From: Rich Carlson
Date: October 31, 2019
Subject: It's October 31; Good Morning Union

“The just shall live by faith.”   Romans 1:16,17

Some call today Halloween; but it has another name, “Eve of All Saints Day!” The next day, November 1, “All Saints Day,” was when the then universally recognized church celebrated the many saints that made up part of their worship system. “Saints” were the living souls of those who had died and gone to heaven; from that our society transitioned on to calling them ghosts and goblins and eventually we dressed our kids up in all kinds of costumes and collected candy to rot our teeth!! I still wonder how we got from point A to point B on this one!

Another “fun fact” is that it was 502 years ago today that the Reformation began? Martin Luther, acting on his convictions, wrote the “Disputation on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences,” also known as “The 95 Theses,” a list of questions and propositions presented for debate. Popular legend has it that on October 31, 1517, Luther nailed a copy of his 95 Theses to the door of the Wittenberg Castle church in Germany. This “95 Theses” document, which propounded two central beliefs—that the Bible is the central religious authority and that humans may reach salvation only by their faith and not by their deeds—was the spark that ignited the Protestant Reformation.

I still like to watch the old black and white movie simply called “Martin Luther,” especially the scene where he discovers the truth of righteousness by faith while reading my text for today, and he takes his feather quill pen and writes boldly in the margin of that big church bible, the word, “SOLA!” “Alone!” “The just shall live by faith—ALONE!” They struggled with understanding and accepting this absolutely crucial teaching then, and I sometimes see the same struggle with that assurance today.

I was reminded again today, on the “eve of all saints day,” that I do not believe in saints up in heaven but I do believe that I am saved by faith—ALONE by my Savior in heaven!! Thank you Martin for starting me on that journey to absolute freedom in Christ.

Have a great day with your assurance in Jesus “SOLA,”

Pastor Rich

Quote for the day:      “I cannot and will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I can do no other, help me God. Amen.”  Martin Luther, defending his 95 theses on righteousness by faith


PS        uGather “Celebrating Community in Christ.” This week Adriana Perera, chair of the music department at Andrews University, (and one of the Worship Summit presenters) will be speaking. See you @ 10:35 in the church

PPS      Today starts another Preview Days. Thanks for all you do to make these potential future Union family members feel welcome as they come to our campus to “check us out!”


PPPS    And here’s your Halloween treat for today:

            Being a Christian is like being a pumpkin!

                        God picks you from the patch and brings you in (John 15:16)

                        Then He washes all the dirt off of you (2 Corinthians 5:17)

                        He opens you up and scoops out all the yucky stuff and removes the seeds of                                           doubt,  hate, greed, etc (Romans 6:6)

                        Then He carves a new smile on your face (Psalm 71:23)

                        And He puts His light inside you to shine for all the world to see. (Matthew 5:16)

Happy “Eve of all saints day” AND Halloween!!