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Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
November 5, 2017
Our Reformation Heritage: Solus Christus – Christ Alone
I trust our focus the last three weeks on our Reformation Heritage has been helpful to you. If you have missed any of the messages, you can find it on our website or we can make you a copy of either the audio CD or my written notes on request. In the evenings we have looked at the lives of John Wycliffe, John Hus and Martin Luther. Tonight will be William Tyndale who was martyred for his work in translating the Bible into English. In the mornings we have covered sola scriptura – Scripture Alone, sola gratia – Grace Alone, and sola fide – Faith Alone. This morning we will be examining solus Christus – Christ Alone, and then next week, soli deo gloria – the glory of God Alone.
These five solas are tied together in an unbreakable chain. Because Scripture alone is the final authority, we can avoid the pitfalls of philosophy and transgressions of traditions to know God’s revelation of truth about how sinners can be redeemed, forgiven and declared righteous in order to enter His presence. It is by God’s grace alone through faith alone in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ alone, and all of it is for the glory of God alone. Each sola is a foundational theological truth which is solidly grounded in the Scriptures but had for the most part been lost as man obscured, perverted and replaced them with church traditions.
Because these five solas are short phrases referring to particular doctrines, they must be explained clearly so that they are not misunderstood or wrongly interpreted to mean something else. For that reason I have been giving you the historical background for their rediscovery and spread particularly in the early 16th century in Europe. It should be noted that though the Reformation was set against the Roman Catholic Church in particular, other Christian groups had also obscured Biblical truth with their traditions, so that the Reformation became a revitalization of the gospel for the whole world. The proclamation of these doctrines are still crucial since even new church denominations can quickly develop their own traditions and doctrines that confuse or contradict the Biblical gospel. (See: Sola Scriptura, Sola Gratia, & Sola Fide)
James Buchanan in his book, The Doctrine of Justification: An Outline of Its History in the Church and of its Exposition in Scripture, comments that “human additions to divine truth, and human inventions in the worship of God, crept in gradually and insensibly” so that “towards the close of the Patristic period, and notwithstanding the sound doctrinal teaching of such men as Anselm and Bernard, there arose a new method of Theology.” This has been commonly called either the Mediæval or Scholastic System.
William Pope in his multi-volume work, A Compendium of Christian Theology, comments about the Mediæval doctrine that developed which the Reformers opposed. First, “the present and eternal acceptance of the sinner for the sake of Christ alone, never rejected absolutely, was denied by implication: the absolute supremacy of the Saviour’s merit was reserved for the original fault of the race; for sin committed after its first imputed benefit, human expiation was demanded.” Second, “the peculiarity of the Apostolical term justification, as referring to a sinner’s relation to law, was all but entirely abolished.” Third, “the fatal dogma of Supererogation.” This was the claimed treasury of merits of the saints dispensed as grace by the RCC. Fourth, “the climax of mediæval error, the one eternal and finished sacrifice of Christ was taken from the direct administration of the Holy Ghost, and changed into a sacrifice offered by the Church through her priests.” The RCC proclaims a gospel far different from that preached by Jesus and the apostles.
God has always had His remnant who have held to true faith in Christ alone, but little is known about most because those not conforming to church dogma were persecuted even to the point of martyrdom and their writings were burned as was Jon Hus in 1415. Among the heresies charged against Hus was his emphasis that it is God and Christ alone that can forgive sins, and that a priest could only announce it. Others holding similar views were either forced to recant or were martyred. The major difference for Martin Luther was being in a political situation in which he was protected so that he could develop Biblical doctrine and guide the church that arose from its proclamation, otherwise he surely would have been burned at the stake as was Hus.
