Bonn, Germany—To commemorate the “Year of Luther”—500 years after the Reformation—the Bonn chapter of UPF held a discussion on the legacy of Martin Luther.
Christian Haubold, who teaches history and Protestant theology and is a member of UPF-Bonn, gave a presentation on September 17, 2017, at the UPF offices in Bad Godesberg, a district of Bonn, on the topic “500 Years Later—What Comes Next, Mr. Luther?
In 1517, Martin Luther proclaimed his 95 Theses in the town of Wittenberg, sparking developments that led to worldwide changes in the church and state. These changes continue to be significant to this day.
However, the focus of Mr. Haubold’s presentation was not the external developments. He dealt intensively with questions such as: What is my position as a human being in relation to God? What can we learn today from the still controversial Luther? Which new paths should we take?
Mr. Haubold showed an impressive knowledge of historical detail as he painted a picture of the man Martin Luther and the time in which he lived. Through descriptions of landmark and dramatic happenings in Luther’s life (such as the study of liberal arts and law, his vow during a terrible thunderstorm, the study of theology, the time spent in the tower), we could gain an understanding of his life and insights.
One of Luther’s still valid statements is “God does not want those who listen and repeat His words, but those who follow and act, in faith and love. Because faith without love is not enough.”
In the fascinating second half of his presentation, Mr. Haubold expanded on terms such as “grace” and “justification” as seen from the viewpoint of the teachings of UPF founder Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon.
Mr. Haubold especially dealt with the concept of resurrection, in which a progressive justification by works, faith and discipleship is described. We need an internal reformation, he said. We should allow God to be both our Father and Mother, he said, so that we can live as children of God in His love.