Monday, January 05, 2009

Love saves, so I was told

It seems that my impression of what friends in Mother Church believe in is still accurate.

In an interaction in one of the blogs I said this:

To us when a person is being legalistic it means the person is insisting the performance of the Law to the letter.

What the RC gentleman defender of faith said:

Which “Law” are you talking about? Natural law? Mosaic law? The Law of Love that Christ gave us at Jn 13:34? The first two do not save, but the last one does. Christ cries out to us, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and NOT DO WHAT I TELL YOU?” (Lk. 6:46).

I don't know for him but I know for me, The Law of Love is exactly the one that damns me. So for him, there is a Law that God could give that saves, a new Law, the other old ones are none doable, non-salvific, the new one is.

Also there is one thing that Jesus has left for you to do and so be saved - love. You need to use the love that Jesus gave to you so you thereby save yourself. Am I putting this crudely?

Do I have disagreement about love? Not really, except that if it is a Law, then I am failing it and would fail it even if I were suceeding in it today.

So there are two understandings and questions that are far apart. How does the Bible relate love with salvation, that is the subject at hand. Is love the cause of salvation? Or is love the result of salvation? Clearly our friend(the RC gentleman) is of the first, while we(Classic Protestants) are of the second.


Xan said...

Great post, Lito. Really shows how the Roman church obscures the Gospel.

I did get your last question wrong, because I thought you meant from God's perspective rather than ours. I think it's worded ambiguously...

L P Cruz said...


Thank you for the correction, I have corrected the post.


Past Elder said...

Free falling Judas in a wind tunnel, you'd think 1 John wasn't in the Bible.

We do good works not in order to be saved, but because we are saved.

How hard is that?

Apparently real hard -- you've got RCs and EOs saying we aren't saved by works except we are, and Protestants saying the same thing with a different list of works (sanctified living, charisms, whatever, instead of a sacramental system), liberals saying we got it about the works so we don't heed the rest, and religious liberals saying we got it about the works but it looks nicer with a lot of churchy stuff around.

And Lutherans so afraid that sola fide will not be heard that they don't deal with works at all even if they do them.

St John describes an outcome, not a check list to decide if the outcome has happened for yourself.

steve martin said...

We do not want to love. Either God or our neighbor.

That is why we continue in our sin.

We want to.

That is not a barrier to God, however, for He loves much so that He gave His life for them and forgives them and adopts them in baptism to be His own.

Love? Hah! How are you doing with your love? Especially with your enemies. (???)

L P Cruz said...


You are at your best when you do guerilla quips, get the hit and pack up and go.

Ain't that the truth, Lutherans are paranoid, sola fide might be neglected they don't talk about works even though they do them everyday.


L P Cruz said...


If it is left to me to use the love Jesus gave me and so I shall be saved, the Lord might as well send me straight down to hell, because by all accounts I will not make it.

Reading the Scripture, Paul says he does not want to be found having a righteousness of the Law but faith in Christ.

I like to be accepted by God out of his mercy and not because of my doing or the using of the ability he has given me.


steve martin said...

"If it is left to me to use the love Jesus gave me and so I shall be saved, the Lord might as well send me straight down to hell, because by all accounts I will not make it."

I'd bet that I'd beat you there by at least 10 minutes!

L P Cruz said...


(I had to edit some spanish words as it could be offensive).

You might like what Luther thinks about progressive sanctification. I read that for him, progressive sanctification is not looking at your holiness and how you have developed.

Rather it is the reverse, rather than seeing how you are doing it, you see how vile and wicked you are and the more you are convinced of your own sinfulness, not of your righteousness.

This is weird in people's eyes, but my experience says this is true.

Ayayay, it is an upside down world, but no, there are still people who hope that we are really not so bad, we just have to believe in ourselves.


steve martin said...


Believing in ourselves is the last thing we need to believe in. (as far as our righteousness is concerned)!