The Marrow Conditions the Atonement on What God Does in the Sinner, by Hanko

The Marrow view involved a view of predestination that was essentially Amyrauldian. The counsel of God with respect to predestination contained a determinative decree and a hypothetical decree. The former belonged to God’s secret will and the latter to God’s revealed will. The Marrow taught that the revealed will of God expressed God’s will as desiring the salvation of all who hear the gospel.

The Marrow Men claimed that by making this salvation conditioned upon faith, they in fact made the work of salvation particular because only the elect actually came to faith. But salvation was made dependent upon man’s faith, because one had to explain how only some were saved when in fact God desired the salvation of all, earnestly urged all to come to Christ, and provided an atonement which was sufficient for all, intended for all and available to all.

It is true that the Marrow Men taught that saving faith was worked in the hearts of the elect of God. And it was in this way that they hoped to escape the charge of Arminianism. But this will not work for two reasons. In the first place, how is it to be explained that God on the one hand desires to save all and expressed this desire in the preaching of the gospel; and on the other hand actually gives faith and saves only a select few? The Marrow Men, as the Amyrauldians before them, resorted to a distinction in the will of God but such a distinction sets God in opposition to Himself as being One Who on the one hand desires to save all, and on the other hand, desires to save only some.

In the second place, by making faith the condition of salvation, faith is set outside the benefits of the atonement. if the atonement is for every sinner, but faith is not for every sinner, then faith cannot be a blessing given by means of the atonement. Then faith is not one of the blessings of Christ’s death, but becomes a condition for making Christ’s death effective. One cannot have it both ways. Faith is either part of salvation or a condition to salvation; but both it cannot be.

Some have maintained that the Marrow Men were concerned with a conditional grace caused by hyper-Calvinism. Christ, so it was said, was being separated from His benefits in the preaching. The church could not offer the benefits of Christ to all because they were only for the elect, and the church had to know who were the elect before these benefits could be offered them. But those who were elect could be known as elect only by the manifestation of election in their lives. Thus Christ’s benefits hinged on this manifestation of election in a holy and sanctified life. The conclusion is, so the argument went, that the offer of the gospel was made conditional. One receives salvation only if he is elect, i.e., if he manifests election in his life and if he is assured of his election. Hence all the salvation was made conditional on the works of sanctification that prove election.

This interpretation, found among the defenders of the well-meant gospel offer, is an attempt to turn the tables by charging those who repudiate the offer as teaching conditions, while those who maintain the offer are the ones holding to sovereign and free grace. This interpretation is, however, false. The General Assembly (against whom the Marrow party reacted) never taught a conditional salvation. The Assembly did maintain that the promises of the gospel were only for the elect — that is true. But it did believe that the gospel had to be publicly and indiscriminately proclaimed along with the command to repent and believe in Christ.

The Marrow Men taught that everyone has a warrant of God that Christ is for him. This warrant from God is based on the cross, in which Christ became dead for everyone. Why are not all then saved? All are not saved because the condition for having Christ in possession is faith in Him, and all do not fulfill the condition. That is conditional salvation.

The idea was that while all those to whom the gospel came did not have Christ in actual fact, they possessed the warrant to have Christ, and therefore the warrant to believe. The best way to explain their use of the word “warrant” is to substitute the word “right”: all who heard the gospel have the right to believe. They have this right to believe because God has expressed in the gospel that nothing can possibly stand in the way of their salvation. Those who hear the gospel have no excuse for not believing what the gospel proclaims.

But this means that when the gospel proclaims that Christ died for sinners, those who hear have the right to say, Christ died for me; I have a right to believe that Christ died for me. It means, in fact, that when, more specifically, the gospel says that Christ died for His people, the individual hearer has the right to say, “I am one of God’s people, if I believe.”

First, if we are to press home this “warrant” to believe, we must make clear that the promises of the gospel are objectively for everyone. In the second place, we press home the “warrant” to believe by stating emphatically that the God who promises Christ to all who hear, even objectively, can do so only because, objectively, He loves all and desires their salvation. “God gives you the right to believe because He loves you and wants your salvation.”

