Without men like Peter Waldo, John Wycliffe, and Jan Hus, and the movements spawned from them, we may never have had Martin Luther. And, without Martin Luther, we would never have had John Calvin and Ulrich Zwingli. Reform to the Catholic Church would have come - someway or another - and I don't have an answer for what that would have looked like. But I am thankful for the Reformers and for the Proto-Protestants who had hearts for Scripture and fought for the Church.
*In many Protestant churches, the last Sunday in October is generally celebrated at "Reformation Sunday." In my studies and longing for a connection with the church of the Reformation, I am viewing the whole month of October as Reformation Month. The following was used in a large group discussion with mixed ages (PDF version can [...]
Because the Lord is one, there is one Church. Because the Lord is one, there is one Body. We are one Body, the Church, and our Body is filled with the Spirit. This Body is called to share in one Hope, the Hope that comes from the Gospel message. This Body is to serve one Lord because we have one Faith, and (no matter the mode) all were Baptized in the same waters. Since we are one Body, there is one God, one Father, who is in all.
From the beginning of human history, humans have been waiting. Waiting for things promised. The restoration of humanity and the rest of creation to the design of the Garden. A place in the Kingdom of God. God's people, from the beginning, were told about a blessed promise, a coming King who would rule forever. But they did not get to see it. Some did not get to see it because of their sins. Others did not get to see the promised saviour not because of any wrongdoing on their part, but because it was not time.
Judas (the other) asks Jesus why the world does not get to see Him. I ask myself a similar question: Why do I get to see Jesus - and therefore the Father - but the world doesn't?
What makes the place holy? Why was it necessary to not be wearing sandals in the place that is holy?
We know that Jesus - the Word - was at the beginning of Creation with the Father, but is the beginning from 1 John 1:1, "which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at with our hands," the same beginning at John 1:1? Yes and no.
"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14 Although this speaks about forgiveness of sins and the healing of land, I believe we can also know that God also reveals Himself when we are humble, we pray, we and seek His face. So, yes, we can challenge" God, but our hearts must be right and the better thing is to just ask Him to reveal Himself to us.
Are you in pristine condition, fresh out of the box? Or do you feel worn down, cracked, or even broken?
But if we really hear these stories, they seem to just glorify sin. And this is why I - and many others who have the same story as I do - often feel that our stories are inadequate.