Fifteen hundred years after Christ died, resurrected and started the Christian church with a group of rag-tag disciples, the church had become a culturally, politically and socially dominant force, involved in all aspects of life. Prior to the start of the Protestant Reformation, many felt the church had strayed quite a bit from its original roots and needed a course-correction.
Martin Luther, a German Catholic Priest started a movement of introspection and change, which carries through to today.
And it started on October 31, 1517. Five hundred years ago today, Luther nailed a written document listing 95 grievances and clarifications on the church door in Wittenberg, Germany (pictured above). This act triggered a process, which continues to this day.
For a list of those “95 Theses,” click here.
A Christian author should keep a list in front of them both of Bible passages and appropriate quotes, which should serve as reminders and course-correctors for their work. Whether they are nailed to a door, pinned to a wall, taped to a computer or propped on a desk as reminders, some thoughts should be ever-present during the writing process.
Consider these which follow as seeds and you can grow your own list. Some reminders from the Old Testament.
By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done. (Genesis 2:2-3 NIV)
But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them. (Genesis 50:19-21 NIV)
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. (Deuteronomy 6:4-9 NIV)
“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?
On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone—while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?” (Job 38:4-7 NIV)
Hear my prayer, Lord God Almighty; listen to me, God of Jacob.
Look on our shield, O God; look with favor on your anointed one.
Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.
Lord Almighty, blessed is the one who trusts in you.
(Psalm 84:8-12 NIV)
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.
(Isaiah 55:8-12 NIV)
And one more from Martin Luther himself:
“So when the devil throws your sins in your face and declares that you deserve death and hell, tell him this: “I admit that I deserve death and hell, what of it? For I know One who suffered and made satisfaction on my behalf. His name is Jesus Christ, Son of God, and where he is, there I will be also.”