Contend Earnestly: Solus Christus: Part I

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Solus Christus: Part I

As we enter into our second of the Five Solas, this again, like we will probably find with most of the Solas, we will agree with the concept but must challenge ourselves to agree practically as well. Most confessing Christians, would agree with the second sola, Christ Alone.

If I just say Christ Alone what are some thoughts that are brought to your attention?

For me when we proclaim Christ Alone we stand here stating that we are closed minded, that we alone have the truth, that we alone are going to heaven, that we alone have access to the true God, Creator of all things.

By saying, “Christ Alone” we draw a line in the sand against all who disagree and to those Christ says:

“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. “For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it. ”
Matthew 7:13,14

We are called many things for this belief in Christ alone, but we must stand for this truth as it saves us from our sins and sets us apart to be sanctified.

Solus Christus states the belief that the Scriptures and Christ have been secularized and has gone away from a Christ centered faith. At the time of the reformation it was to return to Christ alone is our salvation and our only mediator between God and man. As we have come along we have also seen that Christ alone opposes those things which are built upon the belief of self esteem, feelings instead of belief, man’s wisdom instead of the wisdom found only in Christ, the so called, “What will Christ give me gospel?” It stands in the face of “God has a wonderful plan for your life” and instead states “serve Christ because He alone died for you.”

Solus Christus stands, only on, everything we do and exalt is Christ centered and on Him alone.

Hopefully we will be challenged through this study to understand what we state when we cry out “Solus Christus” but know that our voice is not in solitary, our voice is heard and our voice, because of Christ, reaches to the ears of our Father in heaven.

We are going to look at three aspects of this truth:

Christ Alone is our Salvation
Christ Alone is our Mediator
Christ Alone is to be Glorified

First: Christ Alone is our Salvation

Have you ever told anyone that if they don’t believe in Christ that they will go to hell? What was the reaction? Most of the time the first thing they will say is, "I am a good person and not as bad as ::enter name:: so God will allow me into heaven." Or, that there are many roads to heaven and if you believe in Jesus and someone else believes in Buddha that God will see the good that they have done and they will be accepted as a child of God.

Maybe you have run into a secular humanist, claiming that there is no God and we are the only ones that can save ourselves. Maybe you have run into a postmodernist that believes that there is no absolute truths so to believe that Jesus is the Messiah for all people of all time is a misunderstanding of truth.

Maybe you have run into a universalist that believes that all will be saved and that there is no hell but that we will all enjoy heaven together.

Whichever of these you have run into, they are all the same: none of them believes the Reformation doctrine of “Solus Christus” as our Saviour. But where did the reformers find this doctrine? Well because we have defended and illustrated Sola Scriptura we know where they find these truths: The Bible

Because of the vastness of this subject we must concentrate our time on John 14:6 from Christ’s own mouth in what He claimed.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life;
no one comes to the Father but through Me.

Notice why Jesus even came to this statement, look to Thomas’ question in verse 5:

Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?”

Thomas’ real question to Christ was, "where are you going?" But, Christ, knowing the eternal impact of the question answers perfectly, as He always does, not where He is going, because He could have just as easily said, “I am going to heaven” but in actuality He gives Thomas three answers to His question and then insight on His exclusivity. With His three prong answer Christ uses the emphatic article, “the” to denote singleness or inclusively of His statement.

Jesus says that He alone is the way, or for us here in our life as a Christian, this is the start of our walk with God, when we understand this, this is our justification: He is the way. As Jesus then puts it, He is the truth. As we live our Christian life we must understand that He alone is the truth and we find it no where else, this is our progressive sanctification. Lastly; He is the life. This is our glorification, this is when we see Him face to face and enjoy Him forever. Jesus’ answer to Thomas shows the entire embodiment of a believer’s new life. And Christ, making sure that His commands are understood, says it again by saying, “no one comes to the Father but through Me.” It is almost like when Paul says, “Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say rejoice!” in Phil 4:4 or when Paul says to “pray without ceasing” in 1 Thess 5:17. Paul could have just said, “Pray” because that is in the present tense and in the Greek would mean to never cease from doing so, but he follows it up with the repetitive, “without ceasing”

This is what Christ is doing here. He is displaying to His apostles that He alone is the way to God, He alone is the truth, He alone is the life. What does this mean? If He alone is the way, there are no other ways, if He alone is the truth, everything else is a lie, if He alone is the life, everything else is death. And in case you didn’t get it; no one can come to the Father but through Christ.

This use of “no one” is important to understand. The term literally means “nothing or not a thing; denying absolutely; particularly placing emphasis as not even one, not the least and differing from mēdeís (3367) which would be conditional on certain circumstances.

So, Jesus is stating that under no circumstance can anything or anyone come to the Father except through Him no matter the circumstance. This is an absolute statement and if Christ meant for their to be other ways He could have used the Greek term “medeis” instead of the term that He actually used, which was “oudeis.”

There are absolutes, and this is one and the most important one: No one can come to the Father but through Christ, Solus Christus.

Followed up with these is Acts 4:12 that states:

“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

Of course, as we know that Scripture is breathed out by God and perfect, the word for “no one” is again our term “oudeis” that we just discussed in John 14:6. There are many other important verses and statements by Christ affirming that He alone is our salvation but none more than His declaration in John 14:6


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