On Gentile Justification and Jewish Jealousy

Posted by on March 2, 2014 in Covenant Theology, Exegesis, Featured, Galatians, Gospel, Holy Spirit, James, John, Justification, Law, Love, N.T. Wright, Protestantism, Reformed Theology, Romans, Sola Fide | 1,010 comments

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 both St. Augustine and N.T. Wright are in fact Romanists). According to Kauffman, “The sheep of Christ must not be led astray by Stellman’s inability to see what the passage states so plainly.”

OK, let’s do this, shall we? After highlighting both Paul’s and Jesus’ use of jealousy as a means to rebuke their fellow Israelites, Kauffman writes:

But notice what Jesus says about the Samaritan leper, the Roman Centurion, the harlots and the tax collectors. Although the Samaritan leper was glorifying God, Jesus says, “Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole” (Luke 17:19). The Roman Centurion was known for his love for God’s people, but Jesus highlights his faith (Luke 7:9). Jesus likened the harlots and tax collectors to the first son who “did the will of his father” (Matthew 21:29-31). But when He explained the Parable, He observed that John the Baptist came preaching, and “the publicans and the harlots believed him” (Matthew 21:32). Jesus said of the harlot at the Pharisee’s house, “she loved much” (Luke 7:47), but then he turned to her and said, “Thy faith hath saved thee” (Luke 7:50). On all these occasions, the objects of Jesus’ teaching lessons were performing works in accordance with the law, and in fact were excelling the Jews in their obedience, but He does not point to the Law as the cause of their healing or their salvation. He points to faith. This is the Man from Whom Paul learned his gospel, and it is Jesus who explained the Jealousy Narrative to him in the first place (Galatians 1:11-12). We should not be surprised that Paul takes the same approach in Romans.

I have no real arguments here. Kauffman then shows how Paul is using the “jealousy narrative” in Romans 2 in order to create envy in the hearts of his kinsmen and thereby bring them to salvation. He concludes:

What has Paul done? He has stirred the Jews to jealousy by doing exactly what Jesus did throughout His ministry: he is stating explicitly that believing Gentiles* are better at obeying the law than unbelieving Jews. These unbelieving Jews are “the hearers of the Law,” but the believing Gentiles  are “the doers of the Law,” just as Jesus had portrayed them in the Gospel accounts. When Paul says “For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified,” he is simply saying that it is the believing Gentiles who will be justified, not the unbelieving Jews. This is simply the parable of the Tax Collector and the Pharisee writ large. It is the tax collector, not the pharisee, who “went down to his house justified” (Luke 18:14). All that remains after Romans 2 is to identify the instrumental means of their justification—faith or works?

 

We note, significantly, that Paul did not say “the doers of the law will be justified by doing the law.” In fact he denies that explicitly in the next chapter: “by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified … Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law” (Romans 3:20-28). Taken together, the message of Romans 2 and 3 is that the doers of the law will be justified by faith, apart from the works of the law. This is justification by faith alone, but speaks powerfully to the transformative effects of regeneration: He “gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Titus 2:14).

A couple things to note here. First, Kauffman tries to create a distance between law-keeping and justification that the text does not warrant (although Reformed theology certainly requires it). In vv. 6ff, Paul writes:

For he will repay according to each one’s deeds: to those who by patiently doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; while for those who are self-seeking and who obey not the truth but wickedness, there will be wrath and fury. There will be anguish and distress for everyone who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek.

It sure sounds like Paul sees a causal connection between one’s do-gooding and his final salvation, as well as between another’s do-badding and his final condemnation. This should not surprise us, since Jesus himself made it very clear that on the last Day, “those who have done good” will come forth to “the resurrection of life,” while “the resurrection of condemnation” awaits “those who have done evil ” (John 5:29). This is also consistent with James’ clear teaching that “a person is justified by works, and not by faith alone” (2:24).

The real question, of course, is how, given the sin problem, can it be said that anyone can offer to God good works sufficient to contribute to his final salvation? The answer (on which Paul will expand in ch. 8) is obvious, and is plainly stated in the passage we’re considering: It is by the New Covenant gift of the Spirit that we can exhibit the love of God and neighbor that fulfills the law and pleases the Father. Paul writes:

[Gentiles] show that what the law requires is written on their hearts. . . . For a person is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is true circumcision something external and physical. Rather, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly, and real circumcision is a matter of the heart—it is spiritual and not literal. Such a person receives praise not from others but from God (vv.15, 28-29).

This is perfectly in keeping with Romans 8:1-4:

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do: by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and to deal with sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, so that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

And Galatians 5:4-6, 6:8

You who want to be justified by the law have cut yourselves off from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit, by faith, we eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything; the only thing that counts is faith working through love. . . . If you sow to the Spirit, you will reap eternal life.

It simply could not be more Pauline to say that (1) love fulfills the law, (2) love is the fruit of the Spirit, and (3) sowing to the Spirit by loving God and neighbor results in the reaping of everlasting life (and last I checked, there’s not really a more causal relationship out there than that of sowing and reaping). What Romans 2:13 shows, therefore, is that the way the Jews are confounded and moved to jealousy is by watching Spirit-indwelt Gentiles be justified by exhibiting “the obedience of faith” under the New Covenant, which is why Paul ends the letter thusly:

Now to God who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages but is now disclosed, and through the prophetic writings is made known to all the Gentiles, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith — to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever! Amen.

Is justification by faith? Yes. Is it by faith apart from the works of the law? Indeed. But is justification by faith apart from Spirit-wrought works of sacrifice and love? Nope. At least not according to Paul. . . .

 

 

1,010 Comments

  1. p.s. For Jim. All non-predestinarians and predestinarians (whether modern TULIP Calvinists or those of the historic predestination persuasion) have to agree that only God knows with absolute inerrant certainty that someone is elect Good Ground and not just nonelect who looks a lot like the elect (to himself/herself and others). However, this does not make it impossible to have a firm/full assurance (i.e. that we are the elect Good Ground who will be with Christ when we die) as commanded in Scripture and exemplified for us by Paul and many others. While I’m not Presbyterian in my beliefs–I think the Westminster Confession (Chp 18. which can be read here http://www.reformed.org/documents/wcf_with_proofs/) is probably one of the best descriptions I’ve come across of the full or “absolute/infallible assurance” that God’s Word clearly calls each and every believer to. Have a great weekend guys and gals.

  2. Robert, Bingo

  3. This post will reach 10,000 comments soon and touch on every issue that divides protestants and Catholics if Jason doesn’t step in and write another darn post! Lol

  4. Kenneth, Ya!

  5. Kevin said, “. You have to go to the chapters and verses on justification. Justification is a declaration, not an action. ”

    We should really take a look at this statement. I unintentionally offended a man over on Kauffman’s site by charging Protestants of exactly what you are admitting to here.

    Luther had a Canon within a Canon. For him, anything that didn’t jive with “MY GOSPEL” had to relegated to a lower status or thrown out all together. Of course, Luther’s gospel was all about a half dozen or so passages from Romans and Galatians ( He called Galatians his “Kate” after his wife ).
    Okay, my point is one of authority, isn’t it? Who is to say which chapter and verses take priority? I assert Jn 19, “Woman…son… mother” are all about justification and the fact that it is familial rather than forensic. I further assert, Matthew 16 ” On the Rock…” is all about how membership in that Church is all about getting to heaven. And I can make more assertions.
    To me, it sure seems all of scripture, including Christ’s very clear, ” This is My Body…Unless you eat… Believe and be Baptized…”etc. etc. are all filtered through a few very disputable ( even among Protestants–Abraham’s faith is a Calvinist/Arminian sticking point for instance ) ) passages in Paul.
    I say, Dr. Jim, that Mt. 16 is as important as Rm 4. Unless I can be shown otherwise from scripture, HERE I STAND, I CAN DO NO MORE!

    You can’t show me because Luther’s slogan was that every German plough boy with a Bible could be his own pope. All opinions are equally inspired the Holy Ghost. Time to turn out the light and go home.

  6. Robert,
    You wrote, “The whole sacrificial system assumes that death is deserved by the sinner for his transgression. Jesus had no sin, so he can only die if sin is somehow reckoned to him. This is just so basic and appears in nearly every book of the Bible.
    I’m still waiting for a RC around here to give a coherent explanation as to why Jesus died if it wasn’t to bear our punishment.”

    Whoa! The whole sacrificial system was not about a substitute taking a sinner’s punishment. Every book of the Bible says no such thing.

