From what I understand, sola scriptura was necessary for a time and culture in church history in which church tradition and human authority, such as the papacy, were equal authorities along with the Bible. The reformers sought to do away with those other mediators, although they only ended up enforcing church tradition and replacing the pope or bishop with the pastor.
Even Martin Luther exalted the teaching pastor as “one who speaks as God” so that he did not truly promote sola scriptura, but basically succeeded in wrapping the entire church institution in a new package – separate but the same.
Most people who believe in sola scriptura today also believe in the authority of church tradition and church pastors. To remove one of these from their pedestal is essentially to remove all of them. By saying that the Bible is our ultimate authority, we are actually saying that the specific interpretation taught by a specific church denomination is also our authority. If the Bible is our authority, then which translation and interpretation are we implying? Churches cannot even agree upon what should be included in the canon of scripture. And translations rely heavily upon interpretation just to publish a Bible. Read the rest of this entry »