Third, as far as the hearer is concerned, when persuaded that he has a right (warrant) to believe, he has also the promise of God along with the assurance of God’s love for him and God’s desire to save, Fourth, the only reason why a man with this warrant to believe is not saved is because he does not believe. Everything hinges on his faith. To have Christ in possession rests on faith. He has Christ in warrant, but in possession only at such a time that he “closes with Christ.” Faith itself is not included in this warrant proclaimed, and it is not included in God’s promise of Christ. This false gospel is Arminian and Amyraldian.

The twelve Marrow Men, among whom were Thomas Boston, James Hog, and Ebenezer Erskine, who opposed the decisions of the General Assembly that condemned Edward Fisher’s book, had to say something about the extent of the atonement of Christ. The Marrow Men insisted that by this condemnation the Assembly had made the preaching of the gospel to all men impossible. They claimed that the Assembly had made it impossible to fulfill the divine commission to preach salvation in Jesus Christ to all men without distinction.

The Marrow Men denied that they taught universal atonement, but their denials rang false. These men distinguished between a giving of Christ in possession and a gift of Christ as warranted men to receive Him. Where did this warrant come from? It had to come from the atoning sacrifice that Christ completed on Calvary. The Marrow Men approved of Fisher’s book The Marrow of Modern Divinity, which taught that (and again we have a very strange distinction) while Christ did not die for all, He is dead for all. They solemnly assured the Assembly that they considered it heretical to teach that Christ’s atoning sacrifice was for all men; but they approved of the expression that Christ is dead for all men. The distinction is impossible to understand, and can only be interpreted as a rather subtle way to introduce into the teachings of the church a universal atonement of our Lord. It was intended to teach, I think, that while Christ did not in fact die to save all men, nevertheless, His death has universal significance and benefit.

If everyone who hears the preaching has a “warrant” from God to believe in Christ, that “warrant” must have a juridical basis. That is, if I promise ten men a thousand dollars each if they will come to my house, I had better have ten thousand dollars available to me, or my “warrant” is a lie. If God gives everyone who hears the gospel a “warrant” to be saved if they believe in Christ, that salvation must be available for the non-elect. If it is not, the promise of God is false

But God did not impute the sins of the non-elect to Christ, and Christ did not die for the non-elect, and the promise of the gospel is only for those who believe the gospel. As true it is that nobody can know if they are elect until after they believe the gospel, it is also true that nobody can know if Christ’s death has any benefit for them until after they believe the gospel.

http://www.prca.org/current/Free%20Offer/chapter6.htm

Advertisements
Explore posts in the same categories: atonement

Tags: , ,

You can comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.

18 Comments on “The Marrow Conditions the Atonement on What God Does in the Sinner, by Hanko”

  1. markmcculley Says:

    While it is true that the Marrow extends the promise to include the non-elect who will not believe, to some extent all paedobaptists extend the “promise of the covenant” to include their own non-elect children. For example, Hanko writes: the idea of preaching as taught by the Marrow involved a conception of conversion and faith different from historical Reformed theology. it taught that conversion in the line of the covenant is essentially no different from conversion when it is effected among the unchurched. It took place later in life and not in infancy, and it was preceded by a conviction of sin that was not the work of saving grace, but resulted from the preaching and an accompanying preparatory grace. It brought a man into a state of conviction in which he hungered and thirsted for righteousness and sought escape from the burden of sin and guilt that afflicted his tortured conscience.

    By this view of preparatory grace, a certain common grace was introduced into the thinking of the church and was made responsible for acts in the unregenerate that Scripture assigns only to the regenerate child of God.

    mark: Hanko is denying the need for conversion of the elect. He is not only teaching eternal justification but also infant regeneration apart from the hearing of the gospel. In this way, Hanko can and does teach that some Arminians have been born both justified and regenerate, and live and die as Arminians. For all his dismissal of a ‘common grace” resulting in an ineffectual calling, by his presumption of the regeneration of ANY of the children of Christians , Hanko gives suggestion of a promise to some who are not elect and who are never saved.