    Sacrifice could be offered for petition, thanksgiving and praise, not just for sin. There were lots of unbloody sacrifices such as the Shew Bread or incense or the 8 days of unleavened bread after the Passover Lamb was slain.
    Speaking of the Passover Lamb, it was at no time slapped, whipped or abused in any way. Rather, it was taken into the home as a pet or family member for 4 days before its slaying. No Penal Substitution here folks.

    The Laying On of Hands was more to identify with the animals purity rather than a transferal of guilt.
    Even in the case of the Scape-Goat, we don’t see either goat being killed as a substitute for sins.
    As for the victim dying, that was in order to extract all of its blood which was then splashed upon the people and the altar to show the family ties between God and His children.

    This is huge, This is where the Deformers really got it wrong. This explains why they rejected the Mass as another execution of a criminal rather than a sacrifice.

    Penal Substitution is an error that lead to its very unscriptural corollary, Limited Atonement, as a logical conclusion. We gotta talk more about sacrifice.

  7. Robert, I forgot to answer your charge that no RC can explain Calvary if Penal Substitution is wrong. ( or something like that ).

    Four words; Merit, Satisfaction, Sacrifice, Ransom.

    None of which mean Penal Substitution. We are talking about the Gospel, Robert. Not the Greek legend of Damon and Pythias.

    I will wait some hours in order for you guys in America to wake up and comment before going on with this teaching moment.

  8. Jim, Sacrifice could be offered for petition, thanks giving, prayer, ” Isaiah 53 ‘ But He was wounded for our transgressions and crushed for our iniquities.” He was numbered amongst the transgressors. Cmon Jim get with the program. He was our substitute.

  9. To everyone I wanted to share a quote by John Calvin ” In other words, when we discard the ridiculously high opinion of our own virtue, we can see how totally dependent we are on God’s help. When we see how poverty stricken we are , we take refuge in his mercy, rely on it and find complete protection. We renounce all goodness or merit of our own and hold to God’s mercy alone, offered in Christ to all who long and look for it with his faith. In the maxims of the Law, God is seen as the rewarder of perfect righteousness and the avenger of sin. But in Christ, his face shines out, full of grace and gentleness to poor, unworthy sinners.”

  10. Kevin, Yes, He did what we couldn’t do. But He did it as our head, not so much in our stead. His sufferings do not say that we don’t have to suffer. Rather, His sufferings, as our representative, give our sufferings meaning.

    As for the Isaiah 53 passage, please check out our friend Nick’s Catholic Blog. http://catholicnick.blogspot.pt/2014/03/isaiah-53-does-it-really-say-god.html#more . Just this week he posted a piece showing that the popular Protestant translation taken from a 4th century Hebrew version is not as good as the older Greek one.

  11. Kevin, While I’ve got your attention, I shall continue with this morning’s posting in answer to just how, according to the Catholic view, Christ saved us as opposed to the Calvinist Penal Substitution error.

    I mentioned four aspects of the one Saving event. The first one was Merit.
    Christ is God, a Divine Person. But it was as man with the fullness of grace in His human soul that He merited for us.

    What exactly did He merit? Well, He merited what Adam lost for us; Grace.
    Protestants like to focus on the fact that Christ was thinking of each member of the elect while hanging on the cross. They are correct to do so. However, we must remember that Christ was the New Adam who came to restore the grace lost to all who share Adam’s nature.
    Adam ( and Eve ) disobeyed. Restoration could only come through a New Adam ( and a New Eve ) ‘s obedience.

    I will explain Satisfaction, Sacrifice and Ransom another time. Chew on this for a while first.

  12. Silly Kevin, Do you seriously think anyone on a Catholic site gives a ding-dong what Calvin said? Ha!

  13. Jim, I just read that article. Pure imagination. He tries to make the argument from the Septuagint that crush means purify. Need I say anymore. Christ died on the cross a brutal death, and God purified Him for our transgressions Come up with something better. How does Christ get numbered amongst the transgressors? Get it God counted Him with the sinners! Next you’ll tell me He was numbered amongst the purified. Please. Why for you Catholics that it can’t be about Him, it has to be about you. Why do you try to reduce what he did. He propitiated all sin forever. Hebrews 10:14 says this one tome sacrifice PERFECTED us and there are no more sacrifices for sin. Please let Him off the cross and give Him his credit do. He’s God. He’s not still trying to figure it out. He dosent do installment plans. He saves immediately and eternally.

  14. Jim, ” The Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. Thats substitution bee, get with the program.

  15. Kevin, Nick is not the only person on the net to say this. Some of the other folks are Protestants, too.

    Anyway, I want to focus on the next aspect of the Atonement; Satisfaction.

    The classic explanation from St. Anselm is;

    Offense is measured by the dignity of the person offended. Satisfaction is measured by the dignity of the person who makes the satisfaction.

    IOW, If I were to go to England and throw an apple at the queen, Obama would have to get on the phone and make an apology. Lowly me could not make sufficient reparation. America would have been disgraced by my actions and only one head of state can make things right for the offense given to another head of state.

    Now since Christ is of infinite dignity, a single tear or one drop His blood shed at His circumcision would have been sufficient to save a million worlds.

    Satisfaction is not punishment but is in lieu of punishment. Suffering willingly embraced diverts punishment.
    Christ’s offering was immeasurably more valuable than the sin of Adam and all mankind was offensive.

    Penal Substitution says there is an equivalence between the offense given by sin and the satisfaction made by Christ.

    No Way! Even if PS was true, how could Christ’s dying and going to hell for only three days pay the debt that requires eternal hell fire?

    To be continued…

  16. Jim,

    You can’t show me because Luther’s slogan was that every German plough boy with a Bible could be his own pope. All opinions are equally inspired the Holy Ghost. Time to turn out the light and go home.

    This is why I’m still Catholic. I am convinced Jesus founded the Catholic Church so I must follow her teaching because I believe she is guided by the Holy Spirit. At the end of the day as a Protestant I would have to submit to my own authority.

    We saw a perfect example here earlier. W A Scott thinks you can lose your salvation, Kevin disagrees but all is good because its been decided by somebody that its a non essential. Who decided that? Move along nothing to see here. If God says you can or can’t lose your salvation I’d say its essential. Anyone here as a Protestant can just tell me based on their authoritative interpretation that I’m wrong. All I can do is point to the Church which is just another opinion to protestants.

    The difference is I’m taking a leap of faith on the church that Jesus founded and im all in. Protestants all are in on their own ability to interpret scripture guided by the Holy Spirit. We know though, not everyone is guided by the Holy Spirit because they come up with different answers which gets brushed aside as a non essential. The Holy Spirit leads us to all truth not just the essential truth it doesn’t leads us to non essential lies.

    How did the Protestant way of getting to the truth work when 95% of the population couldn’t read and the ones that could had a corrupt bible?

    Again, I just don’t see how you can have assurance of truth without authority. Even if WA Scott was guided by the Holy Spirit when discerning the truth on whether one can lose his salvation. How would I have then assurance that he has this guidance. Kevin certainly doesn’t think he does. And so the beat goes on….

    Btw I typed this on my tiny iPhone. Excuse typos and bad grammar.

  17. CK,
    “How did the Protestant way of getting to the truth work when 95% of the population couldn’t read and the ones that could had a corrupt bible?”

    Exactly! And throw in the fact that very, very, few people even had Bibles of their own to read before Gutenberg invented the printing press around 1450. ( The first thing he ran off just so happened to be a Catholic Bible ).

  18. Kevin, I will digress and offer a critic of the theory Penal Substitution you advocate.

    #1 Calvin said Christ went to hell and was punished by the devil for 3 days. Pure blasphemy.

    #2 The theory says that since Christ was punished in the stead of particular individuals, the judge ( God ) cannot demand double jeopardy and punish the sinner/criminal again.
    A. The Bible is clear that Christ suffered for every single human being that has ever or will ever live. Yet all men are not saved and are punished in hell.
    B. Even the elect continue to suffer the ravages of Adam’s sin; they get sick, they die, women have travail in child bearing, work is burdensome.

    #3 It makes for some major problems with the doctrine of the Trinity. The idea of God pouring out His wrath on or hating the Son is !?!?!?!?! ( I can’t find the words to describe it ).

  19. Ck, you wrote to Jim:

    This is why I’m still Catholic. I am convinced Jesus founded the Catholic Church so I must follow her teaching because I believe she is guided by the Holy Spirit. At the end of the day as a Protestant I would have to submit to my own authority.

    Response:

    1) All men sinned in Adam.

    2) CK contracted original sin.

    You believe (1) is true on the authority and interpretation of the Catholic Church guided by Holy Spirit. On what authority do you believe (2) is true ?

