25 Oct Celebrating Reformation – 10/24/2020
The 16th and 21st centuries sure are different, aren’t they? Everything has changed. We live in an electronic world; they lived in a fire-lit world. We have modern medicine; they had herbal remedies and nothing else except the bone saw. They had the plague and we – wait a minute, we have the plague too! It goes by a different name today, Covid, but it sure looks like the plague of Luther’s day.
This weekend we celebrate Reformation, that time in the 16th century when especially Luther and others as well worked to free the Christian faith, to make it available to people who could open a Bible and read it. We think of the translation Luther did, first of the New Testament from Greek into German, then, later, of the Old Testament, a much more difficult task, from Hebrew into the people’s language, German.
In addition to plague times that link us to that earlier century, there is also the issue of human sin. We realize that while all the stuff and things of life have changed, human nature has not. We still sin. We still need God’s forgiveness, and the forgiveness of those around us. We still need the cross of Calvary.
Today Luther joins us, to talk about plague times, 1527, about a tract he wrote and had printed in Wittenburg addressing the then-ravaging plague. We hear a little about him, about his family, about their coping with plague and death and the work of the devil. And especially we hear about the one place we still look when life seems out of control, suffering replaces celebration, God seems distant. Let’s listen today to Luther point us toward the grace of our Lord. The Good News is present today as it was for him so long ago!