Friday, February 12, 2010

Imputations, one more time

The other day, I was wondering why, when I was exchanging responses with folk who claim to be Confessional, they got amazed when I spoke about two imputations. They do not believe the Scripture speaks of two imputations.

First the imputation of our sins to Christ (2 Cor 5:21), then the imputation of His righteousness to us (Rom 3:24-24; 4:21-25) . The two are not the same and they are not simultaneous nor are they equivalent. The first happened outside my space-time. The other happens in my space-time. Then I got to read this post from Brett Meyer which quotes the BoC, it was so on target and spot on. This was taken from the Solid Declarations III.

10] These treasures are offered us by the Holy Ghost in the promise of the holy Gospel; and faith alone is the only means by which we lay hold upon, accept, and apply, and appropriate them to ourselves. 11] This faith is a gift of God, by which we truly learn to know Christ, our Redeemer, in the Word of the Gospel, and trust in Him, that for the sake of His obedience alone we have the forgiveness of sins by grace, are regarded as godly and righteous by God the father, and are eternally saved. 12] Therefore it is considered and understood to be the same thing when Paul says that we are justified by faith, Rom. 3, 28, or that faith is counted to us for righteousness, Rom. 4, 5, and when he says that we are made righteous by the obedience of One, Rom. 5, 19, or that by the righteousness of One justification of faith came to all men, Rom. 5, 18. 13] For faith justifies, not for this cause and reason that it is so good a work and so fair a virtue, but because it lays hold of and accepts the merit of Christ in the promise of the holy Gospel; for this must be applied and appropriated to us by faith, if we are to be justified thereby. 14] Therefore the righteousness which is imputed to faith or to the believer out of pure grace is the obedience, suffering, and resurrection of Christ, since He has made satisfaction for us to the Law, and paid for [expiated] our sins. 15]

For since Christ is not man alone, but God and man in one undivided person, He was as little subject to the Law, because He is the Lord of the Law, as He had to suffer and die as far as His person is concerned. For this reason, then, His obedience, not only in suffering and dying, but also in this, that He in our stead was voluntarily made under the Law, and fulfilled it by this obedience, is imputed to us for righteousness, so that, on account of this complete obedience, which He rendered His heavenly Father for us, by doing and suffering, in living and dying, God forgives our sins, regards us as godly and righteous, and eternally saves us. 16] This righteousness is offered us by the Holy Ghost through the Gospel and in the Sacraments, and is applied, appropriated, and received through faith, whence believers have reconciliation with God, forgiveness of sins, the grace of God sonship, and heirship of eternal life.

17] Accordingly, the word justify here means to declare righteous and free from sins, and to absolve one from eternal punishment for the sake of Christ's righteousness, which is imputed by God to faith, Phil. 3, 9. For this use and understanding of this word is common in the Holy Scriptures of the Old and the New Testament. Prov. 17, 15: He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the Lord. Is. 5, 23: Woe unto them which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him! Rom. 8, 33: Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth, that is, absolves from sins and acquits
I highlighted some words for reflection specially the ones in red are a way of proving my point. I am at a loss as to why the Confessional guys I interchanged with in my blog a while ago found it rather odd of me speaking of these imputations. We might ask - the Word of the Gospel, how is this understood?
From the BoC, AP IV, 291-2
The Gospel shows another way. It compels us to use Christ in our justification. It teaches that through him we have access to God through faith and that we should set him, the mediator and propitiator, against the wrath of God. It teaches that by faith in Christ we received the forgiveness of sins, reconciliation, and victory over the terrors of sin and death.
....
Faith alone accepts the forgiveness of sins, justifies, and regenerates...As we have already stated, we teach a man is justified when, with his conscience terrified by the preaching of penitence, he takes heart and believes that he has a gracious God for Christ's sake. This faith is accounted for righteousness before God (Rom 4:3-5)
Now look at what Walther said...found or quoted here.

C.F.W. Walther wrote in 1868: "…you often hear pastors preach, 'You are saved if you believe.' What they should be saying is, 'You are saved so that you might believe."
I thought Walther was Confessional? Huh? What is the point of faith if you are already saved? Walther seems to be saying all are saved, they just have not believed it yet. That manner of speaking is as universalistic sounding to me as anything. The Scripture speaks of all being paid for by Christ's propiation, but not all are justified/saved because not all have faith, not all are using Christ as a shield against the wrath of God, this is obvious. So I repeat what the Apology said... use our Saviour, set him against the wrath of God, against the wrath of the Law, because the wrath of the Law is still there for those who reject Christ. Outside of Christ, there is still wrath, the Scripture is not kidding. The good news is that God has provided for us his Son as the one who answers the Law for us sinners - John 3:16. So we run for safety and cover, this is the Lord Jesus.

Now have a look at what Abraham Calov said, Apodixis Articulorum Fidei ( R. Preus' Justification and Rome)?

Although Christ has acquired for us the remission of sins, justification, and sonship, God just the same does not justify us prior to our faith. Nor do we become God's children in Christ in such a way that justification in the mind of God takes place before we believe.

How is that different from Walther. Between Walther and Calov, I would go with Calov.

I thoroughly enjoyed SC III, I was salivating as I was reading it. Hope it has been a blessing.

87 comments:

Daniel Gorman said...

"For not everything that belongs to conversion belongs likewise to the article of justification, in and to which belong and are necessary only the grace of God, the merit of Christ, and faith, which receives this in the promise of the Gospel, whereby the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us, whence we receive and have forgiveness of sins, reconciliation with God, sonship, and heirship of eternal life." FC, SC, III

As the Formula states, there are three aspects of justification or the imputation of Christ's righteousness: Grace of God eternally given to the Elect (2 Tim. 1:9); the merit of Christ given for all men (John 1:29), and faith given to all believers (Rom. 5:1).

Admittedly, eternal justification/imputation is mainly promoted by hyper-Calvinists (even a blind hog gets an acorn once in awhile). Before the JBFA and OJ fanatics attack me, let me say no Calvinist would ever confess that the merit of Christ is given for all men.

David Cochrane said...

St Lito,

Mark 16:16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.ESV

Granted without faith we do not recieve the fruit of the cross.

However it would be incorrect to remove the benefits of the cross for all people. That would throw us back in to the pit of despair. How do we know justification is for us? Quite similar to what we have with Limited Atonement.

2 Cor 5:18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling [3] the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. ESV

God's peace. †

L P said...

Daniel,

OJ and UOJers will not attack you for they affirm what the hyper-calvinists affirm, that the elect are already justified even before they were born only that in UOJ/OJ, the justification is universal.

See Calov again. I doubt if Calov is wrong on this one.

BoC JBFAers do not dwell into the philosophical aspects of time and eternity. At any rate will oppose you because the means of grace in the above position becomes immaterial. Means of Grace is sacred to BoC JBFDAers.

LPC

L P said...

Hi Bro David,

We have the same background and were both taught to use faith in an abusive way. I too had a reaction to this as you know.

The atonement, the imputation of our sin to Christ is universal but the imputation of Christ's righteousness is not and is subjective, it is not automatic, for if it were there is no more need for the means of grace.

So how does one know if justification is for him? Because Jesus died for him.

This message is delivered by the HS through the means of grace. When that is believed the sinner is justified as per God's Word and BoC.

When one denies the first imputation, the denier does not get the imputation of Christ.

Walther in the quote goes beyond St Paul's answer to the Philippian jailer. Paul did not say to the jailer, but you are already saved, just believe it. Rather he said "believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be saved", there is the future side of righteousness.

Just the same, JBFA does not look to faith, it looks at the first imputation all the time and has the hope and want to be forgiven only for the sake of Christ - like ST Paul in Phil 3.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "See Calov again. I doubt if Calov is wrong on this one.

BoC JBFAers do not dwell into the philosophical aspects of time and eternity. At any rate will oppose you because the means of grace in the above position becomes immaterial. Means of Grace is sacred to BoC JBFDAers."

You have rightly pointed out the trap that most EJ and OJ advocates fall into. However, Calov JBFA advocates should consider this passage from the BOC to avoid the trap of denying the eternal purpose and grace of God:

"Thus far is the mystery of predestination revealed to us in God's Word, and if we abide thereby and cleave thereto, it is a very useful, salutary, consolatory doctrine; for it establishes very effectually the article that we are justified and saved without all works and merits of ours, purely out of grace alone, for Christ's sake. For before the time of the world, before we existed, yea, before the foundation of the world was laid, when, of course, we could do nothing good, we were according to God's purpose chosen by grace in Christ to salvation, Rom. 9:11; 2 Tim. 1:9. Moreover, all opiniones (opinions) and erroneous doctrines concerning the powers of our natural will are thereby overthrown, because God in His counsel, before the time of the world, decided and ordained that He Himself, by the power of His Holy Ghost, would produce and work in us, through the Word, everything that pertains to our conversion." FC, SD, XI

The outward Means of Grace (i.e., Hearing of the Word and Baptism) are absolutely necessary for man's justification and will be accomplished by the power of the Holy Ghost, through the Word, according to God's eternal purpose and grace. However, the Mind of God in justification is beyond the comprehension of fallen man.

Brett Meyer said...

LPC, you state, "OJ and UOJers will not attack you for they affirm what the hyper-calvinists affirm, that the elect are already justified even before they were born only that in UOJ/OJ, the justification is universal."

On second consideration would you retract "are already justified even before they were born" and replace it with "are predestinated to be justified by Christ through faith, by grace, even before they were born"?

My concern with your statement is addressed by Romans 8:30, "Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified." This verse supports the doctrine of election but does not support UOJ or Justification before the Means of Grace working contrition and faith. So my point would be that God has predestinated the elect to be justified in the blood of Christ from eternity but until the Holy Spirit works faith in the elect through the Means of Grace, Word and Baptism by grace, they are dead in sins and not justified, just as the whole world was concieved into that condition.

For any wondering about my confession I confess that Christ died and paid for the sins of the whole world. I confess that the righteousness that avails against God's wrath over sin and on unbelieving mankind is in Christ and never apart from Him. Through faith we die to sin and are raised again by faith to be in Christ and Christ in us taking as our own His righteousness and becoming heirs to eternal life as God's dear children. God would have all men to be saved, only those God calls to believe in Christ as their Lord and Savior from sin, death and Satan will recieve eternal life in Heaven as declared in Romans 8:30 above.

Lito, I'm confident that you'll agree but want to point this out. I thank the Lord that you are His faithful soldier down under. There are so few today.

In Christ,
Brett

L P said...

Brett,

My comment to Daniel stems from his slant or tilting over to UOJ and I wonder if he might clarify.

So if following your suggested replacement, the effective sentence becomes...
"OJ and UOJers will not attack you for they affirm what the hyper-calvinists affirm, are predestinated to be justified by Christ through faith, by grace, even before they were born only that in UOJ/OJ, the justification is universal."