As I mentioned last week, Luther had been a man greatly troubled by his sinfulness. After he developed a more literary hermeneutic for his study of the Bible, it still took him years to understand the truth. Toward the end of his life he wrote, “I did not learn my theology all at once, but I had to search deeper for it where my trials and temptations took me … living, nay rather dying and being damned make a theologian, not understanding, reading or speculation.” It wasn’t until 1519 that he finally understood that Romans 1:17 referred to the righteousness of God satisfied in the atoning work of Christ on the cross and applied to the sinner by faith. Justification before God was secured by faith alone in Christ alone.
Huldrych Zwingli, whose preaching in Zurich began the Swiss Reformation in 1525, came to understand that Christ’s redemptive work was the center of Christian theology. He proclaimed that redemption came from placing trust in Christ alone and not in Sacraments, Ordinances, Church membership, or anything else. John Calvin taught the same thing in Geneva. He comments on John 3:16, “as we were formerly told that God so loved us as to give up his Son to die for us, so it is immediately added that in a strict sense faith should look to Christ alone.” Interesting enough, Jacob Arminius responded to humanist opponents that denied original sin, “I believe that our salvation rests on Christ alone and that we obtain faith for the forgiveness of sins and the renewing of life only through the grace of the Holy Spirit.”
The differences between the doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church and the Reformers on these issues are seen in these selections from the Ten Theses of Berne Switzerland, May, 1526
3. Christ is the only wisdom, righteousness, redemption, and satisfaction for the sins of the whole world. Hence it is a denial of Christ when we confess another ground of salvation and satisfaction.
5. The mass as now in use, in which Christ is offered to God the Father for the sins of the living and the dead, is contrary to the Scripture, a blasphemy against the most holy sacrifice, passion, and death of Christ, and on account of its abuses an abomination before God.
6. As Christ alone died for us, so he is also to be adored as the only Mediator and Advocate between God the Father and the believers. Therefore it is contrary to the Word of God to propose and invoke other mediators.
7. Scripture knows nothing of a purgatory after this life. Hence all masses and other offices for the dead are useless.
Another quote from Buchanan’s, The Doctrine of Justification, summarizes the historical differences in doctrine on the means of justification.
For Roman Catholics, “the sinner, being regenerated by baptism, and purified, from time to time, by confession and penance, was held to be justified,—not by faith in Christ, as the means, or by the righteousness of Christ, as the ground, of his forgiveness and acceptance,—but by inherent righteousness, sacramentally infused and nourished, with or without the exercise of an explicit faith in Christ and His finished work. In opposition to these and similar errors on this point, the Reformers held and taught, that we are ‘justified by faith alone,’ simply because faith receives and rests upon Christ alone for salvation, and apprehends and appropriates His righteousness as the ground of acceptance.”
The Biblical Jesus
The apostle John warned in 1 John 2:18, “Children, it is the last hour, and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have arisen: from this we know that it is the last hour.” There have been many antichrists throughout history, and there are plenty of them around today. We also know it will get worse in the future for Jesus warned in Matthew 24:23–24, 23 “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or ‘There He is,’ do not believe him. 24 “For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect.”
There are those who are so deceived and / or deceitful that they claim to be the Messiah and yet have not been put into psychiatric confinement. Wikipedia lists 16 false Jewish Messiah’s ranging from Simon Bar Kokhba (d. 135) to New York City’s Menachem Mendel Schneerson (d. 1994) of Chabad. It lists 32 false “Christian” Messiah claimants ranging from Simon Magnus in the first century to several that are living at the present time. Among the more well known in recent times was Sun Myung Moon (1920-2012) of the Unification Church (Moonies). Of interest locally is Ahn Sahng-hong (1918-1985), the Messiah of World Mission Society Church of God, the “Mother God” cult with a headquarters across the river in Orange County.
There are also the many cults that claim to follow the Biblical Jesus, but their Jesus has a different identity or attributes. The Jesus of the Mormons is the brother of Lucifer. The Jesus of the Jehovah Witnesses is a lesser god. Most cults have a Jesus that is either not fully human or not fully God. These heresies arose early in church history with the apostle warning in 1 John 4:1-3, 1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.
