In a metro area, however, there is also the increased probability of crime. On one occasion in Phoenix, I returned to my vehicle and found a police car parked directly behind it. A closer look at the vehicles nearby revealed why law enforcement was on the scene. One large SUV had four windows smashed, and another smaller vehicle had two windows smashed in.
Valuables had been taken from inside both vehicles. I did not find out what items had been taken, but both vehicle owners were pretty upset.
My vehicle was untouched. One look made clear why. Yes, it was seven years old, a minivan, with 145,000 miles on it. But the real reason why the vehicle remained untouched was on the inside. There was nothing of value on display. Actually, there was one thing on the front passenger seat: a Bible.
Apparently a Bible is not worth “breaking and entering.” At the church I served in Phoenix, we had a few “B & Es” over the years but a Bible never went missing. It’s a challenge to even get people to enter the church to hear the Word of God when the doors are open…
Imagine such a passive approach to God’s Word at the time of the Reformation. Martin Luther finds a few things wrong with the church of his day (e.g., how to be saved by works and not by faith alone) and says, “No big deal. Too much effort. Guys who question the church tend to get burned (literally, at the stake). So, live and let live.”
Such nonchalance would have kept millions from the truth of God’s Word, and thus out of heaven. But Luther’s “B & E” of the stronghold of the church rescued the truth of the Gospel.
“But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe…For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law.” (Romans 3:21,22,28)
On that hot day in the desert, I was glad I didn’t have to deal with broken windows, cleanup, and insurance. I’m also glad that Luther resolved to let things get messy so they could get better, namely the truth of the Gospel proclaimed by the church. Not exactly “breaking and entering,” but he shook things up for the better.
Soli Deo Gloria!
Pastor Stephen Luchterhand