This is the effective sentence. Note I mentioned UOJ in the sentence, is this what you want for me to agree or disagree? Would you like me to agree or disagree that hyper-calvinists believe this?
I know of Calvinists and for them, Jesus coming over to become incarnate becomes an after thought for the whole understanding is governed by a decree.

As to your statement...

Romans 8:30, "Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified." This verse supports the doctrine of election but does not support UOJ or Justification before the Means of Grace working contrition and faith. So my point would be that God has predestinated the elect to be justified in the blood of Christ from eternity but until the Holy Spirit works faith in the elect through the Means of Grace, Word and Baptism by grace, they are dead in sins and not justified, just as the whole world was concieved into that condition

Regarding your quote above, those whom he foreknew he predestines ... so I do agree with your statement above.

Lito

Daniel Gorman said...

LP originally opined to me, "OJ and UOJers will not attack you for they affirm what the hyper-calvinists affirm, that the elect are already justified even before they were born only that in UOJ/OJ, the justification is universal."

LP later opined, "My comment to Daniel stems from his slant or tilting over to UOJ and I wonder if he might clarify."

I will gladly clarify. Hyper-Calvinists affirm that the elect are eternally justified by God (EJ) without any reference to calling or faith. Hyper-UOJ/OJs affirm an universal justification at the time of the resurrection without any reference to calling or faith. Hyper-JBFAs (Calov) affirm a justification of believers that is disconnected from the eternal purpose and grace of God.

I confess what the BOC confesses. There are three things and three things only that belong to and are necessary for justification: the grace of God, the merit of Christ, and faith. Faith comes through outward means of calling (Word and Sacrament) by the Holy Spirit.

I have no quarrel with EJ of the elect, OJ for all men, or JBFA of believers when they are rightly formulated. Hyper formulations of all three tend toward rationalism and a denial of scripture.

Brett Meyer said...

Lito, my mistake I misread your statement and did not understand you were speaking of those who confess UOJ.

Please accept my apology.

Carry on - I thoroughly enjoy reading your conversations.

In Christ,
Brett

Brigitte said...

Does this tie things together at all?

This was the Treasury reading from Feb. 10, by Herman Sasse:



"It is the height of senselessness for the sentiments of the modern man when, in Luther's Little Baptismal Book and in the old agendas of our Church, the child continues to be asked whether it forsakes the devil, if it will be baptized according to is faith, and if it will affirm the question: "Will you be baptized?" But it is not merely avowed liturgical conservatism or even thoughtlessness when the Church for nearly two thousand years has thus baptized infants as though they were adults, as though they could already confess with the mouth and believe with the heart. This is not the "as though" of mere fiction. It is much rather connected with the eschatological "as though" of the Sacrament of Baptism. God views us in Baptism as people who have already died and been raised, put to death with His beloved Son on Golgotha and raised from the dead on Easter morning. Thus he already views us as such who already believe, the poorest, weakest little child which we bering ot Holy Baptism in "the understanding and hope that it will believe" in a way no different from a Basil, an Ambrose, or an Augustine, who as grown men and conscious Christians came to Baptism."

L P said...

Brett,

No worries, carry on as well.

God bless,


LPC

L P said...

Daniel,

Hyper-Calvinists affirm that the elect are eternally justified by God (EJ) without any reference to calling or faith. Hyper-UOJ/OJs affirm an universal justification at the time of the resurrection without any reference to calling or faith.

Agreed.

Hyper-JBFAs (Calov) affirm a justification of believers that is disconnected from the eternal purpose and grace of God

I cannot speak for other JBFAers for loosely speaking a lot of other Prots affirm JBFA only that they have various understanding as to how faith functions.

I for one believe there is no justification without the means of grace.

As to disconnected to the eternal purpose of God, I note however that in Eph 1:11-14, this is how St Paul explains who we are, but he explains this after the fact of faith. There is an element of mystery in our coming to faith if predestination is in view. For grace after all, the love of God to sinners, has an element of mystery in it - What is man that you (God) are mindful of him? (from the Psalms).

The means of grace is part and parcel of that predestination.

Whom he called he justified, how can they call if there is no preacher? Rom 10:11-15.

LPC

L P said...

Brigitte,

Forgiveness is tied to the means of grace and so I seem to think Sasse is affirming this tie up, indeed.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "I cannot speak for other JBFAers for loosely speaking a lot of other Prots affirm JBFA only that they have various understanding as to how faith functions."

I was referring to Calov's statement: "Nor do we become God's children in Christ in such a way that justification in the mind of God takes place before we believe." This statement is contrary to scripture (Rom. 11:34) and previous BOC citations. Calov should have stuck to the forensic formula of justification:

"Those who flee as suppliants to the throne of grace He absolves from the comprehensive sentence of condemnation, and by the imputation of the righteousness of His Son, which they grasp in faith, He pronounces them righteous, receives them into grace, and adjudges them to be heirs of eternal life. This is certainly the judicial meaning of the word “justification,” in almost the same way that a guilty man who has been sentenced before the bar of justice is acquitted."
Martin Chemnitz, Loci Theologici

LP opines, "I for one believe there is no justification without the means of grace."

The means of grace are how we obtain faith (AC, V). However, strictly speaking, there is no justification without the grace of God, the merit of Christ, and faith (FOC, SD, III).

LP opines, "As to disconnected to the eternal purpose of God, I note however that in Eph 1:11-14, this is how St Paul explains who we are, but he explains this after the fact of faith. There is an element of mystery in our coming to faith if predestination is in view. For grace after all, the love of God to sinners, has an element of mystery in it - What is man that you (God) are mindful of him? (from the Psalms)."

There is great mystery in justification which I cannot unravel: God has eternally predestined the Elect to calling, justification, and glorification without fail. God desires all men (not just Elect) to be justified and has provided for their justification in the merits of Christ. God justifies some by faith (not all men, not necessarily Elect, not necessarily eternally, but always believers only).

L P said...

Daniel said I was referring to Calov's statement: "Nor do we become God's children in Christ in such a way that justification in the mind of God takes place before we believe." This statement is contrary to scripture (Rom. 11:34) and previous BOC citations. Calov should have stuck to the forensic formula of justification:

Disagree, with your opinion on Calov's statement. To the contrary he is within well in Scripture - simply just look at John 1:12, Eph 2:3. ( note in this verse how St Paul includes himself in the "we"). We are by default children of wrath, until we come to faith.

I think you are doing some reductionism here. Correct me,but I seem to think you interpret the kindness of God/love of God as God already treating us as his children prior to faith. Part of that love is justice. It is just of God to save sinners and just of him to send them to hell as much as they spurn his kindness.


All of this, i.e., God's saving and condemning is part of God's justice, therefore also part of God's love .

Daniel further states There is great mystery in justification which I cannot unravel

Correct, and better not contradict yourself by saying more than you can fathom.

Further Daniel states God justifies some by faith (not all men, not necessarily Elect, not necessarily eternally, but always believers only).

Firstly this statement is self-contradictory when you tact in the last phrase but always believers only

If God justifies some by faith, then therefore you mean there are people out there that he justifies who have no faith.

Could you give a case of this in Scripture?

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "Disagree, with your opinion on Calov's statement. To the contrary he is within well in Scripture - simply just look at John 1:12, Eph 2:3. ( note in this verse how St Paul includes himself in the "we"). We are by default children of wrath, until we come to faith."

Neither of your citations say anything about the Mind of God. Of course, we are children of wrath until we are justified by faith. Who has disputed this except the hyper-Calvinists and the hyper-UOJers?

IP opines, "I think you are doing some reductionism here. Correct me,but I seem to think you interpret the kindness of God/love of God as God already treating us as his children prior to faith. Part of that love is justice. It is just of God to save sinners and just of him to send them to hell as much as they spurn his kindness."

I think you are getting off track. God could send us all to an eternity of Hell at conception. God mercifully showers His undeserved blessings upon the children of wrath.

According the grace of God and merit of Christ, some children of wrath will be baptized and believe. Some will fall from their baptism in unbelief. Some fallen will return to their baptism in repentance. Others will die in unbelief. God does not predestine anyone to damnation but God does predestine everyone who is justified by faith according to the riches of His grace. All these things are eternally known to the Mind of God. Yet, Calov presumes to know the mind of God in justification?

LP opines, "Daniel further states There is great mystery in justification which I cannot unravel

Correct, and better not contradict yourself by saying more than you can fathom."

Exactly!

LP opines, "Further Daniel states God justifies some by faith (not all men, not necessarily Elect, not necessarily eternally, but always believers only).

Firstly this statement is self-contradictory when you tact in the last phrase but always believers only

If God justifies some by faith, then therefore you mean there are people out there that he justifies who have no faith.

Could you give a case of this in Scripture?"

Sorry, I did not make myself clear. When I said "God justifies some by faith", I simply meant that God does not justify all men by faith. I didn't want to fall into the Calvinist trap of concluding that God begrudges some justification or passes them by.

Brigitte said...

Would not the "simul" come into this? At all times the wrath of God is there. At all times, even we, approach only ever and each time under Christ's cover. Fear and trust are together.

L P said...

Daniel,

This is much clearer now, your disagreement is with Calov.

If Calov is wrong as you assert, then you are saying that justification in the mind of God DOES take place BEFORE WE BELIEVE. Or don't you?

The point is then, you DO believe that God justifies us prior to faith. Correct? For why disagree with Calov if you do not?

If you disagree with Calov, then how is your position not Calvinistic?


That Calov quote says that forgiveness, which though acquired by Christ from eternity happens in your space-time. In fact, must happen in your space-time (my addition).

You said All these things are eternally known to the Mind of God. Yet, Calov presumes to know the mind of God in justification?

Yes I agree all things are known to the Mind of God. But the thing that needs to be proven is this hypothesis - God knows that Fred Nerd out there will believe when confronted by the Means of Grace. In the Mind of God, does God see Fred already his Child prior to faith?

What you can charge Calov is possibly Open Theism, which on my part to believe that charge, you need more evidence that he held to such a view.

My quoting Calov is to support what I see in Scripture, that Abraham believed God and this was counted to him as righteousness. Not before.

I have spoken to some about this and for them God was already treating Abraham as righteous prior to Abraham believing. Do you hold to this position?

For me, God showing favour to Abraham, by speaking to him, does not imply that God was already treating Abraham as righteous. Only in Gen 15:6

I have more to say about your criticism that my quotes doe not contain the words "mind of God". So if the above does not cut it for you, then may I suggest you absorb Calov's last sentence a bit more?

Where does justification of the sinner take place, does it not take place in the mind of God? Do you agree with this or you don't?

LPC

L P said...

Brigitte,

We are safe, IN Christ, outside of Christ there is no safety, this I contend. There is indeed God's wrath.

Hence, God is truly merciful because he wants to bring sinners to be IN Christ. Through Word and Sacrament. These too are God's mercies to us, I contend.

