An example of 'faith alone' in action

Straight from the blog of george sodini, the man who shot and killed 3 women, wounding dozens of others, before turning the gun fatally on himself, yesterday in southwest pennsylvania.
“Maybe soon, I will see God and Jesus. At least that is what I was told. Eternal life does NOT depend on works. If it did, we will all be in hell. Christ paid for EVERY sin, so how can I or you be judged BY GOD for a sin when the penalty was ALREADY paid. People judge but that does not matter. I was reading the Bible and The Integrity of God beginning yesterday, because soon I will see them.”

I am leary of something when it can be twisted like this man has done. People like this are part of the reason why I am very wary of the " faith alone" crowd and their belief.

I felt the same way when I saw what he had said. This is taking that belief to the extreme but it points out the dangers that “faith alone” teaching has.

Come on now. Taking this killer’s words and attempting to compare them to the ideology of Faith in Christ alone for one’s salvation is like saying that the ideas of Fred Phelps and the Westboro Baptist Church is the epitome of Baptist Theology.

If you disagree with Sola Fide then so be it. But you don’t really need this for your arguments to hold water do you?

There are people who misinterpret, twist, misunderstand all kind of doctrine from all different traditions, sometimes innocently, and other times with horrific results. Reading what he said, it is clear he had no clue what he was talking about - other than looking for excuses to do what he eventually did. He finishes by saying “soon I will see them”. Them as in “God and Jesus”.
Clearly, it is non-trinitarians, or duo-diests, or some such, you need to be wary of, if you choose to use this guy at all for determining who to be wary of. Frankly, I wouldn’t judge anyone else by what this guy said or professed to believe.

Jon

Well, he didn’t mention faith alone in his statement. He said that he believed he can’t be judged for his sins, which would be the doctrine of eternal security.

Obviously there was a component of mental illness to this guy’s rationale that colored his view of faith alone. His situation is a really extreme version of the faulty thinking behind faith alone and its consequences. When you removed the consequences of our sins, severity of our sin is belittled and there is no scale for the weight of our destruction. Now I know that most followers of faith alone are not murderers, nor do they have the desire to murder so I don’t want to turn this into a *sola fide leads to murder *thread. I think that sola fide can be particularly dangerous when you mix it with a narcissistic personality type. They already think they can do no wrong, and when they have a belief system based on the idea that they cannot fall out of God’s saving grace it can get very dangerous. The truth is, our sin has weight. Jesus still wears his wounds for us like when he appeared to the apostles after the resurrection.
I guess I would liken the killer’s interperation of faith alone to a Catholic who thinks they can sin Monday thru Friday but if they go to confession on Saturday its all good. While that is technically true, it becomes an abuse to do this with the intention of sinning and then calling on God’s forgiveness in a calcuated way.

Indeed and exactly! And as Luther said,
“There is no justification without sanctification, no forgiveness without renewal of life, no real faith from which the fruits of new obedience do not grow.”

Jon

Faith alone does not mean that you can commit all kinds of sins, that is not what faith alone means.

That’s true. It is a separate step to go to “assurance of salvation” from the position of “sola fide.” Not all who espouse sola fide espouse assurance of salvation, though those who espouse the latter invariably espouse the former.

Also, it seems a bit of a stretch to conclude that someone did something horrible like this because he figured he was going to heaven anyway. The thought of the loss of heaven may have possibly acted as a deterrent, but we are hard put to conclude that the sole, or even principle, motivator of the action was the absence of this deterrent through an assurance of salvation.

Blessings,

Gerry

So why exactly did you think we would be interested in what he wrote on his blog?

Did you mean sola scriptura instead of sola fide? Not that I would agree.

I do believe, however, that the current “Jesus and me against the world” craze could lead one into this man’s type of thinking with a little less difficulty.

God help us all.

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