Return To Our Regular Programming

I have been at Presbytery for most of last week, which was why I was almost entirely absent from the blogging world. But I am back now, and ready to hit the saddle again. To start off with, I owe Doug a response. In the continuing debate about covenant theology, he has responded in this way (his words in block quotations, and my response underneath). This is from his blog post Obedience and Life, one of the comments.

Lane, it was apparent that we were not rejecting obedience because we insisted on it just a few sentences before the passage you quoted.

I don’t believe that I was saying that you were rejecting obedience (what FV’er does?). I was saying that you were rejecting any overlap between obedience and works, such that you could say that the CoW was based on grace, and that obedience was required, but works were not. I am challenging that assertion. More below under the discussion of Paul.   

We distinguish between obedience and works because Paul does. In the Pauline vocabulary, deeds without faith is works. Deeds done in faith is obedience.

So, when Paul talks about justification being not by the works of the law, is he excluding all works done by faith or without faith, or is he only excluding some works? Is he excluding obedience from that? If so, then your distinction (I would say divorce) of works and obedience falls to the ground. It does not sound to me as if you are rejecting all works as being part of justification. What does the phrase “works of the law” mean? I argue that it means any and all works, whether done from faith or not. As such, it would certainly include everything under the label of obedience. Now, of course, Paul is talking about the CoG here, not the CoW. In the CoW, Adam would have been justified by works. Out of curiosity, what is your interpretation of Romans 2:13? Is this a statement that says that people will actually be justified on the final day by works, or does it mean “do this and live,” a hypothetical but realistically impossible schema (impossible because of sin)?

We are bi-covenantal if we believe there are two covenants. This we believe, holding the covenants have with different terms and different promises, but with the same gracious God as the other party to the covenant. You are saying that we cannot be bi-covenantal unless we believe that the two covenants are radically different in nature. But you can’t find that in the Confession, which is why numerous Reformed theologians agree with us that the “covenant of works” was gracious.

The confession says that the principle of Adam’s obtaining eternal life was obedience, and in no way is that true of the CoG. That is a radical difference, if you ask me.

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58 Comments

  1. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    You cite wilson’s vocabulary, where he seeks to define works as “deeds done without faith” but then your criticize him with your own vocabulary, talking about works done with faith or not faith.

    To put it better in Wilsons vocabulary, you should ask “So, when Paul talks about justification being not by the works of the law, is he excluding all deeds done by faith or without faith, or is he only excluding some deeds? Is he excluding obedience from that?”

    Juts for greater clarity

  2. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    if Wilson is sure that Adam could not put God in Adam’s debt, then Romans 4:4 would necessitate Wilson denying that “works” as Paul means them are involved in the CoW.

  3. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    I guess that’s really the sticking point for the FV.

    We’d say: God is eternal, and we are not, and eternality is an incommunicable attribute, and God CAN’T (or he’d deny himself) make us “eternal” even by pact.

    We’d say: Man cannot place god in his debt, because God is a-se, and God cannot become dependent even by pact THEREFORE, when God makes a pact, he doesn’t place himself as a debtor to man, but his debt is only TO HIMSELF.

    Therefore, since “works” would place God in debt to man (Romans 4:4), “works” have no place in any actual covenant God makes with man.

  4. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    Paul, I’m not sure how your comment is much different from how I stated it. In my mind, deeds and works are the same thing. Maybe Doug doesn’t hold to that.

    Do you believe that we are given eternal life? What isn’t eternal about eternal life? Of course, we are not eternal in the sense of having existed from eternity past. I like the mathematical analogy here: we are like a limit from the right. We will live to eternity future. The fact that God is a-se does not imply that pactum merit places God in a dependent position. That is an extension of what I’m saying, and what others are saying. The pact places God in debt to His own Word. He has to do what He promised He would do if the conditions are met. If Adam had obeyed, then the conditions would have been met, and God would be obligated to meet those conditions. But this is not what you have said before. Before, you said that there is no promise at all in the CoW. Despite the reasoning of WCF 19.1-2 combined with WLC 99, you still refuse to see that a threat of punishment in the law implies the corresponding opposite positive promise. Threat of death for disobedience equals promise of life for obedience. The eternality of death is present, is it not? Then so is the eternality of the life (from the right).

