Next week, Protestants around the world will celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Martin Luther and his 95 Theses along with the development of this movement by John Calvin have sparked many conversations, blogs, and sermon series over the past few months. If you’re a women’s ministry leader, you might be asking, “What’s the big deal?” or “Does this really impact me?” The answer is “yes” because theology matters, and it impacts the way your women study God’s Word.
In the next few weeks, we will cover a few theological issues at the heart of the Reformation. Commonly called “The Five Solas,” each of these are important for you to consider. Today, here is a quick tutorial on each of these Latin phrases that summarize the Reformers’ convictions about Christianity. (Plus, you can always impress your pastor with Latin phrases!)
Sola Scriptura or “Scripture alone.” We believe the Bible is our highest authority and is the infallible and inerrant Word of God.
Sola Fide or “faith alone.” Salvation is by faith and not by works.
Sola Gratia or “grace alone.” This one can be partnered with Sola Fide because we believe that our salvation is by faith and grace. We are not offered salvation based on our merit but because of the grace offered by God through Christ—which leads us to the next sola.
Solus Christus or “Christ alone.” Jesus Christ alone is the One who paid the price for our sin. In other words, Christ atoned for our sin. Christ is the ultimate revelation of God, born as a man who lived a sinless life and was the sacrifice for all. Salvation is not offered by any other way.
Soli Deo Gloria or “to the glory of God alone.” In other words, our life purpose is to bring glory to God and to Him alone.
Consider these five solas and how they fit into your life and your leadership. Do you teach these five theological principles? Do you live to bring glory to God and not yourself? Over the next few weeks, look for additional information and ways you can be a better theological learner.
Kelly King is the Women’s Ministry Specialist for LifeWay Christian Resources and oversees the YOU Lead events. Join her this year and get to know her heart for ministry leaders. Follow her on Twitter @kellydking.