:-}

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP asks, "If Calov is wrong as you assert, then you are saying that justification in the mind of God DOES take place BEFORE WE BELIEVE. Or don't you?"

Scripture does not reveal the mind of God in justification.

LP asks, "The point is then, you DO believe that God justifies us prior to faith. Correct? For why disagree with Calov if you do not?"

God's eternal purpose and grace is to justify the Elect by faith. The Calov citation is an implicit denial of the eternal purpose and grace of God in justification.

LP asks, "If you disagree with Calov, then how is your position not Calvinistic?"

Calvinist doctrine and the Calov citation are both based on rationalism not scripture. There are many flavors of Calvinism. Hypo-Calvinists (and Arminians) would probably agree with Calov. Hyper-Calvinists (and BOC Lutherans) would disagree.

LP opines, "That Calov quote says that forgiveness, which though acquired by Christ from eternity happens in your space-time. In fact, must happen in your space-time (my addition).

You said All these things are eternally known to the Mind of God. Yet, Calov presumes to know the mind of God in justification?

Yes I agree all things are known to the Mind of God. But the thing that needs to be proven is this hypothesis - God knows that Fred Nerd out there will believe when confronted by the Means of Grace. In the Mind of God, does God see Fred already his Child prior to faith?

What you can charge Calov is possibly Open Theism, which on my part to believe that charge, you need more evidence that he held to such a view."

Where did Calov say that forgiveness has been acquired by Christ from eternity? I haven't read enough of Calov to say what view he held. I'm only judging your citation. That citation implies either Open Theism or a denial of predestination in justification.

"Where does justification of the sinner take place, does it not take place in the mind of God? Do you agree with this or you don't?"

Justification is the voice of God absolving the sinner. Doctrine should not go beyond scripture.

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel states, "Scripture does not reveal the mind of God in justification."

This isn't true. The following passages show this.

Ezekiel 33:11 Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?

1 Timothy 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

Matthew 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

John 1:7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.

John 1:12-13, But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

God would have all men to be saved and come unto the knowledge of the truth. This is the mind of God revealed to us in Scripture. It is wrong to go beyond what God has revealed to us in Scripture. It is equally wrong to not proclaim everything God has revealed to us in Scripture.


To Brigitte, your opinion that God is truly merciful to those He has made His children and at the same time they are under His wrath over sin is what Universal Objective Justification teaches. It is not Scriptural though and denies the efficacy of Christ's atonement in those God has brought to faith by grace through the Means of Grace. Through faith we become children of God and are clothed in Christ's righteousness with which we are completely free from God's wrath and truly receive the adoption of sons.

In Christ,
Brett

L P said...

Daniel,

Unfortunately you did not answer my question on Abraham it would have been also more explicit what your position is on UOJ.

You said these:

1.) Scripture does not reveal the mind of God in justification.

This is absolutely false. Scripture itself is the revelation of the mind of God on how men are justified in his eyes. John 20:31. Exactly even Brett quoted to you my verse - John 1:11-12. More on this below.

2.)Calvinist doctrine and the Calov citation are both based on rationalism not scripture. There are many flavors of Calvinism. Hypo-Calvinists (and Arminians) would probably agree with Calov. Hyper-Calvinists (and BOC Lutherans) would disagree.

It is amazing that Calov and BOC Lutherans as you claim would disagree with him. It is also amazing you cast doubts on his Lutheran orthodoxy. Unfortunately most of his writings have not been translated for they were in Latin. But study the man before you disagree...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abraham_Calovius

Now I return to this quote of Calov that seems to offend you:

Nor do we become God's children in Christ in such a way that justification in the mind of God takes place before we believe

This statement by Calov is correct and in fact a tautology. First Calov was very specific, he was speaking of justification and that this justification occurs, i.e., takes place in the mind of God, we was not speaking of other things. The connecting of justification with predestination at this point is a red herring.

Calov was correct. For if we have a common agreement on justification i.e., that justification is to be reckoned righteous, and the one reckoning or accounting this to be is God, then Calov's statement is correct, for justification does occur in the mind of God!

Proof:

Have you heard an audible and literal voice from God that says you are righteous? Tell me did he do this to Abraham? To clarify -- did God say to Abraham, "Oh, good on you Abraham, you believe me I now declare you are righteous". Was there anything of this nature ever happened to Abraham? Was there any such transaction? Please show me from Scripture.

See Gen 15:6. The HS was describing what was going on in God, i.e., the reckoning, where was it occuring, etc.

The point I am making is that justification is an attitude of God to the sinner, he justifies them, reckons them as righteous, and the righteousness that is reckoned to them is the life, death, perfect obedience of Jesus Christ. This is a promise as per God's word, in fact there is a future side of this - that is why St Pauls says - Rom 4:24. To believe indeed that this will happen, to us, that too is faith and hence, a gift of God.

Hence, what Calov was saying that a.) justification occurs in the mind of God - is Biblically correct b.) that this occurs at the point of faith is again Biblically correct - Gen 15:6, and not before.

The throwing of predestinarian underpinnings is irrelevant at this point for Calov was speaking only of justification in that quote, not predestination.

What I do notice amongst defenders of UOJ though is that they like to throw predestination into the discussion which to me is a distraction. They want to accuse non_UOJers of "intuitu fidei" through this route. I am not accusing you of this since, you have not made known if you are a UOJer or not.

I believe that the JBFA BoC way (which is the only BoC way), avoids the errors of UOJ universalism and avoids the making faith a work etc. The means of grace - avoids these errors.


LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

In response to my statement, "Scripture does not reveal the mind of God in justification", Brett Meyer opines, "This isn't true. The following passages show this."

Actually, your citations prove my point. God desires all men to be justified by faith. If God reveals His mind in justification, why are all men not justified by faith?

LP opines, "It is amazing that Calov and BOC Lutherans as you claim would disagree with him. It is also amazing you cast doubts on his Lutheran orthodoxy."

Even orthodox teachers sometimes err.

LP opines, "This statement by Calov is correct and in fact a tautology. First Calov was very specific, he was speaking of justification and that this justification occurs, i.e., takes place in the mind of God, we was not speaking of other things. The connecting of justification with predestination at this point is a red herring. . .

The throwing of predestinarian underpinnings is irrelevant at this point for Calov was speaking only of justification in that quote, not predestination."

Scripture connects justification with predestination (Rom. 8:30). Calov cannot disconnect what scripture has connected.

LP opines, "Proof:

Have you heard an audible and literal voice from God that says you are righteous? Tell me did he do this to Abraham? To clarify -- did God say to Abraham, "Oh, good on you Abraham, you believe me I now declare you are righteous". Was there anything of this nature ever happened to Abraham? Was there any such transaction? Please show me from Scripture.

See Gen 15:6. The HS was describing what was going on in God, i.e., the reckoning, where was it occuring, etc.

The point I am making is that justification is an attitude of God to the sinner, he justifies them, reckons them as righteous, and the righteousness that is reckoned to them is the life, death, perfect obedience of Jesus Christ. This is a promise as per God's word, in fact there is a future side of this - that is why St Pauls says - Rom 4:24. To believe indeed that this will happen, to us, that too is faith and hence, a gift of God.

Hence, what Calov was saying that a.) justification occurs in the mind of God - is Biblically correct b.) that this occurs at the point of faith is again Biblically correct - Gen 15:6, and not before."

Your "proof" is mere rationalism. It's similar to the rationalism employed by the hyper EJers to prove eternal justification in the mind of God and by the hyper UOJers to prove objective justification in the mind of God.

Brigitte said...

Brett: I know all about the adoption of sons and righteousness in Christ; still I identified my 18-year-old son in a morgue last year and I myself, still have to die.

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel, you state, "Actually, your citations prove my point. God desires all men to be justified by faith. If God reveals His mind in justification, why are all men not justified by faith?"

You seem to deny that God would have all men come to faith in Christ because you see that all men do not come to faith and by rejecting Christ remain condemned.


God has also revealed to us that Christ's righteousness and subsequent forgiveness of sins and justification are by faith alone to those God has called out of sin and darkness. It's a gracious gift. We, by our human reason, cannot understand fully how these two revealed truths of God can coexist but they do because God has declared both. Likewise it is abundantly clear that no one is considered justified by God until they by grace have been called to faith through the gracious working of the Holy Spirit through Word and Baptism.

Brett Meyer said...

Brigitte, I am sorry for the loss of your son. It however does not weigh on the issue which you addressed. As redeemed children of God we are not under His wrath but His eternal grace, mercy and stand in His sight as Christ does, clothed in Christ's righteousness.

In Christ,
Brett

L P said...

Daniel,

It is unfortunate you do not deal with the questions I asked of you such as the case of Abraham.

My proof is an appeal to the way language is used. To reason is not necessarily to be rationalistic.

I do not think you have thought much of what you disagree with.

You accuse me of rationalism, but your doing so is just plain name calling.


LPC

L P said...

Brigitte,

With the word "simul" a reference to what the Reformers say -we are simultaneously saint and sinner at the same time?

We are simultaneously saint and sinner at the same time but the sinner side is repenting - broken of his sins though he fails. Yet, though we are sinner and saint at the same time, we are through Word and Sacrament as they elicit faith, are no longer counted as children of wrath, but children of God. John 1:11-12.

God comfort you in the loss of your son, my heart goes out to you.

LPC

L P said...

Daniel,

Additionally though predestination and justification have a relationship, it all depends on how predestination functions in your approach to the world, in other words, how is predestination used. SC, XI, 13-29. In the end, again, the BoC directs any such questionings to the Word and Sacraments.

Predestination is for consolation when the Christian is facing doubts and tests. So in your criticism of the Calov quote by your interposing predestination in it, you show what I observe amongst UOJers, that they muddle the discussion.

Calov's words rather than neglect faith, promotes faith and faith in Christ (SD XI 66-69) in compliance with the BoC's treatment of Election. I brought up Calov's words because I doubt if men like Calov knew of UOJ nor did they believe it, like the synodical fathers did.

LPC

Brett Meyer said...

LPC states, "I brought up Calov's words because I doubt if men like Calov knew of UOJ nor did they believe it, like the synodical fathers did."

This is an excellent point as the UOJists wish to claim UOJ as a doctrine which came from Christ. It has been proven that it is a doctrine of men, created by man's reason, and is not of God. They wish to claim that UOJ was confessed by Luther but as the central doctrine of their faith where are Luther's sermons on this central doctrine? Woe unto them that God never declares the whole unbelieving world righteous, forgiven of all sin or justified in Scripture. They claim it is a thought of Scripture - a concept. It is to laugh.

But as you point out, the synodical fathers and before them the pietistic, universalist fathers of Walther, Hoenecke and the Piepers surely wrote at length about OJ and SJ - they surely didn't waste any time writing about this new doctrine. Tholuck and Knaap gave this man made doctrine wings, scales and a serpents head.

