Looking at Christian history

Mark Noll in his book Turning Points (3) outlines a biblical framework for looking at Christian history.

  1. “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me” (Matthew 28:18). Nothing that occurs to Christ’s followers and His Church is outside the reign of Christ. History can be interpreted through Christ.
  2. “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). The movement of Christian history is outward bearing witness to Christ and baptizing in the name of the Triune God and inward, teach people the word of Christ.
  3. “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). Despite how many times the Church may fail in its mission and ministry, it is sustained by the living presence of Christ who is there to forgive and renew.
  4. “…you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8). Even though Christianity would find itself present in many cultures, it would never belong to any single culture since its calling was to bear witness to God’s reign in Christ who over culture as Lord of lords and King of kings.
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The Augsburg Confession and the Apology on the New Obedience

Summary: This is part of a thirty part overview of the Book of Concord. In part fifteen Dr. Robert Kolb and Dr. Charles Arand review the life of the Christian after being redeemed (justified – made right with God through Christ). Melanchthon referred to this as the “new obedience” in contrast to the old life condemned under the Law. This new life is still about the Law and will of God, but focuses on how we live by faith the world in response to God’s love in Christ. This new obedience does not impact our justification. Instead, the new obedience is the life of faith anchored in Christ and His word, empowered by the Spirit, to love our neighbour, fulfill our callings and resist evil. Note: the title of this video does not fit the content.

 

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