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The Reformation Part 4: Post Tenebras Lux

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The Reformation (Part 4) - Post Tenebras Lux
What does the Creation narrative, the first advent of Christ and the Reformation have in common? The answer is the use of the “light from darkness” motif.

In Genesis “darkness was over the surface of the deep” then God said, “Let there be light”. In Matthew, Isaiah 9:2 was quoted to describe the beginning of the ministry of Christ, “the people who were sitting in darkness saw a great light, and those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death, upon them a light dawned.”

During the Reformation John Calvin began to use the Latin phrase, “Post Tenebras Lux” (After Darkness….Light) to describe God’s great spiritual reform of the city of Geneva. Soon “Post Tenebras Lux” became the rallying cry for the entire Reformation.

The Middle Ages are often referred to as the “Dark Ages” but in reality, there were many advances in the arts, science, and technology in that period. Likewise, in the church, there were high seasons of spiritual light but by the late Middle Ages, the Roman Catholic Church had spread thick darkness over the souls of people. The reformers saw themselves as bringing the light of the gospel to a dark age.

Five beacons from the Reformation continue to light the way today:

The Light of Scripture
It is the PLACE for truth and not the traditions of men taught by Rome.

The Light of the Gospel
It is the PLAN of salvation and not the Roman Catholic sacramental system.

The Light of Regeneration
It is the POWER of God to open the eyes of the spiritually blind. Rome had taught that man was essentially capable of salvation if simply aided by the church.

The Light of a Renewed Mind
It is the PERSPECTIVE gained by regeneration, through the gospel found in Scripture that forms the Protestant Christian Worldview. This worldview has transformed western civilization.

The Light of Reformation
It is the PROVIDENCE of God in saving and preserving His people viewed through the history of the Reformation. These events serve as a prototype for understanding God’s larger plan for the ages.

Make It Matter
Beware of those who want you to turn back to a performance-based religion.
Live in the light of God’s free gift of salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
Learn Church History because those who don’t learn from it are doomed to repeat it!
Plan on attending the Kindred University course “The Reformation” beginning on September 3.

Leading up to the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation on October 31st, I will be reflecting on key principles taught by the Reformers. Next week we look at the phrase The Priesthood of All Believers.

1 Comment

Wow, this is great material and you've helped me "see the light" about the theme of Light from dark being interwoven throughout Scripture and all of human history! Thanks Dave!

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