  20. CK,
    One of the reasons I am Catholic is because of Holy Scripture, the immense wisdom, knowledge, and deposit of faith the Church has protected for 2000 years. No one person wrote it, thought it or interpreted it – I don’t have to know it all or understand it all (not possible), but it has been guarded by the Holy Spirit for 2000 years. Sinful indivual Catholics come and go, but this is so much bigger than any person or heresy can tear down.
    An interesting thought;
    If the printing press hadn’t been invented, would Luther have had the ability to omit words and books of the bible? Some say that if he would have stayed within the Catholic Church to reform in love and obedience, he might have been one of the greatest saints ever. All the great ones have been led and inspired to build up and give light to the Church.
    Reading the Doctors (plural) of the Church is magnificent because they all bring their individual intellectual Spirit-wrought gifts. No one generation has all the gifts, they are spread before us throughout history as a banquet.

  21. Robert and Kevin, Some food for thought for you; The Bible speaks of the sacrifice of Isaac ( or the sacrifice of Abraham ). Isaac never shed a drop of blood. So it is the interior disposition that constitutes a sacrifice more than anything else.

    Next, Robert, Abraham was not sacrificing Isaac for sin or as a penal substitute. Therefore, Penal Substitution is not found all through the Bible as you assert.

    Isaac was a type of Christ. This makes Abraham stand for God the Father. In this scene, Abraham seems willing to offer Isaac up. So, The Father ( in this scene ) seems to be willing to offer His Son up rather than want to pour out His wrath as PS suggests.

  22. Robert and Kevin, back to the Atonement. Although volumes have been written on this subject, I am going to summarize the last two facets, Sacrifice and Ransom, in a few sentences.

    Sacrifice is a gift, not a punishment. In the Bible, the blood was a propitiation and an expiation. It was sprinkled on the altar and holy things and on the people signifying family blood ties had been restored with God.

    Now for Ransom; The ransom price was not paid to the devil as his hold on us was not just. Still, sin makes us a slave to sin.
    The first mention of this vanquishing of the devil is in Gen3:15. God says He will, ( in the future ) establish enmity between the Woman and her Seed and the Serpent and its Seed. This Woman and her Seed share the same one enmity with the Serpent. The word used int he Bible is the word for a complete and total enmity/victory over the Serpent. If this Woman is ever under the Serpents power, the enmity is not complete.
    Eve, not Adam according to St. Paul, was deceived. She became an accomplice of the Devil in tricking Adam. The New Adam came to overthrow the Devil. However, without a New Eve participating in humbling the Devil, the victory is lacking something.
    Guess where I’m going with this.
    To be continued…

  23. Jim, you said” Penal substitution says there is an equivalence between the offense given by sin and the satisfaction made by Christ.” Exactly. your getting it. 2 Corinthians 5:21 ” He made him who knew no sin to become sin that we might become “the Righteousness of God” in Him.”He knew no sin and was numbered among sinners, and we are sinners and numbered as the righteousness of God. It has to be imputation. God declares us righteous, not because we are but because he does not count our sins against us. Romans 5:19 ” Through one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be constituted righteous.”

  24. CK, you said ” I don’t see how you can have assurance without authority.” Our authority is Scripture, there can be none higher. We have the Spirit of power and knowledge.The church is a product of the Word and not vice versa. The only thing Rome has been infallible at is being fallible. One Pope in 1440 had Joan of arc burnt at the stake as a heretic. 20 years later the next Pope pardoned her. And some years later the next Pope made her a saint. When they had the vote to make the Pope infallible speaking from the chair, it was a split vote. Look at your own errors, which you turn your back on because its to painful to face the truth. In the long war on the truth, the most relentless and deceptive enemy has been Rome. the true church has always known this and separated itself from this institution. It is a false Christianity, a front for the kingdom of Satan.

  25. Jim, again you are like my Catholic friends who are to arrogant to look at their History. The catholic church kept the scriptures from the people. Often times having masses in a language they couldn’t understand. When Bloody Marry returned to power in 1500’s and the Roman catholic church became the state religion. They removed all the bibles form the churches. They killed 300 Protestant ministers. 800 fled to Geneva. And the killed William Tyndale, all for the crime of translating the Bible into English. All for the sake of the Pope and his religion. I wouldn’t want to look at that History either. Spurgeon said when i consider all the crimes and villainies that has taken place under a false Priesthood, i would rather a man looked at me in the street and called me the devil than to call me a Priest. For all that the devil has done he would be hard pressed to match. To this day Pedophilia and Homosexuality is rampant and Rome turns its back. Its rumored that Ratzinger retired because the problem of Homosexuality with the Priesthood is overwhelming. Pull the rose colored glasses off.

  26. This is a good example of someone just not looking or knowing the truth of History. The Reformers tried to stay and reform the Catholic church. It broke their heart to leave. But Rome would not relent and hunted these men down and killed them. Thats something you can be proud of.

  27. Kevin,

    This is what I’m talking about. If one can’t read, how can Scripture be their authority? It’s like all of the sudden one must be able to read in order to have an authority to turn to. So tell me, is Christianity only for the educated? I’d also like to know one could come to the truth, using your infallible technique, between the death of the last Apostle and before we had the all the books of the Bible identified (apparently fallibly).

    You said The only thing Rome has been infallible at is being fallible.. If that’s the case, the collection of books you call the bible may not even be inspired. You have no assurance that Scripture, your sole authority, is truly the Word of God. You have a bunch of dudes in pointy hats claiming to be guided by the Holy Spirit (much like you and every other Protestant here), using Sacred Tradition (which is apparently is no longer applicable) telling us what is inspired.

    Show me the “true church” and I will follow it.

  28. CK wants Kevin to,
    Show me the “true church” and I will follow it.

    I want CK to show Kevin the “false anti-church with Anti-Christ as head” so he will avoid it.

  29. CK, Scripture is the Authority. And faith comes through hearing the word of God Romans 5:17. Most of the masses were in Latin they couldn’t understand. The RC has had a History of keeping the word form its people. Luther and the Reformers returned the church to the Word of God being the center as opposed to ceremonies and drama. The mass had become a spectacle with the Priest with his back to the people. The people couldn’t partake of the cup. The great French Historian called it the grand opera of the poor. CK the books of the cannon were established long before the church put them in a binder for us. Calvin said wherever the Word of God is preached and the sacraments are rightly administered, there is the church. The creed does not say I believe in one holy catholic church. It says I believe one holy catholic church. I have full assurance that the Bible is the word of God. All scripture is inspired by God. The Word of God established the church, not vice versa.

  30. Eric W, thats a great point. They just have to turn around. K

  31. Jim,

    We’ve been through Penal Substitution ad nauseum on these boards, so I won’t say everything, but you did say tha atonement is these:

    Merit, Satisfaction, Sacrifice, Ransom.

    Merit—if it is fully meritorious, there is no need for purgatory. It is enough to save us.
    Satisfaction—if it satisfies God’s demands, there is no need for purgatory. It is enough to save us.

    Sacrifice—of course there were some sacrifices in the old covenant that did not demand blood, but the NT continually associates Jesus’ death primarily with a bloody sacrifice. Jesus died, he died the death we deserve. He dies in our place. This at its most basic level is penal substitution, as death is the punishment for sin. If Jesus did not have to die, God let his Son be abused for no purpose.

    Ransom—the ransom is paid to God. We are saved by God from God.

  32. Kevin,

    The papacy is the safest place in the world for anti-christ…I will prove it

    Aquinas wrote:
    As the head of Christ is God, and yet He is the Head of the Church, as was said above (1, ad 2), so likewise Anti-christ is a member of the devil and yet is head of the wicked.

    Rome condemned this:
    If the Pope is wicked and especially if he is foreknown, then as Judas, the Apostle, he is of the devil, a thief, and a son of perdition, and he is not the head of the holy militant Church, since he is not a member of it.

    RC will not identify the “false” for you. They know it is a logical possibility that the Pope(s) can be anti-christ.
    ——————————-

    You wrote:
    But Rome would not relent and hunted these men down and killed them. Thats something you can be proud of.

    You nailed it !

  33. Okay, I am really curious and am sincerly asking this question of the Protestants:

    What has happened to all those who have lived since the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ within the Catholic Church (the only Church) for the first 1500 years, before they were ‘reformed’ of the false Body of Christ, what happened to them?

  34. Eriic W,

    So rely on the anti-Christ and his cohorts to tell you what is inspired.

  35. Kevin,

    How do you know the bible you have inspired? The roman cult lead by the anti-Christ said so?

    You guys act like the bible fell from the sky.

    I’d also wish you’d spend at half as much time addressing my questions and selling your point as you do spewing half truths.