Who is the Biblical Jesus? We could spend many weeks on this, but for our purposes today, let me cite some verses explaining His major attributes and characteristics.
1) He is fully God, the second person of the triune Godhead. The promise of Immanuel, God with us, in Isaiah 7:14 is fulfilled in Jesus in Matthew 1:22-23. A name give to Messiah in Isaiah 9:6 is “Mighty God.” In John 1:1, 14, 18 Jesus is identified as the Word who was with God and was God that became flesh and is the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father. In John 20:28 Jesus accepts Thomas’ worship and profession, “my Lord and my God.” Jesus Himself said He and the Father were one (10:30) and claimed, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am” (8:58). Paul identifies Him in Titus 2:13 as “our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus.” Peter uses the same designation for Him in 2 Peter 1:1. The apostle John said of Jesus, “This is the true God and eternal life” (1 John 5:20). The benediction in Jude 24-25 is to “the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Jesus also has all the attributes of deity. He is eternal existing in the beginning with God (John 1:1-2) and being the Alpha and Omega (Revelation 1:8; 22:13). Jesus is omnipresent promising in Matthew 18:20 to be with His followers always. He is omniscient knowing the thoughts of men (Luke 6:8), the history of people He had just met (John 4:29), and accepting His disciples declaration in John 16:30, “you know all things.” Jesus is immutable remaining “the same yesterday, today, forever” (Hebrews 13:8). He is omnipotent with Matthew 8 & 9 showing He has power over nature, sickness, disease, death, demons, and sin. Hebrews 1:3 states that He upholds all things by the word of His power and Matthew 28:18 that all authority given to Him. His authority to forgive sins and raise the dead also show He has the prerogatives of deity.
Jesus also has the offices as the Creator through whom all things have come into being (John 1:3,10; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2) and preserver / upholder of all things (Colossians 1:17; Hebrews 1:3). Jesus also receives honor and worship due only to God (Exodus 34:14; Matthew 4:10). This worship is not only from people (Matthew 14:33; Philippians 2:9-12), but also angels (Hebrews 1:6).
2) Jesus is also fully man, born by the power of the Holy Spirit through the virgin Mary without human father (Luke 1:34-35). He had a physical body of flesh (John 1:14; 1 Tim. 3:16). This includes the physical limitations of flesh of becoming hungry (Matt. 4:2), thirsty (John 19:28), tired (John 4:6), suffering (Heb. 2:10,18; 5:8) and dying (John 19:30,32-34). He had to be human in order to pay the penalty of man’s sin and to become our high priest (Hebrews 2:14, 17-18).
4) Jesus died of His own will as the atonement for man’s sin thereby securing for man a basis for redemption and forgiveness of sins. Jesus said in John 10:17–18, 17 “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. 18 “No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.” He stated His purpose in this in Mark 10:45, “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” As Paul stated it in Titus 2:14, Christ Jesus “gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.” Hebrews 10:12 states that He “offered one sacrifice for sins for all time.” This is the fulfillment of Isaiah 53:10-12 and Daniel 9:24.
5) Jesus physically rose from the dead on the third day proving His claims and the trustworthiness of His promises. This is the testimony of every Gospel account, Acts and multiple Epistles and Revelation in fulfillment of multiple Old Testament prophecies especially Psalm 16:10, “For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay.”
6) Jesus has ascended to the right hand of the Father in heaven and will one day return for all those that belong to Him that they will be in heaven with Him forever. His ascension is recorded in Mark, Luke and Acts with an angel in Acts 1:11 telling them that Jesus would return in the same way that He left. Jesus’ promise in John 14:1-4 was that He was going to His Father’s house to prepare a place for His followers and would return to receive them to Himself.
Jesus is the Messiah, the Christ, the promised anointed one that would save His people from their sins. Denial of any of these truths means that you have a different Jesus that cannot save you. Only the Jesus revealed in the Scriptures can do that. It is Christ alone! So make sure your belief is in the true Christ and not an imposter or caricature of Him.
