Heidelberg 114: Between Moralism And Antinomianism (1)

Judged by the mainstream of Reformed theology and particularly by confession of by the Reformed Churches, Richard Baxter (1615–91) was not Reformed. Remarkably, because many are not aware of what Baxter taught about the central issue of the Reformation, the article by . . . Continue reading →

Heidelberg 86: Why Good Works? (2)

We should also reject soundly and unreservedly that teaching that will not say that believers, who are united to Christ by the Spirit, through faith alone, who are justified freely (sola gratia), through faith alone (sola fide), have no moral obligation to be conformed to Christ and thus to do good works. That is antinomianism. No, the Spirit is conforming us to Christ’s image. Those who have been given new life (regenerated) will do good works. They want to do good works out of thankfulness. Gratitude is not, as some say, a second blessing any more than oranges are a second blessing on an orange tree (see Belgic Confession art. 24) Continue reading →

Heidelcast 74: Nomism And Antinomianism (12)


Before I began this series my intent was to do a series of episodes on the Reformed understanding of the Christian use of the moral law as the norm or rule of the Christian life. Confessional Protestants (Reformed and Lutheran) call it . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 73: Nomism And Antinomianism (11)


Last time we considered what some folk mean by the expression “the law of Christ” and, in contrast, what the Bible means by it. It’s neither a new covenant of works, as if we could obey our way into acceptance with God . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 71: Nomism And Antinomianism (10)


We’ve come to the 3rd part of the Marrow, “Of the law of Christ.” This is a phrase that occurs frequently in this discussion. Neither the antinomian nor the neonomian are satisfied with the law of Christ the way it is. The . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 70: Nomism And Antinomianism (9)


The issue before this week is this: The nomist (i.e., the legalist) will frequently deny that he is a legalist. We can even get the nomist to profess orthodox things about the doctrine of justification but here’s an acid test—by the way . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 64: Nomism And Antinomianism (7)


The nomist wants to know whether the works he did before coming to faith are of any value. He asks, “why then, sir, it would seem that all my seeking to please God by my good works, all my strict walking according . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 63: Nomism And Antinomianism (6)


The Heidelcast is working through The Marrow of Modern Divinity (1645). Last time we began looking at the doctrine of the covenant of grace. We saw that the principle of the covenant of grace is fundamentally different from that of the covenant of works. . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 62: Nomism And Antinomianism (5)


The Heidelcast is working through The Marrow of Modern Divinity (1645) as a model for how to account for justification and sanctification, how to keep them together, without losing either and without confusing them. The circumstances in which The Marrow first appeared were . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 61: Nomism And Antinomianism (4)


The first major section of the Marrow of Modern Divinity was a defense of the covenant of works. It is fascinating to see how, already in the 1640s, the covenant of works came under criticism from the nomists (legalists, moralists). Nothing really . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 60: Nomism And Antinomianism (3)


With this episode I had intended to begin a survey of The Marrow of Modern Divinity but Chris Gordon, my friend, colleague, and pastor at Escondido URC put in my hands a terrific little volume from 1831, which was an assessment of the Marrow . . . Continue reading →