Let’s try this one more time…

Now as I get the taste of shoe leather (actual its synthetic rubber which has a distinct taste all its own) and crow out of my mouth how about we define a few things first. 

First Adam in the covenant of works was promised life if he obeyed.

For Moses writes about the righteousness that is based on the law, that the person who does the commandments shall live by them.
(Romans 10:5 ESV)

But the law is not of faith, rather “The one who does them shall live by them.”
(Galatians 3:12 ESV)

If Adam obeyed he was promised life.   

And out of the ground the LORD God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
(Genesis 2:9 ESV)

Adam’s disobedience as our federal head earned us the penalty and curse of the Law.  God demanded our death for our disobedience and he demanded that we still keep the law perfectly. 

And you warned them in order to turn them back to your law. Yet they acted presumptuously and did not obey your commandments, but sinned against your rules, which if a person does them, he shall live by them, and turned a stubborn shoulder and stiffened their neck and would not obey.
(Nehemiah 9:29 ESV)

I gave them my statutes and made known to them my rules, by which, if a person does them, he shall live.
(Ezekiel 20:11 ESV)

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 6:23 ESV)

For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.”
(Galatians 3:10 ESV)

In our name and in our behalf, Jesus paid our debt to the Law as our debt was two fold so was too was the payment:  His life of perfect obedience fulfilled the law for us.  By his death on the cross he satisfied the penalty demanded for our disobedience.  This is what is meant by the active and passive obedience of Christ. 

If, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ. Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.
(Romans 5:17-19 ESV)

For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died;
(2 Corinthians 5:14 ESV)

Now both aspects of Christ’s obedience is necessary if he had just died for us then we would be back to square one the penalty paid but still needing to live in perfect obedience to the Law.   Christ’s obedience to the Law frees us for the need to live to the Law for our justification.  His obedience makes us righteous. 

Now Terry states: 

What was actually imputed to us was the righteousness of Christ that He ALWAYS had, as God, and as man, from birth. This righteousness was SHOWN or DEMONSTRATED by His perfect sinless life, and obedience to the Law.

So according to Terry, despite what scriptures states about obedience to the law isn’t true in Christ’s case, his righteousness that is imputed to us is completely merit less.  And Christ’s obedience isn’t what makes us righteous despite what Paul says in Romans 5:19.

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7 Comments

Filed under atonement, Theology

7 responses to “Let’s try this one more time…

  1. Peter,

    You think you are following fresh Scriptures, as though you had studied the whole counsel of God and inductively arrived at your conclusion. And, I remind you, a conclusion that you yourself repudiated a couple of posts ago.

    But having been reminded by me of the “true Reformed view” of Active Obedience Imputation, which I disagree with, you seemed to shake the cobwebs out of your head, and say, “Yikes, I’m not in step with the ‘Great Ones’ of Reformed Theology’. I better get back in step.”

    And so, contrary to your seeming belief that you are following fresh Scriptures, as though you had inductively arrived at your conclusion yourself, you merely went back to the “Great Ones”, reconstructed their old traditional argument, and said, in Luther’s words (on another subject), “Here I stand”.

    A few final points and you can have the last word — probably 🙂 :

    1. You close with Rom. 5:19, which indicates that THROUGH (Gk. dia) Christ’s obedience, many will be made righteous. I fully agree with that, since it’s through His obedience that He ended up at the Cross and died as the scrificial Lamb of God. But like the sacrificial lamb in the Old Covenant, which symbolized Christ, it was not its LIFE that qualified it as “unblemished”, it was its CONDITION. The picture could hardly be clearer.

    Had Christ been disobedient (unthinkable, the more we know Him), He would have DEMONSTRATED that He was not righteous, and thus couldn’t have imputed righteousness to us.

    So, of course “through His obedience” He went to the Cross and accomplished what became the imputing of His righteousness to us. But nothing you have said indicates that He was ever NOT righteous, inherently.

    You, like so many others, think that Rom. 5:19 delivers the coup de grace to the argument, as though, “See?! End of story!” But it actually, with Rom. 5:18, teaches the exact opposite of your view, which I think 99% of Christians untainted by your “logic” would readily see.

    2. Because He was never NOT righteous (“right”, “in right standing with God”, “inherently right and good”), I believe more than ever, that it is dishonoring to Christ to push the old agenda that it is His obedience that was imputed to us.

    The Scripture says that His RIGHTEOUSNESS was imputed to us, not His OBEDIENCE. We were declared RIGHTEOUS (“right”, “in right standing with God”, “inherently right and good”), not OBEDIENT. We became the RIGHTEOUSNESS of God, not the OBEDIENCE of God.

    3. Don’t be embarrassed for “slipping up” and saying that Christ’s obedience was not imputed to us. For one glorious moment, one brilliantly lit space of time, the simple truth of the always-righteous Messiah, Savior, Lord and yes, fully Man, shined past the dark and flawed arguments of the Westminster divines, and shined in your heart, as you observed the simple words of Scripture, that the Righteous One imputed His inherent righteosness, which He never lacked, to us.

    May that light shine again in your heart, and the hearts of many.

    Final sidepoint: Peter, you have accurately quoted me in all of your posts. For that I am grateful. Too often, opponents in these kinds of discussions [deliberately?] misprepresent what the other has said. You have refrained from that, and I appreciate it very much.

    Blessings,
    Terry

  2. Terry:

    1. With regards to this: “Don’t be embarrassed for “slipping up” and saying that Christ’s obedience was not imputed to us. For one glorious moment, one brilliantly lit space of time, the simple truth of the always-righteous Messiah, Savior, Lord and yes, fully Man, shined past the dark and flawed arguments of the Westminster divines, and shined in your heart, as you observed the simple words of Scripture, that the Righteous One imputed His inherent righteosness, which He never lacked, to us.” (sic)

    Just so we are in complete understanding I have been working 12 hour shifts for the past three weeks and then while I am home I have still been working on “work” projects then taking breaks to post to this blog there is more somnambulation in that post than anything else.

    2. I’ve not seen you answer any of the scripture with regards to life appointed to those that kept the commandments, what righteousness was fulfilled when Christ was baptized, nor any of the other scriptures that I posted besides Romans 5:17-19. As to whether the picture could hardly be clearer well, as you yourself pointed out there is a vast majority of theologians that disagree with the idea of non-meritorious salvation. Not just the Westminister divines, but also Luther, and others of the reformation. Not to mention the Baptists that signed the LBC 1689.

    3. I’ve never posted that Christ wasn’t in right standing or not right with God that is a straw man that you have concocted yourself please take it back to your cornfield with you. What I have stated is that what Christ was doing was for us and not to prove his own righteousness.

    4. I believe that I’ve said all that I have to say on this subject so I’ll let Jeremy finish up with anything else he wishes to post on this.

    Peter Nelson

  3. I’ll try to finish up my thoughts tomorrow night. Stay tuned!!!
    🙂

  4. I’m sure that they’ll appreciate something from the kinder and gentler side of the blog rather than the old grump that’s been posting lately. 🙂

  5. Peter,

    I fully accept your explanation of somnambulism, and was really only ribbing you, tongue in cheek [is that a mixed metaphor?].

    (Although, come to think of it, sleep loss is commonly used as a sorta truth serum 🙂 )

  6. I’m gonna hafta post my conclusion tomorrow night instead. Sorry.

  7. Take your time boss, after all it is your blog 🙂

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