Crumbs from the Lord's Table

Sola Fide or Faith alone revisited

Sola Scriptura or Bible alone revisited
Sola Fide or Faith alone revisited
The One Church built by Christ
Peter the Rock / Stone misconception revisited
What the Bible says of Jesus' Only Church
1. Church is the Pillar of Truth, Manifold of Wisdom
2. A Church Witnessing unto all nations, so undoubtedly one Visible to all
3. One Single Visible Church in succession till His return
4. Revelation 12 - Church in the wilderness - not an invisible church
5. No separate invisible on earth ; One General Assembly: Visible on Earth with invisible in Heaven
6. An Imperfect Kingdom with Good & Bad Co-existing
7. The Vineyard appointed to new imperfect servants with successive authority till His return
Church Fathers say their church is Catholic
What the founder of Sola Scriptura & Sola Fide said of the Catholic Church
Did Luther or any other have the authority from the Lord or His Church
Who then is the Whore of Babylon?
The Catechism of the Catholic church on the separated communities and their Salvation
The various Christian denominations and their evolution
Catholic Apologetics Links

Protestant Reformation gave rise to another doctrine that is Sola Fide or ‘Faith alone is needed for justification before God’, teaching that Faith alone was needed for ones salvation and ‘works’ or ‘deeds’ were not needed. But this again is the protestant strategy foretold by St. Peter who stressed about persons wresting with verses from Paul’s epistles and confusing the believers.



2Pe:3:15-17: And account that the longsuffering of our

Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul

also according to the wisdom given unto him hath

written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in

them of these things; in which are some things hard to

be understood, which they that are unlearned and

 unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto

 their own destruction. Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye

 know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led

 away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own




This doctrine of Sola Fide contradicts what St James clarifies in his letter. St James in his letter says



Jas:2:17-26: Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead,

 being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I

 have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I

 will shew thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that

 there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe,

 and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith

 without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father

 justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son

 upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his

 works, and by works was faith made perfect? And

the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed

 God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and

 he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by

 works a man is justified, and not by faith only. Likewise

 also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when

 she had received the messengers, and had sent them out

 another way? For as the body without the spirit is dead,

 so faith without works is dead also.



To justify his stand, Luther denied that the epistle of James was the work of an apostle and termed it an "epistle of straw".



In Chapter 2 of his letter to the Romans St Paul himself without doubt clarifies that ‘works’ or deeds’ do matter;


Ro:2:1-12: Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man,

 whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou

 judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that

 judgest doest the same things. But we are sure that the

 judgment of God is according to truth against them

 which commit such things. And thinkest thou this,

O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest

 the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?

 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and

 forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the

 goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? But after

 thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto

thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of

 the righteous judgment of God; Who will render to every

 man according to his deeds: To them who by patient

 continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and

 immortality, eternal life: But unto them that are

 contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey

 unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, Tribulation

and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of

 the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; But glory, honour,

 and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew

 first, and also to the Gentile: For there is no respect of

 persons with God. For as many as have sinned

without law shall also perish without law: and as many as

 have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law;



Ro:6:15, 16: What then? shall we sin, because we are not

 under the law, but under grace? God forbid. Know ye

 not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey,

 his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto

 death, or of obedience unto righteousness?


2Co:5:10: For we must all appear before the judgment

 seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things

 done in his body, according to that he hath done,

 whether it be good or bad.


 In his letter to Titus as well, the same St Paul writes;


Ti:2:13, 14: Looking for that blessed hope, and the

 glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour

 Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might

 redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a

 peculiar people, zealous of good works.



St. Peter as well repeats the need for good works.


1Pe:1:16-19: Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am

 holy.  And if ye call on the Father, who without respect

 of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass

 the time of your sojourning here in fear: Forasmuch as ye

 know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things,

 as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received

 by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious

 blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without




In the Book of Revelation, our Lord Himself declares that everyone will be judged ‘according to their works’.


Re:20:12: And I saw the dead, small and great, stand

before God; and the books were opened: and another

book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead

 were judged out of those things which were written in the

books, according to their works.


Re:22:12: And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward

is with me, to give every man according as his work shall




What St Paul meant by ‘works’ that was not needed was the ‘works of the law’, mainly the much debated circumcision that was not needed anymore in the New Covenant. This mainly because the Jews evidently insisted on obedience to the Jewish Law for all Christians.


Lu:16:16: The law and the prophets were until John:

since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and

every man presseth into it.


Joh:1:17: For the law was given by Moses, but grace

and truth came by Jesus Christ.



Ro:2:29 to 3:1: Thou that makest thy boast of the law,

through breaking the law dishonourest thou God? For

the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles

 through you, as it is written.  For circumcision verily

 profiteth, if thou keep the law: but if thou be a breaker

 of the law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision.

 Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of

 the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for

 circumcision? And shall not uncircumcision which is by

 nature, if it fulfil the law, judge thee, who by the letter

 and circumcision dost transgress the law? For he is not a

 Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that

circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a

 Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of

 the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose

 praise is not of men, but of God. What advantage then

 hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision?


Ro:3:28-31: Therefore we conclude that a man is justified

 by faith without the deeds of the law. Is he the God of

 the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the

 Gentiles also: Seeing it is one God, which shall justify

 the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through

 faith. Do we then make void the law through faith?

