The End of Lutheranism: 1575 – Verbum Domini Manet in Aeternum
They claim that our church is heretical and have often predicted a fatal massacre for it. In fact, they have even dared to determine the year of its destruction. (Johannes Taisnierius Hannonius, Physiogn. Pauli oper. Math., p. 457, predicted from the stars in 1572 that “the Lutheran religion will be wiped out within three years.” See also Johann Paulus Windeckius, Prognostic. de futuro ecclesiae statu.) But this church, by God’s benefaction, still stands unmoved, and we hope that it will continue to flourish until the end of the world. (Johann Gerhard, Theological Commonplaces: On the Church, § 172)
Such was the prediction. Some things never change. Predictions of disaster unless something is done immediately are always in the air. Things are so bad, some say, we must make sweeping changes NOW, before it is too late. Such Chicken Little “sky is falling” doom and gloom, fear-mongering, panic-causing prognosticators, come and go. They did in Johann Gerhard’s time, they do in ours as well. We hear it in our society and in the church.
And in response to it all, we do well to recall the motto of the Reformation Verbum Domini Manet in Aeternum — The Word of the Lord endures forever!