Quotes from Why the Reformation Still Matters
I finished reading Why the Reformation Still Matters by Michael Reeves and Tim Chester a few weeks ago. There is a previous blog post with quotes from first 5 chapters of the book. Today's post includes quotes from Chapters 6-11.
For them (the Reformers) there was an important difference between union and communion. Communion with Christ--meaning the actual enjoyment of Christ--is something that fluctuates in believers...Union is the foundation of communion...union with Christ is a fixed and therefore stable thing, the solid foundation on which we can know lasting joy. (117)
our sin cannot be removed from our hearts simply by our trying harder or scrubbing ourselves clean: the Spirit must transform us through the gospel. That is how the new life of the Spirit begins, and this is how it grows...The gospel, then, cannot be treated simply as a message for unbelievers, as the doorway into the Christian life; in order for Christians to grow they must be kept in the sunshine of the gospel. (133)
Deep heart metamorphosis instead of superficial behavioral change, personal communion with God instead of abstract blessing, and joy-inducing assurance: these were some of the vital benefits of the Reformers' theology of the Spirit. (140)
For the Reformers the marks of the church--the gospel word and the gospel sacraments--were an indicator of when one should leave a church...In other words, the key factor when deciding which church to join is not the style of worship or provision for children or charisma of its leaders, but the gospel. (174)
We do not need to leave the world and go into a monastery to serve God. We glorify God in all of life. There is no hierarchy of professions in God's sight...By faith we see our daily activities as tasks given to us by God to be done for his glory and for the common good...We are renewed so that we can again reflect God's glory in God's world. The Reformation affirmation of everyday life is an invitation to see the whole earth as they theater of God's glory and to see our whole lives as opportunities to reflect that glory. (193-194, 199)
Our sanctification is not something God ever enables from a distance with hands off. (209)