“ Scripture Alone”

Psalm 119

Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path (v,105)

Your word, Lord is eternal, it stands firm in the heavens (v.29)

Let your steadfast love come to me, O Lord,

your salvation according to your promise.
42 Then I shall have an answer for those who taunt me,

for I trust in your word.
43 Do not take the word of truth utterly out of my mouth,
    for my hope is in your ordinances.
44 I will keep your law continually, for ever and ever.
45 I shall walk at liberty, for I have sought your precepts.
46 I will also speak of your decrees before kings,

and shall not be put to shame;
47 I find my delight in your commandments, because I love them.
48 I revere your commandments, which I love,
    and I will meditate on your statutes. (v.41-48)

Most think of this week as building up to Halloween next Monday, the 31st of October.  October 31, 1517 is famous because Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the church door at Wittenberg, inviting debate on points he disagreed with the dominant Catholic Church at the time.  October 31 is generally considered the beginning of the Reformation.  Out of the Reformation came multiple protestant denominations and Catholic reform.

         In Luther’s thinking there were four pillars around which his theological thinking developed: Scripture alone (over traditions), Faith alone (not works), Grace alone (not indulgences), and Christ alone (not saints).  These named the four tensions he felt with Rome.  We will look at these four “Sola” or “Alone” foci this week. 

         The verses above were written by King David. Christian lore has it that David used Psalm 119 to teach his son Solomon wisdom.  The whole psalm is an acrostic poem built on the Hebrew alphabet and speaks of the delight of living by Scripture, the Torah, sacred law, and its value for our lives.  Jesus is famously quoted as saying during his temptation by the Devil in the wilderness after his baptism, “Man shall not live on bread alone, but on ever word that comes out of the mouth of God.”

         God’s word is a “light,” “eternal, ”trust worthy,” hope giving, and give liberty and honor to those who know it.  It is not a bonfire we burn at Halloween to light the way for the dead or a candle we put in a pumpkin to make a scary face to scare away evil visitors.  God’s word lightens our way every day and is reliable showing us the way to life.  Spend a moment reflecting on the blessing God’s word has been in your life.  Perhaps you can name a verse that has been light to your path!  Amy Grant sings a worship song around Psalm 119:105.  Enjoy.

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