A confessing community: Salvation revealed

The Bible is a collection of inspired writings, spanning an array of genres, written by forty-plus authors over a span of some four thousand years. Yet it presents a single, united message. It is easy to miss this central theme in the complexity of…

A confessing community: Salvation provided

Sola 5, whose Confession we are studying in this series, is an association of God-centred evangelical churches in Southern Africa. While there is a degree of doctrinal diversity between the churches, all churches confess certain core doctrines. Most core to the identity of the…

A confessing community: Sin

The five solas of the Protestant Reformation remind us of the gospel truth that the Reformers recaptured: that salvation is by grace alone (sola gratia) through faith alone (sola fide) in Christ alone (solus Christus) according to Scripture alone (sola scriptura) for the glory…

A confessing community: The fall

It is universally recognised that “nobody’s perfect.” Bad things happen to good people. Innocent people—including infants—die. Every culture in history has had to wrestle with why. What is the source of imperfection, death, and misery in the human race? From a humanistic standpoint, it…

A confessing community: Creation of angels

Writing in 1941, German Lutheran theologian Rudolf Bultmann suggested that the Bible is filled with “mythological thought,” which can be traced to “Jewish apocalypticism” and “the Gnostic myth of redemption.” Bultmann suggested that such mythological thought “is incredible to men and women today because…

A confessing community: Creation of heaven and earth

It may surprise you—or perhaps it won’t—that Bible interpreters have never fully agreed on a single interpretation of the creation story in Genesis 1–2. Some of the early church fathers (e.g. Victorinus, Lactantius, Basil the Great, Ambrose of Milan, and John Damascene) explicitly affirmed…

A confessing community: The Scriptures interpreted

One of the biggest doctrinal controversies in the fourth century centred on the deity of Jesus Christ. Arius and his followers taught that Jesus Christ was a created being, who did not always exist. Athanasius strongly defended the deity of Jesus Christ and helped…

A confessing community: The Scriptures sufficient

Every age has had its religious leaders who have claimed to receive direct divine revelation, apart from Scripture. Our age is no different—and, in fact, it may be more prevalent in Africa than in many places in the world. African churches are filled with…

A confessing community: The Scriptures revealed

South African Airways (SAA) buys 1.5 million bottles of Valpre water a year. The wholesale price of these bottles is R2.75 each. SAA, however, does not buy directly from the producer. It buys them from an empowerment company set up by ANC cadres and…

A confessing community: The revealed God

A 2000 M. Night Shyamalan film posits that superhero stories are simply sensationalised accounts of true-life heroes who, while not as powerful as the superheroes of which comic books tell, are extraordinary people who are able to do extraordinary things. As the stories of…