  5. Mark said,

    April 30, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    Despite the reasoning of WCF 19.1-2 combined with WLC 99, you still refuse to see that a threat of punishment in the law implies the corresponding opposite positive promise.

    The negative threat “you will die”, the [implied] promise “you will not die” is its positive opposite.

  6. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    I think that Pr. Wilson’s distinction may hold in one context and not in another. Pr. Lane, I agree with you (and I think Pr. Wilson does, too) that, as concerns justification, all human works (save the Last Adam’s) are out of the question – period. However, outside of the context of justification, Pr. Wilson’s distinction makes sense. There are two kinds of deeds: good and everything else (evil). Deeds w/o faith fall into the latter category. Lawful deeds done by a heart purified by faith (and all other stipulations – see WCF chapter 16) fall into the former.

  7. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 1:43 pm

    The only hooker here is that we can speak of Adam’s justification as well. Basically, we say that there are two hypothetical methods of justification: works or faith. They are not combinable. The method of works is not possible today for any sinner, since sin makes us infinitely indebted to God. We can never pay what we owe. Faith lays hold of the righteousness of another, such that Jesus’ righteousness becomes ours. The point here is that faith and works are antithetical when it comes to justification. It is either one or the other. Adam would have been justified by works had he obeyed. We can only be justified by faith.

  8. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    1. I’m arguing on two fronts a) the lack of foundation in the text of Genesis of a “covenant” that includes an offer of eternal life in return for obedience to moral law. If we’re going to be dogmatic, it needs to be more easily assertible: it needs to be a necessary consequence of something. It may be true, but it may not be *necessarily* true. (b) That IF we do posit such a covenant, we need to do so in a way that doesn’t give the impression man earns a reward for works, or that man places God in his debt.

    2. I understand about eternal life. I’m just making an analogy, and I meant to push in the direction of the kind of eternity (past) that IS incommunicable. Sorry if that was unclear.

    3. “The fact that God is a-se does not imply that pactum merit places God in a dependent position. ” Good! I don’t think so either.

    But calling what Adam does to get a reward “works” DOES seem to put God in a debtor position, BECAUSE of Paul’s definition of Works in Romans 4:4. Insisting that Adam does something called ‘works’ to get a reward undermines what you’ve said you agree about the unmerited nature of God making the pact in the first place, and the distinction of pact merit from other merits. Works justice is strict justice. Romans 4:4 teaches that. That’s the ground I’d like to defend.

    4. Why speak of Adam’s “justification” Isn’t that imprecise? He was created in righteousness. I’ve seen Bavink or some other standard guy, (IIRC) saying that in a sense Adam was already “justified”.

    Shouldn’t we instead speak of his glorification?

  9. R. F. White said,

    April 30, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    Pduggie, I don’t read Lane as saying that man places God in his debt, but that God condescends to place Himself in man’s debt according to His own covenant word. Also, please explain how God’s putting Adam on probation nullifies God’s showing favor toward Adam before his probation. God’s favor toward Adam many have been unmerited, but it was not unconditional.

  10. R. F. White said,

    April 30, 2008 at 3:51 pm

    argh, not “many” have been unmerited but “may” have been unmerited.

  11. Stephen Tipton said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:00 pm

    to pduggie:

    You are mixing the merited nature of the reward/punishment due to the enacting of a covenant with the gracious (strictly unmerited) nature of the covenant itself. Are you saying that because the covenant was unmerited that any and all fruit from that covenant is unmerited in the absolute sense? Is there no sense at all in which, when Adam might have fulfilled the condition placed upon him by God in the CoW, he would have merited the reward stipulated in the covenant? Even if you say that his ability to perform the duties required in the CoW was given by the grace of God, don’t you think God knew that?

    Works justice is strict justice? Have you never had a boss who hired his inept nephew? At any rate, you are absolutely right: if Adam had fulfilled the CoW per the stipulations which God dictated to him, then he would have deserved the benefit stipulated in that covenant. But what we need to stop doing is looking for a way to not pat Adam on the back (moot point as it is in any event) but see God for the gracious and merciful God that He is. He did not have to create Adam. He did not have to create him in his own image. He did not have to create him upright and good. He did not have to create the garden. He did not have to put him into a garden which he did not plant (sound familiar?). He did not have to enter into covenant with him. He did not have to give him what was, let’s be honest, a pretty easy command for his probation. When Adam fell, he did not have to set in motion the very means of Adam’s redemption from his fall. God can, after all, be merciful. However, he cannot be unjust. If Adam had fulfilled the stipulations of the CoW, God could not have withheld the benefits which God had promised for such fulfillment. That would be to deny himself. Once he made the stipulations, God only had three options: in the case of failure he could 1) utterly destroy Adam,or 2) be merciful and forgive Adam on the basis of what Christ would come to do. In the case of Adam’s success he could only fulfill his covenant obligations.

  12. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:06 pm

    “but that God condescends to place Himself in man’s debt according to His own covenant word.”

    God can’t do that.

    He can’t make us uncreated beings either.

    You want to say God would be in debt to Adam if Adam worked? Really?

  13. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:10 pm

    God can’t place himself in a covenant relationship with a creature where he has to keep promises based upon his own character and essence (not the creature’s)? What?!? PDuggie, what in the world keeps God from that? It’s not an absurdity, like a square circle.

  14. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:13 pm

    “Also, please explain how God’s putting Adam on probation nullifies God’s showing favor toward Adam before his probation. ”

    Did I say it did?

  15. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:14 pm

    “God can’t place himself in a covenant relationship with a creature where he has to keep promises based upon his own character and essence (not the creature’s)?”

    No he can do that all day. What he can’t do is by so doing place himself in debt to a creature.

  16. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    He is in debt only to himself when he does so. That preserves the sovereignty and glory of God.

  17. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:22 pm

    One can be in debt to Guido and have to pay up cuz of his tools of persuasion. One can also be in debt to, say, one’s child because of one’s own voluntary promise and have to pay up cuz of one’s own intergrity. The second is, I think, analogous to how God makes and keeps promises.

    God’s in debt to his own character, but he’s promised to a creature. Thus, there’s a debt to the creature too, but it will be paid based up God’s own character. This would be similar to, “Daddy, you promised…”

  18. J.Kru said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    I’m confused.

    Regarding the original post, do we want to say that obedience is in no way related to the covenant of grace, or do we want to say that OUR obedience is in no way related? Christ’s obedience is central to the COG.

    I’m not just arguing semantics, I’m wondering if it helps us to understand the FV.

  19. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 4:43 pm

    I would put it this way: our obedience is in no way related to how we obtain eternal life in justification in the CoG. Our obedience is rather the inevitable result of that justification, and is part of sanctification. God works in us obedience. Adam, however, did not need sanctification. He would have worked for his justification.

  20. Joshua W.D. Smith said,

    April 30, 2008 at 5:12 pm

    Wouldn’t he have obeyed (and part of this is believing what God said, not what Satan said) to maintain his “justification”? He already had the status of righteous, and therefore acceptable to God.

    And Lane, “in no way related” does not seem consistent with “inevitable result”– “result” is a kind of relation, n’est pas? So obedience is in fact related to obtaining eternal life: it is a necessary condition and non-meritorious means of obtaining the eschatological fullness of the inheritance (not the same as justification!)–but this is in no way meritorious, since it is simply God rewarding His own gift of Spirit-wrought obedience…

  21. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 5:47 pm

    Eternal life is obtained at justification. We are never more “eternal-lifed” than we are at justification. Therefore, our obedience forms no causal connection whatsoever. Furthermore, it constitutes no antecedent relation, either. It forms only a consequent relationship.

  22. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    We are never more “eternal-lifed” than at our justification? How about when we actually enter into eternal life? Positional realities and actual realities oughtn’t be confused. At our justification, we are positionally in Christ in the heavenly places, but one day we’ll be there MORE than positionally – we’ll ACTUALLY be there. I’d say the actuality is more than the position, lest we become absolute preterists!

