Grace not Works in Old Testament

2009 March 29

Sometimes Christians mistakenly think that the Old Testament saint was saved by keeping the law.  This is a destructive mistake, because it makes us separate ourselves from the Old Testament based on a false claim.  I review Psalm 130 to show that grace, not works is the way of salvation in the OT.

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Infants and the Law

2009 March 11

An ingredient that ought to be thrown into anyone’s stew if they are cooking up a theology about faith in children is this:

Infants are called to keep the law; infants can break the law.

Cursory examples are:

Gen 17 – Circumcision

Positive: Infants required to recieve circumcision;

Negative: he who did not receive circumcision are considered “cut off from his people”

Jdg 13 – Nazarite Vow

Positive: Samson required to be a Nazarite “from the womb”;

Negative: Samson must not drink alcohol – so his MOTHER could not drink it while he was in the womb, because it would cause HIM to break the command.

GRANTED:

Ability to break the law does not necessarily imply ability to keep the law.

Ability to keep the law externally does not imply internal regeneration.

However, I do think the fact that the Law binds infants is important to the question.  At very least it implies that whenever we talk about the subject of covenant infants it must be through or with God’s law, and not apart from God ‘s law.

Unrepentant covenant breakers are supposed to be excommunicated.  One of the reasons that some paedobaptists refuse to commune children is because they are either unsure of their faith or are sure that they have no faith at such a stage.

IF we are sure they have NO FAITH, then the children are necessarily UNREPENTANT COVENANT BREAKERS.  This means we must not say of them:

Baptism is a sacrament of the New Testament, ordained by Jesus Christ, not only for the solemn admission of the party baptized into the visible Church; but also to be unto him a sign and seal of the covenant of grace, of his ingrafting into Christ, of regeneration, of remission of sins, and of his giving up unto God, through Jesus Christ, to walk in the newness of life. Which sacrament is, by Christ’s own appointment, to be continued in His Church until the end of the world. (WCF XXVIII.1)

In other words, if we KNOW that children have no faith, then we CANNOT mean that baptism is an intentional sign of regeneration and faith.  BUT that is exactly what both the Westminster Confession of Faith, and the Bible maintain.  Both Baptism and Circumcision are seals of the righteousness that comes through faith.  Baptism says “this one is in Christ and forgiven” (See the Bible):

[Abraham] received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. (Rom 4.11 ESV)

11 In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. 13 And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, 14by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.  (Col 2.11-14 ESV)

3Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.  (Rom 6.3-4 ESV)

27For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.

Maybe, I’ll edit more into this later.


N T Wright and Works Salvation

2009 March 8

I posted the following here: LINK.  (I don’t know if John Armstrong will approve it yet).  It is a response to other commentators.

——-My Comment:———

I’d like to respond to the fear that Wright might be endorsing works-salvation.

Wright absolutely rejects any forms of “works salvation.” He has said, jokingly, that anyone who thinks they can earn anything from God, doesn’t need a theologian, they need to see a psychiatrist.

Wright actually says that the Spirit effectually calls people to life through the preaching of the gospel. He does believe that “ENTRANCE” to salvation is by grace through faith alone. But he doesn’t see the WORD “justification” as being the right bible word for ENTRANCE in every occasion.

When Wright talks about future vindication according to works, he is NOT saying that a person who is regenerate could lose salvation by not being good enough.

There is no ENOUGH judgment to works, only and EITHER/OR:

EITHER a man’s works display the fruit of the Spirit – OR they don’t. This is a variation on Jesus’: a good tree cannot bear bad fruit. (Matt 7.15-20)

If a man is ontologically regenerate – he WILL bear the fruit which WILL vindicate his faith on the last day. The last day judgment of works is not set against the faith vindication in life – the works that we are judged by PROVE THAT WE HAD FAITH.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” (Eph 2.10 – ESV)

We real christians can’t ESCAPE doing the good WORKS which are proof of God’s WORK in us in the first place. WORKS prove FAITH.


Anastasia’s Wisdom: Crucifixion – “Your Love is Better to Me than Wine (Song 1.2)”

2008 July 2

Krista had the girls in the car today and was hearing this song (Beautiful One – Jeremy Camp):

Beautiful one I love you
Beautiful one I adore
Beautiful one my soul must sing

Anastasia announced,

They’re talking about God.

Krista asked,

You’re right, Anastasia. How do you know?

And now, this reply:

Because when Jesus died on the cross, the blood and wine came down, and he saved us.


From: Muslims for Ron Paul Yahoo Group: “Ron Paul Black Man’s Best Friend.”

2008 January 11

A quote from a Muslim site:

Is Dr. Paul a racist? No, Dr. Paul WILL SET YOU FREE. We need to
emphasize his prison release program and of make sure people realize
that Hillary and Obama are NOT going to end war, they want new wars.
Ron Paul is the Black Man’s Best Friend. He is going to bring your
sons home from the war and release all non-violent drug offenders from
prison his first day in office, he said.


Ron Paul has more Black supporters than any other Republican candidate and more active US military personnel supporters than any other candidate.


Ron Paul and Religious Groups: Muslims, Jews and Christians

2008 January 11

Jewish Site

…..http://www.jews4ronpaul.org/home

Christian Site

…..http://www.christiansforronpaul.com/
……………especially: statement of faith
…………………………….articles

Muslim Sites:

.