  36. Robert,

    “The problem is that in context, the law that Paul is talking about is specifically the Mosaic law, otherwise the passage makes no sense.”

    The Mosaic Law cannot be truly kept, except via the law of faith/christ. This is the whole point again why your dispensationalist charge as well as your assertion that the mosaic law and law of christ are “basically the same” are both off the mark.

    “Paul specifically says that the Jews have no advantage for having the law—which is the Mosaic law—over the Gentiles if the Jews do not follow it because those who obey the law—the Mosaic law in this context—are those who will be justified. The Jews thought they had an advantage over the Gentiles for having the Mosaic law, not for having the law of Christ. You’re simply not following the argument Paul is making.”

    I *agree* with that argument. Abraham was a “doer of the law” before the Mosaic law.

    “So the Ten Commandments are not essentially coterminous with the Law of Christ? Why in the world, then, does the CCC devote so much attention to them?”

    Again, the law of christ is a *fulfillment* of the OC law. It does not *destroy* it. I’m not sure why this is still not being grasped. The OC law was a seed and shadow, that does not mean it is “basically the same”. It’s not called the “law of faith/christ” for nothing. The distinction is in the very term.

    “Yes David had the law of Christ, but the form in which he had it was the old covenant law.”

    He did not *only* have that – he had faith formed by love. He had sanctifying grace. As did all the OT saints.

    “That is my entire point. That is what you are denying. That is dispensationalist thinking. I’m not saying the law of Christ isn’t greater. Its fuller and demands more—in a sense, but Jesus expected his hearers to understand his exposition of the Mosaic law and not to see it as a completely new thing.”

    It is not a *completely new thing*. I agree. But it is not “basically the same” either. Again, there’s the third option which I, Augustine, Aquinas, RCism affirm.

    “When I accuse you of dispensationalism it is because you are basically acting as if there is no identity at all between the old covenant law and the new covenant law (which would make no sense even from a RC point of view given the attention to the Ten Commandments)”

    I agree that would make no sense from an RC view. Which is why I don’t hold that position. The 2 Great Commandments are in the OC – both of us have pointed that out.

    “When Paul speaks of an old covenant believer and the law, he knows quite well that they had grace and the Spirit.”

    If they had grace and the Spirit, they would have faith in Christ and not think of the Gentiles as inferior.

    “If in Romans 4 Paul is saying that David is not justified by graceless law, the collective Jewish answer would have been D’uh.”

    Because they did not *understand grace*. If it is by works, it is no longer grace.

    “So, I know what you confess, but what it amounts to is pulling oneself up by one’s bootstraps with the help of God.”

    Progressive sanctification and grace. Dead horse beaten.

    “And I’ll also note that Paul talks about fulfilling the law after we have been justified, he doesn’t say fulfill the law so that you can get more justified. ”

    So you do view charity/agape as merely a necessary by-product/result of faith rather than a necessary constituent of it. So when you said “No, because the Reformed have always said that there is no such thing as saving faith if love is not present”. you meant “saving faith if love does not follow”. As I said before, we do fulfill the law when we are justified. If we have infused agape, we are fulfilling the law. We aren’t justified and not fulfilling the law, but then fulfilling it later. That would be like Kevin’s silly tank analogy.

    “Sure, but Paul specifically opposes belief and works of the law, that is belief and obedience, in the matter of justification.”

    So the fact that something is part of the law does not necessitate it being considered a “work of the law” which was the point of your original objection. And again this points to a Goddidit approach – the same as you did with progressive sanctification/synergism and grace – rather than to a consistent underlying principle that harmonizes all Scripture.

    “The indwelling Trinity perfectly fulfills the law. So you can’t really say justification is based on these things. It’s based on these things plus the cooperation you agree to give.”

    It does perfectly fulfill the law. But we grow in our participation via grace. That’s why sanctifying grace is not uncreated (contra kevin’s ridiculous caricatures of theosis). We have a finite participation in the infinite. That’s why we can grow in perfect righteousness in capacity (the full cup to still bigger full cup).

    “Can you tell me with full assurance that if you were to die right now, you will not go to hell?”

    If I’m in a state of grace, I have a moral confidence/assurance. I do not have a metaphysical certainty since I can never know the future – work out with fear and trembling, take heed lest you fall, race not a trophy ceremony. If I’m confident enough to take communion, I would naturally be confident that I am in a state of grace, which would result in salvation.

  37. Kevin or any defender of psub,

    I have a few questions on penal substitution.

    1. Would you please define “forgiveness”. I usually think of forgiveness as something that DOESNT need to be paid for. Something un-earned. In this way it seems that if we are forgiven Jesus didn’t need to pay any price and if He did pay the price we don’t really need to be forgiven. The two ideas of payment and forgiveness seem antithetical. How do you reconcile the two?

    2. What does the Bible teach the wages of sin is? Mere physical death and torture? Or an eternity cut away from God in hell? If the price for sin is usually hell then it would seem that Jesus actually didn’t pay the wage of sin…. He was merely executed and died an earthly death. Again the wage doesn’t seem to add up

    3. Did God hate the Word at calvary? Was the Son hated by the Father as the Father poured out His wrath? What Trinidadian implications does this have?

  38. ” What happened to all those who have lived since the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ within the Catholic ( you mean catholic with a small c) church ( the only church) for the first 1500 years etc.” Well lets start with the fact the catholic church is the church that all true believers belong. catholic means universal. Roman Catholic is specific. As if the church ever had a home office. The first church out of the NT was the Jewish church that James was the Bishop of. In the early church, as Ratzinger has just opined on, there was a common sharing of the Bishops in a democratic sense, no one lording over another. There was no special prestige given to the Bishop of Rome. There wasn’t even a Bishop in Rome for the first 150 years. Peter was never in Rome, let alone the head of the church there. There was no special Apostolic succession to any one Bishop. The revisions Rome has done with forged documents is comical to support the list. Popes, Antipopes, more than one Pope at one time in 2 different countries, false Popes and on and on. But don’t take my word for it, check it out for yourself. Paul said he was charged with the gospel to the Gentiles and said as Peter was to the Jews. Paul writes the letter to the Romans, greets 2o people and never mentions Peter. Now if Peter was Pope in Rome, don’t you think Paul would have greeted him. Paul wrote a series of Epistles from Rome, greets everybody, never mentions Peter. Peter called himself a fellow elder. He had a leadership position, but considered himself one of many. . James gave the ruling in Acts at the big meeting of all the elders. There is so much more. The men who went to Nicea knew very little of the medieval Roman church developed to today. Simply put Rome is a false Christianity and a front for the Kingdom of Satan. Eric w asks a very pertinent question, would you know the anti-Christ if you saw it. The great Reformers were thru the ages were convinced that anyone who studied the doctrines of the antichrist is scripture and didn’t see Rome in it were under a strong delusion. It was that clear to them. The body of Christ is made up thru History of all those who trusted in Christ alone for their salvation. There are saved people throughout the Roman church. But not ones that adhere to the doctrine of the church, being justified or saved thru a sacramental system of meriting increase and good works. This is antigospel and therefore antichrist.

  39. Kevin,

    “But not ones that adhere to the doctrine of the church”

    Unfortunately neither the eastern or western churches held to what you view as the “gospel” – even after the Pelagian/semi-Pelagian controversy which gave it a prime springboard to launch from in the west, it still didn’t come forth. Sacramentalism remained, cooperation remained, infused righteousness remained. Forget the papacy – the east aren’t down with that and yet don’t have your gospel. So you’re left in the strange position of believing the clear essential truths of the gospel were essentially lost or corrupted for over a millenium in the ordinary structures of the visible churches.

  40. James, OT saints had infused habits? Really, again where would we find this, the 1st Epistle of Plato? Let me walk you through Romans 8:2-4 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, weak as it was thru the flesh, God did, sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us” God transferred the law to Christ, and He fulfilled it( past tense) in us, not by us, the voice is passive, those who are walking by the Spirit. This is all substitutionary. Isaiah 53 etc. Colossians 2:13-14″ When you were dead in your transgressions and uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us ALL our transgressions. having CANCELLED out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us: and He has TAKEN IT OUT OF THE WAY, having nailed it to the cross.” Did you get he legal deal bro. The certificate of debt and its legal demands He took out of the way and payed for all our sins. Can you share this with your buddy Jim and Kenneth. All our sins. All legal decrees cancelled. Why? Because the Lord maid the iniquity of us all to fall on Him. He was numbered with the sinners and we were numbered with the righteous 2 Corinthians 5:21, Romans5:19, Romans 4:25 and 1 Corinthians 15 say we are no longer in our sins and we are raised with Him, he being the first fruits, in heaven . Commands function in Law covenant as the basis for blessing and curse, the swearers perfect personal perpetual obedience is the ground. In the covenant of Grace they function as reasonable service of worship that we offer in view of god’s mercies. Here is the principal that underlies scripture. Law is not Gospel and Gospel is not Law. God swore the covenant with himself. He walked thru the animals himself. He gave us the NC before there was ever and act of obedience. Rome make Jesus a kinder, gentler Moses with a softer simpler version of the Law. As if anyone could ever love God with all their heart or there neighbor fully. Rome was under delusion to think someone had actually lived and kept the Law. No one ever has. Faith has always been the complete sphere of salvation. And our works simply fruit.