    Further, since when did Adam need any sort of justification, Pr. Lane (post 19)? Maybe by justification you means eternal life, reward, further blessing or something like that. Please clarify, sir.

  23. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:05 pm

    I mean what John says that if we believe, we have passed (past tense!) from death to life. We have eternal life now as believers. Our souls, or our inner man, has been resurrected, never to die again. We live in the tension of the already/not yet, in that our bodies have not yet been redeemed. But in terms of our inner man, we have eternal life now. Our inner man will never experience a greater aspect of eternal life, since it has already been resurrected. See Gaffin’s recent book for an excellent discussion of this inner/outer anthropology.

  24. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:06 pm

    With Adam, he would have been justified by works in that it would have been proven that he was righteous. His glorification would have been his justification (similar to Jesus’ vindication in Romans 4:25).

  25. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:14 pm

    #24 – I think I dig it – the terminology’s a bit jarring is all.
    #25 – I think that too often in zeal to protect sola fide and justification, we make it everything. So say that, in our justification, our works are altogether excluded is great. To say that, in our salvation, our works are altogether excluded is quite misguided. I don’t think that you’ve done this, but I hear/read it all the time. If we turn sola-fide justification into the WHOLE of our salvation (sola-fide sanctification, glorification), we’ve effectively blurred lines that need to be kept distinct. It’s like wrapping around to Rome, but doing it the other direction.

  26. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:15 pm

    Umm.. gotta little carried away. Make that #s 23 and 24!

  27. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:18 pm

    #25 agreed. However, the FV is reacting to a problem that doesn’t exist in solid Reformed circles. For instance, the claim in Andrew Sandlin’s book is that the critics of Norman Shepherd and the FV believe in a faith that is alone. Not only is that terminology never used by CJPM, but the idea is not present either. That is why the book is almost worthless.

  28. greenbaggins said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:18 pm

    Make that “Sandlin’s book is almost worthless.” Not CJPM.

  29. Ron Henzel said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:33 pm

    Lane,

    Regarding your comments 27 and 28: enough examples of what you’re talking about here have been set forth in this blog to convince me of the likelihood that the respondents to CJPM began drafting their material before they’d actually read the book.

  30. Ron Henzel said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    Wilson writes:

    We distinguish between obedience and works because Paul does. In the Pauline vocabulary, deeds without faith is works. Deeds done in faith is obedience.

    How odd that in the thirty-or-more years I’ve been reading both biblical and systematic theology, I’ve never come across any reference to this distinction. What are they smoking up there in Moscow?

  31. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    Cigars and pipes, to be sure.

    Obedience IS necessarily a good work. Works themselves can be good or bad. Seems like a pretty simple distinction to me.

  32. Ron Henzel said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:53 pm

    Tim,

    Are you defending Wilson’s assertion that Paul reserves the word “works” for deeds done without faith, and the word “obedience” for deeds done with faith? Where, pray tell, is such a distinction found in Paul’s writings? Doesn’t it destroy the logic of Paul’s argument in Romans 4:4? And how can Paul even talk about “good works,” as when he writes, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works” (Ephesians 2:10) if the word “works” denotes deeds done without faith?

  33. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    No, I’m not defending what Wilson doesn’t assert. There is no “reservation” of words. But there is the clear biblical notion that deed w/o faith are not obedience. Thus, works can be logically and biblically distinguished from obedience. That’s the very simple distinction I laid out in #31. I think you’re making far more of it that Wilson is.

  34. Stephen Tipton said,

    April 30, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    Eph 2:10: For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

    According to Wilson, are those “good works” for which we were created for deeds done without faith? How is that even coherent?

    In Rom 6:16 Paul uses obedience (hypokuo, sorry my Greek transliteration isn’t great) and says that when we obey sin we are servants of death. Is that obedience to sin a matter of deeds of done in faith?

    Is this distinction based upon Greek or upon a supposed distinction in the English language? Deeds without faith may not be obedience to God, but they sure are obedience in Pauline theology.

    Seems he may need to go back to the drawing board on this one.

