Recently I achieved a long held aim to visit the Reformation memorial in Geneva. This memorial celebrates the key men of the Reformation in Geneva and beyond. On reflection, I asked myself why I was so keen to see it.
The answer lies in the messages I heard as I grew up. The message that the Word of God – Scripture, is God’s word to us and the basis for our knowledge of Him as well His will for our lives, was drummed into me from an early age. In time, this truth was one that I grew to believe for myself.
It was John Calvin, also known as the “Reformer of the Holy Spirit”, who struggled to return people to that message at the time of the Reformation. Church tradition, our own mystical and rebellious beliefs, then as now, must be confronted by and conformed to the Word of God.
Calvin was unrelenting in his views. One of the great cries of the Reformation was Sola
Scriptura - Scripture alone. In our post modern age where everybody’s opinion, no matter how bizarre, “has value” Calvin’s words may well be the antidote.
Calvin, like us, wasn’t perfect. He made mistakes. But his legacy to us is that we need to know God’s Word and apply it to our lives with passion and vigour – and without excuse.
At a time when the fabric of society is unravelling, when relationships are fleeting and absolutes are being diluted, in effect when our solutions haven’t worked, a return to “Sola Scriptura” may just be the way to go!