Reformation Topic: Sola Fide and Sola Christus ("Faith Alone" and "Christ Alone")
Text: Galatians 2:15-21
Big Idea: Justification, right relationship with God, is based on what Jesus accomplished for us. In order to receive the benefits of Jesus’ work, we must place our faith in Him—nothing more and nothing less.
During this time, much of the Catholic church embraced a salvation of works. Not only did many teach that baptism and other sacraments were necessary for salvation, but numerous Catholic leaders were also selling indulgences—pardons from a priest for specific sins. Want to do some serious sinning tomorrow? No problem! Just buy your indulgences ahead of time and then God will have to forgive you! The Reformers’ view of the New Testament rejected this perversion by declaring that justification is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. Right standing with God, they said, cannot be bought, earned, or sold. It comes from believing in the finished work of Jesus Christ.