are the two main times in which we use the church and its settings to celebrate our remembrance of the birth of Jesus Christ and his death and resurrection. These are also an opportunity to reach out into our community with the message of the gospel.
I soon found out that 31 October is the day when Martin Luther pinned up his 39 articles that brought public attention to the need for change substantiated by the truth of the Word of God and produced the movement among church is that we now call The Reformation.
In an older church calendar this was called All Saints Day and the evening to this day was called All Hallows Day. These were organised in the calendar of the Roman Catholic Church and later the Church of England.
The 489th Reformation Day (October 31st) is upon us! This was the date when Luther nailed the 95 Thesis to the church door in Wittenburg, Germany. The symbol of Luther is the Luther Rose.
So this is a very important day for us to remember. It marks the beginning of the end of the dark ages for the church. The organised Christian churches had lost their way and had forgotten the teachings of the Word of God. This was the start of a wake-up call that is called The Reformation. People were alerted to 3 major teachings from the Word of God.
1. Justification by faith alone
2. The priesthood of all believers and not just a selected few
3. That there was no single pontiff over all of the Church of God before the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
These important doctrines changed the Christian Church and I hope that they changed the church for ever. It is not my intention in this blog to expand upon these three great Christian doctrines but to alert you to the fact that the church once lost its way and we should pray that it never does again.