L P said...

Brett,

As you know in my early walk in the Lutheran faith, I first thought the Synodical expositions on UOJ was just another way of talking about the atonement but I discovered that they equate the atonement with justification. I have become very uncomfortable with this equation, because when I study justification, faith is always lingering somewhere when St Paul speaks of it.

Having experience with Pentecostalism and Calvinism, they sounded like:
a.) Word-of-Faith prosperity philosophy of Copeland and Hagin which says that believe that you are healed, wealthy etc. and so you are. Where is the object of faith? Not Christ.
b.) Calvinists equate justification with atonement too but they pull atonement on the left side, hence, since they see justification as not-universal, they see atonement as limited.


In UOJ your object of faith is justification itself, so believe that you are and so you are. Believe that you are not and so you are not. This sounded like Word-of-Faith prosperity style teaching to me. I know I am giving a crass comparison but I cannot help it. Hence the object of faith is not exactly Christ's atonement.

This to me this misses the target by an inch. We know if we miss the target even by a millimeter, we are still off.

God bless.

LPC

Brigitte said...

Ok, ok, I get it, wrath is the opposite of justification. I should not be saying anything, I have only the foggiest idea of what is being argued about: UOJ, etc. I'll be quiet and just submit one more quote:

"We must assert that as you believe, so it will happen to you, because this faith is not taken from your judgment but drawn from the Word of God. Therefore if you can grasp this and believe that God is well pleased with those who fear Him, then it will happen this way to you. If you do not grasp it, you are not under His pleasure but under His wrath, according to Christ's saying "As thou hast believed, so be it unto thee." The thought of God's wrath is false even of itself, because God promises mercy; yet this false thought becomes true because you believe it to be true. However, the other thought, that God is gracious to sinners who feel their sins, is simply true and remains so. You should not suppose that it will be this way because you believe this way. Rather be assured that a thing which is sure and true of itself becomes more sure and true when you believe it. On the other hand, if you believe that God is wrathful, you will certainly have Him wrathful and hostile to you. But this will be a demonic, idolatrous, and perverse thought, because God is served if you fear Him and grasp Christ as the object of mercy."

Exposition of Psalm 51:1 in 1532.

Brett Meyer said...

Brigitte, you are doing the right thing by testing what is being said and taught. Don't stop testing the spirit's as Christ commanded. Test what is said here and what you are taught in Church. We all must do this. Your initial statement that God can be both at peace with those washed in the blood of the Lamb and His wrath over their sin rests on them. This is in fact what UOJ teaches. We're contending against the man made doctrine of UOJ because it destroys Christ's doctrine of Justification by faith alone and perverts Christ's Gospel. Please continue to openly question, test and apply Scripture and the Lutheran Confessions to what you hear - for your sake and that of your family.

In Christ,
Brett Meyer

L P said...

Brigitte,

Do not have to be silent, more dialog will lead to more light, that is my supposition anyway.

What this a quote from Luther?

Therefore if you can grasp this and believe that God is well pleased with those who fear Him, then it will happen this way to you. If you do not grasp it, you are not under His pleasure but under His wrath, according to Christ's saying "As thou hast believed, so be it unto thee."

I highlighted "this", as I do not know the context of the quote.

What is "this"? I suspect that is the Atonement of Christ, i.e., the work and so also the person of Christ?

LPC

Brigitte said...

It's just from the "What Luther says" under the subject "wrath of God" (p. 1550). "This" I think is: that you believe that God is merciful, through Christ, of course. You only have a merciful God if you believe you have a merciful God. If you believe you have a wrathful God, that's what you get, though that's not what he is like (in Christ).

L P said...

Brigitte,

The whole point all the time in my thinking is the object of faith, faith has an object...Christ so in the passage where Jesus says --

"As thou hast believed, so be it unto thee". He was referring to him as the object of faith of the person believing and so those who put their trust in Him, will never be put to shame, so says the Scripture.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

Brett Meyer opines, "You seem to deny that God would have all men come to faith in Christ because you see that all men do not come to faith and by rejecting Christ remain condemned."

No, God would have all men come to faith but some would not (Matt. 23:37). This is the mystery of justification. We don't fully know the mind of God in justification as you have finally acknowledged, "We, by our human reason, cannot understand fully how these two revealed truths of God can coexist but they do because God has declared both."

LP opines, "Additionally though predestination and justification have a relationship, it all depends on how predestination functions in your approach to the world, in other words, how is predestination used. SC, XI, 13-29. In the end, again, the BoC directs any such questionings to the Word and Sacraments."

FC, SC, XI, 43-51 explain why the doctrine of Predestination is taught and must be taught. FC, SC, XI, 52-52 distinguishes what of the mind of God is revealed and what is not revealed.

L P said...

Daniel continues to evade the question about Abraham and where justification occurs...completely bypassing the point of contention over Calov's quote.

Daniel instead quoting FC, SC, XI, 43-51 explain why the doctrine of Predestination is taught and must be taught. FC, SC, XI, 52-52 distinguishes what of the mind of God is revealed and what is not revealed.

Selectively quoting what is not in question, he does not lead the reader to urge on and read further... that the point is to focus on the means of grace of which faith is not possible without them...SC XI 70] Therefore, whoever would be saved should not trouble or harass himself with thoughts concerning the secret counsel of God, as to whether he also is elected and ordained to eternal life, with which miserable Satan usually attacks and annoys godly hearts. But they should hear Christ [and look upon Him as the Book of Life in which is written the eternal election], who is the Book of Life and of God's eternal election of all of God's children to eternal life: He testifies to all men without distinction that it is God's will that all men should come to Him who labor and are heavy laden with sin, in order that He may give them rest and save them, Matt. 11:28.

71] According to this doctrine of His they should abstain from their sins, repent, believe His promise, and entirely trust in Him; and since we cannot do this by ourselves, of our own powers, the Holy Ghost desires to work these things, namely, repentance and faith, in us through the Word and Sacraments. 72] And in order that we may attain this, persevere in it, and remain steadfast, we should implore God for His grace, which He has promised us in Holy Baptism, and, no doubt, He will impart it to us according to His promise, as He has said, Luke 11:11ff : If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye, then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him!



LPC

L P said...

In short ex falso sequitur quodlibet.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "Daniel continues to evade the question about Abraham and where justification occurs...completely bypassing the point of contention over Calov's quote."

No, you're evading how God reckoning Abraham's faith for righteousness in a forensic manner supports Calov's thesis. Does the grace of God in the predestinating Abraham's hearing the outward word, coming to faith, rebirth in baptism, and atonement by Christ have no connection in the mind of God to justification?

LP opines, "Selectively quoting what is not in question, he does not lead the reader to urge on and read further... that the point is to focus on the means of grace of which faith is not possible without them"

Hyper JBFA denigrates justification through word and sacrament. For example, what about those who reject Christ at the time of their baptism but later believe? Does the moment of their baptism have no connection with their justification in the mind of God? What about those who hear the outward word and believe and are later baptized? Does the moment of their baptism have no connection with their justification in the mind of God?

According to FC, SD, III, three things are necessary in the mind of God for justification: the eternal grace of God, the merit of Christ, and faith that comes through hearing the word of God and through baptism. The grace of baptism is absolutely necessary for our justification in the mind of God whether faith comes at, before, or after baptism.

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel states, "Does the grace of God in the predestinating Abraham's hearing the outward word, coming to faith, rebirth in baptism, and atonement by Christ" and "The grace of baptism is absolutely necessary for our justification in the mind of God whether faith comes at, before, or after baptism."

please quote the Scripture passage where Abraham was baptized.

L P said...

Daniel said No, you're evading how God reckoning Abraham's faith for righteousness in a forensic manner supports Calov's thesis.

I just gave you proof using Gen 15:6, the case of Abraham, but you keep on making assertions without engaging as to where my proof is flawed. By proof I mean argument.

Daniel continues Does the grace of God in the predestinating Abraham's hearing the outward word, coming to faith, rebirth in baptism, and atonement by Christ have no connection in the mind of God to justification?

Brett, made a point to you regarding Abraham's baptism which properly speaking I believe you cannot find this incident in Scripture.

In the eternal foreknowledge of God of course God knows all things, even my planning to go to the toilet, he even knows what I do not know and he even knows what I will plan to do etc. But this is a separate issue. Today we know from Scripture that Abraham believed but what if the record of Scripture is different? For I can point Scripture to you that God through Jesus gave people the Gospel and yet they walked away from it. I raise this because if you continue in your line, based on predestinarian paradigm , Jesus coming to the pharisees is pointless.

Where does justification occur? based on the definition of the word - it is reckoning, declaring righteous and so it does occur in the mind of God, for where does reckoning take place and foremost? Reckoning occurs in the mind and so Calov's use of the word "justification" is consistent with the definition of the term.

Daniel, right now it is u who is arguing philosophically not me. Give a counter example that before faith, God was already treating Abraham as righteous, from Scripture.


Daniel continues to do labeling ... saying Hyper JBFA denigrates justification through word and sacrament. For example, what about those who reject Christ at the time of their baptism but later believe?

You keep using hypo, hyper, etc, I know what they mean but I doubt if you are applying them correctly, so you think I am a hyper-JBFA, what is a hyper-JBFAer?

I consider you a UOJer but are you the UOJer of the right kind as may be those I identify as UOJer you will label them hyper-UOJ. In short, one's hyper is another man's hypo, no?

Daniel says For example, what about those who reject Christ at the time of their baptism but later believe? Does the moment of their baptism have no connection with their justification in the mind of God? What about those who hear the outward word and believe and are later baptized? Does the moment of their baptism have no connection with their justification in the mind of God?

As I said, God's foreknowledge knows all things and when is going to be baptized and when one is to born and when one dies. The question is this - do you mean to tell me that Hindu taxi driver in the street is right now being treated by God as righteous because God knows that 10 years from now he will be baptized? If he is meant to be baptized anyway then God does not need me to preach the Gospel to him so I can baptize him for after all it will happen any way - what will be will be.

I think respectfully that you are confounding and confusing the issues here.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

Brett Meyer asks, "please quote the Scripture passage where Abraham was baptized."

I do not know where or when Abraham was baptized. Baptismal rebirth is necessary before a man can enter the kingdom of God (John 1:5). Scripture does not reveal the location or time of Abraham's baptismal rebirth.

LP asks, "You keep using hypo, hyper, etc, I know what they mean but I doubt if you are applying them correctly, so you think I am a hyper-JBFA, what is a hyper-JBFAer?"

I would define a hyper-JBFAer as a person who thinks that he knows the mind of God in justification. If you say justification does not take place in the mind of God until faith, you might be a hyper-JBFAer.