  2. markmcculley Says:

    Lee Gatiss argues that Calvinistic hypothetical universalism is, in the end, still a variant of limited atonement: Christ died effectually for the elect and only conditionally for the non-elect. The conditional intent for the non-elect is not in place of particular redemption for the elect (as in Arminianism), but in addition to or prior to this effectual atonement for those who will believe (For Us and For Our Salvation, 99).

    It is hard to see what concrete advantage accrues to the non-elect by saying Christ died for them upon the condition that they believe, when God does not in fact grant the gift of faith to any of the non-elect. This is the same point made by Dabney, whom Crisp employs in making the case for hypothetical universalism, when he observes: “To say that God purposed, even conditionally, the reconciliation of that sinner by Christ’s sacrifice, while also distinctly proposing to do nothing effectual to bring about the fulfillment of that condition He knew the man would surely refuse, is contradictory. It is hard to see how, on this scheme, the sacrifice is related more beneficially to the non-elect sinner, than on the strict Calvinist’s plan” (Systematic Theology, 520).

    Hypothetical universalism appears to do more for the Calvinist’s psyche than for the state of the non-elect.

    http://ww.thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/kevindeyoung/2015/01/30/a-more-generous-calvinism-2/

  3. markmcculley Says:

    wrong about the extent of the atonement, wrong about the nature of the atonement
    correct about the extent of the atonement, not necessarily correct about the nature of the atonement http://www2.bhpublishinggroup.com/…/9781433669712_sampCh.pdf

  4. markmcculley Says:

    David Bishop—-Tolerant Marrowists believe the good news of God’s grace should be communicated to unbelievers in a message that goes something like this — God has good news for you. Jesus died for you. And now if you will take Him, He will have you.

    The moment one of these guys are forced to concede though, that this really is what they think they should be telling unbelievers, they suddenly realize just how very Arminian it sounds. That is because it is Arminian!

    But rather than taking stock of what it is they have been buying from the men they have been listening to this whole time, they usually instead try rescuing their scrapheap of a theology by attacking the people who have cornered them and forced them to consider just what it is they are telling people about God’s grace.

    The gospel is not “God has good news for you.” The gospel is not “Jesus died for you.” The gospel is not “And now if you will take Him, He will have you.” The Marrow Men thought that was the gospel. And that is why the Church of Scotland condemned the Marrow. Because when it came to the notion of the gospel being an offer, they saw that the Marrow was nothing more than Arminian scheme trying to masquerade as something Biblical.

    the free offer presupposes universal atonement

    no antithesis in the Marrow against universal atonement

    the “difference” between “christ is dead for you” and “christ died for you” is sophistical

  5. markmcculley Says:

    Rick P and Lig Duncan tell us the Marrow is “the solution to everything” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0toqyCQbxNQ&list=PLzoy1HKod766DtEetkJBT2FpXEjtmyL_D

  6. markmcculley Says:

    I want to talk about Mcmahon’s confusion of two ideas. The extent of the atonement and the idea that “the sinner must obtain and understand his subjective experience of the work of Christ for him personally. ”

    I don’t believe that second thing. Most of the people I know who believe that the gospel talks about the extent of the atonement don’t believe that second thing. We know you can’t have an experience of knowing you are elect before you believe the gospel. So we don’t believe that second thing.

