Does Phillipians 4:3 prove Sola Fide?


Phil. 4:3-
"And I entreat thee also, my sincere companion, help those women who have laboured with me in the gospel, with Clement and the rest of my fellow labourers, whose names are in the book of life. "

If their names are already in the Book of Life, aren’t they saved before death, by Faith Alone(they could’ve done dastardly deeds after, one could say), or by their previous works, both condemned by the Church?


Names can be removed from the Book of Life. God says in Exodus 32:31-33 that names are in the book but God can remove them under his righteous judgment. Revelation 3:5 Jesus Christ can remove names out of the book of life.

God did not make a mistake, or waste space when He writes the names in the book. God in His mercy and grace will not give up on us unless we first give up on Him.


You (and the post previous to this) might be reading to literallyHere’s a good explanation from A Translator 's Handbook on Paul’s Letter to the Philippians.

…In some languages a more satisfactory wording would be “book of those who possess real life,” “book with the names of those who really have life” or “… have true life.” The use of a phrase such as “to have true life” would help to suggest the quality of life which is characteristic of those having so-called “eternal life.” This particular quality of life is expressed in some languages as “have life from God,” “who have been made alive by God,” or “who have come to have a new life through Christ.”


Reading through Revelation 3, I agree. Unless if one is victorious in Christ as soon as he believes.


I personally believe (and I very much agree with what Neofight says), that names are written in the book when one becomes part of the family of God, when we are transferred into the Kingdom of His Son, when through the washing of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit (baptism confirmation), becoming heirs having the hope (which is a word not just meaning possibility but certainty) of eternal life. So one is victorious through Christ.

But when I read through the letters to the seven churches, Jesus Christ makes much emphasis on persevering, which provides a certain amount of a conditional rather than absolute.


No. Scripture says that one can lose salvation, some names will not be erased from the book of life.

Revelation 3:
5 The victor will thus be dressed in white, and I will never erase his name from the book of life but will acknowledge his name in the presence of my Father and of his angels.

Matthew 10:
22 You will be hated by all because of my name, but whoever endures to the end will be saved.

Luke 12:9
9 But whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God.


If that were the case, Jesus would not talk about the necessity of perseverance, which he does throughout the Gospels and Revelation.

Here’s just one example from the same chapter of Revelation, chapter 3:

“I am coming soon; hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown.” (Rev 3:11)

Our “crowns” that we receive as believers in Christ can be lost. We have to hold on to the Faith throughout our lives.


3:11 doesn’t disprove sola Fide though. I bet at least some Protestants believe if you leave Christianity you are doomed, right?


James 2:19


I personally don’t like the phrase “sola fide” because it translates to “by faith alone”. The word alone really only applies to man, at the exclusion of God’s actions. I prefer the term “by being faithful”, its a state of active rather than a state of passive, and does not exclude God from the process.


Got to make sure to read it all in context. Just one chapter earlier, Jesus said:

“He who conquers and who keeps my works until the end, I will give him power over the nations,” (Revelation 2:26)

It’s important to realize that the churches Jesus is addressing were not in apostasy. They had not flat out denied or left the faith. What they had done was become lukewarm:

“I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were cold or hot! 16*So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.” (Revelation 3:16)

So when Jesus talks about perseverance, he’s not JUST talking about not leaving Christianity. He’s talking about living the faith out. Not letting ourselves get comfortable and think that just because we professed faith in Christ, we are assured salvation.



…first of all I commend you for seeking out Sacred Scriptures–the book of Wisdom has a wonderful take on what you are doing!

You are correct, non-Catholic Christians sometimes hold on to their respective group’s interpretation of what they believe (think) Scripture is stating… yet, as it has been noted on the previous posts: there is no assurance of Salvation (outside of Christ Jesus) nor is there Salvation by Faith alone.

Personally, I find that St. John 15:1-10 is the clearest deliberation, by Christ Himself, that Salvation is not dependent upon Faith alone nor is it received once and for all; specifically:

3 You are clean already, by means of the word that I have spoken to you.
4 Remain in me, as I in you. As a branch cannot bear fruit all by itself, unless it remains part of the vine, neither can you unless you remain in me. (John 15:3-4)

Jesus states that His Disciples (the Twelve) have been separated from the world (Saved) through His Word (Teachings); yet, He insists that they must remain in Fellowship (Faith and Works) with Him for outside of Him there is no Salvation!

Maran atha!



DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit