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Sola Scriptura - The scripture alone!

18/10/17 - Pastor Tim Loftis

Let me share some reflections with you about Sola Scriptura. When I look back on my life I am thankful that I grew up watching a mother who loved the Word of God. I literally cannot remember a day when I didn’t see my mother sitting somewhere in our house reading her Bible! Usually it would be early in the morning, but often it would be after a long day of working hard at raising 5 kids and partnering with my dad in the work of church planting. I can truly identify with the verse that says “…from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” 2 Tim. 3:15.  Mark talked about this passage in his message on Sunday, as he introduced us to the five Solas series and focused on the first of those that we will learn about, ‘Sola Scriptura’.

A few years back I shared with my mum that I wanted one of her old Bibles when she died, but rather than wait for that sad event, she went ahead and gave me one that she had used between 1972 and 1982. It’s something that I treasure greatly because it was hers, but more than that, it is filled with the evidence of her love for the scriptures. My mother was a prolific note-taker, and almost every page has some sort of mark or note or underline on it, and often she would write the sermon outline in the margin beside the passage that was being preached. The blank page in the front of the Bible has this little poem written on it; “Sin will keep you from this book, or this book will keep you from sin!”.

My mother was truly a ‘Bible Woman’, who looked to the scripture alone for her foundations and alignment with God’s heart and truth. She is now 84 years old and dementia is beginning to take its toll on her mind, but my dad often tells us that as he is reading the scripture to her if he gets a verse wrong she will correct him, and make him read it right! What a legacy I have in the scriptures. But please remember, legacy is not enough, we need to make ‘sola scriptura’ as true and vital in our lives today, as it was to the reformers 500 years ago.  

Mark did a great job on Sunday of connecting us with the importance of looking to the Scripture alone for our authority and for what returns us to the gospel, reminds us to trust in God’s voice and helps us to rest our hope in Jesus. With so many competing voices in our ears these days, we need to be reminded to get back to God’s message for us which is written down in His Word. It shows us our need for constant ‘reformation’ of our hearts and minds, bringing them back in line with God’s heart and will for us.

Let’s make the cry of ‘Sola Scriptura’ true in our lives today, 500 years on from the reformation.

 

For the Scripture Alone,

Pastor Tim

PS. If you'd like to read some more about this check out the link below… australia.thegospelcoalition.org/article/sola-scriptura-seven-things-it-is-and-isnt