LP asks, "I consider you a UOJer but are you the UOJer of the right kind as may be those I identify as UOJer you will label them hyper-UOJ. In short, one's hyper is another man's hypo, no?"

I would define a hyper-UOJer as a person who thinks that he knows the mind of God in justification. If you say justification occurs in the mind of God before faith, you might be a hyper-UOJer.

LP asks, "As I said, God's foreknowledge knows all things and when is going to be baptized and when one is to born and when one dies. The question is this - do you mean to tell me that Hindu taxi driver in the street is right now being treated by God as righteous because God knows that 10 years from now he will be baptized?"

God doesn't merely foreknow the Hindu taxi driver's future baptism. He eternally predestined his baptism (FC, SD, XI, 45). However, to say that the Hindu taxi driver is treated by God as righteous now because of his future baptism would be hyper-EBJ (Eternal Baptismal Justification).

LP opines, "If he is meant to be baptized anyway then God does not need me to preach the Gospel to him so I can baptize him for after all it will happen any way - what will be will be."

That would be a logical extension of hyper-EBJ. I have seen similar rationalistic statements from hyper-EJers.

Daniel Gorman said...

"I do not know where or when Abraham was baptized. Baptismal rebirth is necessary before a man can enter the kingdom of God (John 1:5)."

My citation of scripture was in error. The correct verse is John 3:5.

L P said...

Daniel.

You said If you say justification occurs in the mind of God before faith, you might be a hyper-UOJer.

Since you reject Calov's statement, and Calov cannot be accused of being a UOJer much less a hyper-UOJer, then by your definition...

You are a hyper-UOJer.


This is getting amusing and entertaining.

Thanks for that.

LPC

L P said...

BTW, Where is Abraham mentioned being baptized in John 3:5?

Arguing from silence, can get you anywhere you please.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "Since you reject Calov's statement, and Calov cannot be accused of being a UOJer much less a hyper-UOJer, then by your definition...

You are a hyper-UOJer."

That would be rationalism. I reject all forms of hyper-justification that pretend to know the mind of God in justification.

LP asks, "Where is Abraham mentioned being baptized in John 3:5?"

"Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God." John 3:5

Before I answer your question, would you please answer my questions?

1. Is Abraham a man?

1a. If 1 is no, what is Abraham?

2, Assuming 1 is yes, can Abraham enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and of the Spirit?

2a. If 2 is yes, is John 3:5 infallible scripture?

3. Assuming 2 is no, is baptism being born of water?

3a. If 3 is no, what is being born of water?

4. Assuming 2 is no and 3 is yes, will Abraham reside in the kingdom of God?

4a. If 4 is no, where will Abraham reside?

5. Assuming 4 is yes, will you acknowledge Abraham's baptism?

5a. If 5 is no, why not?

6. Assuming 5 is yes, you have the answer to your question.

L P said...

Daniel,

Here are my answers...

We come down to 4 yes to Abraham being in the kingdom of God.

You asked will you acknowledge Abraham's baptism?

I cannot because I have no record of it from Scripture. However, I have a record of him being circumcised but not baptized as you claim which is a claim that is an argument from silence.

You do have a curious position in believing that Abraham was baptized.

Yes we should shun rationalism but we should not embrace irrationalism either which you seem to fall for.



Firstly, John 3:5 is not all there is that is spoken of by Scripture as to how we enter the kingdom of God or how we become children of God or children of the kingdom..

God uses Word and Sacrament to create faith in us, and faith is justification. The end result that God wants to achieve in us is faith in Christ. Hence he can use either the Word or the Sacrament to create faith in us. So he can use the Word which what God did clearly in Abraham, Gal 3:26. Also 1 Pe 1:23.

In fact you are the one being rationalistic and not taking Scripture in totality, the sum of God's Word is truth not just a portion of it, I am sure you know that but you are bent on being bent on a portion of it. You made a conclusion by reason yet fallaciously, without Scripture saying something on the topic of Abraham being baptized. You are drawing conclusion but your data is not complete.


Case in point the thief on the Cross with Jesus, that thief died without a record of him being baptized. Jesus said that day the thief joined Jesus in paradise. Lk 23:43. Here the thief was already trusting Christ.

As can be seen now in my discussion with you Daniel, you have come to other areas off topic already, revealing you have some non standard doctrine that is not supported by Scripture.

Lastly you said...That would be rationalism. I reject all forms of hyper-justification that pretend to know the mind of God in justification.

Still, even if you claim that you are the right kind of UOJ - UOJ is still not Scriptural for it goes beyond Scripture, declaring that all people are automatically justified when Jesus died or was raised;, this UOJ idea is extra-Scriptural, a Waltherian idea that is not Biblical.


LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "Here are my answers...

We come down to 4 yes to Abraham being in the kingdom of God.

You asked will you acknowledge Abraham's baptism?

I cannot because I have no record of it from Scripture. However, I have a record of him being circumcised but not baptized as you claim which is a claim that is an argument from silence.

You do have a curious position in believing that Abraham was baptized.

Yes we should shun rationalism but we should not embrace irrationalism either which you seem to fall for."

If scripture says Christ died for all men, would I be employing rationalism or irrationalism in concluding that Christ died for John Doe? If no man enters the kingdom of God without being baptized and Abraham enters the kingdom of God (both of which you have already acknowledged by your answers to 1-4), is it rationalism or irrationalism to acknowledge Abraham's baptism?

LP opines, "Case in point the thief on the Cross with Jesus, that thief died without a record of him being baptized. Jesus said that day the thief joined Jesus in paradise. Lk 23:43. Here the thief was already trusting Christ."

Are you saying baptism of the thief on the cross was too hard for the omnipotent Christ? Or, are you saying that Christ misled us when he said no man enters the kingdom of God without being born of water?

LP opined, "As can be seen now in my discussion with you Daniel, you have come to other areas off topic already, revealing you have some non standard doctrine that is not supported by Scripture."

Is it non-standard doctrine to believe what our confessions teach? "Of Baptism they teach that it is necessary to salvation. . ." Augsburg Confession, IX. Hyper-JBFAers have a lower opinion of baptism. They teach that baptism is not always necessary to salvation.

It's your blog. You can decide what's off topic. IMHO, upholding the scriptural and confessional doctrine of baptismal justification is not off topic.

LP opines, "Still, even if you claim that you are the right kind of UOJ - UOJ is still not Scriptural for it goes beyond Scripture, declaring that all people are automatically justified when Jesus died or was raised;, this UOJ idea is extra-Scriptural, a Waltherian idea that is not Biblical."

Three things are necessary for justification: the grace of God, the merit of Christ, and faith (FOC, SD, III).

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel, you state, "Are you saying baptism of the thief on the cross was too hard for the omnipotent Christ? Or, are you saying that Christ misled us when he said no man enters the kingdom of God without being born of water?"

The verse as you correctly noted before but fail to do so now is John 3:5, "Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God."

Note that the water is nothing without the Word. The God ordained purpose of Holy Baptism is to work contrition and faith by Christ, the Word.

The God ordained purpose of the Word is to work contrition and faith by the grace of God.

Your confession that no one enters the kingdom of God except they be baptized with water and the Word does not include the full doctrine of Christ when you deny that those God has brought to faith through the Word alone are also saved even though they have not been baptized. It is the Word that is the power of God. Your confession makes God's Word insufficient without the visible water. It is the Word which washes us and is the renewing of the Holy Spirit.

Titus 3:5, "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;"

What difference is the spiritual condition of a man who is baptized in Christ and one who has not been baptized but the Holy Spirit has worked contrition and faith in him through the Word by grace? None.

Should a Christian want to be baptized if he has not already been? Absolutely, but demanding it rejects that Christ has already made of an unjust man a just man in God's sight who will be saved while he endures in the one true faith.

Brigitte said...

Daniel, I thought you made some sense until you got to the baptism of Abraham or the thief on the cross.

Other than that, I can't figure out if you guys are getting anywhere or not.

Surely, when Walther says we are saved so that we believe, he does not mean "declaring that all people are automatically justified when Jesus died or was raised."

It's just that the prison door is actually open to all. It's done. Freedom is here. But if you don't actually buy it and walk out, you are still in there. The door has been thrown open, so that you might be free. Salvation's work is done, so you can have peace with your already merciful God, that's how he is.

To me it is a matter of proclamation. When you proclaim, you say: it's done, done for you. And the other person can believe it.

When you explain, then you go into all the parts everyone here thinks they need to go into.

Brett Meyer said...

"Surely, when Walther says we are saved so that we believe, he does not mean "declaring that all people are automatically justified when Jesus died or was raised.""

Yes, I believe he did.

"For God has already forgiven you your sins 1800 years ago when He in Christ absolved all men by raising Him after He first had gone into bitter death for them. Only one thing remains on your part so that you also possess the gift. This one thing is—faith. And this brings me to the second part of today's Easter message, in which I now would show you that every man who wants to be saved must accept by faith the general absolution, pronounced 1800 years ago, as an absolution spoken individually to him."
C. F. W. Walther, The Word of His Grace, Sermon Selections, "Christ's Resurrection—The World's Absolution" Lake Mills: Graphic Publishing Company, 1978, p. 233. Mark 16:1-8.

Walther rejected the Righteousness of Christ through faith alone and created his own way to righteousness, leading and continuing to lead thousands through the wide gate.

Upon reading that statement which is proven by the quote above many will curse me while polishing their Walther idol planted firmly in their heart.

Brigitte said...

Brett and others: I am a newbie to your dispute, but what you write above sounds kind of hysterical to me, Brett.

Justification is centered in Christ's death on the cross to atone for the sins of the entire world. Correct. In this death we see what we can learn about the mind of God. He hates sin but he is merciful and gives the most precious for our ransom. That is his mind as far as we can understand it and see it. As far as we go, we look to the cross to know ourselves as well, that we need such a salvation, (we would have never figured this out--bondage of the will) and that God meant it when he did it, also for me.

So salvation essentially was done there on the cross, but also is in the mind of God and in our mind. God's eternally and our's temporally.

Wow, that's pretty good. Don't you think? LOL, :)

Daniel Gorman said...

Brett Meyer opines,
"Note that the water is nothing without the Word. The God ordained purpose of Holy Baptism is to work contrition and faith by Christ, the Word.

The God ordained purpose of the Word is to work contrition and faith by the grace of God.

Your confession that no one enters the kingdom of God except they be baptized with water and the Word does not include the full doctrine of Christ when you deny that those God has brought to faith through the Word alone are also saved even though they have not been baptized. It is the Word that is the power of God. Your confession makes God's Word insufficient without the visible water. It is the Word which washes us and is the renewing of the Holy Spirit.

Titus 3:5, "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;""

The washing of regeneration is baptism! There is no washing of regeneration without both water and the Word: "...by the Word such power is imparted to Baptism that it is a laver of regeneration, as St. Paul also calls it, Titus 3:5." Large Catechism, Baptism

Those who have been brought to faith before baptism are saved. However, no one is saved by the faith you describe. Justifying faith believes that baptism saves us (1 Peter 3:21).

