Recently Matthew Barrett, executive editor of Credo Magazine, was interviewed by 9 Marks about the solas of the Reformation. You can read the entire interview in the 9 Marks Journal: “The Reformation and Your Church.”

Here is the middle of the interview where Barrett talks about why the solas go together and something surprising he learned from writing his book on sola scriptura:

How do all five solas fit together as an inseparable whole?

All five books (and solas) fit together and are inseparable from one another. It’s only on the basis of the work of Christ alone that sinners receive the perfect righteousness of Christ and the total forgiveness of sins. Reception of this imputed righteousness, however, isn’t by works but through faith alone in Christ alone.

But even our faith is a gift from God. Therefore, it’s by God’s grace alone that we’re raised from spiritual death to life, that our eyes are opened to our sin and our desperate need for a Savior. It’s precisely because salvation is by grace alone that all glory goes to God alone.

So, how do we know about this good news? Through the Scriptures alone! Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, Melanchthon, and many others cried sola scriptura, which means that only Scripture, as God’s inspired Word, is the church’s inerrant, sufficient, and final authority. Scripture read, preached, and proclaimed feeds the sheep with the good news, the gospel of Jesus Christ. To paraphrase Luther, the Scriptures are the swaddling clothes in which we’re presented with Jesus, our Savior.

What’s something surprising you learned from writing your book, God’s Word Alone?

God’s Word is inherently and invariably Trinitarian in nature. Throughout redemptive history, each person of the Trinity participates in the delivery of divine revelation, yet it’s the Holy Spirit in particular who takes on a central role, carrying along the biblical authors so they speak from God (2 Pet 1:21).

Additionally, God’s Word, though communicated in a variety of ways, is undeniably covenantal in character. God communicates who he is and what he will do via divinely initiated covenants—and Scripture itself is a covenantal document. It’s the constitution of the covenant between God and his people. To reject God’s Word is to reject his covenant. Redemptive history demonstrates that the covenantal Word of the triune God proves true. His covenantal promises, both spoken and written, will not fail, and nowhere is this more evident than in the incarnation of Christ, the Word made flesh.

Read the rest of this interview today: The Solas

Other articles and interviews in the 9 Marks journal include:

Other articles and interviews in the 9 Marks journal include:

The Sunday Before the 95 Theses

By Stephen Nichols | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

I hear there is a friar in the town of Wittenberg, a Brother Martin. Maybe he will help us.

The Reformation and the Glory of God

By John Piper | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Our salvation could never be merited so that the entire transaction would culminate soli Deo Gloria—to the glory of God alone.

Episode 20: On the Reformation

By J. Leeman, M. Dever | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Jonathan Leeman interviews Mark Dever on the Reformation and its usefulness for Christians today

The Reformation and Your Church

Should Pastors Today Care about the Reformation?

By D. A. Carson | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Pastors devoted to their ministry have so many things to do. So why should they care about the Reformation?

Connecting the Church and the Gospel: A Reformation Perspective

By Michael Horton | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Despite varying emphases of different traditions, the ecclesiological presuppositions of the Reformation reflect distinct convictions concerning the gospel message.

Wise Men are Men, and Truth is Truth

By Brad Littlejohn | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

How do we cope with the legacy of such flawed heroes?

Is the Reformation Just a White Man’s Legacy?: How the Reformation Addresses Social Exploitation

By Mika Edmonson | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

For many Christians, the Reformation has nothing substantial to say to racial and economic injustices. Are they wrong?

What Your Church Members Should Know About the Reformation

By Shawn Wright | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

A brief overview of important, Reformation-related people and events.

Four Ways the Reformation Changed Church History

By Alex Duke | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Luther and his fellow Protestant reformers changed the course of church history. How so? Let me name a four.

The Five Solas: An Interview with Matthew Barrett

By Matthew Barrett | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

he Five Solas series is to help Christians understand the historical and biblical context of the five solas and how to live out the relevance of Reformation theology today.

The Reformation and the Nine Marks

What Role Did Expositional Preaching Play in the Reformation?

By Michael Reeves | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Almost certainly, the most striking practical change at the time of the Reformation was the rise of expository preaching in local churches.

A Brief Look at John Calvin on Imputation

By Thomas R. Schreiner | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Calvin summarizes well the Protestant doctrine of imputation, a doctrine which has continued to be a great comfort and strength for believers and for those who are heirs of the Reformation.

How the Reformers Rediscovered the Holy Spirit and True Conversion

By Sinclair Ferguson | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

The Reformation featured a rediscovery of the Holy Spirit.

The Reformation’s Legacy of Personal Evangelism

By Paige Patterson | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Having rediscovered the doctrinal foundations essential to evangelicalism, the Reformers provided the legacy and sometimes the example for intense evangelism.

Did the Reformation Recover the Great Commission?

By Michael A. G. Haykin | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

It’s well known that the Reformation entailed a recovery of core doctrines regarding salvation and worship. Did it also involve a recovery of the Great Commission?

Two Views on Church Discipline: Protestant vs. Roman Catholic

By Jeremy Kimble | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

How does a Protestant understanding of church discipline differ from Roman Catholicism’s?

Two Views on Church Authority: Protestant vs. Roman Catholic

By Gregg R. Allison | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Think of a three-legged stool. Now imaginatively label one of those legs “Scripture,” label the second leg “Tradition,” and label the third leg “Magisterium.”

The Reformation’s Restoration of the Sacraments

By Bobby Jamieson | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

The Protestant Reformation of the sixteenth century restored the gospel to the sacraments and the sacraments to the congregation.

Martin Luther: Reformer of Pastoral Counseling

By Bob Kellemen | 9Marks Journal: The Reformation and Your Church | 09.26.2017

Luther the pastor and shepherd inspired Luther the reformer.

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