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Creation 39(3):6, July 2017

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Sola Scriptura in an age of science




This year, Protestants celebrate the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s 95 Theses (p. 52). Luther’s bold proclamation against various practices of the Roman Catholicism of that period is generally seen as the start of the Protestant Reformation. Half a millennium later, it is worth remembering the biblical principles that inspired the Reformers to stand against the political and religious powers of the day.

Sola Scriptura—Scripture alone—was one of the main slogans of the Reformers. They argued that Scripture, and only Scripture, is to be the ultimate authority for Christians, even for the church hierarchy and the pope himself.

Today, there is a need to re-emphasize sola Scriptura in the area of creation. For many Christians, uniformitarian interpretations of science, not the Bible, is the ultimate authority when it comes to origins, and they try to reinterpret the Bible to somehow fit in a billions-of-years timescale and evolution, rather than interpreting science in the light of the clear teaching of Scripture.

The saddest thing about this is how unnecessary it is in light of what current scientific research shows. In geology, Mount St Helens (p. 23) shows that massive catastrophic geological events can drastically change the landscape, and that flora and fauna can recover quickly afterwards. In biology, we see how creatures are so well-designed that scientists seek to copy them (p. 12, p. 43). Also, we see creatures living in delicate balance in wonderfully designed ecosystems, such as coral reefs (p. 28).

When we take the Bible as our authority, we can use Scripture to confidently address a wide range of issues that are important in today’s society. When we understand that our doctrine of marriage is grounded in creation, we can speak compassionately and powerfully to the issue of same-sex attraction, and expect God’s Word to transform people (p. 46)! And when we understand the idea that humans are unique image-bearers of the Creator God, we can counter ideas about aliens and life on other planets, and give answers to people who have had confusing experiences (p. 16). In fact, Scripture is not only authoritative but sufficient to speak to such a wide range of issues, because it is inspired by the God who created us.

So enjoy this issue of Creation—and consider a renewed commitment to the authority and sufficiency of God’s Word! It’s the only foundation that we can trust to address the questions that people are asking in today’s society.

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From Creation to Salvation
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Christianity for Skeptics
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How Did We Get Our Bible?
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Readers’ comments

Dean R.
It would be much easier to think we could buy our way into heaven or earn favour with God but what a tragedy of greek proportion to not be able to survey the wondrous cross & the empty tomb transmitted by historical data & copied for our benefit.In a way, our days are no different to that of ancient Israel & the conflict she endured & the alluring surrounding cultures.
Sola science is an often changing story so often devoid of fact & filled with assumption, assertion & fake evidence that media is happy to evangelise without critical or questioning thought.
Nations really can be lead astray by grand deceptions just as emporers get new clothes.Science tells me nothing of the last days & the persecution that is to come as it sets itself up as Saviour & truth & puts itself at odds with Jesus the risen LORD.
You cant serve two masters, sooner or later something has to give & if you are not prepared you will crumble.
Donald J.
Roger T the Christian church will stick to its guns with scripture alone just like Christ alone and study the word in context for what God is trying to say to us. With so many going of context that is why there are is much confusion outside the Christ church with so many cults and religions. So please stay with God's word on what he is trying to say. God bless
Bill P.
I agree with Roger. I know you guys will stick to your guns. Funny you write about Mt. St. Helen's because that is the example I've been using to other brothers and sisters in the Lord for them to study and the effect it had and has on the area. They still can not get the millions of yrs. out of their thinking, even with the proof of that event back in 1980, and the canyon that was formed 2 yrs. later. Sadly it not only stops them from seeing the evidence of a young earth, but it has also caused them to water down and given them a more worldly view of The Word Of God. Some have even shut me out all together. They are still in my prayers in that some way some how they might have an AH AH moment and their eyes might open up to the deceptions being taught in this world motivated by the father of all lies. Enjoy your site very much, you guys do good work. God be with you.
Bob J.
I thank the Lord for your ministry each and every day. I see prophecy being fulfilled before our very eyes. II Timothy 3:1-7; 4:2-4 etc. Isaiah 5:20-21; Matthew 24:37; Luke 17:26-30. I believe with the teaching of evolution man has accomplished his goal - Got rid of God in the minds of many. Sadly many professing Christians have done much harm with the teaching of "so called" Theistic evolution. Seems Israel has as many enemies in the church today as in the world! I've asked this question to deaf ears - If you use the magisterial approach or eisegesis rather than exegesis, interpreting Scripture from ones own imagination rather than believing the literal truth, and many today do so regarding Genesis creation account and Revelation regarding prophecy, why not interpret it all that way. Where does one get the authority to interpret any of God's Word in this manner? If one can do this at the beginning and the end of Scripture, who's to say any of it is right?! I recently sent a letter and asked a "Christian" university their views on these two issues. They informed me that they teach Genesis and also teach the "options." They just allow their students to wrestle with the issue of eschatology and come up with their own ideas! Is this teaching? They also quoted from one they obviously look up to and he says -"Don't interpret Scriptures using texts with texts but use your imagination." My question would be - Who says there are options regarding God's truth? I never realized Scripture was multiple choice! And since when, do we interpret Scripture by disregarding God's truth and bringing His truth under subjection to our imaginations? Thanks again for your faithfulness in standing without compromise on the truth of God's Word - Proverbs 30:5-6; Ps.138:2 - In Christ - Bob Jones
Ann S.
Presently reading an old reprint from 1850 called "Life of Luther" by Barnas Sears, D.D. It contains letters from Luther and is a great read -- his simple clarity -- he was not alone in his thinking -- the neglect or rather, absence of the use of scripture was worse than I thought. He worked hard to have Greek and Hebrew taught. Helps to remind me to lean on scripture and "the truth shall set me free". Thank you for YOUR information daily emailed to me. Ann
Roger T.
Greetings, I wonder is CMI aware that on 31st October the Reformation will be declared to be ended?
Supported by the Evangelicals of America and several other "protestant" churches in the name of ecumenism apparently all the issues that Luther raised have been addressed and we can all come together again as one church irrespective of our different interpretations of Scripture! Those who want to stick to sola scriptura will be labeled as bigots. Check YouTube "The Great Controversy Confirmed" if you have any doubts. I hope that CMI will stick to their guns on this. God Bless your ministry. Roger.

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