    But Mcmahon puts the two things together. Without argument, he simply assumes that if you talk about extent in the gospel, then you will be one of those persons trying to find your election in some experience before you think you can believe the gospel. https://markmcculley.wordpress.com/2012/03/01/if-we-dont-believe-one-of-the-hyper-points-does-that-mean-we-are-not-hyper/

  7. markmcculley Says:

    Amyraut—“Sin seems to have changed not only the whole face of the universe, but even the entire design of the first creation, and if one may speak this way, seems to have induced to adopt new councels”

    and thus God becomes the God who declares not the end from the beginning but the end from the fall

    the fall is conditioned on the sinner, and the creation is either plan a or no plan at all

    did God make the world, and then decide (after man decided) what to do with the world

    why must we deny that death is God’s work also?

    why must we deny that the fall of Adam is God’s work also?

    why must we keep talking about what Adam “could have done” or “might have done”?

    was God’s plan a to be glorified in a church of human Adams who never sinned? (Ephesians 3:20)

  8. markmcculley Says:

    Herman Bavinck, Sin and Salvation, volume 3, Reformed Dogmatics, 2006, p 469—-”The center of gravity has been shifted from Christ and located in the Christian. Faith (not the atonement) has become the reconciliation with God.”

    Jonathan Gibson, From Heaven, p 358—-“Election and the Atonement do not operate on separate theological tracks. What God has joined together, let no theologian separate. Affirming union with Christ before the moment of redemption accomplished counters any disjunction between the effect of Christ’s death and the effect of His resurrection. (Those who put union later) sound as if Christ’s death might lead to the death of some sinners, but not also to their resurrection. This is not only analogy. if one, then the other. if death with, then resurrection with.”

  9. markmcculley Says:

    F YOU —-promises have consequences, laws have consequences
    the theology of glory is a prosperity theology
    prosperity theology is a “possibility theology”
    sarcasm alert
    have you “actualized” your “potential”?
    1. make sure you have oil in your lamps
    if you don’t, there will be consequences
    if you do have oil, be sure to thank god for his grace in causing you to have oil in your lamp
    2. exercise your faith in the gospel
    appropriate by faith being united to Christ
    act on your option to accept the offer which is sufficient if you meet the conditions of the gospel
    3. F YOU as a legalist elder brother welcome those your Father welcomes, then the consequence is that you get to be at the party
    but F YOU as a legalist elder brother do NOT welcome those your Father welcomes, then you will NOT get to be at the party
    but you “sinned against grace”, against “potential”
    you excluded yourself, since God excludes nobody but “offers” to save the non-elect
    and despite your legalism, we must assume that you are a Christian
    because God is your father
    and your baby brother was already a Christian before he left home
    circumcised as a baby because he was born a Christian,
    just like you were
    otherwise the law could not have commanded you to obey the law and the gospel could not have commanded you to obey the gospel

  10. markmcculley Says:

    Matthew Mason—According to John Owen, although God’s will toward the elect was not changed upon the death of Christ, for he is immutable, Christ’s death nevertheless changed the status of the elect. On the basis of Christ’s merit, founded on God’s free engagement in the covenant of redemption with his Son, God is obliged to deliver them from the curse . Therefore, because of Christ’s satisfaction, God is able to give out the benefits Christ purchased, without any other conditions needing to be fulfilled. In particular, Christ also purchased faith in the gospel for the elect. Hence, from the time of the atonement, the elect have an absolute right to justification.

    Fisher’s Catechism on Q.87, q.20 What is the evil in maintaining that none but true penitents have a warrant to embrace Christ by faith? a. It sets sinners upon spinning repentance out of their own bowels, that they may fetch it with them, as a price in their hand to Christ, instead of coming to him by faith, to obtain it from him, as his gift

    http://heidelblog.net/2013/11/are-gods-demands-always-gracious/

    David Robertson: I am astounded that you have suggested that I am more dangerous than a person who teaches that grace makes no demands….The demand for repentance is not good news! I could not disagree more…when God calls for repentance it is great news, because it means that he wants us to return to him….he has also provided the means.

