500 years ago, German monk Martin Luther felt spiritually led to restore Christianity back to the original gospel message of Jesus Christ and the early church, known as the Reformation. The Five Solas are five Latin phrases that emerged during the Reformation to summarize the Reformers’ theological convictions about the essentials of Christianity (Latin was the language of the universal (catholic) church at the time; note Luther’s conversion story is well worth a read.).
- Sola Scriptura – Scripture alone (the Bible alone is our highest authority)
- Sola Fide – Faith alone (we are saved through faith alone in Jesus Christ)
- Sola Gratia – Grace alone (we are saved by the grace of God alone)
- Solus Christus – Christ alone (Jesus Christ alone is our Lord, Savior and King)
- Soli Deo Gloria – To the glory of God alone (we live for the glory of God alone)
Luther was the first person to fully translate a common-language Bible directly from Greek and Hebrew (in 1534, German language) “of, for and by the people,” using everyday dialects heard on the streets and in homes.
Luther, making use of the relatively new printing press for mass printings, enabled families and households for the first time ever, to have the freedom to read God’s Word, first hand, for themselves.
Direct results of Luther’s daring, provocative challenge to church authority include: the spread of literacy, an end to the Dark Ages, freedom of religion, the idea of self-government, the Pilgrims founding of America and our resultant governing liberties using the Holy Spirit’s enlightenment via scripture.
During this season of Thanksgiving, the Five Solas are indeed reasons for gratitude and celebration, as we focus on Jesus and the joy of our salvation!
Article Written By: Trish Knox