  35. tim prussic said,

    April 30, 2008 at 7:32 pm

    Seems that you might want to read him a bit closer. A logical distinction is not a prescriptive exegetical rule. Wilson’s talking about a distinction. Stephen, I fear you’ve turn his distinction into something quite different than he actually articulated.

  36. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 10:16 pm

    “We are never more “eternal-lifed” than we are at justification. ”

    What, no “not yet”?

  37. pduggie said,

    April 30, 2008 at 10:17 pm

    nevermind, you addressed it :)

  38. Vern Crisler said,

    May 1, 2008 at 12:06 am

    Sigh, so much of this issue could be cleared up if FVists would just read some Reformed Systematic Theologies — and stay away from Wilson and other “leaders” of FV for a while. It’s the same advice I offer freely to Clarkians (though they do not appreciate it). Put down the Clark books for a while and read some philosophy books, or actually read Van Til for a change instead of getting him second and third hand.

    So, open up Berkhof, Dabney, Warfield, and others, and learn, learn, learn the Reformed faith. Stop trying to reinvent theology, or proffering novel terminology. It merely confuses people and does no good.

    Read Calvin. Read Turretin. Stop reading Jordan and Leithart (and David Bahnsen for heavens sake). Or I predict these discussions will go on interminably.

    Vern

  39. its.reed said,

    May 1, 2008 at 5:58 am

    ref. 38:

    Amen.

  40. greenbaggins said,

    May 1, 2008 at 9:06 am

    Stephen, are you any relation to Lane Tipton?

  41. greenbaggins said,

    May 1, 2008 at 9:07 am

    Paul, you obviously did not read comment 23.

  42. pduggie said,

    May 1, 2008 at 9:20 am

    Nor you 37 :)

  43. greenbaggins said,

    May 1, 2008 at 9:41 am

    Touche, touche.

  44. R. F. White said,

    May 1, 2008 at 9:53 am

    pduggie, in 8, you said, “Insisting that Adam does something called ‘works’ to get a reward undermines what you’ve said you agree about the unmerited nature of God making the pact in the first place.”

    in 9, I took that sentence to mean, “God’s putting Adam on probation nullifies God’s showing favor toward Adam before his probation.”

    in 14, your question implies that you didn’t mean to say what I took you to say.

    So, let me rephrase, was how would Adam keep God’s unmerited pre-fall favor toward him? Was it conditioned on Adam’s keeping God’s commandment?

  45. R. F. White said,

    May 1, 2008 at 10:03 am

    Sorry for the typos in 44. You get my drift. But let me rephrase my question still differently: could Adam lose God’s unmerited pre-fall favor toward him? That is, is God’s unmerited pre-fall favor toward Adam something that can be kept and lost?

  46. Joshua W.D. Smith said,

    May 1, 2008 at 10:31 am

    Lane, I’m sorry, but I don’t agree with #21 & #23, even accepting such a dualistic application of eternal life. Our souls still suffer the effects of sin, which is not consistent with the fullness of eternal life. So even our internal man will in fact be more “eternal-lifed” in the future, will experience a greater aspect of eternal life. Eternal life is not simply duration, but quality of participation in God’s life…

  47. Mark C. said,

    May 2, 2008 at 5:58 am

    rey said:Adam would not have been justified at all, actually.

    There is justification as vindication a la James.

    Joshua Smith said:So even our internal man will in fact be more “eternal-lifed” in the future

    Only because we have presently have this treasure (His life) in earthen vessels. (the fallen tent) 2Co 5:1-5

  48. Joshua W.D. Smith said,

    May 2, 2008 at 10:50 am

    Perhaps we are talking about a Job-type justification (esp. as this is against the enemy): Adam would have been demonstrated to be right about trusting and obeying God’s plan for obtaining the glorified status. And this would have been the justification of God as well: He is shown to be faithful to his promises and creation…

  49. Stephen Tipton said,

    May 2, 2008 at 11:42 am

    It isn’t that Adam is assumed to be guilty of not fulfilling the covenant and needs to be vindicated. It is, however, that prior to the fall, the status of Adam is not yet known because he has not yet fulfilled the requirements of the covenant. Adam was made upright, but mutably so. Will he be confirmed in that status through his obedience, or will he fall and be subject to death and separation?