Justification before God is baptismal regeneration, "And in this latter sense the word is much and often used in the Apology, where it is written: Iustificatio est regeneratio, that is, Justification before God is regeneration. St. Paul, too, has employed these words as distinct from one another, Titus 3:5: He saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Ghost. FC, SC, III

Brett Meyer opines, "What difference is the spiritual condition of a man who is baptized in Christ and one who has not been baptized but the Holy Spirit has worked contrition and faith in him through the Word by grace? None.

Should a Christian want to be baptized if he has not already been? Absolutely, but demanding it rejects that Christ has already made of an unjust man a just man in God's sight who will be saved while he endures in the one true faith."

"Now here we have the words: He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. To what else do they refer than to Baptism, that is, to the water comprehended in God's ordinance? Hence it follows that whoever rejects Baptism rejects the Word of God, faith, and Christ, who directs us thither and binds us to Baptism." Large Catechism, Baptism

If you really believe that baptism is not necessary for salvation, you have rejected the Augsburg Confession and no longer a Lutheran. Have you considered Amyraldianism?

Brett Meyer said...

Brigitte states, "As far as we go, we look to the cross to know ourselves as well, that we need such a salvation,"

I disagree, the Holy Spirit uses the Law of God to convict us of our sin - to show us the depth of our sinfulness. The Law shows us our need for a savior. The Gospel, the cross, shows us what Christ has done to be our Savior.


Daniel, if there is such a term you would be classified as Hyper-Baptismal to the point of denying the efficacy of the Word alone. For your confession to be correct every time the Word declared that man must believe in Christ to be saved it would also state clearly and without question "must believe and be baptized to be saved" - every time. It doesn't.

Daniel Gorman said...

Brett Meyer, you raise a good point. Perhaps, I over-stated Baptismal Justification to the point of being Hyper-Baptismal. Let me rephrase.

When the Holy Ghost works saving faith through the hearing of Word, original sin remains before and even after baptism. Believers may, for a short time, stubbornly deny that baptism saves them. As Martin Chemnitz so beautifully opines in his Loci Theologici, "When faith does not err in its object, but lays hold on that true object, although with a weak faith, or at least tries and wants to lay hold on Christ, then there is true faith, and it justifies. The reason for this is demonstrated in those lovely statements in Philippians 3:12: ;I apprehend, or rather I am apprehended by Christ' and Galatians 4:9: ;You have known God, or rather have been known by God.; Scripture shows a beautiful example of this in Mark 9:24: 'I believe; help my unbelief.'" As unbaptized believers are known of God, they will come to know that God will save them through baptism.

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel, my wife made a good point concerning Mark 16:16, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned."

It does not declare, "but he that believeth not and is not baptized shall be damned."

John 11:25-26, "Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?"

You on the other hand have confessed, "However, no one is saved by the faith you describe."

In your most recent comment you state, "As unbaptized believers are known of God, they will come to know that God will save them through baptism." This confession is in error according to John 11 quoted above.

Brigitte said...

Brett, is that a useful distinction to say that you see your sinfulness by the law versus by looking at the cross? Is there an important point?

When I look at the law I can be crushed or I can kind of finagle my way around it like the Pharisees or some mixture of the two processes. When I look at the cross there is no bringing of a false sinner. At the cross a real sinner meets real salvation.

Brett Meyer said...

Brigitte, my confession is that it is a most critical distinction. It is the proper, God pleasing, separation of Law and Gospel.

Romans 3:20, "Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin."

Galatians 3:24, "Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith."

You state, "When I look at the law I can be crushed or I can kind of finagle my way around"

A person may decieve themselves and feel that they are finagling around the Law, but the Law condemns everyone, James 2:10, "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all."

Brigitte said...

Brett, we all know about the importance of proper distinction between law and gospel. We all know we should not finagle our way around the law. Still, you must admit that you do that, too, and that the Pharisee in you raises his head probably equally much as in me. In any case, we are talking about something else, really.

You are saying at the cross you only see gospel not law? Is that it? I don't know how that is a proper distinction between law and gospel. At the cross is where they meet.

Brett Meyer said...

Yes, as it applies to man, Christ's payment for sins on the cross is pure Gospel.

What Christ has done for us is Gospel. It's a perversion to say it's Law.

Brigitte said...

For Brett:
From Luther's mediation on the passion of Christ.

"They contemplate Christ's passion aright who view it with a terror-stricken heart and a despairing conscience. This terror must be felt as you witness the stern wrath and the unchanging earnestness with which God looks upon sin and sinners, so much so that he was unwilling to release sinners even for his only and dearest Son without his payment of the severest penalty for them. Thus he says in Isaiah 53:8: "I have chastised him for the transgressions of my people." If the dearest child is punished thus, what will be the fate of sinners? It must be an inexpressible and unbearable earnestness that forces such a great and infinite person to suffer and die to appease it. And if you seriously consider that it is God's very own Son, the eternal wisdom of the Father, who suffers, you will be terrified indeed. The more you think about it, the more intensely will you be frightened.

You must get this thought through your head and not doubt that you are the one who is torturing Christ thus, for your sins have surely wrought this. In Acts 2: 36,37 St. Peter frightened the Jews like a peal of thunder when he said to all of them, "You crucified him." Consequently three thousand alarmed and terrified Jews asked the apostles on that one day, "O dear brethren, what shall we do now?" Therefore, when you see the nails piercing Christ's hands, you can be certain that it is your work. When you behold his crown of thorns, you may rest assured that these are your evil thoughts, etc."

Brett Meyer said...

I don't disagree with what Luther says in the quotes you provide.

Brigitte, I am assuming you would agree that the Scriptures are divided cleanly between Law and Gospel.

Do you believe that Christ's passion is Law or Gospel?

Brigitte said...

Brett you would say that Christ's passion speaks "cleanly" just gospel to us. Does that make sense to you?

I've already said that at the cross law and gospel come together.

When we say, Jesus died on the cross for my sins, it is good news to all, for me, and I have my hopes pinned on it, but the fact that it was necessary, and that sin is this bad and cost so much is the full weight of the law.

L P said...

Daniel said If scripture says Christ died for all men, would I be employing rationalism or irrationalism in concluding that Christ died for John Doe? If no man enters the kingdom of God without being baptized and Abraham enters the kingdom of God (both of which you have already acknowledged by your answers to 1-4), is it rationalism or irrationalism to acknowledge Abraham's baptism?


It is rationalism of the bad kind that makes one conclude and say things that are not found in Scripture such as what you do for Abraham.

Then Daniel continues to say ... Are you saying baptism of the thief on the cross was too hard for the omnipotent Christ? Or, are you saying that Christ misled us when he said no man enters the kingdom of God without being born of water?

I am concluding nothing of the kind , here again you manage to be sophistic and throw red herrings. All things are possible for God but not all things possible for God, God makes it actual, not at all. It is possible for God to make my life easy, but he does not do it, that is not the question and again one of your red herrings, I am sorry to say.

Everyone who enters the kingdom got born again, but the means that God uses to cause the person to be in that state is either Word or Baptism, for the former - see again 1 Pe 1:23.

Daniel continues to falsely claim for himself the moral high ground by saying ...Is it non-standard doctrine to believe what our confessions teach? "Of Baptism they teach that it is necessary to salvation. . ." Augsburg Confession, IX. Hyper-JBFAers have a lower opinion of baptism. They teach that baptism is not always necessary to salvation.

Obviously you are now not so rational as before and you laud irrationalism, --- there is a difference between what is necessary vs. absolutely necessary!

I believe Baptism is necessary but not absolutely necessary as shown many times in Scripture - e.g. that thief, the paralytic Lk 5:30 whom Jesus forgave without our record of him being baptized etc. Also, you do not understand or are misusing language, there is a difference between saying something is necessary vs it is necessary and sufficient.

Another point - the end point of Baptism is faith. This is the reason why God uses it for us.

Actually, you claim to be Confessional but you look at Baptism as ex-opera-operato like RC and you are so much so an RC in your model of thinking. But so it is the case, for UOJers are actually functioning RCs, they do not look at faith as an astounding gift of God. UOJ is rationalism of the bad kind.

LPC

L P said...

Brigette,

"Surely, when Walther says we are saved so that we believe, he does not mean "declaring that all people are automatically justified when Jesus died or was raised."",

I am sorry to disappoint but that is exactly what he taught.

He was fighting revivalistic view of faith and in his enthusiasm, he fell on the other side of the horse. He countered revivalism by teaching a universalistic view of justification. Yet rather than this view eliciting faith it actually makes faith optional.

For me, the best approach is the BoC approach. Teach that faith is a gift created by God through Word and Sacrament.

He also I think became allergic to faith language, which is shown as being inherited by the likes of Rev Paul McCain, yet the Scripture does not do such a thing.

LPC

L P said...

Daniel,

Additionally,

You did not overstate your self, you are a hyper-baptist.

Here is what you said "As unbaptized believers are known of God, they will come to know that God will save them through baptism."

You persists in your leap of logic, the rationalism you condemn is present in you. Though baptism is taught in the Scriptures, the end point is to believe again to believe the union it brings us to Christ.

Your position makes baptism an ex-opere-operato work in which case it requires no faith, this the BoC condemns.

So clarify yourself, if a baptized person, rejects his baptism before he dies, is that person saved?

LPC

Brett Meyer said...

I believe Daniel would confess that even though a man is brought to faith in Christ by the grace of the Holy Spirit, he still is not saved unless he is baptized.

That's the reason Daniel has convinced himself that Abraham and the confessing thief on the cross were baptized, even though there is no record of their baptism in the Bible.

Daniel Gorman said...

Brett Meyer opines, "In your most recent comment you state, "As unbaptized believers are known of God, they will come to know that God will save them through baptism." This confession is in error according to John 11 quoted above."

Why are you pretending to be a Lutheran? Only a Zwinglian or a Baptist would twist scripture to deny salvation through baptism (1 Peter 3:21).

LP opines, "Actually, you claim to be Confessional but you look at Baptism as ex-opera-operato like RC and you are so much so an RC in your model of thinking. But so it is the case, for UOJers are actually functioning RCs, they do not look at faith as an astounding gift of God. UOJ is rationalism of the bad kind."

You are more Papist in your thinking than I. I reject the Papist and hyper-UOJ ex-opera-operato doctrine of Baptism: "in the use of the Sacraments, faith which believes that sins are forgiven, is required." AC, XIII. I also reject the Papist doctrine that baptism does not actually save us but that human works are also necessary for our salvation (AC, IV, V).

You, on the other hand, agree with the Papist premise that baptism is not absolutely necessary for salvation. Read their "Catechism of the Catholic Church." It's loaded with loopholes. You won't find any loopholes in the Book of Concord.