  41. Kevin,

    CK the books of the cannon were established long before the church put them in a binder for us.

    What?? Again, if you have truth on your side there’s no need to make things up. It is a historical fact that before the Church’s declaration there was no agreed upon canon. You don’t even need the Holy Spirit to know this.

    Calvin said wherever the Word of God is preached and the sacraments are rightly administered

    OK. Who decided what the Word of God is? Does that include the book of Wisdom?How do you know when the sacraments are being rightly administered? Take baptism. Some Protestants say its a symbol, some say it regenerates. Both can point to Scripture to support their position. So you chalk it up as a non essential and move on.

    You can’t even admit that the Catholic Church played a pivotal part in establishing an agreed upon canon. It’s a historical fact.

  42. Kevin,

    “James, OT saints had infused habits? Really, again where would we find this, the 1st Epistle of Plato? ”

    Kevin, OT saints had extra nos imputation and remain ungodly and were plagued with mortal sin 24/7? Really, again where would we find, the 1st Epistle of Calvin?
    They had faith. And Paul and the NT writers explain what that faith was for both covenants – faith informed by charity – i.e. infused agape.

    “Let me walk you through Romans 8:2-4 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, weak as it was thru the flesh, God did, sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us” God transferred the law to Christ, and He fulfilled it( past tense) in us, not by us, the voice is passive, those who are walking by the Spirit.”

    Yes – might be fulfilled *in us* who *walk by the spirit*. Bingo.

    “This is all substitutionary.”

    And now you jump to saying He fulfilled it in our place. When it never says that. Just like Paul never says faith alone or faith devoid of/prior to charity, but rather he says faith, and in other places, faith with agape. Arguments from silence are not compelling.

    “Rome make Jesus a kinder, gentler Moses with a softer simpler version of the Law. As if anyone could ever love God with all their heart or there neighbor fully. ”

    The view that Rome holds to a softer simpler version of the Law is another one of your pet misrepresentations that has been addressed ad nauseum.
    Geneva makes Jesus a weak, impotent savior who cannot empower anyone to actually keep his law. That was easy.

    “Rome was under delusion to think someone had actually lived and kept the Law. No one ever has. ”

    So were all the NT writers who assume believers can actually fulfill and keep the law. Who believe the NC and HS actually had power to do something besides offering a band-aid for the OC.

    “Faith has always been the complete sphere of salvation. And our works simply fruit.”

    Your first sentence is true. Your second sentence is partially true. It is fruit, but also our increase.

  43. Debbie,

    One of the reasons I am Catholic is because of Holy Scripture, the immense wisdom, knowledge, and deposit of faith the Church has protected for 2000 years. No one person wrote it, thought it or interpreted it – I don’t have to know it all or understand it all (not possible), but it has been guarded by the Holy Spirit for 2000 years. Sinful indivual Catholics come and go, but this is so much bigger than any person or heresy can tear down.

    I came to the same conclusion. Well said.

  44. CK, in Jude it is clear when the scripture says “the faith delivered once and for all.” At the end of Revelations it says no one should add or subtract for the words of this book. The Roman Catholic church is very much like Mormonism when it comes to man made added revelation. I will give you an example. When the Philippians jailer asked Paul, What must I do to be saved? And Paul simply said believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be saved. Now we can imagine had he asked a Roman Cardinal today, what his answer would be. Join the Roman Catholic church, get on the installment plan, do the sacraments of the new law, good works, rites, sacramentals, start praying to Mary, wear your scapular, then at the end of your life we will look at the state of your soul. at which time you may need to go to Purgatory to be purged. Do you see how a false human institution can be built out of false added revelation. Im so glad God gave us the examples of scripture like the Philippians jailer. We can learn so much comparing the true gospel with a false religion. It becomes so clear.

  45. CK, You obviously are regurgitating what you have been taught, can I suggest before you engage me on church History, do some research. There absolutely was a working established cannon. God decided what the working cannon was. All scripture is God breathed. They were being used long before the church voted. Again thanks for putting them in the binder. Baptism means immerse and the predominant practice in the early church was adult baptism. The RC used to have pedo communion, then stopped the practice, do you believe in that ? Again the word established the church, it existed before the church.

  46. James, ” Yes might be fulfilled in us who walk by the Spirit” Nice eisegesis. Jesus fulfilled the Law in our place “in us” not ” by us”. Kills your case for you fulfilling the Law. Read verse one, no more condemnation for those in Christ. Why? Because he condemned sin in the flesh and fulfilled the Law in us. Get a clue.

  47. Kevin,

    “He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled *in* us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”

    The law is fulfilled in us who walk according to the Spirit and not the flesh. Which is what RCism says.

    You want it to say:
    “He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled *for* us”

    I’m not the one eisegeting.

  48. Kevin,

    The only person that added anything to Scripture was Luther.

    When the Philippians jailer asked Paul, What must I do to be saved? And Paul simply said believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be saved. Now we can imagine had he asked a Roman Cardinal today, what his answer would be. Join the Roman Catholic church, get on the installment plan, do the sacraments of the new law, good works, rites, sacramentals, start praying to Mary, wear your scapular, then at the end of your life we will look at the state of your soul. at which time you may need to go to Purgatory to be purged. Do you see how a false human institution can be built out of false added revelation. Im so glad God gave us the examples of scripture like the Philippians jailer. We can learn so much comparing the true gospel with a false religion.

    Kevin let me give you an example, “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”

    Now you don’t believe you have to forgive.
    Do you see how a false human interpretation can be built out of false added revelation. Im so glad God gave us the examples of scripture like the Sermon on the Mount.. We can learn so much comparing the true gospel with a false religion. It becomes so clear.

    Convinced?

    Now would you mind answering and commenting on my last post. I’ve pasted it below for you reference. Thanks

    CK March 22, 2014 at 9:23 pm
    Kevin,
    CK the books of the cannon were established long before the church put them in a binder for us.

    What?? Again, if you have truth on your side there’s no need to make things up. It is a historical fact that before the Church’s declaration there was no agreed upon canon. You don’t even need the Holy Spirit to know this.

    Calvin said wherever the Word of God is preached and the sacraments are rightly administered

    OK. Who decided what the Word of God is? Does that include the book of Wisdom?How do you know when the sacraments are being rightly administered? Take baptism. Some Protestants say its a symbol, some say it regenerates. Both can point to Scripture to support their position. So you chalk it up as a non essential and move on.

    You can’t even admit that the Catholic Church played a pivotal part in establishing an agreed upon canon. It’s a historical fact.

  49. Kevin,

    I wrote three questions to you about e that you might have missed…. Get back to me whenever you can I want to hear the answers from a reformed perspective

  50. James wrote, “Geneva makes Jesus a weak, impotent savior who cannot empower anyone to actually keep his law.”

    Beautiful! I love to see Kevin get beaten with his own stick. Ha!

  51. Kevin has brayed,
    “He knew no sin and was numbered among sinners, and we are sinners and numbered as the righteousness of God. It has to be imputation. God declares us righteous, not because we are but because he does not count our sins against us. Romans 5:19 ”

    In the Bible God explicitly condemns crooked judges who acquit the scoundrels and convict the innocent.
    Proverbs 17:15 says, “He who gives a decision for the evil-doer and he who gives a decision against the upright, are equally disgusting to the Lord.

  52. CK, you wrote:
    So rely on the anti-Christ and his cohorts to tell you what is inspired.

    Response:
    Right, even anti-christ and his cohorts must wait for Rome to inform them they are Christ’s predicted enemies. They remain in doubt about themselves.

