The Five Sola's of the Protestant Reformation
On October 31, 1517, Martin Luther, a Roman Catholic monk, set into motion events which led to the Protestant Reformation and the transformation of western society when he nailed his 95 Theses to the castle church door in Wittenburg, Germany. As Christians living in the 21st century, we have inherited a rich theological heritage from our spiritual forefathers who searched the Scriptures during the Reformation. A convenient way to summarize the theology of the Protestant Reformation is through the five “Sola” slogans.
Sola Scriptura (“Scripture Alone”): All that we need to know in order to be saved and to know and serve God is contained in the Bible alone (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
Sola Gratia (“Grace Alone”): God saves sinners from their sins based only on His undeserved mercy and favor, not based on what they do or deserve (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Sola Fide (“Faith Alone”): God saves sinners through the instrumentality of faith in Jesus Christ, apart from any human activity of any kind (Romans 3:28).
Solus Christus (“Christ Alone”): All of the merit that we need to be accepted by God is found in Jesus Christ, not in angels, saints, sacraments, the church, ourselves, or any other creature (Philippians 3:8-9).
Soli Deo Gloria (“The Glory of God Alone”): The purpose of every person, place, thing, and event in the whole realm of creation, including human salvation, is to display God’s glory, not to magnify any mere creature in any way (Romans 11:36).
May God help us to embrace these biblical truths and to hold them forth in our generation to His glory!