Jesus Christ Alone is Savior
At the heart of solus Christus is that Jesus Christ alone is the source of salvation. This is still a crucial issue today since every works-righteousness religious system has either something other than Jesus as their source of salvation or something in addition to the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. False religions seek to find salvation in someone or something other that Jesus Christ. Cults seek to find salvation in some caricature of Jesus plus other things.
As I have pointed out in previous sermons, in Roman Catholicism salvation from sin is gained through a system of grace distributed by the Church in which merited righteousness is received through the Sacraments and final penance is made through suffering in purgatory. Faith is placed in Christ plus these religious works plus the church itself. I remember the wording on the outside of the sanctuary of St. Genevieve Catholic Church near where I grew up that said, “This is none other than the house of God; This is the Gate of Heaven.”
Though Vatican II broadened the possibility of salvation for those not in direct communion with the Roman Catholic Church, it still sees itself as “the all-embracing means of salvation.” Included in its 1964 Decree on Ecumenism is this statement. “For men who believe in Christ and have been truly baptized are in communion with the Catholic Church even though this communion is imperfect. …it remains true that all who have been justified by faith in Baptism are members of Christ’s body, and have a right to be called Christian, and so are correctly accepted as brothers by the children of the Catholic Church.” That still excludes me because my faith is in Christ alone, not baptism. My trust is in Christ alone, not the Catholic church or any other church regardless of their claims.
Scripture is my final authority and the Bible makes very clear statements that salvation is by God’s grace alone through faith alone in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ alone. Consider these:
First, from the negative. Psalm 146:3-5, 3 Do not trust in princes, In mortal man, in whom there is no salvation. 4 His spirit departs, he returns to the earth; In that very day his thoughts perish. 5 How blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, Whose hope is in the LORD his God.” Jeremiah 17:5-8 is even stronger, 5 Thus says the LORD, “Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind And makes flesh his strength, And whose heart turns away from the LORD. 6 “For he will be like a bush in the desert And will not see when prosperity comes, But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, A land of salt without inhabitant. 7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD And whose trust is the LORD. 8 “For he will be like a tree planted by the water, That extends its roots by a stream And will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green, And it will not be anxious in a year of drought Nor cease to yield fruit.
Peter’s declaration in Acts 4:8-12 is powerful for its clarity and its revelation about the dramatic change in Peter having seen the risen Lord Jesus and being filled with the Holy Spirit. The man who had previously denied Jesus when challenged by a servant girl now boldly proclaims Jesus Christ the Nazarene directly charging the Sanhedrin with His crucifixion and declares that God raised Him from dead. Peter quotes Psalm 118:22 then proclaims, “And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”
Jesus was also very direct in not only offering salvation to those that would believe in Him, but also excluding any other means of gaining salvation. In John 14:6 Jesus declared, “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”
In 1 John the apostle makes several exclusionary statements to distinguish between those who follow the truth and walk in the light and those who walk in darkness and are not saved. 1 John 2:22–23 demands the correct identity of Jesus, 22 “Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. 23 Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also.” 1 John 4:2–3 adds to this, 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world. The culmination is in 1 John 5:10–13, 10 “The one who believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself; the one who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has given concerning His Son. 11 And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.”
All of these proclamations of the scriptures exclude salvation by any other person and by any other means than faith alone in Christ alone. And why is it Christ alone? Because Jesus alone meets the qualifications necessary to be Messiah and the Savior as God incarnate who willingly gave His life as the full and sufficient price of redemption of mankind. Only Jesus conquered the grave proving His atonement was accepted by the Father and that He has the authority to forgive sins and grant eternal life to those who believe in Him.
As the old Imperials’ song put it, “No, it won’t be old Buddha that’s sitting on the throne, And it won’t be old Mohammed that’s calling us Home, And it won’t be Hare Krishna that plays that trumpet tune, And we’re going to see The Son not Reverend Moon!”
