Why should we know God's Word?

In our day and age where anti-intellectualism runs rampant in the visible church, it is not surprising to see poll after poll verify what students of scripture have known for many years. The visible church does not know much about the scriptures they profess to believe in. This is sad considering many saints during the Reformation period lost their lives for the sake of being able to read and study God's word. Not to mention the many passages in scripture that speak as such:

Isaiah 66:2 This is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word.
John 8:31-32 Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
Psalm 19:7-8 The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.
Psalm 119:9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.
Psalm 119:11 I have hidden Your Word in my heart, that I might not sin against You.
Psalm 119:103 How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Psalm 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Psalm 119:130 The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.
Psalm 119:162 I rejoice at your word like one who finds great spoil.

The posts on this blog will address essential Biblical doctrines of the Christian faith. You can find much of the background for the posts here. My prayer for these posts is that the people who read them will be encouraged to open their Bibles and not just read a verse or two, but learn them and indeed, be transformed by them. As Jesus prayed, "Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth." (John 17:17). This is my prayer as well.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Justification part 2

Justification Part 2

- What is the basis for our justification?

o This is an important question

§ Proverbs 17:15 - “He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous, both of them alike are an abomination to the LORD.”

§ In the Law, Exodus 23:7, our LORD says – Keep far from a false charge, and do not kill the innocent and righteous, for I will not acquit the wicked. Also seen in Exodus 34:7, Nahum 1:3

o We should inquire about the basis for God declaring condemned sinners righteous in His sight.

- Romans 4:5 “To the one who does not work but trusts him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness.”

o Counted (logizomai) – Louw-Nida lexicon: to keep records of commercial accounts, involving both debits and credits—‘to put into one’s account, to charge one’s account, to regard as an account.’

§ God counts or imputes righteousness to our account so that we are considered by God perfectly and forever righteous.

· Therefore God justifies us based only on the righteousness of God in Christ.

o 2 Corinthians 5:21 – He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

§ Just as Christ did not become inherently sinful, neither do we become inherently righteous.

· Our sin is imputed to Christ and Christ’s righteousness is imputed to us.

o Dr Grudem’s defines it as follows:

§ “God thinks of Christ’s righteousness as belonging to us, or regards it as belonging to us.”

o More scriptural proof:

§ Romans 10:3-4 – For, being ignorant of the righteousness that comes from God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.

§ Philippians 3:9 – (I may) be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God on the basis of faith.

- Grudem points out the twofold problem of the belief that an internal change leads to justification.

o Present sin would keep us from ever being declared perfectly righteous.

§ Once we sin, we are again unjust needing justification.

o There would be no provision for forgiveness of past AND future sins.

§ Leaving us without confidence that we are right with God.

o This turns Romans 5:1 & 8:1 on their head, for we are not guaranteed peace with God nor can we say there is no condemnation.

- As we stated in Justification part 1, the view of the internal change of man leading to justification is held by Roman Catholicism.

o It is a perversion of the one true gospel and therefore damnable (Galatians 1:6-9).

§ We stand firm in the righteousness of Christ, and therefore can rejoice and rest in the God of our salvation.

No comments: