[Please find this year's program at the end of this article ]
As the 11th anniversary of SOLA 5, an Association of God-centered Evangelical Churches in Southern Africa, is celebrated in terms of an annual conference, hosted this year in Cape Town from the 3rd to the 6th of September 2015, by the Goodwood Baptist Church we desire to once again affirm the relevance of this association for these present times.
Below is the introductory statement taken from our handbook :
Sola 5 is focussed upon bringing together biblically-minded, God-centred churches and believers to encourage one another to meet this need throughout the whole southern African region. True churches and believers who have been disillusioned and disheartened by the definite weakening of the church need not feel isolated and frustrated. As he had in Elijah’s day, we are persuaded that God still has his people today who are willing to speak up and confront our man-centred culture. Like-minded local churches can be linked together in productive and supportive association without the development of cumbersome ecclesiastical structures and without the cultivation of personalities that engage in destructive power-plays and pragmatic politics. It is clear that local churches and individual Christians are searching for identity, and direction and an escape from man-centred administrative structures and mindless tradition. Practically, isolated local congregations and individual believers are yearning for answers to questions such as:
• What is the local church really here for?
• How ought we as a church family to relate to other church families?
• If we are not meant to lead an isolated and independent existence as local churches, on what basis can we co-operate and associate with other groups of believers?
• Where can I find a genuine New Testament church?
Sola 5 is an association of like-minded congregations that straddles country borders to embrace churches in the whole southern African region, including Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, Lesotho, Swaziland and South Africa. It enables committed local churches to benefit from (inter alia):
• an unambiguous shared identity
• theological education
• mutual support in church planting ventures
• co-ordination of missionary activities
• a usable internet website
• economies of scale in the publishing of sound literature.
The beliefs, values and principles of association within Sola 5 are set out in our Confession of Faith, Core Values, and Constitution.
Sola 5 is a baptistic association, but it is our hope that the Lord will enable us to cooperate with like-minded, non-baptistic church associations as we strive to be channels of God’s grace to our society.
Finally, a word about our name: Sola 5.
The passing of time erodes and changes the meaning of words. One word that has lost its meaning in the postmodern world is the word “evangelical.” In the spirit of the Cambridge Declaration of 1996, we want to affirm our commitment to historic confessional Christianity by reasserting the vital notions of the authority of Scripture, of Christ-centred faith, of gospel grace, of justifying faith, and of God-centred life. The fivefold Reformation creed of
· Sola Scriptura (Scripture alone),
· Solus Christus (Christ alone),
· Sola Gratia (by grace alone),
· Sola Fide (by faith alone) and
· Soli Deo Gloria (glory to God alone)
…summarizes the urgent need of the hour; these convictions must drive the church again as they once did. All five of these convictions are necessary in order to be faithful to what God has revealed.
Hence our name, Sola 5.
This Year's Conference Speakers
This Year's Program