Jesus Christ Alone is Mediator
Christ alone has ramifications in other areas of theology in addition to salvation from sin. One of those is the area of mediation. Roman Catholicism requires confession be made to a priest in order to gain absolution. It also has Mary and an abundance of saints to whom you can request intercession with God on your behalf. Other cults often require something of similar nature emphasizing that you are not good enough and Jesus is not sufficient so you have to go through them to approach God. Contrasts these ideas with the Scriptures.
Paul states it bluntly in 1 Timothy 2:5-6, 5 “For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time.” Hebrews 10:19-23 explains our access to God and the reasons for it more fully. 19 “Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 4:14–16 adds, 14 “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. 16 Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
I can pray directly to God and confess my sins to receive forgiveness and cleansing as directed in 1 John 1:9 because Jesus is my High Priest, Christ alone is my mediator. Hebrews 7:25 adds to this confidence to draw near to God saying, “Therefore He is able to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.” I will quickly add here that my confidence is even greater because according to Romans 8:26 the Spirit helps my weakness and intercedes for me when I do not know how to pray as I should. If the Son of God is your mediator, and if the Holy Spirit intercedes when you don’t know how to pray, why would you want to go through Mary, the saints or anyone else?
Jesus Christ Alone is the Head of His Church
Let me quickly add here an additional aspect of this idea of Christ Alone. Jesus is the only head of the church.
Paul explains in Ephesians 1:19-23 that Jesus is seated at the right hand of the Father far above all rule and authority and power and dominion with all things put in subjection to Him and that He is head over all things including the church which is His body. Paul states directly in Ephesians 5:23 that “Christ is head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body.” In Colossians 1:15-20 Paul explains Jesus’ role as the Creator who is before all things and in whom all things hold together, and that “He is also head of the body, the church.”
The Pope has been given a lot of titles in the effort to attribute to him more than he is or that belongs to him. Cult leaders often do the same in trying to elevate their supposed superiority. These verses make it plain there is only one head of the church and it is Christ alone. The apostle Peter calls Jesus the “chief shepherd” and refers to himself as a “fellow elder” (1 Peter 5:1-4) and not by any of the titles the Pope has been given as Peter’s supposed successor.
Making up a title for yourself or changing the meaning or misapplying a Biblical title does not change history or what God states in His word about church leaders. John, the last apostle, died at the end of the first century. No one has been able to meet its qualifications listed in Acts 1 since then. The terms presbyter, elder, bishop, overseer, pastor and shepherd all refer to the same people in the same offices with responsibility for the same ministry and all having to meet the same qualifications (1 Timothy 3; Titus 1). There is not a Biblical hierarchy within them or among churches. Even when I served on the international board of our church association, I carried no authority over any other church. Greater church leadership should result in greater service, not authority and power.
Personally, I prefer the term pastor, from the Latin for shepherd, since that is my primary role in the church. But even in that, I am only an undershepherd. Jesus is the chief shepherd. I am Biblically charged with areas of responsibility and have authority to carry out those roles, but that quickly reduces down to my ability to explain and apply the Scriptures. I have authority to instruct and protect the flock, but I have neither authority or desire to issue commands and run your life. I only desire to increase your understanding of God’s word so that you will make wise decisions for our own life.
Christ alone is the head of the church
Christ alone is the mediator between God and man
Christ alone is the Savior
Salvation is by God’s grace alone through faith alone in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ alone for the glory of God alone.
