Reformation Day (Oct 31) celebrates the achievements of the Reformation, among them a new degree of clarity that came to the doctrine of justification and with it the church’s understanding of the Christian gospel itself. But the most important lesson of the Reformation is not found in looking back to events that occurred five centuries ago. Rather, it involves the church’s recognition of an enduring need for reformation: the true reformation church is that church which is always reforming.
In this Reformation Day talk I explore this theme through my own personal journey over thirty-six years in search of the gospel. From the tender age of four when I prayed that first, faltering sinner’s prayer until today as a theology professor, I have been on a journey seeking to understand just what is that gospel at the heart of Christian confession and evangelistic proclamation. As I have discovered, the answer is by no means clear. The first steps of reformation come as we recognize the gospel is not simply something we proclaim; it is also something that we seek.