Sola Scriptura: Scripture is the final and only inerrant authority
Solo Christo! By Christ’s work alone are we saved
Sola Gratia: Salvation is by grace alone
Sola Fide: Justification is by faith alone
Soli Deo Gloria!: For the glory of God alone
The 5 “Solas” represent the essence of Reformed Protestant faith and theology. Since I first was introduced to them years ago, I have not found any point of disagreement with these doctrinal positions. They form the basis of my worldview and are foundational to my understanding and application of scripture. I fully acknowledge that some, and perhaps many, disagree.
While I prefer the term “Reformed,” some may use the term “Calvinism” to describe my theology. The so-called Five Points of Calvinism are sometimes reduced to the acronym TULIP. These describe the view I hold of our Sovereign God and the way in which He views mankind and chooses to deal with him, or more specifically, with us.
T = Total Depravity of Man
U = Unconditional Election
L = Limited Atonement
I = Irresistible Grace
P = Perseverance of the Saints
I acknowledge that these brief descriptions do not adequately define Reformed Theology or if you prefer, Calvinism. If you are interested in learning more about the Five Points, use this link to read more about this theological perspective. It is a fairly long essay, but I have seen none better in terms of providing not only definition of terms, but also great historical background and application.