 God forbid: yea, we establish the law.



Ro:4:9-11 Cometh this blessedness then upon the

 circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also?

 for we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for

 righteousness. How was it then reckoned? when he was

 in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in

circumcision, but in uncircumcision. And he received the

 sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the

 faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might

 be the father of all them that believe, though they be not

 circumcised; that righteousness might be imputed unto

 them also: And the father of circumcision to them who

 are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in

 the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he

 had being yet uncircumcised.



Ro:9:30-32: What shall we say then? That the Gentiles,

 which followed not after righteousness, have attained to

 righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith.

But Israel, which followed after the law of

 righteousness, hath not attained to the law of

 righteousness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not

by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they

 stumbled at that stumblingstone;



Ga:2:14-16 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly

 according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter

 before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the

 manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why

 compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews? We

who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,

 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the

 law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have

 believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the

 faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for

by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.



Ga:5:3-6 For I testify again to every man that is

 circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. 

 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you

 are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace. For we

 through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness

by faith. For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision

 availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which

 worketh by love.



St Paul concludes his letter to the Galatians in a way surely pointing to the fact that he was debating that the Jewish law was not needed for Christians rather than ‘works of men’.



Ga:6:11-17 Ye see how large a letter I have written unto

 you with mine own hand. As many as desire to make a

 fair shew in the flesh, they constrain you to be

 circumcised; only lest they should suffer persecution for

 the cross of Christ.For neither they themselves who

are circumcised keep the law; but desire to have you

 circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh. But God

 forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord

 Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and

 I unto the world. For in Christ Jesus neither

circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision,

 but a new creature. And as many as walk according to

 this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the

 Israel of God. From henceforth let no man trouble me:

 for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.


All this points to the fact that when St Paul said ‘works of the law’ he meant


obedience to the Jewish Law, that was not needed for Christians for salvation.


This can be seen in the Acts of the apostles where as well.



Ac:15:1-6; 22-31: And certain men which came down

 from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be

 circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be

 saved. When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small

 dissension and disputation with them, they determined

 that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them,

 should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders

 about this question. And when they were come to

 Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the

 apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God

 had done with them. But there rose up certain of the sect

 of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was

 needful to circumcise them, and to command them to

 keep the law of Moses. And the apostles and elders came

 together for to consider of this matter.



Acts 15:22-31Then pleased it the apostles and elders,

 with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own

 company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely,

 Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among

 the brethren: And they wrote letters by them after this

 manner; The apostles and elders and brethren send

 greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in

 Antioch and Syria and Cilicia: Forasmuch as we have

 heard, that certain which went out from us have

 troubled you with words, subverting your souls,

saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to

 whom we gave no such commandment: It seemed good

 unto us, being assembled with one accord, to send chosen

 men unto you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, Men

 that have hazarded their lives for the name of our Lord

Jesus Christ. We have sent therefore Judas and Silas, who

 shall also tell you the same things by mouth. For it

 seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon

 you no greater burden than these necessary things; That

 ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood,

and from things strangled, and from fornication: from

 which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well.



Ac:21:20-25: And when they heard it, they glorified the

 Lord, and said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many

 thousands of Jews there are which believe; and they are

 all zealous of the law: And they are informed of thee,

 that thou teachest all the Jews which are among the

 Gentiles to forsake Moses, saying that they ought

not to circumcise their children, neither to walk after

 the customs. What is it therefore? the multitude must

 needs come together: for they will hear that thou art

 come. Do therefore this that we say to thee: We have four

 men which have a vow on them; Them take, and purify

 thyself with them, and be at charges with them, that they

 may shave their heads: and all may know that those

 things, whereof they were informed concerning thee,

 are nothing; but that thou thyself also walkest orderly,

 and keepest the law. As touching the Gentiles which

 believe, we have written and concluded that they observe

 no such thing, save only that they keep themselves from

 things offered to idols, and from blood, and from

 strangled, and from fornication.



To sum up the facts, it can be said that the Protestant doctrine of ‘Sola Fide’ or Faith alone is a mere ‘wresting’ of the letters of St Paul, as forewarned by the Chief apostle St Peter.


The doctrine of Sola Fide or Faith alone was not heard of till the 16th century Reformation and we know why. The reason was that this was just a misinterpretation of Martin Luther which he mentions in his ‘Table talks’. This discovery is termed as Luther’s "Tower Experience," because in one of his "table talks" he mentions that he was studying Romans 1:17 in the heated room (his study) of the tower of the Black Cloister in Wittenberg when the light broke upon him. Luther makes it clear in several places that this (his discovery of the doctrine of Faith alone), not the 95 Theses, was the pivotal event of his life. The most important of these appears in his Preface to the Complete Edition of Luther's Latin Writings of 1545. Several other mentions of the event are recorded from his "Table Talks," one from 1532 (LW 54:193-194), one from 1538 (LW 54:308-309), and one from 1542-43 (LW 54:442-443).


The doctrine of Sola Fide was so not part of any church doctrine till Luther had the ‘Tower experience’ in the 16th century.




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‘Tower Experience’ References:


Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Lutheran Church Missouri Synod


The Internet Modern History Sourcebook


Boise State University website


Reformation Theology



Christ Reigns!