    Scott Clark–Are you suggesting that Christians are still under wrath in some way? Of course God is displeased with Christians when the sin but our sin doesn’t place us back under the law for justification….Yes, repentance is an gospel in the broad sense, in the same way sanctification is a part of the gospel in the broad sense. In the narrow sense, however, we should be careful to distinguish faith and repentance because justification and sanctification are two distinct things. We are not justified because we are sanctified. We are sanctified, by God’s grace, because we are justified.

    http://oldlife.org/2015/03/from-dgh-on-does-the-gospel-threaten-submitted-on-2015-03-24-at-1222-pm/comment-page-2/#comments

  11. markmcculley Says:

    Mark Jones—Is it possible to question the Marrow today without being accused of being neonomian? Boston had reservations about the conditionality of the covenant of grace, but pretty much every orthodox Reformed theologian I have read affirmed the conditionality of the covenant of grace .. in describing how faith is an antecedent condition for receiving the benefits of the covenant. They had to in order to ward off the Antinomian view that faith was not a condition for receiving the benefits of Christ.

    Mark Jones—-I know Boston and his friends did not think the Marrow taught hypothetical universalism. And many scholars try with all their might to avoid the implications of this thought, but I simply cannot see how we can deny that the Marrow teaches hypothetical universalism….Culverwell, whom Fisher quotes in the Marrow in relation to the Fee Offer, held to Hypothetical Universalism (Ussher convinced him).

    Mark Jones—-No particularist at that point in Reformed history) would be comfortable with the language used by Fisher. That later particularists in Scotland aren’t uncomfortable with Fisher’s language is a very interesting historical point.

    Mark Jones—The Marrow Men ended up fighting a battle in order to defend the Auchterarder Creed.—-“It is not sound and orthodox to teach that we must forsake sin in order to our coming to Christ.” … Witsius, the so-called “middle-man” in the Antinomian-Neonomian debates that emerged in the latter part of the seventeenth century, asks whether repentance precedes the remission of sins. Does sorrow for sin precede justification as a disposing condition, prerequisite in the subject? An awakened sinner will, in his experience, have a previous (or, concomitant/accompanying) hatred for sin and purpose of a new life before receiving Christ.
    http://www.reformation21.org/blog/2016/01/the-marrow-part-1.php

  12. markmcculley Says:

    Lots of related factors—one of them is the need for repentance, another is the nature of repentance—is repentance before or after faith, is repentance the same thing as faith—so it involves not only “desire to save non-elect” (what some call “the offer”) and the nature of the atonement (hypothetical universalism) but also neonomianism (what some call “Lordship” and what others folks call “anti carnal Christian”)

    Mark Jones—I have heard that one or two have argued that sanctification is by faith alone. No one disputes that it is by grace alone, but the more contentious question is whether sanctification is by faith alone. I do not think so, and I agree with Kevin DeYoung who also denies that sanctification is by faith alone. Of course, whatever does not comes from faith is sin. So sanctification always involves faith (Acts 26:18)… But the phrase itself is decidedly unhelpful.

    Mark Jones—In the process of becoming holier, are we sanctified by faith alone? I think what’s at stake is whether there are other means that God uses in a positive way to conform his people to the image of Christ Jesus. We could ask whether God’s gospel threats or his moral law are true and valid instruments of sanctification in the life of a Christian who is united to Christ

    Mark Jones—For Christ, keeping God’s commandments functioned as a means of sanctification (John . 15:10). For us, keeping the commandments likewise functions in part as the means by which we remain in Christ’s love

    http://christopherjgordon.blogspot.com/2015/11/how-arminian-has-sanctification-debate.htm

  13. markmcculley Says:

    Mark Jones—-I know Boston and his friends did not think the Marrow taught hypothetical universalism. And many scholars try with all their might to avoid the implications of this thought, but I simply cannot see how we can deny that the Marrow teaches hypothetical universalism….Culverwell, whom Fisher quotes in the Marrow in relation to the Fee Offer, held to Hypothetical Universalism (Ussher convinced him).

    Mark Jones—-No particularist at that point in Reformed history) would be comfortable with the language used by Fisher. That later particularists in Scotland aren’t uncomfortable with Fisher’s language is a very interesting historical point.

    http://www.reformation21.org/blog/2016/01/the-marrow-part-1.php

  14. markmcculley Says:

    Waddington—“Dr. Fesko offers a fascinating discussion of hypothetical universalism . It is a fact that there were members present in the assembly who held this view, and the author notes the complexity of the matter and the various views that fall under the label of hypothetical universalism. My concern is not with the details of the discussion. Muller has brought this issue to our attention as well so we are familiar with it. My concern is theological more than historical. As I have already noted, it is a fact that members of the assembly held to a variety of views that can be classified as forms of hypothetical universalism.”

