Why a Legal Fiction is not Pulp Fiction

Why a Legal Fiction is not Pulp Fiction

*** By Jonathan Prejean *** Recently, I’ve read several comments from Reformed Christians on the question of Catholics calling the Reformed doctrine of imputation a “legal fiction.” Based on my reading of those comments, some Reformed Christians see the description “legal fiction” as similar to saying that it is “made up” and not true. But that would only be relevant in the literary context, when one is...

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The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 3

The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 3

This third (and final) post of this series will extend the look at Imputed Righteousness in Paul’s Epistles  by focusing on two of the most popular Reformed prooftexts of the doctrine: Philippians 3:9 and 2 Corinthians 5:21. Before addressing these texts, a brief look at the Biblical definition of “righteousness” is helpful. According to Scripture, the term “righteousness” simply refers to doing good actions (e.g. Deut 24:13; 2 Sam...

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The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 2

The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 2

The previous post took a brief look at the Reformed understanding of Justification and why the notion of “Imputation of Christ’s Righteousness” is both logically and exegetically problematic. This post will continue to focus on the exegetical problems, this time in Paul’s Epistles, particularly the first five chapters of Romans (which many Reformed consider to be the definitive passages on the doctrine of Justification). Paul begins...

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The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 1

The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 1

How does a sinner become right with God? That’s a question Reformed Protestants love to ask, and for good reason, since it’s one of life’s most important questions. But the interesting thing is, the Reformed answer contains a serious flaw, and recognizing this can help explain where their understanding of Justification goes off course and get corrected. This blog post, which is somewhat a continuation of the last blog post, will address...

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Doing, Being, and the Function of Faith

Doing, Being, and the Function of Faith

This is going to sound very strange, but what if I told you that Catholics believe in Justification by faith alone while (Reformed) Protestants are actually the ones who believe in Justification by works? A statement that outrageous surely requires an explanation, so that’s what I want to provide. This post won’t be so much about exegesis as it is about simply helping people to understand where each side is coming from. In the Protestant...

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Invisible Church Discipline

Invisible Church Discipline

To wrap up the “mini-series” that began with the Reformed view of Infant Baptism and the New Covenant, followed by a look at the Reformed distinction of the Invisible vs Visible Church, I’d like to conclude by taking a brief look at the place of “church discipline” within Reformed ecclesiology. To keep things brief, I will focus specifically on the notion of “excommunication” and whether or not it makes...

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