Luther and the Reformers had a good deal of criticism for the practice of buying and selling indulgences, but what were the theological motivations behind this invention?
The Jealousy of God
God is jealous for His church, not rooted in a sense of insecurity, but in His unchanging character and deep love, that we would have an undivided heart towards Him.
God's love and faithfulness toward us is a pledge of His fatherhood over us, including discipline and correction. It is a great tragedy to be handed over to ourselves and to be removed from God's discipline and fatherhood.
The Return of the King
The entire Bible centers around the plot line of the 'return of the King' in fulfillment of the words spoken by the Lord to the serpent after the fall of mankind in Genesis 3:15.
Beauty for Ashes (Lent)
Lent is an opportunity for repentance, contrition, self-examination, and reflection. Its purpose is not simply to grieve the suffering of Christ, but also to weep for ourselves and our sin.