    Waddington—However, beyond doing us the favor of reminding us that at the time of the assembly hypothetical universalism was a live option, one gets the sense that there is also at work here a theological agenda. The contemporary view is too narrow perhaps. Church history hopefully involves an increasingly more precise and improved understanding of the Scriptures and theology.

    Waddington– In other words, should we try to turn back the clock and broaden our confessional views on this? Maybe so. Maybe not. That is a matter for exegetical, biblical, and systematic theology. Historical theology has done us the service of reminding us that at one point hypothetical universalism, at least in some of its variations, was acceptable. We recognize that there is development in theology and that we need to be historically sensitive to this.

    Waddington–Would it be right to judge earlier formulations by later standards? Yes and no. Yes, in the sense that if a later development actually is an improvement and refinement and correction to earlier views, we would not want to revert to the earlier formulations. No, in the sense that we will recognize earlier formulations as defective but not necessarily erroneous or heretical.

    http://www.opc.org/os.html?article_id=529&cur_iss=Y

  15. markmcculley Says:

    Consistency is very narrow. And one man’s heresy is another man’s diversity.

    Mark Jones—-First, I wonder if the reader could be forgiven for thinking that Oliver Crisp views Arminians as a branch within the Reformed tradition, as many Remonstrants today wish to argue. Crisp states on page 27 that “most Reformed theologians (though perhaps not all) are said to affirm monergism.” In the footnote he then claims: “Reformed theologians are typically theological determinists, but some have advocated theological libertarianism, like the Arminians.”

    Mark Jones—Does Oliver Crisp think the Arminians are, in some sense, Reformed? Oliver Crisp states on the next page (28) that it is not clear to him that “Arminians are synergists.” He also raises the question over how the human will may “contribute” to salvation. So if there are (hypothetically?) Reformed theologians who are not monergistic, but it is also not clear to Crisp that Arminians are synergistic, then what categories does he have in mind to sort this problem out? Are Arminians monergistic but some Reformed are not?

    Mark Jones–As we study the historical context of debate between the Arminians (Remonstrants) and Reformed, we note that they had strong disagreements on almost every major point of theology (e.g., providence, Christology, trinity, covenant, doctrine of God), especially justification. For the Arminians, it is the (human!) act of faith that is (by grace!) counted as (evangelical) righteousness, as if it were the complete fulfillment of the whole law. It is a genuine human act, coming forth from the liberum arbitrium. So that is synergistic, in my mind.

    Mark Jones—In addition, we should also add that Arminius’s vigorous commitment to scientia media meant that God responded to hypothetical human willing prior to God’s providential concursus…. Historically speaking, the term Reformed has reference to a particular confessional tradition. Arminius, for example, came into conflict with this confessional tradition. He tried to claim he held to the Heidelberg Catechism and Belgic Confession, but this was deceptive on Arminius’s part. I wonder if Crisp thinks that Karl Barth is part of this Reformed confessional tradition, as well?

    http://www.reformation21.org/blog/2015/05/reflections-on-deviant-calvini.php

    Mark Jones on “when calling someone a heretic”—–” I would argue that Pelagianism is a heresy, but Arminianism is not. Pelagianism overthrows several fundamental articles. I would argue that Arminianism is a serious error, but it is not a heresy…..you should be very careful, indeed – when you hurl around the word “moralist”… on matters that do not rise to the level of soul-damning doctrine. ….We do not need to shrink back from lively, vigorous theological debate. Amyraldianism and closed communion and episcopacy are all errors, in my view. But, these errors are not heresies. A wall exists between my brothers who hold to any one of these views, but the wall is not so high that we cannot “shake hands” as brothers.”

    mark mcculley– in the meanwhile, it can never hurt to use the word “antinomian” when talking to your congregation, because in this day and age those in the covenant need to be reminded that sinners who actually practice sin are “antinomian” and it’s very well possible that many in your congregation will not do the works necessary to stay in covenant and attain final justification.

