Why Study Reformation Theology?

Posted by on Feb 18, 2016 in Men's Advance

Conference registration is now open—online and by mail! 

Marcus-J.-Serven-252x183Our 10th annual Men’s Advance is rapidly approaching–scheduled for Friday and Saturday (April 15-16, 2016). At this conference we will emphasize the importance for Christian men to understand and embrace the essential elements of Reformation theology. Simply stated, we see the Reformation as a Spirit-led recovery of the gospel as it was taught by Jesus and the Apostles. Consider the thesis put forward by the well-regarded Reformation scholar, Dr. Timothy George; he writes,

“As a movement in history, the Reformation of the sixteenth century is now behind us. Of course, we can still learn much about its causes and effects as we study the social, political, economic, and cultural factors which rendered it such a pivotal epoch in the history of Western civilization. However, as a movement of the Spirit of God the Reformation has an enduring significance for the church of Jesus Christ.” (Timothy George, Theology of the Reformers, 2nd edit., 378)

Here Dr. George, we believe, rightly sets forward the compelling argument that the Reformation was “a movement of the Spirit of God.” From the 4th Century through the 16th the church of Jesus Christ became increasingly corrupted by the traditions of men. As a result, the gospel message in all of its simplicity and power was obscured. God, however, brought about an era of revival that stretched for more than one hundred and fifty years! We can thank God that the churches who emerged from the Protestant Reformation, and who have remained faithful to its teachings, are the true spiritual heirs of Jesus and the Apostles from the early church. The question is this—will we as “spiritual heirs,’ be faithful to preserve these truths and to apply them to the issues of modern-day life. Dr. George argues,

“The abiding validity of Reformation theology is that, despite the many varied emphases it contains within itself, it challenges the church to listen reverently and obediently to what God has once and for all said (Deus dixit) and once and for all done in Jesus Christ. How the church will respond to this challenge is not a matter of academic speculation or ecclesiastical gamesmanship. It is a question of life or death. It is the decision of whether the church will serve the true and living God of Jesus Christ, the God of the Old and the New Testaments, or else succumb to the worship of Baal.” (Timothy George, Theology of the Reformers, 2nd edit., 379)

This quote shows forth the urgency and importance of studying Reformation Theology. Come join us on April 15-16 for the Men’s Advance, where Dr. Joseph Morecraft and I will lay out a feast of biblical truth to be applied to this life in which we now live. In addition, Charlie Zahm will lead us in some energetic singing throughout the weekend and then conclude with a FREE closing concert on Saturday night for the entire family. I hope you can attend.

—Pastor Marcus J. Serven