Every year about this time someone writes about the Reformation being a time of sadness and not of joy. Georg Stöckhardt says balderdash to this notion.
October 31, 1517 is a day to remember for all eternity for the kingdom of God on earth. On that day the work of the Reformation began. The shape of Western Christendom was completely changed by this work. The Evangelical Lutheran Church, the church of the pure Word and Sacrament, came to light and was a city of God on the mountain, a Zion of the Lord, and by God’s grace has remained to this very day. Though there are no lack of those who regard the Reformation as something deplorable, as a misfortune. They point out the fracturing and splitting up which has occurred in the Western Church since the Reformation, whereas before this had been like one flock under one shepherd, namely the pope. We cannot let ourselves alone be misled by this. We cannot let this interfere with our joy. The Reformation did not cause this splitting up, that we no less heartily lament, but the disobedience of so many toward God’s pure Word caused the Reformation. Luther’s reformation of the Church is and remains a great miracle of God.
– From an outline for a sermon on Revelation 14:6-7. Translated by DMJ