    I am reminded of the Ian Murray defense of Wesley—it’s not his fault that he was Arminian because it was the fault of the “truly reformed” Antinomians….

    • markmcculley Says:

      Fesko— Oliver Crisp’s essay on sin, for example, has much to commend it. He thoughtfully engages the subject and challenges the common Reformed doctrine of immediate imputation for original sin. He promotes a Zwinglian realist view. At one level, this is fine. But when he rejects immediate imputation, Oliver Crisp does so apart from any exegesis. To claim that immediate imputation promotes an arbitrary view of God or that no one ever authorized Adam to represent humanity are expected common objections, but to fail to provide substantive counter-exegesis to the exegetical support for immediate imputation renders the objections unconvincing.

      http://www.opc.org/os.html?article_id=576&cur_iss=Y

  16. markmcculley Says:

    The Marrow men ) have moved God’s imputation of sins to Christ into the present and put all the focus on the Holy Spirit, so that the “application” of the death has become the “atonement”, so that it is denied that God has already imputed the sins of a sinner to Christ (or not). So most Reformed folks sound just like Lutherans and Arminians on the extent of the atonement, and their Calvinism is about “regeneration before faith” and also (often) “regeneration before faith means that you faith is not alone but will produce enough change in you to prove to you that you believe” (not all Marrow folks are guilty of this second problem.) But they are all teaching in some sense an universal (and thus unjust) atonement–no sins imputed yet, with the sinners being enabled to “make the exchange”.

  17. markmcculley Says:

    Tim Keller—while good works are in no way the reason for our justification, they are absolutely necessary evidences that we have justifying faith. Nevertheless such “evangelical obedience”—never in any way become part of our standing as justified before God, a standing that cannot be lost, even when we fall through sin under “God’s fatherly displeasure.”

    mark mcculley–So 1. Without enough works, we can lose the evidence that we thought we had of our being justified. So it’s not our water baptism that gives us that evidence, and it’s not our being “in the covenant” nor is it God’s “promise to us” that God will “be our God”? 2. As long as we say that works give us assurance and that works don’t give us the not yet aspect of our justification, no problem? 3. How many works are enough, assuming perfection is not possible? Does the answer to “how many works” depend on what ability God has given us, or does it only depend on what God’s law calls sin? If we do just enough works so that our faith is “not alone”, does that prove that we really have faith? if we do just enough works, does that prove that our faith excludes these works as being any part of our standing? Can we have faith that our works prove our faith without ever believing in our works for salvation?

    Stoever, A Faire and Easy Way—“John Cotton professed himself unable to believe it possible for a person to maintain that grace works a condition in him, reveals it, makes a promise to it, and applies it to him, and still not trust in the work. Even if a person did not trust in the merit of the work, he still probably would not dare to trust a promise unless he could see a work…”

    “Grace and works (not only in the case of justification) but in the whole course of our salvation, are not subordinate to each other but opposite:as that whatsoever is of grace is not of works, and whatsoever is of works is not of grace.

    Tim Keller__-Owen argues that the root of our sinful behavior is an inability to hate sin for itself, and this stems from a tendency to see obedience as simply a way to avoid danger and have a good life—not as a way to love and know Jesus for who he is.

    So is Ferguson agreeing with Kant that we need to get the self-interest out of ir, or is he agreeing with Piper (and c s lewis) that being motivated by the benefits is not a problem, but then also (again like Piper) always questioning our ,motives–do we love God enough? It’s an one-two punish—they say, now that you are definitely sanctified (regenerated, in union with, have Christ indwelling you) NOW YOU ARE ABLE to love God and to hate sin, but then 2, they keep asking, but do you love God, and will you tomorrow?

    http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/4-lessons-for-the-bedeviling-sanctification-debate


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: