Did you know that 2017 is the 500th Anniversary of Martin Luther’s 95 Theses? You don’t have to be Lutheran to care about this important moment in the history of the Christian faith. The changes that Martin Luther brought to the world sparked the Protestant Reformation and have effects that trickle down to people of all denominations today.
This year provides a wonderful opportunity to teach our kids about church history and why it is relevant to our lives today. Here are seven reasons you, and your children, should care about Luther:
- You like to read. Luther’s translation of the Bible into German was a pivotal moment in the spread of literacy (thanks also to the timely invention of the printing press). From 1517 onward, religious books and pamphlets flooded Europe. Reading wasn’t just for scholars, monks, and priests anymore.
- You are a woman or you care about women. Martin Luther contributed to the rising status of women. For his day, Luther was progressive. He believed that girls should be taught along with boys.
- You love music. In Luther’s time, singing belonged only to priests and monks. Thanks to his influence, ordinary lay people began to lead singing and great composers were inspired. Luther held that music was next to theology in its importance.
- You value equality. Luther believed in spiritual equality of all believers. He taught that God is equally accessible to all the faithful, and every Christian has equal potential to serve God.
- You care about family. Luther, along with other Reformation thinkers, elevated marriage and family. He and his wife were devoted to one another and he preached many sermons praising marriage. And although there were monks who were legally married before Luther, his marriage to Katharina Von Bora in 1525 helped pave the way for clergy to marry.
- You are a history buff. It is impossible to understand modern history apart from Martin Luther and the Reformation. For example, the Pilgrims would never have settled here in America if there had not first been a Protestant Reformation.
- You realize that Reformation continues today. Martin Luther taught that faith is not static. As believers, we recognize that we are in constant need of reformation. We are changed and we are changing.
Want to learn more about the life of Martin Luther? Sparkhouse Family is giving away a copy of their kids’ pop-up book, The Life of Martin Luther.
Also, to get an early glimpse of the book, watch this video.