Brett Meyer said...

I don't deny salvation through Baptism because I do confess that Baptism for any living person is the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost by the grace of God for the working of contrition over sin and faith in Christ and the remission of sins.

I also confess that Baptism is not the only way to be saved as Scripture declares that the Word also works saving faith through the Word alone.

You on the other hand reject that faith alone saves but require Baptism to be saved in opposition to Scripture and the efficacy of the Word, of Christ. You reject that faith in Christ outside of Baptism is also the washing of regeneration, being born again by faith.

L P said...

Daniel,

You are more Papist in your thinking than I. I reject the Papist and hyper-UOJ ex-opera-operato doctrine of Baptism: "in the use of the Sacraments, faith which believes that sins are forgiven, is required." AC, XIII. I also reject the Papist doctrine that baptism does not actually save us but that human works are also necessary for our salvation (AC, IV, V).,

You claim to reject but in your theology you affirm what you deny.

You continue to evade, I asked you about the person who was baptized and yet rejected his baptism, i.e. rejects or disbelieves what was delivered to him, is that person saved or now damned.

You can only answer this by a YES or NO, either way you will be contradicting yourself.

If you say YES then you are a JBFA denier. If you say NO, then you by default say that faith is required in baptism and so you contradict yourself.

Jesus is the author of that faith and without faith it is impossible to please God.

The problem with you is as rightly Brett declared, you fail to accept the purpose of the means of grace such as Baptism is to bring us to faith or to work faith in Christ and so we are saved.

You on the other hand separates and does not account all of the data in Scripture.

You keep on saying baptism is ABSOLUTELY necessary yet you cannot show several people that Jesus forgave were also baptized, where is the record of such things. God uses either the Word or the Sacraments to work faith in us and so that we might be saved.

You are into ex-opere-operato because you do not see the objective of Word and Sacrament - which is they work faith. Hence, you do not believe faith alone saves because you extruded it from baptism and you reduced baptism to a work. You are corrupting the Lutheran teaching on Baptism and so also then justification. Sorry to say, but this is what I see you promoting.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP asks, "So clarify yourself, if a baptized person, rejects his baptism before he dies, is that person saved?"

As Mark 16:16 teaches, it is possible to be baptized, not believe, and be damned. However, it is not possible to believe, be saved, and not be baptized.

Brett Meyer opines, "I don't deny salvation through Baptism because I do confess that Baptism for any living person is the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost by the grace of God for the working of contrition over sin and faith in Christ and the remission of sins."

OK, maybe you are a Lutheran, albeit a Lutheran who has been infected by Reformed teachings.

Brett Meyer opines, "I also confess that Baptism is not the only way to be saved as Scripture declares that the Word also works saving faith through the Word alone.

You on the other hand reject that faith alone saves but require Baptism to be saved in opposition to Scripture and the efficacy of the Word, of Christ. You reject that faith in Christ outside of Baptism is also the washing of regeneration, being born again by faith."

The key word is "washing." There is no "washing of regeneration" without water: "Hence it is well described as a divine, blessed, fruitful, and gracious water, for through the Word Baptism receives the power to become the "washing of regeneration," as St. Paul calls it in Titus 3:5." LC, Baptism.

Paul was justified by faith before he was baptized. Whether Titus believed before or in baptism is not recorded. Yet, Paul says in the Spirit. "He saved us (Paul and Titus) by the washing of regeneration (baptism)". If God saved Paul without baptism, he would have said "He saved us by regeneration."

The Reformed, in their twisting of scripture, deny that Titus 3:5 and John 3:5 refer to baptism or even to water. But Titus 3:5 and John 3:5 are parallel verses. God saves us by the washing of regeneration (i.e., being born of water) and renewing of the Holy Spirit.

Daniel Gorman said...

"Paul was justified by faith before he was baptized." After rereading Acts, I may have been in error. Paul may have been justified by faith through baptism rather than through the preceding Word. So, I withdraw my argument. That Paul and Titus were saved by baptism does not necessarily prove that all the saved are.

Other verses prove my point. For example, 1 Peter was directed to a large number of strangers. 1 Peter 3:21 says "Baptism now saves us." Is it possible that none the strangers were justified by the preceding Word? And how would Peter know that? I suppose it's possible he know by the Spirit. However, if true, that would undercut LP and Brett Meyer's argument that baptism is not really necessary for salvation.

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel states, "The key word is "washing." There is no "washing of regeneration" without water:"

Daniel, is it the water that washes or Christ's blood in the Word?

Since without the Word the water is just water and less than nothing then it's is and must be Christ's blood in the Word which washes the unclean free from sin through faith given by grace. And since it's Christ's blood, the Word that washes, it does so also in Word alone outside of baptism and through the preaching and hearing of the Word by the working of the Holy Spirit.

Daniel states, "However, if true, that would undercut LP and Brett Meyer's argument that baptism is not really necessary for salvation."

But alas, it is not true.

Brigitte said...

A little bit of Luther for us all:

"Who does not see that it proves nothing whatever against my teaching that Peter says: "Baptism certainly does not justify without faith, but faith does justify without Baptism; therefore no part of justification may be ascribed to Baptism. Otherwise if Baptism in itself alone justified, we could not deny that Baptism without faith does does justify. But since this is denied, justification is correctly left to faith alone. Peter, therefore, wants to say that through Baptism, as through an external sign, the faith that saves is called forth and put into practice. Thus not even the Word itself, which is far superior to the visible sign, justifies anyone by itself if man does not believe. Thus the Epistle to the Hebrews says: "The Word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it".

That's one. And another.

"God does everything to justify us. Christ has merited our justification, and the Holy Spirit implements the merit of Christ so that we are justified. The Word, as well as the Sacrament and the preacher, is the instrument through which the Holy Spirit effects the implementing of this merit of Christ. But actual justifying (formalis iustificatio) is left to faith alone, since without faith neither God nor Christ nor anything else is profitable for righteousness."
(1523)

The princile of "sola fide" must not be impaired by anything even baptism. And we also see that anything to do with justifying is given in the present tense not in the past tense.

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "You keep on saying baptism is ABSOLUTELY necessary yet you cannot show several people that Jesus forgave were also baptized, where is the record of such things."

"And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written." John 21:25

LP opines, "You are into ex-opere-operato because you do not see the objective of Word and Sacrament - which is they work faith. Hence, you do not believe faith alone saves because you extruded it from baptism and you reduced baptism to a work."

I think the real problem is that you view baptism as a work that men must do. If you can't see or read about men doing it, then a baptism can't possibly exist. While it is true that God may use men to pour the water and say the words, baptism is never a work that men do. As the LC states, baptism is always God's work and God's work alone.

"Yes, our works, indeed, avail nothing for salvation; Baptism, however, is not our work, but God's. God's works, however, are saving and necessary for salvation, and do not exclude, but demand, faith; for without faith they could not be apprehended. For by suffering the water to be poured upon you, you have not yet received Baptism in such a manner that it benefits you anything; but it becomes beneficial to you if you have yourself baptized with the thought that this is according to God's command and ordinance, and besides in God's name, in order that you may receive in the water the promised salvation." LC, Baptism

Daniel Gorman said...

Brett Meyer asks, "Daniel, is it the water that washes or Christ's blood in the Word?"

The water that washes us free of every sin is mingled with the blood of Christ (1 John 5:4-12).

"Hence there is now in baptism this efficacy of the blood of Christ. That is the true caustic soap which not only removes the uncleanness of the outer man, but penetrates to the inner nature, consuming its impurities and cleansing them away, that the heart may become pure in God’s sight. Thus, the blood of Christ is so effectively mingled with the baptismal water that we must not regard it as mere water, but water beautifully dyed with the precious crimson blood of our dear Saviour, Christ. Baptism, then, cannot rightly be regarded a physical cleansing, like the Mosaic ablutions, or like the cleansing the bathhouse affords; it is a healing baptism, a baptism or washing with blood, instituted by none but Christ, the Son of God, and that through his own death." Luther's Sermon for the Sunday after Easter

Brett Meyer opines, "Since without the Word the water is just water and less than nothing then it's is and must be Christ's blood in the Word which washes the unclean free from sin through faith given by grace. And since it's Christ's blood, the Word that washes, it does so also in Word alone outside of baptism and through the preaching and hearing of the Word by the working of the Holy Spirit."

Do you have any scriptural support for your theory of the preached word being mingled with the actual blood of Christ?

L P said...

Daniel,

YOu are really a functioning RC, because you think that a person can never be regenerated no other way but by baptism.


Keep on reading the LC and may be you will realize that you should not twist the Scripture and the Confession as you do. That is right the LC speaks a lot about baptism, but no where does it imply that you can be regenerated by baptism alone, for it is not the water that serves but the Word with the water.

Scripture says you can be regenerated by the Word also without the water as 1st Peter says.
Secondly your quoting the fact that there were many things Jesus did that are not written is another twisting and misapplying of Scripture. You reason like a yogi who claims that Jesus went to India or like the Mormos who uses the same passage to prove their point, but it is argument from silence.

What God has written for us is sufficient - your doctrine is a myth because you have no actual passage to prove it.

LPC

L P said...

Brigitte,

Thanks for that quote. I have never read that quote from Luther before. Additionally, the Confession is also in that line of thinking.

The whole object or aim of the Word and the Sacrament is that we may have faith and believe and so be saved.

What Daniel is doing is a misunderstanding of the whole end result of what God wants to happen in the Word and Sacrament - which is faith in Christ's atonement work.

The Word so says 1 Peter 1:23 regenerates.

Baptism also regenerates, but even at that the LC says that it is the Word in the water that regenerates and so water by itself even the LC agrees does nothing.

Hence, in all of these, what is necessary absolutely, if one is going to be regenerated is the Word. The Word is grasped by faith, the object to be grasped - the promise of forgiveness for the sake of Christ's work and person.

We should affirm both - the Word regenerates, and Baptism regenerates. I think Daniel has a problem with the English rendition of "and".

For the case of Abraham, he was regenerated by the Word - John 1:11-12, and so with the other OT saints, David, Isaac, Jacob etc.

Daniel is thinking like an RC because like the RCs there is only one and only one way to be regenerated - by Baptism only. This Daniel consistently affirms.

LPC
LPC

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel asks, "Do you have any scriptural support for your theory of the preached word being mingled with the actual blood of Christ?"

Scripture responds in John 1:1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."

Daniel Gorman said...

LP opines, "YOu are really a functioning RC, because you think that a person can never be regenerated no other way but by baptism."

No, I don't believe that. A person can be regenerated (i.e., justified by faith alone) through the word before or after being baptized. My point was that the term "washing of regeneration" in Titus 3:5 (and "born of water" in John 3:5) is baptism not regeneration by the word. And, yes, the washing of regeneration and the renewal of the Holy Spirit is necessary for salvation.

