Acts 2:21 and Sola Fide


#1

I was reading the Bible for a Rosary meditation, and came across this verse. Doesn’t this and others like it prove sola fide? For those wondering if I was trying to read Protestant apologetics, no I wasn’t.


#2

No, I don’t think it proves sola fide.

First of all, the allusion is to the end of time: at that point, all who call on the Lord (for mercy, perhaps?) will be saved.

What the verse doesn’t speak to are other questions:
[list]*]Do all those who call on the name of the Lord before the end of time likewise get saved? The verse doesn’t address other times and places and situations.
*]Are there others who are saved, besides those who ‘call on the name of the Lord’? The verse simply doesn’t address this[/list]

If sola fide were true, then it wouldn’t be necessary to qualify the statement as referring to the end of time. :wink:


#3

Answering the question is helped tremendously if the verse is quoted.

And it shall be that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ (Acts 2:21)

Peter is citing the prophet Joel.

And it shall come to pass that all who call upon the name of the LORD shall be delivered; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the LORD calls. (Joel 2:32)

Joel was speaking about the survivors of the invasion of Assyria that was about to happen. Peter was bringing this to the attention of the audience, that Jerusalem would be attacked and destroyed. This actually happened in 70AD. Peter is answering the question “What shall we do” put to him by the crowds who wished to be saved - it has nothing do with faith alone.

Besides, Jesus himself said,

***"Not every one who says to me, `Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. *(Matthew 7:21)

-Tim-


#4

Not to mention James 2:

[21]Was not Abraham our father justified by works, offering up Isaac his son upon the altar? [22] Seest thou, that faith did co-operate with his works; and by works faith was made perfect? [23] And the scripture was fulfilled, saying: Abraham believed God, and it was reputed to him to justice, and he was called the friend of God. [24] Do you see that by works a man is justified; and not by faith only? [25] And in like manner also Rahab the harlot, was not she justified by works, receiving the messengers, and sending them out another way?

[26] For even as the body without the spirit is dead; so also faith without works is dead.

There are individual short statements that can be interpreted all kinds of ways, but they are by nature not very in depth. Then there are passages that are more in depth and explain things that might not be mentioned every time someone wants to emphasize (say) the importance of faith.

Basically, the bible has to be read as a whole.


#5

Let’s take a look at what Peter said on Pentecost: Acts 2: 21 And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
But that’s only one thing Peter said in his homily, look how he concludes his homily:
Acts 2: 37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
So Peter himself clarifies what “Calling upon the Lord” means: baptism for the forgiveness sins! :dancing:

Is that the “faith alone” that many Evangelicals would tolerate? :nope:


#6

I’m not certain that this was Peter’s intent; he’s talking about the ‘last days’. (Certainly, we can say that we’ve been in the ‘final age’ since Pentecost, but this seems to be a reference to the apocalypse, not the razing of Jerusalem.)

After all, looking in context to the immediately preceding verse, we see:

“The sun shall be turned to darkness,
and the moon to blood,
before the coming of the great and splendid day of the Lord,” (Acts 2:20)


#7

Also, compare to Matthew 25 - sheep and goats. This is a fairly striking contrast to sola fide.

This is why one needs to contextually account for the whole bible, instead of holding certain sections higher than others.


#8

Sola Fide folks go to extraordinary lengths to find ways to explain that these passages have nothing to do with salvation.

I think the separation of “salvation” or what Catholics would call initial justification, from sanctification has done a great disservice to Christendom.


#9

That describes the destruction of Jerusalem.

The Olivette Discourse in Matthew 24, the six seals in Revelation 6, Joel 2, parts of Daniel and Zechariah - all have eschatological meaning but the literally meaning is the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.

70AD was the turning point, when God removed the old covenant forms of worship and the “Chair of Moses” with the destruction of the Temple and allowed the new covenant worship and the “Chair of Peter” to flourish.

-Tim-


#10

Wait – you’re suggesting that the sun turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, and the ‘day of the Lord’ came when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem? :nope:

The Olivette Discourse in Matthew 24, the six seals in Revelation 6, Joel 2, parts of Daniel and Zechariah - all have eschatological meaning but the literally meaning is the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.

We can discuss the validity of those points another time. However, even if this were true, it does not demonstrate that Acts 2:21 is talking about 70A.D.! :wink:

70AD was the turning point, when God removed the old covenant forms of worship and the “Chair of Moses” with the destruction of the Temple and allowed the new covenant worship and the “Chair of Peter” to flourish.

70AD was not necessary – nor did it accomplish – new covenant worship or the authority of Peter.


#11

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