    Request to Rome: Please identify anti-christ and his cohorts

  53. Kenneth. I will Thx

  54. James, The point is is He fulfilled the Law, we walk by faith. Pretty simple. No need for further justification or cooperation on our part to earn something that he gave us as a” free Gift” by faith. Here is how it works. We believe in Christ who gives us the “free gift of righteousness” which justified us ( Romans 5:1,8:1). When we believe we are in union with Christ and the Spirit of CHRIST dwells in us. So those who are in Christ are those who walk by faith. And those who walk by faith or “the righteous shall lvd by faith”possess justification, adoption, seal of the Spirit, raised up with him, heir, transferred out of domain of darkness into kingdom of light, reserved in heaven won’t fade away, younger brother, etc. This is a finished act what he did. And it actually saves. Rome’s gospel is a perversion of this because it puts the adoption and final justification at the end of life based partly on the life lived. That is a different gospel. I do really enjoy debating with you.

  55. CK, That isn’t a statement about justification. Its a commandment. If you don’t forgive your father won’t forgive you. Christians are to forgive. And Christians do forgive. Don’t tell me you have forgiven everyone in your life completely. Jesus said if you lust in your mind after a woman you have committed adultery. Heck there wouldn’t be any men in heaven, if it was based on our works. The Law drives us to the gospel because we can’t keep it perfectly.

  56. CK, the Sermon on the Mount is the standard for Christian life. And it sounds like your definitely a Catholic who is trying to be justified by keeping all the precepts of the Sermon on the Mount. Good luck. Galatians 3:10 ” Cursed is anyone who does not abide in all things of the law.” Remember CK, the road your going down to be justified by the law, or keeping the commandments perfectly, you must keep it all. Its one unit. James says if you stumble in just one thing in the law, your guilty of it all. Christians are people who don’t try to be justified by keeping the law, but look at the law, see how impossible it is to keep it perfectly and run to the gospel, which is always and forever by simple faith. He payed the price for all our sins. He descended into hell to suffer the torment, so that he might save us from sin and the penalty. Isaiah 53. “upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace.

  57. Jim, Romans 4:5 ” But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the UNGODLY, his faith is reckoned as righteousness. Why is He able to do this? God doesn’t declare bad people good, but legally righteous, because he bore the penalty for their law breaking. Simple!

  58. Eric W,

    Response:
    Right, even anti-christ and his cohorts must wait for Rome to inform them they are Christ’s predicted enemies. They remain in doubt about themselves.
    Request to Rome: Please identify anti-christ and his cohorts

    Thanks! I’m out of Rome. On my to the nearest Eastern Orthodox Church. Cool with that?

  59. Kevin,

    Right now my dilemma is what i posted twice in the hope that you would answer. It gets to authority which is a necessary ingredient to resolve differences when two Christians cant resolve their disagreement. You keep avoiding it. Where do Protestants go when they can’t resolve their disagreement with Scripture?

    Eric W maybe you can help out?

    Thanks

  60. Kenneth, 1. The scripture we were ransomed us with a price. The word means bought back out of slavery. He had to live a perfect life, die on a cross, descend into hell and suffer torture so that he could redeem us from sin and its penalty. 2. He lived perfectly, died on the cross, and descended into hell. God didn’t make bad people good, just legally righteous because he bore the penalty of our law breaking. 3. God poured out His wrath on his Son, crushed him for our iniquities. Numbered him with sinners.

  61. CK, Maybe Debbie can help you out? What do you think? Scripture is our final authority. When you are in your church, look all around you, you will be sitting in the house of the anti christ.

  62. Kevin,

    You are using circular logic and i think you know that. Does the Bible tell you which books are inspired? Have you ever thought about it? At

  63. Submitted too early…

    Kevin,

    Lucky for you the Koran wasn’t introduced to you first. One could use your answer to prove it’s the word of God. It is because it is..

  64. Kevin, you belched,
    “Jim, Romans 4:5 ” But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the UNGODLY,…”

    The UNGODLY are those outside the Covenant ( non-Jews ).

    ” He had to live a perfect life, die on a cross, descend into hell and suffer torture so that he could redeem us from sin and its penalty.”

    Thanks Kevin. I am glad you actually said this so everyone can see. Christ went to hell? Check it out folks! This is Penal Substitution unmasked.

  65. CK, No on the contrary Rome uses circular logic. Because if Rome is the authority on scripture, then were did Rome get its authority?

  66. Jesus went to hell? Can’t wrap my head around that.

  67. Jim, I didn’t say Christ spirit went to hell, but that God punished him with the wrath and the torments of hell. Most of all He turned his back on him and forsook him. Christ could not have gone to hell because he told the their today you will be with me in paradise.

  68. “Rome’s gospel is a perversion of this because it puts the ADOPTION and final justification at the end of life based partly on the life lived.’

    Kevin, Kevin, Kevin. After weeks of telling you the ADOPTION takes place at the BEGINNING of our life of grace, in Baptism, you still don’t get it. It is first/initial justification. Final justification comes later, after having lived our lives as adopted sons and heirs who have merited our reward and are now ready to receive our inheritance. ( not earned our wage as hirelings ). We don’t get adopted on Judgement Day. We get rewarded.
    I know this isn’t going to sink in. You problem is emotional. You do however fill a valuable role, Kevin. We get to hone our arguments on you. Thank you so much.

  69. “Christians are people who don’t try to be justified by keeping the law, but look at the law, see how impossible it is to keep it perfectly and run to the gospel…”

    When we are in a state of grace, the Law is kept within us.

  70. Jim, Do you understand the problem with your doctrine. You say your acquitted but you have to wait until the end of your life to see if your acquitted based on the life lived. Not the Gospel.

  71. “Jim, I didn’t say Christ spirit went to hell, but that God punished him with the wrath and the torments of hell. Most of all He turned his back on him and forsook him.”

    Please don’t back pedal. Calvin said Christ went to hell and the devil tortured him.
    You know it. You are just embarrassed now and are trying to distance yourself for Calvin’s and your own blasphemous blunder.

  72. Jim, no you are in a state of grace with cooperation for more.

  73. Kevin,

    CK, No on the contrary Rome uses circular logic. Because if Rome is the authority on scripture, then were did Rome get its authority?

    From Jesus. What ever you bind on earth….you know the argument.

    What I don’t know is how you would answer my previous questions. You’ve commented on several things I didn’t ask. I just have to assume you can’t answer and are taking Rome’s say so on what’s inspired but your pride does not allow you to admit it. You came to the same conclusion I did which is one of the reasons I’m catholic.

    Peace

  74. CK

    “CK March 23, 2014 at 10:04 am
    Jesus went to hell? Can’t wrap my head around that.”

    Don’t even try CK. It is crazy talk. In the Creed, when we say, “..descended into hell…” we mean as a victor who went to preach to those in prison or as the Orthodox say, ” to harrow hell”.
    This should expose Penal Substitution for the nonsense that it is.

  75. “Jim, no you are in a state of grace with cooperation for more.”

    Someone give Kevin a cigar for getting it right for once.

  76. CK, your Catholic, really?

  77. Kevin, since I seem to have you live, let me ask you about Penal Substitution.

    In the OT, if a guy went to offer a sacrifice and couldn’t afford a lamb, he could offer pigeons. If he couldn’t afford a pigeon, a sack of flour would do.

    Question; How was the sack of flour punished in the guy’s stead?

  78. KEVIN March 23, 2014 at 10:29 am
    CK, your Catholic, really?

    Another non answer. It speaks volumes.

  79. Kevin,

    “God punished him with the wrath and the torments of hell. ”

    Kevin, the torments of hell=eternal separation from God. Christ is seated with God in the heavenly places now. Not separated.

    Penal Substitution is a false doctrine, a tradition of protestant men.

  80. Kevin, On the cross, Jesus was loved by the Father, not hated.

    Do you believe in the Trinity or not?

    Gotta go.

  81. Jim, dont change scripture or lessen what Christ did. God poured out his wrath on his son who nor all the sins of all time. He took the punishment in our place. By his stripes we were healed past tense!

  82. “Jim, dont change scripture or lessen what Christ did. God poured out his wrath on his son who nor all the sins of all time. He took the punishment in our place. By his stripes we were healed past tense!”

    Yes Indeed Kevin! By His stripes we are healed. But not in the sense of PS.
    By His stripes He merited for us. He made satisfaction for us. He ransomed us.

    Kevin, where in the Law does it say you or I were to be flogged? Would our flogging have appeased the wrath of God?

  83. Kevin, Okay, let me explain something. Christ’s Passion did not move the Father to love us. We were already loved. That is why Jesus came.

    Do you think the cross is Plan B? That God was surprised by the Fall of Adam and had to come up with damage control? No. God would not have allowed the Fall if He had not had a plan.

    God already had a plan in which God would become man so that man could become god.

    The Bible says God locked up all men in trespass SO HE COULD HAVE MERCY ON THEM ALL ( Rom 11:32). Not so they would form a Massa Damnata from which He could sing, “eeny meeny miny moe , all but a few to hell shall go”.

