For 1,000 years Constantinople was the capital of Christianity. It was the repository for Christian treasures, tradition and literature, including the Scripture. Then, in 1453, the Muslim Turks captured Constantinople, ending a millennium of Christian rule. Many Christians thought it a sign of the end of the world. How could it be anything other than that?
At the same time, halfway across Europe in a city named Mainz, Johannes Gutenberg was perfecting his new invention, the printing press. And in 1455, he would produce the first Bible by means of a printing press, the so-called Gutenberg Bible. The printing press, certainly one of the most important inventions in the history of mankind, would eventually make books, particularly the Bible, affordable for the common man. As a result, the printing press was the sina qua non of the Reformation.
God is the Great Auteur of history. The sacking of Constantinople by the Muslims left Christians inconsolable. They wondered how their God could permit such a travesty, and yet, the Lord had something greater in mind, the decentralization of Christianity through the propogation of the Word of God, which would eventually advance the kingdom of God to the ends of the earth. The Lord knew the kingdom of God does not need a centralized earthly administration because its King administrates in the hearts of man.