    His “justification” or “vindication” would really just have been his “declaration that the righteous requirements of the covenant had been fulfilled.” In this sense, his “justification” is similar to Jesus’. In our case, justification means that we are declared to be no longer under condemnation due for sin, certainly on the imputation of the active and passive obedience of Christ. Adam, however, was never under condemnation prior to the fall. Therefore he needed not “vindication” in the sense that we will need it, but he did need the declaration from God that he had fulfilled the righteous requirements of the covenant.

    To put it even more simply: prior to the Fall, Adam had not fulfilled the righteous requirements of the law. His justification would have been the declaration that those righteous requirements had been fulfilled. This would have been simultaneous with his glorification, and would have been the basis of that glorification.

    Lane: no, I am not related to Lane Tipton, other than how all Tiptons are distantly related. Everyone I know who has met him thinks highly of him, so it usually rubs off on their opinion of me. So I usually milk it if I can.

  50. tim prussic said,

    May 2, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    #51 – Harrumph!

    Good explanation. I’m kinda uncomfortable with the use of redemption-type language for Adam in the garden, but I understand that it’s a pre-fall reality that reflects what Christ accomplished in a post-fall world. Further, Rey, there’s no reason to assume guilt to have a justification. Was there, after all, any supposed guilt with the justified Christ (1 Tim 3:16)?

  51. MarkC said,

    May 2, 2008 at 1:22 pm

    rey said: But there is no need for vindication where there is no suspicion of guilt.

    Guilt need not enter in.

    1Ti 3:16 By common confession, great is the mystery of godliness: He who was revealed in the flesh, Was vindicated [justified-dikaioō] in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Proclaimed among the nations, Believed on in the world, Taken up in glory.

    Or

    Mat 11:19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is justified by her deeds.”

  52. MarkC said,

    May 2, 2008 at 1:22 pm

    Ooops. Didn’t see Tim’s post.

  53. Joshua W.D. Smith said,

    May 2, 2008 at 2:27 pm

    There was assumed or apparent guilt in the eyes of the world and the enemy, since he suffered the curse of the cross. It looked like Jesus had been wrong to trust and obey the Father, it looked like His claims to David’s throne were false, it looked as though God had indeed despise the suffering of the afflicted one. So it looked like Jesus was wrong and that God was false. Resurrection shows that this is in fact wrong.

  54. tim prussic said,

    May 2, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    #54 – Dude, what gives? I could’ve made it all bold or IN CAPS…

    #55 – Fair enough. The world may’ve looked at Jesus and thought he was fool. They may even have thought him a sinner. But he was vindicated/justified in his resurrection. Even so, I don’t think the word justify must necessarily require sin or the presumption of it. This is one reason I’m loathe to use redemptive terminology for the COWs. Pr. Lane’s post (#7) is a good example.

  55. Mark C. said,

    May 2, 2008 at 4:43 pm

    #54 – Dude, what gives? I could’ve made it all bold or IN CAPS…

    Yeah well it wouldn’t have helped. It’s called reading to the end BEFORE responding.

  56. tim prussic said,

    May 2, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    Dude…

  57. Joshua W.D. Smith said,

    May 2, 2008 at 6:14 pm

    Tim, fair enough. Shouldn’t we talk about Adam’s “justification,” in some sense, since under the CoW, Adam could not have been justified in the WFC sense? But no one’s jumping all over Lane and others for talking about Adam’s “justification” in the CoW…

  58. tim prussic said,

    May 3, 2008 at 10:22 pm

    JWDS, certainly Adam couldn’t have been justified in the sola-fide, forensic sense that we are as fallen men. I think that Pr. Lane’s language can be misleading and unnecessarily give gas to some. If folks get gas about an eschatological justification (mostly anti-FV types), shouldn’t those same homiez get up tight about a pre-lapsarian justification? Either way, the reality is that every use of that term is conditioned and nuanced, but we’d probably do well to protect it and use it specifically for sola-fide, forensic justification. That said, I can dig Pr. Lane’s explanation in #24.

    Happy Sabbath tomorrow, all.


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