Sola gratia


Sola gratia

"Sola gratia" is one of the five solas propounded to summarise the Reformers' basic beliefs during the Protestant Reformation; it is a Latin term meaning grace alone. The emphasis was in contradistinction to the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church of the day. Catholic doctrine, as defined by the Council of Trent, holds that salvation is made possible only by grace; the faith and works of men are secondary means that have their origins in and are sustained by grace. (See [http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text/pt3sect1chpt3art2.htm Catechism of the Catholic Church No. 1987-2029] .)

During the Reformation, Protestant leaders and theologians generally believed the Roman Catholic view of the means of salvation to be a mixture of reliance upon the grace of God, and confidence in the merits of one's own works performed in love, pejoratively called Legalism. The Reformers posited that salvation is entirely comprehended in God's gifts (that is, God's act of free grace), dispensed by the Holy Spirit according to the redemptive work of Jesus Christ alone. Consequently, they argued that a sinner is not accepted by God on account of the change wrought in the believer by God's grace, and indeed, that the believer is accepted without any regard for the merit of his works—for no one deserves salvation, a concept that some take to the extreme of Antinomianism.

"Sola gratia" is different from "Sola fide" because "faith alone" is considered either a work or is insufficient for salvation which can only be granted freely by God to whom He chooses. This doctrine is especially linked with Calvinism's unconditional election and predestination.

Recent activity

In November 1999, the Lutheran World Federation and the Catholic Church issued the "Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification" that said, "By grace alone, in faith in Christ's saving work and not because of any merit on our part, we are accepted by God and receive the Holy Spirit, who renews our hearts while equipping us and calling us to good works." [http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/chrstuni/documents/rc_pc_chrstuni_doc_31101999_cath-luth-joint-declaration_en.html] On July 18, 2006, delegates to the World Methodist Conference voted unanimously to adopt the declaration. The Methodists' resolution said the 1999 agreement "expresses a far-reaching consensus in regard to the theological controversy which was a major cause of the split in Western churches in the 16th century" over salvation by grace alone or by grace and good works. [http://www.catholic.org/international/international_story.php?id=20646] Many conservative Protestant and Catholic groups still believe the differences between their views remain substantial, however. [http://www.lcms.org/pages/internal.asp?NavID=2212] [http://sites.silaspartners.com/partner/Article_Display_Page/0,,PTID307086|CHID559376|CIID1415576,00.html] [http://www.catholicrestoration.org/library/joint_declaration.htm]

ee also

*Christian view of the Old Testament Law
*Law and Gospel
*Expounding of the Law

External links

* [http://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/articles/topic/fivesolas.html Articles on the five "sola"s] from a conservative Protestant perspective


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  • sola gratia —   [lateinisch »allein durch die Gnade«], in der reformatorischen Theologie Kurzformel für die soteriologische Aussage, dass die Rechtfertigung des Sünders allein aus der Gnade Gottes geschieht (sola fide). * * * so|la gra|tia [lat. = allein durch …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Sola gratia — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Gratia. Sola gratia est une expression latine signifiant « par la grâce seule », utilisée pour désigner un principe théologique chrétien selon lequel le salut des âmes est obtenu par la grâce seule, c… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • sola gratia — Der Begriff sola gratia (lat. allein durch Gnade) ist ein Grundsatz der reformatorischen Theologie. Er drückt die Überzeugung aus, dass sich der Mensch die Gnade Gottes nicht durch sein Handeln verdienen kann. Die wichtigste biblische Grundlage… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Sola gratia — Dieser Artikel oder Abschnitt bedarf einer Überarbeitung. Näheres ist auf der Diskussionsseite angegeben. Hilf mit, ihn zu verbessern, und entferne anschließend diese Markierung. Der Begriff sola gratia (lat. Allein durch Gnade) ist ein Grundsatz …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Sola gratia —    (lat. = allein durch die Gnade), eine Kurzformel der ev. Theologie u. Gläubigkeit: Ein Mensch kann sich das Heil bei Gott nicht verdienen; ein Sünder ist von sich aus zu einem Heilsakt völlig unfähig. So verstanden ist das S. g. eine… …   Neues Theologisches Wörterbuch

  • sola gratia — noun The doctrine that salvation is conveyed by the grace and goodwill of God, as a free gift, without merit on the part of the sinner …   Wiktionary

  • sola gratia — so|la gra|tia <lat. ; »allein durch die Gnade«> Formel der Rechtfertigungslehre Luthers (ev. Theol.) …   Das große Fremdwörterbuch

  • Sola gratia —  (лат. только благодатью) девиз протестантской Реформации, подчеркивающий, что христианское спасение основывается исключительно на Божественной благодати, а не на каких либо человеческих заслугах. Именно Божественная инициатива и действие… …   Вестминстерский словарь теологических терминов

  • Sola gratia, sola fide, sola scriptura, solus Christus — 1 Cette devise qui caractérise la réforme de Martin Luther signifie d abord que l homme n est pas sauvé par ses œuvres morales ou pieuses. En fait Luther désire instaurer une relation de confiance avec Dieu et non plus une relation basée sur la… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Sola gratia, sola fide, sola scriptura, solus christus — 1 Cette devise qui caractérise la réforme de Martin Luther signifie d abord que l homme n est pas sauvé par ses œuvres morales ou pieuses. En fait Luther désire instaurer une relation de confiance avec Dieu et non plus une relation basée sur la… …   Wikipédia en Français


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