Sola fide

related topics
{church, century, christian}
{theory, work, human}
{god, call, give}
{law, state, case}
{group, member, jewish}
{@card@, make, design}
{work, book, publish}

Sola fide (Latin: by faith alone), also historically known as the doctrine of justification by faith alone, is a Christian theological doctrine that distinguishes most Protestant denominations from Catholicism, Eastern Christianity and some in the Restoration Movement.

The doctrine of sola fide or "by faith alone" asserts God's pardon for guilty sinners is granted to and received through faith, conceived as excluding all "works", alone. All humanity, it is asserted, is fallen and sinful, under the curse of God, and incapable of saving itself from God's wrath and curse. But God, on the basis of the life, death, and resurrection of his Son, Jesus Christ alone (solus Christus), grants sinners judicial pardon, or justification, which is received solely through faith. Faith is seen as passive, merely receiving Christ and all his benefits, among which benefits are the active and passive righteousness of Jesus Christ. Christ's righteousness, according to the followers of "sola fide", is imputed (or attributed) by God to the believing sinner (as opposed to infused or imparted), so that the divine verdict and pardon of the believing sinner is based not upon anything in the sinner, nor even faith itself, but upon Jesus Christ and his righteousness alone, which are received through faith alone. Justification is by faith alone and is distinguished from the other graces of salvation. See the Protestant ordo salutis for more detail on the doctrine of salvation considered more broadly than justification by faith alone.

Historic Protestantism (both Lutheran and Reformed) has held to sola-fide justification in opposition to Roman Catholicism especially, but also in opposition to significant aspects of Eastern Orthodoxy. Protestants exclude all human works (except the works of Jesus Christ, which form the basis of justification) from the legal verdict / pardon of justification. Thus, "faith alone" is foundational to Protestantism, and distinguishes it from other Christian communions. According to Martin Luther, justification by faith alone is the article on which the church stands or falls.

Christian theologies answer questions about the nature, function and meaning of justification quite differently. These issues include: Is justification an event occurring instantaneously or is it as an ongoing process? Is justification effected by divine action alone (monergism), by divine and human action together (synergism) or by human action? Is justification permanent or can it be lost? What is the relationship of justification to sanctification, the process whereby sinners become righteous and are enabled by the Holy Spirit to live lives pleasing to God?

Contents

Full article ▸

related documents
Arminianism
Perseverance of the saints
Baroque
Huldrych Zwingli
Anabaptist
Mannerism
Iconoclasm
Opus Dei
Baptist
Catharism
Sola scriptura
Anglo-Catholicism
Arianism
Ecumenical council
Second Vatican Council
Transubstantiation
Catholic
Fleur-de-lis
Abstract expressionism
Carmelites
Sistine Chapel
Giotto di Bondone
Cologne Cathedral
Cistercians
Canterbury Cathedral
Château de Chenonceau
Reims
Anointing of the Sick
Waldensians
Sacrament