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Daily Reformation, Acts 8:26-40

About the Reformer

Zwingli was scarcely two months younger than Luther, who survived him fifteen years. Both were educated and ordained in the Roman Church, and became innocently and providentially reformers of that Church. Both were men of strong mind, heroic character, fervent piety, and commanding influence over the people. Both were good scholars, great divines, and fond of poetry and music. Both labored independently for the same great cause of evangelical Protestantism—the one on a smaller, the other on a larger field. But their endowment, training, and conversion were different. Zwingli had less prejudice, more practical common-sense, clear discrimination, sober judgment, self-control, courtesy, and polish—Luther more productive genius, poetic imagination, overpowering eloquence, mystic depth, fire, and passion; and was in every way a richer and stronger, though rougher and wilder nature. Zwingli’s eyes were opened by the reading of the Greek Testament, which he carefully copied with his own hand, and the humanistic learning of his friend Erasmus; while Luther passed through the ascetic struggles of monastic life, till he found peace of conscience in the doctrine of justification by faith alone.

—Philip Schaff, Creeds of Christendom

Pulling It Together

All along, God has been bringing you to different points of the journey: a turn here, an intersection there—all places where you have a decision to make. Do you wait while looking both ways, move forward, veer, turn to the left or right, turn around, or stop altogether, content with the destination you have reached? The Ethiopian in our text today saw that God required more from him and was ready to get out of his comfortable conveyance to do what God required. He was willing to convert his present lifestyle into one God wanted for him. So were Luther and Zwingli. Where has God brought you today? What decisions lie ahead? Authentic conversion is an ongoing engagement with the will of God.

© Mark E. Ryman, Daily Reformation: Devotions with the Reformers

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