I am functioning Lutheran ("Baptism is necessary for salvation"). The Pope is the very anti-Christ. He excommunicates priests for teaching that baptism is necessary for salvation (e.g., Leonard Feeney, 2/13/1953). The Pope denies the gospel is necessary for salvation much less baptism (Lumen Gentium).

L P said...

Daniel,

You said...
No, I don't believe that. A person can be regenerated (i.e., justified by faith alone) through the word before or after being baptized. My point was that the term "washing of regeneration" in Titus 3:5 (and "born of water" in John 3:5) is baptism not regeneration by the word. And, yes, the washing of regeneration and the renewal of the Holy Spirit is necessary for salvation.

I do not know then what you are on about because in the statements you made you contradicted yourself. It seems you are backing off from the corner you have painted yourself in. Titus 3:5 is not in dispute, what is in dispute which you ignore is 1 Peter 1:23.

Hence, ex falso quodlibet for you.


In your view, is regeneration the same as "being born again"? Is a person regenerated by the Word alone, saved?

I am functioning Lutheran ("Baptism is necessary for salvation"). The Pope is the very anti-Christ. He excommunicates priests for teaching that baptism is necessary for salvation (e.g., Leonard Feeney, 2/13/1953). The Pope denies the gospel is necessary for salvation much less baptism (Lumen Gentium).

I am not talking about a present day pope or any accused anti-Christ pope of the Sedevacantist. I am saying you are a Romanist because it is the Trentian teaching of the RCs that there is no other way to be regenerated except by baptism. However, though the AC and LC speak of baptism as necessary by no means that it implies that a person is not saved unless he is baptized. This thing, in the last conversations you articulated, that is: - you defended that a person is not saved unless he is baptized. So much so, that you even argued that Abraham must have been baptized even though we all know there is no record of this from Scripture.

You are a functioning Roman Catholic if you say that a person like Abraham must have been baptized to have been saved even though we all know there is no record of this being done in Scripture.

RCs call your view which you agree with them as necessitate medii. This means that if this is lacking, salvation is NEVER attained.

This is the way you have argued for Abraham being baptized (though we have no record for this) since you deemed him saved and salvation cannot happen without baptism (your argument).



Whereas I believe that the proper view approaches necissitate pracepti which I also think is what the Lutheran view approximates. Which means circumstantial inability excuses one from it knowing that God uses also the Word to regenerate people.

RCs affirm both both but this makes them sophists.


You are a functioning RC when you as you have done in this conversation engage in sophistry when you invent words or give words its own spin.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

LP asks, "In your view, is regeneration the same as "being born again"? Is a person regenerated by the Word alone, saved?"

The phrase "born again" is found in two places in scripture. In John 3:3-7, "born again" is baptism. In 1 Peter 1:23, "born again" is regeneration by the word. A believing unbaptized person who is regenerate by the preached word is saved in the sense that God declares him righteous. He is not saved in the sense that he has entered the kingdom of God. Before he can enter the kingdom of God, he must be born of water.

LP opines, "I am not talking about a present day pope or any accused anti-Christ pope of the Sedevacantist. I am saying you are a Romanist because it is the Trentian teaching of the RCs that there is no other way to be regenerated except by baptism."

Feeney was excommunicated for teaching the necessity of baptism before the Sedevacantist movement.

I did a search and could not find the canon of Trent to which you refer. I did find this: "If anyone says that baptism is optional, that is, not necessary for salvation, let him be anathema." Trent is weaker on the necessity of baptism than Augsburg. By implying intent, Trent allows for loopholes. Augsburg does not.

LP opines. "RCs call your view which you agree with them as necessitate medii. This means that if this is lacking, salvation is NEVER attained."

If there is such a group within the RCC, I would disagree with it. Baptism would become a work men must do to merit salvation. However, Trent and subsequent Papal pronouncements make it clear that, in the view of the RCC, neither baptism or the gospel itself are truly necessary for salvation

LP opines. "This is the way you have argued for Abraham being baptized (though we have no record for this) since you deemed him saved and salvation cannot happen without baptism (your argument).

Whereas I believe that the proper view approaches necissitate pracepti which I also think is what the Lutheran view approximates. Which means circumstantial inability excuses one from it knowing that God uses also the Word to regenerate people."

Your view is more Papist than Lutheran. Baptism becomes a work that men must do to merit salvation. If they can't do the work, they are excused from the work.

Baptism is always gift of God that occurs when and where He pleases. When we are regenerated through the word, we earnestly desire baptism but God alone does the work of baptism.

L P said...

Daniel,

You said He is not saved in the sense that he has entered the kingdom of God

False dichotomy. To be "born again" (regenerated) is to be part of the kingdom of God.

Since you cannot deny that Abraham is not in heaven, you have to invent the notion that he must have been baptized or born of water, yet you cannot specify where this happened in Scripture.


For a baptism to be baptism as the Bible says, there must be water and the Word added with the water.

So where is the water being used to baptize Abraham?

Your view is more Papist than Lutheran. Baptism becomes a work that men must do to merit salvation. If they can't do the work, they are excused from the work.

I never declared baptism as the work of men. Where did I imply that?

I believe that baptism is instituted by Christ and is A means of grace. It is A means of grace but it is not the ONLY means of grace.

Baptism is the work of God but that is not the only work he does to save sinners, he can also use the Word as the examples I have made - the paralytic and the thief.

For the case of the thief, your thesis is specially damned because there Jesus said "Today you shall be with me in paradise".


Your view of Baptism is Roman and the Roman Church will not condemn you but they will condemn me....

Here is what they say but say wrongly not considering the overall teaching of Scripture...
Baptism is held to be necessary both necessitate medii and præcepti. This doctrine is rounded on the words of Christ. In John 3, He declares: "Unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he can not enter into the kingdom of God." Christ makes no exception to this law and it is therefore general in its application, embracing both adults and infants. It is consequently not merely a necessity of precept but also a necessity of means.

This is the sense in which it has always been understood by the Church, and the Council of Trent (Sess, IV, cap, vi) teaches that justification can not be obtained, since the promulgation of the Gospel, without the washing of regeneration or the desire thereof (in voto). In the seventh session, it declares (can. v) anathema upon anyone who says that baptism is not necessary for salvation.


Let the reader of these comments judge for him/herself, which view between you and me is Roman. I was an ex-RC catechized kid and I believe I have understood their doctrine well specially about baptism...

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/02258b.htm#IX

Who is it that makes baptism a work? I suggest it is you because you have made baptism a LAW.

I suggest it is you who just like the Romans, make baptism a LAW, so much so that you had to invent he notion that Abraham must have been water baptized.

This stems from your UOJ rationalism.

LPC

Daniel Gorman said...

Glorification is included in the Ordo Salutis (Rom. 8:30). When Abraham was "born again" (regenerated), was he immediately glorified? Was the thief on the cross immediately glorified? If not, why not simply believe, as Christ teaches, that a true baptism of water and word (not a phoney baptism of desire of the Papists) was accomplished before they entered the kingdom of God?

LP opines, "Your view of Baptism is Roman and the Roman Church will not condemn you but they will condemn me....

Not true! The Pope has condemned priests who teach that the water and the word of baptism are necessary for salvation. The Pope will not condemn priests who upheld his phoney non-baptism baptism sans water or the word.

LP opines about the Papist New Advent, "Here is what they say but say wrongly not considering the overall teaching of Scripture...
Baptism is held to be necessary both necessitate medii and præcepti. This doctrine is rounded on the words of Christ. In John 3, He declares: "Unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he can not enter into the kingdom of God." Christ makes no exception to this law and it is therefore general in its application, embracing both adults and infants. It is consequently not merely a necessity of precept but also a necessity of means.

This is the sense in which it has always been understood by the Church, and the Council of Trent (Sess, IV, cap, vi) teaches that justification can not be obtained, since the promulgation of the Gospel, without the washing of regeneration or the desire thereof (in voto). In the seventh session, it declares (can. v) anathema upon anyone who says that baptism is not necessary for salvation.

Let the reader of these comments judge for him/herself, which view between you and me is Roman. I was an ex-RC catechized kid and I believe I have understood their doctrine well specially about baptism...

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/02258b.htm#IX"

The New Advent article anathemizes "anyone who says that baptism is not necessary for salvation." However, later in the article, New Advent defines baptism in such a way that neither water nor the word are actually necessary for a valid baptism:

"The Fathers and theologians frequently divide baptism into three kinds: the baptism of water (aquæ or fluminis), the baptism of desire (flaminis), and the baptism of blood (sanguinis). However, only the first is a real sacrament. The latter two are denominated baptism only analogically, inasmuch as they supply the principal effect of baptism, namely, the grace which remits sins. It is the teaching of the Catholic Church that when the baptism of water becomes a physical or moral impossibility, eternal life may be obtained by the baptism of desire or the baptism of blood."

Brett Meyer said...

Daniel, to whatever degree, God knows, you have rejected Christ in the Word alone in favor of a belief that it is not the Word which saves, creates faith which instantaneously obtains forgiveness of sins and eternal inheritance as a child of God, but only the Sacrament of Baptism which saves. Baptism saves because of the Word, Christ, Christ's body and blood. Thus it is with the Sacrament of Holy Communion and thus it is with the Word alone. By denying that the Word alone also does everything that Baptism does, because it is the power of Baptism, the water only does what God says it does because of the pure Word present, you reject Christ, again to whatever degree as God knows. By the grace of God you have not separated yourself completely from Christ but surely holding to this false doctrine you teach will continue to eat away at your hold on God's pure Word as it clearly has done so far.

By the grace and mercy of God you will see your error and turn from it.

In Christ,
Brett Meyer

L P said...

Daniel,

Exactly too as what Brett said.

You said...

why not simply believe, as Christ teaches, that a true baptism of water and word (not a phoney baptism of desire of the Papists) was accomplished before they entered the kingdom of God?

Because indeed you make Jesus's words of no effect. When Jesus said to the thief, "today, you will be with me in paradise", you are effectively saying this is not exactly what happened, Jesus further did something aside from declaring his promise, he did something more, his words were not enough, Jesus somewhere sometime baptised that thief in water. Can you see what you are doing?

Here is the very Christ himself, he is already saying things to the thief, promising him that very day as he dies, he is going to be with his saviour; yet you reason, it was not enough, Christ must have baptised the thief before entry to heaven.


You have made baptism into a LAW so much so that you even teach that Abraham must have been baptised too though no record of it is found in Scripture. See how peculiar your position has become because you are not accounting for the whole teaching of Scripture. The SUM (not just part of ) Scripture is TRUTH - Psalm 119:160. See also how you have been rationalistic in even teaching that Abraham must have been water baptised.

You are taking AC IX,1 out of context and out of the overall teaching of the BoC and worst you have not been fair in the overall teaching of Scripture regarding the Word.

LPC