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Showing posts with the label Good Works

Reformed Stupidity?

By Wes Bredenhof I saw this question on Reddit recently: Do Reformed preachers not see the stupidity of telling people not to rely on their works while also saying genuine faith produces good works? It just seems like double-speak to avoid being labeled Catholic or Arminian. I reply: this Reformed preacher fails to see the stupidity in this at all. I’ll explain. There is an important distinction being missed here by the questioner. In Reformed theology, we distinguish between the basis of your salvation and the outcome/response to your salvation. Drawing on the Bible, Reformed theology teaches that the basis or ground of our salvation is only in the finished work of Jesus Christ (Romans 3:24). His perfect obedience and his perfect sacrifice on the cross constitute my righteousness before God. I can be justified – declared righteous – only because of Christ. Therefore, I rely on him and what he has done, rather than on me and what I have done. Having been saved by God’s free grace in Ch

Judged According to Works? (Vos)

Posted at The Reformed Reader : The Bible teaches that sinful people cannot earn salvation or contribute to their salvation. Justification and eternal life are free gifts of God received by faith alone in Christ alone (Rom 4:1-8, Gal. 2:15-16, Eph 2:8, etc.). Or as the Heidelberg Catechism says, the good we do can’t make us right or help make us right with God because he demands entire perfection, but “even the very best we do in this life is imperfect and stained with sin” (Q 62). However, doesn’t God promise to reward obedience (Mt. 5:12, 10:41-41, Heb. 11:6, etc.)? Geerhardus Vos explained this well: “That being judged “according to works” also applies to believers is apparent from Matthew 25:34–40; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 22:12. However, this is not to be understood in the sense that works provide the basis for the decision whether one has earned or not earned salvation. Works will come into consideration as a manifestation of genuine saving fait

Of Faith and Good Works, and of Their Reward, and of Man's Merit

The Second Helvetic Confession CHAPTER XVI Of Faith and Good Works, and of Their Reward, and of Man's Merit WHAT IS FAITH? Christian faith is not an opinion or human conviction, but a most firm trust and a clear and steadfast assent of the mind, and then a most certain apprehension of the truth of God presented in the Scriptures and in the Apostles' Creed, and thus also of God himself, the greatest good, and especially of God's promise and of Christ who is the fulfilment of all promises. FAITH IS THE GIFT OF GOD. But this faith is a pure gift of God which God alone of his grace gives to his elect according to this measure when, to whom and to the degree he wills. And he does this by the holy Spirit by means of the preaching of the Gospel and steadfast prayer. THE INCREASE OF FAITH. This faith also has its increase, and unless it were given by God, the apostles would not have said: "Lord, increase our faith" (Luke 17:5). And all these things which up t

Why our good works cannot be part of our righteousness before God.

Heidelberg Catechism (extended) The Catechism Method of Instruction in the Christian Religion As the Same is Taught in the Reformed Churches and Schools (with the Scripture references written out) Note. This Catechism is fully based on the Scriptures. The references to Scripture are indicated in parentheses with a letter. For example, the letter (a) points to the texts (a) placed after the answer. 24. Lord's Day   Q. 62. But why cannot our good works be the whole, or part of our righteousness before God?  A. Because, that the righteousness, which can be approved of before the tribunal of God, must be absolutely perfect, (a) and in all respects conformable to the divine law; and also, that our best works in this life are all imperfect and defiled with sin. (b)   (a) Gal.3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.

A Righteousness Apart from the Law That Is Not against the Law: The Story and Message of The Marrow of Modern Divinity

Christian Focus By Andy Wilson - Posted at The Ordained Servant : The Story of The Marrow of Modern Divinity The Marrow of Modern Divinity is a book with an interesting history and an important message. The title is indicative of the book’s content: it is filled with choice quotations from key Reformers, including Luther, Calvin, Bullinger, Ursinus, and Ames. First published in 1645 by an English bookseller/barber/surgeon named Edward Fisher, it was also at the heart of a controversy in the eighteenth-century Scottish church. In the midst of that controversy, a minister named Thomas Boston published an edition of The Marrow that contained extensive explanatory notes on Fisher’s text. A 2009 edition published by Christian Focus presents Boston’s helpful, but sometimes cumbersome, notes in a reader-friendly format. [1] The Marrow is written as a dialogue among four characters: Evangelista (a minister of the gospel); Nomista (a legalist); Antinomista (an antinomian); and Neo

Of Good Works

Westminster Confession of Faith  (1646) Chapter XVI I. Good works are only such as God has commanded in His holy Word, [1] and not such as, without the warrant thereof, are devised by men, out of blind zeal, or upon any pretence of good intention. [2] II. These good works, done in obedience to God's commandments, are the fruits and evidences of a true and lively faith: [3] and by them believers manifest their thankfulness, [4] strengthen their assurance, [5] edify their brethren, [6] adorn the profession of the Gospel, [7] stop the mouths of the adversaries, [8] and glorify God, [9] whose workmanship they are, created in Christ Jesus thereunto, [10] that, having their fruit unto holiness, they may have the end, eternal life. [11] III. Their ability to do good works is not at all of themselves, but wholly from the Spirit of Christ . [12] And that they may be enabled thereunto, beside the graces they have already received, there is required an actual influence of the sam