Here We Stand: What is the Lutheran Church Really?

Celebrating 500 Years of the Reformation

On October 31, 1517, blessed Martin Luther posted the 95 Theses that would spark a church-wide reformation. As we remember that event’s anniversary, a series of sermons will explain the Lutheran Church.

Luther’s “Ninety-Five Theses” were in direct response to the selling of “plenary indulgences,” a process by which the Roman church granted full forgiveness of all sins in exchange for cash. Luther hated this practice. Originally, however, he wrote his theses in Latin and only intended them for academic debate. Yet the topic was just too hot to ignore, and printers in the region sought to capitalize on it. They translated, printed and dispersed Luther’s document, and when it was read by some within the Dominican order of the Roman church, a firestorm erupted.

The ensuing years would see schism and warfare, and with the threat of bodily death always breathing down his neck, Luther would preach the gospel that would regenerate Christ’s Church. Through it all, Luther remained bound to the Word of God, proclaiming boldly that it is in scripture alone (Sola Scriptura) that the promise of forgiveness of sin and reconciliation with God can be found through faith in Christ Jesus.

What is the Lutheran Church Really? Part Four: “Saying ‘Yes!’ to the Feast” (Sacraments and Prayer)
by Rev. Steven K. Gjerde

What is the Lutheran Church Really? Part Three: “Faith and Good Works”
by Rev. Steven K. Gjerde

What is the Lutheran Church Really? Part Two: “By What Authority Are You Doing These Things?”
by Rev. Steven K. Gjerde

What is the Lutheran Church Really? Part One: “Do You Begrudge My Generosity?”
by Rev. Steven K. Gjerde