Sermon Notes – 11/5/2017
Our Reformation Heritage: Solus Christus- Christ Alone: Selected Scriptures
The five solas are tied together in an unbreakable chain beginning with Sola _______________
The Reformation was set against the Roman Catholic Church in particular, but its truths apply ___________
“human ______________ to divine truth . . . crept in gradually and insensibly” (James Buchanan)
1) the “acceptance of the sinner for the sake of Christ alone . . . was ______by implication” (William Pope)
2) “the peculiarity of the Apostolical term justification . . . was all but entirely ___________” (W. Pope)
3) “the fatal dogma of Supererogation.” the treasury of merits of the saints dispensed as ______by the RCC
4) “the one eternal and finished sacrifice of Christ . . . was changed into a sacrifice offered by the ______”
God has always had His ___________ who have held to true faith in Christ alone
Luther, greatly troubled by his sin, finally understood justification by faith alone in Christ _________- 1519
Swiss reformers Zwingli and Calvin taught trust in Christ alone and not in ______________or anything else
The Ten Theses of _________, Switzerland, May, 1526 contradicted RCC doctrine of salvation
RCC and Reformed doctrine ________each other on the means of justification – Sacraments vs. Christ alone
The Biblical Jesus
Antichrists abound (1 John 2:18; Matt. 24:23-24) _______________________________________________
Cults do not have the Biblical Jesus _________________________________________________________
Jesus was ___________ fulfilling the Father’s will and keeping the Law perfectly John 5:30; 8:46; 14:31
Jesus rose __________from the dead: Gospels, Epistles, Revelation – fulfilling OT prophecies – Psalm 16:10
Jesus is the ____________, the Christ, the promised anointed one that would save His people from their sins
Jesus Christ Alone is Savior
Vatican II broadened the RCC view, but still claims itself as “the all-embracing __________of salvation”
Acts 4:8-12 – Peter’s declaration to the Sanhedrin – “there is salvation in ______________________. . .”
John 14:6 – Jesus’ declaration that “________________ comes to the Father but through Me.”
1 John 2:22–23; 4:2-3; 5:1-13 excludes salvation in _________________ except Jesus Christ
Jesus ____________ meets the qualifications to be the Messiah and the Savior
Jesus Christ Alone is Mediator
1 Timothy 2:5-6 – Jesus is the __________ mediator between God and men
Hebrews 10:19-23 – We can enter the holy place with confidence by the blood of __________
Hebrews 4:14–16 – Jesus is our great ____________________that allows us access to the throne of grace
Jesus Christ Alone is the Head of His Church
The Pope’s titles do not match Peter’s designation for himself – “fellow ___________” (1 Peter 5:1-4)
No one since the ___________ Century meets the qualifications of an Apostle (Acts 1)
Presbyter, elder, bishop, overseer, pastor and shepherd refer to ___________ person, office and ministry
Pastor (from Latin for _________) is primary role of teaching and protecting flock – not command their lives
Salvation is by God’s grace alone through faith alone in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ _____
Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – Do one or more of the following: 1) Count how many times Jesus Christ is referenced. 2) Discuss with your parents the meaning and importance of justification coming by faith alone in Christ alone
THINK ABOUT IT!
Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. What is the relationship of the five solas to each other? What is the “Mediaeval doctrine” of the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) that the Reformers opposed? Why is there so little information from the Mediaeval period on the remnant that held to true belief in Christ? How did Luther finally come to understand justification by faith alone in Christ alone? What were the Ten Theses of Berne (1526) and why are they important? Contrast salvation according to RCC Theology with Reformed Theology. Why should we expect there to be false Christ and false doctrines about Christ? What is the Biblical evidence for the following: *Jesus is fully God? Jesus is fully human? *Jesus was sinless? *Jesus died willing as the atonement for man’s sin? *Jesus’ physical resurrection? *Jesus’ ascension? Where is Jesus now and what has He promised for the future of those that believe in Him? Did Vatican II change the RCC belief that it is the means of salvation? Explain. What Scriptural warnings is there about trusting men instead of God? What is the Biblical evidence that salvation is only found in faith alone in Christ alone? How does 1 John exclude any other means of salvation? Can anyone other than Jesus meet the qualifications to be the Messiah and the savior of mankind? Explain. What is a mediator? What does the RCC church teach about this? What does the Bible teach about Jesus being the only mediator? What is the role of the Pope in the RCC? What does the Bible teach about Christ alone being the head of the church? About leaders in the church?
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