The Mediocrity of the New Covenant?

The Mediocrity of the New Covenant?

According to Reformed Theology, even the “good works” which Christians are called to do are “tainted by sin”. And on top of that, Reformed theology says these “good works” are only pleasing to God in so far as they are “covered by the blood and righteousness of Christ”. But if you stop and think about what this is saying, no Christian should be comfortable with such teaching. Why would God give us a new heart and give us the...

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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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All Law is Not Created Equal

All Law is Not Created Equal

There is no small amount of confusion in Catholic/Protestant discussions over the issue of God’s law. Protestants constantly accuse Catholics of teaching some sort of salvation by law or works, and regardless of how often or how strongly Catholics insist that they believe no such thing, the charges continue. Part of the problem, it seems to me, is that many Protestants — especially Lutherans or those Reformed who lean that way...

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On Gentile Justification and Jewish Jealousy

On Gentile Justification and Jewish Jealousy

Former Catholic Timothy Kauffman has written a couple posts about me at his new blog, Out of His Mouth  (a blog whose purpose is to “wield the sword of truth in defense of the faith, and refute the errors in which [the author] was once enslaved.” His latest article takes me to task over my “succumbing to Roman arguments about the meaning of Romans 2:13” (a charge which actually thrills me because it demonstrates that...

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Appetite for Disruption

Appetite for Disruption

One of the issues that distinguishes Catholicism from Protestantism (and which has come up in the last couple threads here) is the relationship of grace to nature. When I was Reformed, I constantly heard that the last thing in the world the gospel did was reinforce what natural man already knew to be true, but rather, the gospel comes in to disrupt, to disturb, and to turn man’s instincts on their head. You see, natural man is Pelagian and...

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The Cross: Creating a Context for Grace

The Cross: Creating a Context for Grace

Since our discussion of Pope Francis’s recent homily has led us to a discussion of the cross, I thought I’d slow things down for a while and consider the Catholic understanding of the atonement in a bit more detail. For the purposes of our consideration, I will take a page out of my Paradigms Handbook and posit a general idea about the cross and what it was intended to accomplish, and from that basic articulation we will look at the...

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