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5 Solas

The 5 Solas: Solo Christo

5 Solas

We believe, because the Bible teaches, that salvation is by grace alone through Christ alone. Our sin is against God. The only way to be reconciled to him is through him, and that’s why Jesus came. The Word became flesh.

 
 
Today we’re exploring Solo Christo (through Christ alone). This is the teaching that salvation is found in Christ, and Christ alone.
 
A huge concern for the Reformers was that the Roman Catholic church had placed its Priests into the role of mediators between man and God. In fact, the priest was considered an “alter christus” (another Christ), especially when celebrating the Mass and in granting absolution for sins. Later, there was concern of the veneration of the saints and the role of many within the church. The Reformers placed emphasis on the fact that Jesus is our high priest and only mediator between God and man.
 
Christ alone means that salvation depends solely and completely on Jesus Christ, his once for all sacrifice for sin, his finished work on behalf of his people. We need to hold onto this teaching because we find ourselves, as Christians, living in a pluralistic society.
 
Pluralism basically means a diversity of religious belief systems, each one having validity, one not necessarily better than the other, just different. “You’re a Christian, fine, but being Muslim or Hindu is just fine too. You have Jesus, we have Muhammed.”
 
Now if this were not enough, there’s a growing concern regarding what is called Inclusivism. The idea behind it is, that since all truth is God’s truth, people may appropriate God’s gift of salvation as they practice their particular religion. By being a faithful adherent to their religion, they gain access to the benefits of Jesus’ atoning work, since aspects of their religion intersect with truths that are found in Scripture.
 
They’re “saved” by responding to truths in their religion that touch Christianity. The problem is that all other religions and philosophies are incompatible with Biblical Christianity. They may contain elements, but they distort the truth concerning God and suppress it.
 
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. (Romans 1:18)
 
Take Islam for example. They believe in one God, but deny the Trinity. They acknowledge Christ but as a prophet, not all sufficient Savior. They believe in heaven, but the only way to get there is to earn it. Every other religion is works basedsomething you must do in order to earn and secure a spot in heaven. This is NOT Christ alone! In fact, this is not Christ at all. Yet, this teaching is gaining traction in the church, and especially among younger Christians.
 
Why? In an age of pluralism, exclusivism seems to be unfair. These people are sincere, many, if not most, haven’t even heard of Christianity. At least they’re practicing their religionshouldn’t that count for something? In an age of pluralism, being exclusive is seen as “narrow,” “bigoted,” “better than you.” In a pluralistic society, if you do not have a firm grasp on your faith and an adequate knowledge of the teachings, you’re most likely going to try to accommodate the culture rather than defend the faith.
 
We believe, because the Bible teaches, that salvation is by grace alone through Christ alone. Our sin is against God. The only way to be reconciled to him is through him, and that’s why Jesus came. The Word became flesh.
 
John 3:16-17 says: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”
 
The Father sends the Son, the Son secures salvation by reconciling sinners to God the Father.
 
John 3:36 says: “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.”
 
We’re taught that only those who obey or believe in the Son escape the wrath of God.
 
John 14:6: “Jesus said to him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
 
Jesus himself, emphatically, teaches that there is NO salvation apart from Him. He is the only way! That’s why we preach the Gospel. That’s why he sends His people.
 
Matthew 28:19: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
 
Acts 1:8:  “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
 
In the book of Acts, we see the gospel moving, just as Christ said it would. Track its influence to Turkey, Europe, US, the Far East.
 
We take the message of the gospel, very often at a great cost, in order to, as Jesus stated to Paul, “open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and a place among those who are sanctified in Me.” (Acts 26:18) These are people practicing other religions.
 
And yet, Acts 4:12 states plainly “that there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved”
 

Christ Alone.

Joe Griffo is Pastor of Redeemer Church of South Hills in West Mifflin, PA. Learn more about him here
 
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