Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Why We Should Study The Reformation

I would like to share with you guys some of my study notes, discussion questions along with my answers as well as my personal observations from my first lesson in "Reformation Profiles" which would be "Why The Reformation Matters." -(by Steven J. Nichols)  If you guys have something to add, would like more information or would simply like to discuss it-please do so! :D

1. Why do historians refer to the Middle Ages as the “Dark Ages”?

My answer: It was refereed to as the Dark Ages because death and spiritual darkness surrounded the era of the middle ages.

2. Why does history matter, particularly for the church?

My answer: There are three main reasons. The first being plainly that history matters- specifically because our faith is a historic faith. For example, if Christ had died but not risen salvation would be impossible. And secondly, the Reformation points out the center of what the church is all about. And lastly, we face similar problems in our day and having knowledge of this can help considerably; after all, history repeats itself. “What has been is what will be, and what has
been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun” -Eccl. 1:9

3. How did the Reformation capture the essence of the church’s purpose? What reformation movements did Dr. Nichols describe that occurred prior to the Reformation of the sixteenth century? Did these movements succeed? Why or why not? What did the Reformers view as the primary deficiency within the Roman Catholic Church, and what remedy did they present?

My answer: There were two main movements before the Reformation of the sixteenth century: Devotio Modera and the Conciliar Movement. Devotio Modera means "new devotion". -This movement called for spiritual reform; this movement did not quite succeed but it did leave a mark on the Reformation more the the Conciliar movement. The Conciliar movement called for an administrative change from the pope to the earlier church form of bishops. An interesting note is that John Hus was part of this movement. The real problem was "the rotten theological core". -So it needed a theological cure.

4. Does the church face similar problems today as the Reformers faced in the sixteenth century? If so, what are some of these problems? How does the study of history assist the church in facing these difficulties and obstacles?

Yes, the church does face similar problems. -Infinite problems really. One of the main ones being following sola scriptura and not adding our own human philosophy to it.

Additional notes: Church history can be inspiring, tradition should not be authoritative, "If we do not train the future generation everything now is for nought", the church of Geneva took up the motto Post tenebras
lux, meaning “After darkness, light.”

"God calls His people to look back at His redemptive work on their behalf to remind them of their relationship" -(from my study guide).

"In the very midst of life, snares of death surround us. Who shall help us in this strife, lest
the foe confound us? Thou only, Lord, Thou only. In the midst of death’s dark veil, powers
of hell overtake us. Who will help when they assail? Who secure will make us? Thou
only, Lord, Thou only. In the midst of utter woe, when our sins oppress us, where shall we
for refuge go? Where for grace to bless us? To Thee, Lord Jesus, only. Thy precious blood
was shed to win, full atonement for our sin."
—from Martin Luther’s hymn, “In the Very Midst of Life”

 And also,  please comment; its what keeps me going! Why write to produce good, if no one will read it and therefore it will not produce good?