What I Read Online – 03/24/2012 (a.m.)

    • In the new birth and justification we are passive. Repentance and faith are given as a free gift. However, in conversion—the act of repentance and faith—we are active, having been raised from death to life by the Spirit through the gospel. Our initial and lifelong conversion cannot be attributed to us, but only to the Triune God. Every moment our turning from idols and specific sins (including self-trust, but also other fruits of the flesh) to the Living God is a gift of the Father, in the Son, by the Spirit. Nevertheless, it is not the Father who repents, nor the Son who believes, nor the Spirit who does good works; it is believers who, united to Christ, bear the fruit of faith in love and works. Salvation is not restricted to justification but encompasses all of the blessings we enjoy in Christ: election, redemption, effectual calling, justification, adoption, sanctification, and glorification.

       

    • First, we dare not treat justification as a free gift that is based entirely on Christ’s person and work in the gospel and then treat sanctification as something that is based on our person and work
    • Second, we dare not see ourselves as passive in sanctification, as we are in the new birth and justification. Christ is always the object of faith in every act, but there are different acts of faith.
    • We are justified by grace through a faith that simply rests in Christ and we are sanctified by grace through a faith that, resting in Christ, is working through love.
    • We do indeed receive our sanctification as a gift. Not only in the beginning, but throughout the life of daily renewal, believers are always active in love because they are united to Christ alone through faith alone. Nevertheless, the consequence of our being mere recipients of grace is that we are by this gift made active in good works (Eph 2:8-10; Phil 2:12-13, etc.).
    • It is better simply to say that we are working out that salvation that has Christ has already won for us and given to us by his Spirit through the gospel. Though in sanctification (unlike justification) faith is active in good works, the gospel is always the ground and the Spirit is always the source of our sanctification as well as our justification.
    • In this race, the law still functions as God’s command for us, but no longer with the power to condemn those who are justified in Christ. It is easy at this point to turn the third use of the law (to guide believers) back into the condemning use, or as the old Puritans used to say, to turn back from the covenant of grace to a covenant of works
    • Viewed in this light, one can see how antinomianism and legalism come from the same failure to look to Christ for relief from sin’s guilt and power
      • Text as Picture (form + content)

         

        • What dramatic portrait did the speaker intend?
        • What picture does the discourse present?
        • What portrait may the audience have received?
        • What historical information did the speaker intend?
        • What historical information does the discourse present?
        • What historical information may the audience have received?
        • What did the speaker intend to say about the subject?
        • What does the discourse say about the topic?
        • What did the audience understand about the theme?

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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About Joe Fleener

Lover of Christ & His Gospel, Husband to Mandy, Father to three wonderful children, Servant to the Local Church, Bible College Lecturer
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