    The Second person of the Trinity came as man, with a human nature, to give grace to all who share that human nature with Him. There were various ways He could have accomplished this. He could have just forgiven us. Or He could have come as a prince, lived in a palace, and in a pubic ceremony on a certain day, shed one tear drop. This would have made superabundant satisfaction for a million worlds. He was an infinite person, after all. Or, He could have come and gone beyond infinity. He did. He went beyond infinity. He was born in a stable, suffered and died an ignominious death. Why? Not to move the Father.
    He went way beyond infinity. Plus He accepted the finite but immense merit and satisfaction of His sinless Mother in His sacrifice. He heaped grace upon grace for us. Why did He over pay the ransom price? To give us titles to grace.
    Penal Substitution falls short. It is niggardly. It ekes out just enough grace for some. It does the minimum. It makes God a miser. It’s not true.

  84. Jim, when your healed, your healed. For you your got the medicine, now you got to apply it. Thats real good news! Not.

  85. Jim, ” we were already loved” no the scripture is clear unbelievers are enemies of God.

  86. Enemies aren’t unloved by God, NOOO just the oppostie!

    We are also commanded to love our enemies.

  87. Everyone keeps using the term love in such a human way when speaking about what God does.

    God doesn’t just love, HE IS LOVE.

    The beginning thought, the creation, the first note, the excited yearning, the searching, finding, rejoicing, healing, repairing, restoring, reigning, blessing ……. of all creation, all time, all ages …..

    God is love.

  88. Romans 2:5 ” But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteousness judgment. of God” Psalm 7:11 ” God is angry with the wicked everyday.” Some on this site are the first to throw the commandments and the judgments at Protestants friends and then turn around and say God is love with the wicked. But always apply my rule to the antichrist ( Romanists) who makes good look evil and evil look good the scripture says. Reverse what they say. God has provided a way for unbelievers thru Christ, but he will pour out his wrath on wicked.

  89. GOD IS ALSO JUST and must punish sin. He can’t be fully one quality and not the other.

  90. CK, you wrote:
    Thanks! I’m out of Rome. On my to the nearest Eastern Orthodox Church. Cool with that?

    Baby steps….If you consider returning, then remember that Rome identifies anti-christ everytime it claims to be the vicar of Christ.
    ——————————–

    You asked:
    Where do Protestants go when they can’t resolve their disagreement with Scripture ?

    The Holy Spirit speaking in scripture. Agreements must come from judgments of a free conscience before God. Each must be convinced in their own mind.
    ——————————–

    You asked Kevin:
    Does the Bible tell you which books are inspired? Have you ever thought about it?

    Response:
    No, and faith doesn’t require the Bible (whole or in part) to tell us. God’s Word, spoken or written, inculcates itself and ought to be believed on the authority of this True God. This happens whenever we encounter God’s Word. Did Jesus or the Apostles tell you which books are inspired ?

  91. Eric W, ” And remember Rome identifies anti-christ every time it claims tot be Vicar of Christ” Bingo! The usurpation of the Trinity. Holy Father, Head of the church, Vicar.

  92. Kevin,

    Pope Leo XIII wrote:
    But since We hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty…

    Paul wrote:
    …displaying himself as being God

    We can’t make this stuff up.

  93. Eric W, wow thats amazing.

  94. Love is God. Love is not an attribute of God – God is love.

    Mercy and justice are attributes of Love.

    On the cross, mercy and justice kissed.

  95. “Sin needs to be punished.”

    If you really think about it, the punishment of sin is death because sin in and of itself is death.
    It punishes itself in a sense because sin separates us from God, and without God there is no life.

    The Good News (the Gospel) is that God loved us so much that he sent His only begotten Son to saves us from sin (being separated from Him).

    Christ ALLOWED Himself to be separated from God – a free will sacrifice/offering – PERFECTLY pleased the Father. He ALLOWED His Precious Blood, the life within Him to be poured out. This life that He poured out is given to us freely. THe Father was pleased that His Divine Life was poured out.

    Without question, unfathomable in a million ways.

    Penal sub has no place within Love, just doesn’t compute in Divine terms.

  96. 2 Corinthians 5:21 ” He made him who knew no sin to become sin, that we might become the righteousness of God. He knew no sin and became sin in the same way we were sinners and become “the righteousness of God. He doesn’t become sin inherently and we don’t become righteous inherently, but the “righteousness of God.” But He becomes sin by imputation in the same way we become “the righteousness of God”. This is substitution. The highest order of love. that he would die in our place. He got the life we lived and we got the life he lived. Penal substitution is the highest form of love. Isaiah 53 says he was numbered among the transgressors and that he was crushed for our iniquities. It says God caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him. ” No great love than a man lay down his life for another” Remember that one.

  97. I completely agree except the 3 words, “this is substitution”.

    I can’t find these words in the New Testament.

  98. Kevin,

    You’ve been repeatedly told how “righteousness of God” has a perfectly alternative interpretation in 2 Cor 5:21 given the context of chapter 3-5. In the beginning, Paul contrasts the ministry of righteousness versus the ministry of condemnation and contrasts them in terms of what gives life versus what gives death. The implication is new life, regeneration, and sanctification, and not merely a forensic imputation. The word of the gospel shines the light of Christ upon us and we are thus glorified together with Christ in the renewing of our inner persons. We arrive at so great a grace because of His death for our sins, which purchased for us all the graces of the Spirit of God.

    Therefore, he became sin for us in order that we might bear His image, and thus the righteousness of God. This is perfectly consistent with the context.

  99. You believe in the Trinity right? Where is the word? If scripture teaches a doctrine then we accept it. Romans 5:19 says thru one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, and thru one man’s obedience many will be constituted righteous. Thru Adam sin spread to all men. Thru Christ many are declared righteous. The scripture is all about two Adams. 1 Corinthians 15 :22 ” For as in one Adam all die ( sin spread), zoo also in Christ all will be made alive. But each in his own order. Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at his coming. In verse 17 he says if Christ was not raised, your faith is useless and we are still in our sins. All eschatological. We are no longer in our sins. When He was raised so were we as we straddle the already/not yet. Him the first fruits and us the rest of the crop to come. We will pass thru judgment and its immediate with God. Thats why the scripture can say we are raised up with Christ and seated in heave groaning with the saints to put on our glorified body. God does not seat someone in heaven and give them the seal of the spirit of adoption if they can still be condemned. Thats why the Roman notion final justification depends on the state of the soul at death is wrong. Justification is always past tense. How a catholic can read Romans 5:6-19 and still believe in what they do ill never know. Luther called it the most liberating chapter of bible. Reconciliation has happened. K

  100. Erick welcome back. How are you? And you have been repeatedly told we don’t agree. Changing the text again Erick. New wine in old wineskins. It does not say we become the image of god in that verse. It says we become the righteousness of god.

  101. Erick, your biggest problem is you don’t understand that in union with christ we receive justification and adoption and all the other gifts of christ. Romans 8:1 is a judgment and not a statement about ontology or the internal affairs. 8:3 and 4 says he fulfilled the RROTL in us not by us. Passive voice. He fulfilled the law, not us. Yes these gifts come only in union with Christ. Justification undergirds our sanctification and all of salvation.

  102. What is the righteousness of God?

    That is the real question.

    Hint, it is not a thing.

  103. So while waiting for Jason to write his next post I went ahead and started my own blog. Feel free to join the conversation.

    http://www.coffeehouseinquisition.com

  104. The righteousness of God is the active and passive obedience of Christ. 1 Corinthians 1:30 By his doing we are in Christ who became to us wisdom, RIGHTEOUSNESS, sanctification, and redemption. Past tense, hint true gospel. All past tense. So much for end of the life evaluation on the state of internal affairs in someone.

  105. “The righteousness of God is the active and passive obedience of Christ. 1 Corinthians 1:30 By his doing we are in Christ who became to us wisdom, RIGHTEOUSNESS, sanctification, and redemption.”

    Beautifully said!

    Thanks, we are reminded always that it is never self-righteiusness, always is Christ acting for us. Anything credited to us is the active and passive obedience of Christ. What was credited to Abraham as righteousness was Christ. Our Lord Jesus Christ has been leading us back to the Almighty Father throughout all of history. At the cross it was finished for all time, eternally finished.
    God Bless.

  106. Agreed!

  107. KEVIN March 23, 2014 at 9:52 pm
    The righteousness of God is the active and passive obedience of Christ.

    The righteousness of God is achieved in the faith of Christ.
    Romans 3

    22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:

    The faith of Christ is found practiced in the Traditions and rites of the Catholic Church which Jesus Christ established. The faith of Christ means the RELIGION of Christ.

    1 Corinthians 1:30 By his doing we are in Christ

    Only those who obey Christ are in Christ. And those who continue in sin are assuredly NOT in Christ:
    Hebrews 5:9
    And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;

    1 Cor 5:11-13
    11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

    who became to us wisdom, RIGHTEOUSNESS, sanctification, and redemption.

    Yeah, and by Him we receive the wisdom to avoid sin and achieve His Righteousness:
    Romans 6
    King James Version (KJV)
    6 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?

    2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?

    3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?

    4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

    5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:

    6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

    Past tense, hint true gospel. All past tense.

    Yeah, past tense, if you repented and remained in a state of grace. But not if you fall away:

    Heb 6:4-6
    4 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,

    5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,

    6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.

    So much for end of the life evaluation on the state of internal affairs in someone.

    Yeah, Scripture says;
    Romans 14:10
    But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.

    ALL

  108. Robert,

    “First, what God said is a consistent harmonizing principle. Just because you think His biblical revelation isn’t enough to tell you what is pleasing to Him doesn’t mean we do.”

    I do think his revelation is enough. What I don’t think He does is talk in contradictions. There’s a difference between something being the obscurity of a mystery and the obscurity of an absurdity. You cannot just ad hoc give cooperation with grace in sanctification a pass while denying the possibility of similar cooperation regarding initial justification. And for all your talking about how you actually do have warrant to boast in sanctification, let’s be real, you’re not actually going to boast or treat it like you earned a wage, which is how you characterize non-Reformed views. Just so, you replied to Jonathan:
    “It’s not biblical to merit grace. Grace is grace.”
    And yet in progressive sanctification, you merit heavenly reward/increased holiness, so that must mean it’s not of grace. Or it is just “different” grace that you’re permitted to boast in because Goddidit. Again, just ad hoc.

    “Augustine is rather clear that faith is the instrumental means of justification, for one. Then there’s Trent…”

    Where does Trent deny faith as the means of justification? As has been stated, RCs believe we’re justified by faith, even faith alone in the sense Benedict says. Augustine is rather clear that faith is one formed by love and that justification is based on infused righteousness, not extra nos imputation, for one. Even Calvin admitted as much. That’s why he also held to mortal/venial sin, to concupiscence, to merit, to baptismal regeneration, to loss of salvation, to cooperative/operative grace distinctions, to the distinctions between law you reject, and so on. So how he does not map to Trent escapes me. But at least you seem to concede Aquinas.

    “If that were true, no works would be necessary, nor would cooperation with it. God’s own love should be enough, with nothing added to it.But it’s not. It’s God’s love plus my cooperation with it.”

    This is why Jonathan said you reduce Arminians to gospel-denying by this logic. So God does hypnotize you I guess after all. You’re not hypnotized, you said, but you also say mutual love is gospel-denying. So what’s it going to be? And you just condemned Augustine (again).

    “First one is justified, then one loves. It isn’t that one loves, and then one is justified.”

    Yes which is why I said right below this statement of yours which you quoted – No kidding. You think we love to get initially justified? The love of God is poured into our hearts *at justification*.

    Which you just ignore and call meaningless. It’s what RCism teaches, I’m sorry to disappoint you.

    “Initial justification is essentially meaningless without final justification, and you have to love to get final justification, and where does Scripture talk about final justification vs. initial justification anyway?”

    Yep so now we condemn not only Augustine and Arminians, but Lutherans as well. Do you think through your criticisms at all?

    “You don’t like the Reformed principle because we’re not bringing some mythical extra biblical tradition to achieve said harmonization.”

    It’s not extra-biblical to say we cooperate with grace and are justified by faith formed by love and that damnation is our own, salvation all of God. It is extra biblical to say “Goddidit” to harmonize inherent contradictions that are only an issue because of extra biblical tradition that causes them in the first place.

    “If you deny that the old covenant and new covenant law are fundamentally the same, then you have two different ways of salvation.”

    Wrong again. There’s continuity between the OC and NC, but there’s also discontinuity in that the NC *fulfills* the OC and the OC was a mere shadow and seed. Why this is still being missed escapes me. You’re conflating the two convenants. The Mosaic Law cannot be truly kept, except via the law of faith/christ. This is the whole point again why your dispensationalist charge as well as your assertion that the mosaic law and law of christ are “basically the same” are both off the mark.

    “I agree with Aquinas and Augustine that old covenant saints belonged to the new law. They belonged to the new law, living before their time as it were as they were new covenant believers who lived under the administration of the old covenant. The issue, again, is how did David keep the new law and what he kept. How did he do it. By the Holy Spirit? Absolutely. But the actual law that David kept was the old covenant law.”

    So you actually don’t agree with Aquinas and Augustine which was the whole point of the citations. I’m not reinventing the wheel – reread the citations – one cannot fulfill the Old Law without keeping the New Law of faith. Which is the whole point. David did not *only* have the OC law – he had faith formed by love. He had sanctifying grace. As did all the OT saints. Which is the new law.

    “It was in fulfilling that old covenant law specifically by the Spirit—at least the moral norms of it—that David fulfilled the new covenant law.”

    Here we go again with the error. He fulfilled the OC law *completely and entirely* by fulfilling the NC law – it’s not this “in the main” or “for the most part” business you keep saying.

    “By fulfilling the old covenant law, he fulfilled the new covenant law.”

    Precisely backwards. Which is again why you don’t agree with Aquinas or Augustine’s distinctions on law.

    “The Sermon on the Mount starts with the Ten Commandments. He shows that they go far deeper than what many of his contemporaries thought, but he doesn’t abandon them.”

    CORRECT. As I’ve said a million times.

    “He didn’t have a different set of standards to fulfill than we do”

    Nope, he didn’t. The 2GC are in the OC law. But one cannot fulfill them outside of the law of faith and grace of the NC.

    “David’s law of Christ was the Mosaic law; and he was justified apart from it. Ergo, we are justified apart from our own fulfilling of the law of Christ as well. You haven’t answered the point.”

    I’ve answered it repeatedly. You keep equivocating on law of christ with mosaic law. You keep conflating the covenants. You keep failing to distinguish law as both Aquinas and Augustine did. David was a “doer of the law” with the Mosaic law just as Abraham was a “doer of the law” before the Mosaic law. How could Abraham have done that? The same way David and NC believers did, i.e. faith formed by love, sanctifying grace – Aquinas again – “the New Law consists chiefly in the grace of the Holy Ghost, which is shown forth by faith that worketh through love.”

    “The only way you really can is to deny that the law of Christ includes the 10 Commandments (the CCC won’t let you do that);”

    Good thing I don’t deny that. The law of christ is a *fulfillment* of the OC law. It does not *destroy* it. The OC law was a seed and shadow, that does not mean it is “basically the same”. It’s not called the “law of faith/christ” for nothing. The distinction is in the very term.

    “say that works of the Mosaic law refer only to things like circumcision and not things such as the 10 commandments (traditional Rome);”

    Nope – those are part of it but the eternal moral law is included.

    “or say Paul is talking only about initial justification (common among many RCs I have talked to).”

    One cannot fulfill the law without being intially justified first. And one cannot merit initial justification.

    “your response does not address the issue I am raising,”

    I addressed it before in the other Jewish Jealousy thread – you did not respond to my last response there – March 22, 2014 at 7:41 pm. And now you’re just rehashing the same points which is why I cautioned you not to reinvent the wheel. Once you stop thinking the only options are that the two covenants are “basically the same” or that one has to be dispensationalist about it, you would then see the third option that RCism and Augustine and Aquinas affirm which you keep ignoring for some reason.

    So David isn’t the nuclear bomb you want. And there hasn’t been any magic verses forthcoming from you and Kevin that show a compelling case one is justified by faith apart from/prior to/devoid of love rather than faith formed by love. But hope springs eternal.

  109. Oops wrong thread. Ignore above!

  110. Enjoyed this post, just thought I would add this on from Creed Code Cult Facebook

    I love this post, so I came back today to add what is over on the Creed Code Cult Facebook page

    “Even more pertinent is the fact that Peter’s list of virtues that must be (wait for it… wait for it) ‘added to faith’ — culminating in love — is similar to Paul’s insistence that what avails for justification is ‘faith working through love,’ and James’s teaching that we are ‘not justified by faith alone,’ but by faith and Spirit-wrought works of love and sacrifice.

    “I mean, dang. The Calvinist in me wanted to snap my fingers and say to Peter, ‘Oh no you did NOT just tell me to “add” something to my faith! Faith alone, son! Dint you get the memo?'”

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