(The Five Solas of the Reformation)
Index to the studies
by Bob Burridge ©2014
In the late years of the Middle Ages there were those who brought the world out of darkness and superstition. Reformers in the church challenged the beliefs and practices that the deceived the people at that time. They refused to go along with all the man-invented doctrines and rules that marginalized the Bible, and elevated the church as the only source of what God has done and said. There were many things challenged by those who returned to the Bible as their only source of truth about God.
The Great Reformation that took hold in the early 1500s spread all over the Western world. Five foundational principles have been followed by the Reformed churches since that time. We know them as “The Five Solas of the Reformation” — five things that must stand alone. The headings are in Latin.
1. “Introduction to the Five Solas” – Notes – Video
People freely talk about the Bible, Grace, Faith, Christ, and God’s glory. The problem many have is with the “sola” part. Only when these things stand alone, is the gospel seen as what the Bible says it is, rather that what many wish it to be. Though these are each things that must stand alone without mixing them with un-biblical ideas, they all stand together. They overlap and depend upon one another.
2. “Scripture Alone” – Notes – Video
The Bible as God’s word is the only test of what’s true and good. There is no other source from which we can know about God, his plan, and his works. Scripture is the mold into which all we know and do should be poured to re-form our marriages, our parenting, our economy, worship, beliefs, ministries, recreations, customs – everything.
4. “By Christ Alone” – Notes – Video
It’s only through him that we are forgiven and restored to fellowship with God. He paid our debt in full, and clothes us with his perfect righteousness. We find our ability to honor God in the power of the risen and living Savior – and in him alone.
5. “Faith Alone” – Notes – Video
We embrace God’s promises by faith alone. God gives us confidence in his revealed promises and provisions so that we put our full trust him alone. We have no other object in which we put our trust regarding spiritual and eternal matters. Through that trust in Jesus Christ as our Savior the guilt of our sins is removed.
Bible quotations are from the New King James Version unless otherwise noted.