Monday, July 06, 2009

...the symbol of the Reformation

When I was searching for a logo for AudienceONE Ministries that would capture the heart of the gospel, represent the great truths of the Reformation, and be immediately and unmistakably identifiable with our Lord Jesus Christ, there was only one choice: luthersrose. I photographed "luthersrose" passing through Germany while touring in Europe in mid 1997. This is the actual "rose" that is affixed, top center, in the ceiling of Luther's church at Wittenberg. (What a great reminder of that pivotal period in church history of recovering the gospel of sola fide amid a recalcitrant Roman church.)

We need a new Reformation in the church in America today, beloved! If by God's grace that were to occur in our time, what would it look like; how would we recognize it? Here is a glimpse of that prayerful reality.

This would profondly effect, initially and dramatically, three key areas:
1. a return to the gospel of justification by faith alone;
2. a return to the sufficiency and authority of Scripture in polity, personal devotion, and public ministry;
3. a return to the supremacy of God in corporate worship and individual life.

There would also be the tangible, visible fruit of real reform, in two important areas, sanctificaiton and evangelism:
1. Sanctification: how we as Christians live and function according to His truth.
2. Evangelism--a renewed burden and boldness in heralding the gospel; compelling lost souls to be reconciled to God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
In God's soveregn electing love of His own, how tremendous it would be to see many respond in repentance to faith in Christ as Lord and Savior through the preaching of His gospel of grace. May ths symbol be a constant reminder to pray for Reformation for the church in America today--and for each of us to say, "Lord, let it begin with me."


Luthersrose was the symbol that represented the great Reformer's burden, passion, and convictions during the Reformation. It is rich with meaning that any believer in Christ will admire and treasure:
*THE BLACK CROSS represents the utter sinfulness of man and the great sacrifice of Jesus Christ for us on the cross for our iniquities.

*THE RED HEART represents the great love of God in the Lord Jesus Christ poured out for us for our salvation. That we are saved is all of grace, all of Christ, not of our works.

*THE FIVE PEDALED WHITE ROSE represents the purity of our new life in Him, the sinlessness of Christ Himself, and the five great truths of our redemption: by faith alone, through grace alone, because of Christ alone, on the Word alone, to the glory of God alone.

*THE DEEP ROYAL BLUE BACKROUND represents the reign of the Lord Jesus Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords-that He is the one true Sovereign of all.

*THE GOLD RING around the emblem represents the eternal life that we have in Christ Jesus our Lord. The crown of life, the crown of righteousness, the crown of exaltation, the crown of glory, and the crown which is imperishable.

this has been an encore presentation


Jeremy Weaver said...

Luthersrose is now my wallpaper on my desktop. Is that o.k.?

SJ Camp said...

Wallpaper? Absolutely!

littlegal_66 said...

Great call for revival.
As you know, Martin Luther personally oversaw the creation of this beautiful symbol. As an artist, I've always felt it was an exquisite piece of artwork.

littlegal_66 said...

I'm certain that you've read this before, but here is how Luther explained the meaning of his seal:
"Grace and peace from the Lord. As you desire to know whether my painted seal, which you sent to me, has hit the mark, I shall answer most amiably and tell you my original thoughts and reason about why my seal is a symbol of my theology. The first should be a black cross in a heart, which retains its natural color, so that I myself would be reminded that faith in the Crucified saves us. For one who believes from the heart will be justified" (Rom. 10:10). Although it is indeed a black cross, which mortifies and which should also cause pain, it leaves the heart in its natural color. It does not corrupt nature, that is, it does not kill but keeps alive. "The just shall live by faith" (Rom. 1:17) but by faith in the crucified. Such a heart should stand in the middle of a white rose, to show that faith gives joy, comfort, and peace. In other words, it places the believer into a white, joyous rose, for this faith does not give peace and joy like the world gives (John 14:27). That is why the rose should be white and not red, for white is the color of the spirits and the angels (cf. Matthew 28:3; John 20:12). Such a rose should stand in a sky-blue field, symbolizing that such joy in spirit and faith is a beginning of the heavenly future joy, which begins already, but is grasped in hope, not yet revealed. And around this field is a golden ring, symbolizing that such blessedness in Heaven lasts forever and has no end. Such blessedness is exquisite, beyond all joy and goods, just as gold is the most valuable, most precious and best metal.This is my compendium theoligae [summary of theology]. I have wanted to show it to you in good friendship, hoping for your appreciation. May Christ, our beloved Lord, be with your spirit until the life hereafter. Amen."

Under His Love,

P.S. The length of my posting of Luther's words is my mulligan.

SJ Camp said...

Dear littlegal:

No mulligan needed--you're fine.

The definition I posted here was the one that I was given in Germany in Lutherstadt at Wittenberg. A german man translated it for me from the original I was given.

I had not seen the one you posted, so thank you. There are similarities in both... The one that I posted is a bit more discriptive. But both speak to the gospel and blessed hope of our salvation in Christ alone.

Thank you again... I will see how I can incorporate your words into the one that I have listed.

Grace and peace,

littlegal_66 said...


My pleasure--with the excellent, provocative comments all these other folks have been posting, it's nice to feel as though I've actually posted a constructive contribution to your blog!

We all appreciate what you're doing with this.

Under His Love,

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the beneficial and informative post...I agree wholeheartedly with the need for a new Reformation in the Church today!

Anonymous said...

What does the markings in the blue circle represent?

SJ Camp said...

It is a latin word VIVIT. It means He Lives!

iustitiadei said...
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