The “Already And Not Yet”

Scholars who are overly saturated with the eschatological Kingdom of God as ‘already and not yet’—that is, already inaugurated, but not yet consummated—as well as with the Pauline soteriological concept of union with Christ, falsely put the doctrine of justification into the . . . Continue reading →

Reconciling the Divine Processions-Missions Relationship with Confessional Reformed Theology: An Engagement with Adonis Vidu’s The Divine Missions: An Introduction (Part 4)

This series considers Adonis Vidu’s new book about relating a classical theology proper to God’s plan of salvation. So far, after surveying the book’s contents, we have thought about the covenant of grace and the nature of salvation concerning how those holding . . . Continue reading →

Gnosticism And Christian Universalism

Universal salvation (or universalism) seems to have first emerged as a distinct religious doctrine among Christian gnostic teachers in or around Alexandria, Egypt, during the early to mid-second century CE, several decades before the influential and well-known Christian author Origen (ca. 185-251)… . . . Continue reading →

Will We Be Finally “Saved” By Faith Alone (Sola Fide)?

The Scriptures simply do not support the inference that there are two stages of salvation and that our putative “future salvation” is contingent upon sanctification. Saying that our future sanctification is “decisively” wrought by God does not alleviate the problem. The whole construct rests on the premise that so long as we assert divine sovereignty we may say, more or less, whatever we please. Continue reading →

Sola Fide Es El Instrumento Para La Justificación Y La Salvación

Las controversias pueden ser desagradables y dolorosas y la reciente controversia sobre la santificación ha sido ambas en algunos momentos. De igual manera las controversias pueden ser útiles al traer mayor claridad y esta controversia ha sido útil en este sentido. Algunos . . . Continue reading →

Justified Through Our Faithfulness?

Introduction As I mentioned in an earlier post in Romans 2:13 Paul writes, “For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified” (ESV).1 The chapter begins with . . . Continue reading →

Strangers And Aliens (4): Living As Resident Aliens (1 Peter 1:13–21)

Peter wrote this epistle to be circulated among Christian congregations in Asia Minor (modern day Turkey). He wrote to them about their faith, their hope, and their life living in this world—God’s world—as those who have been delivered out of Egypt, as . . . Continue reading →

On The Necessity And Efficacy Of Good Works In Salvation

Introduction There is no question among orthodox, i.e., confessional, Reformed folk whether good works are necessary as a consequence, evidence, and a fruit of justification and sanctification by grace alone, through faith alone. There is no question whether God’s moral law, whether summarized in . . . Continue reading →

Muddying The Distinction Between Justification And Salvation

Ultimately, the Socinians, the Romanists, and the moralists (e.g., Baxter) agreed: the gospel of free justification with God and free salvation must be rejected because it’s insufficient to produce the desired outcome. Continue reading →

Christ’s Merits Affirmed And Ours Denied In The Reformed Confessions

Christ’s Merit For Us Affirmed “only for the sake of Christ’s merits” (Heidelberg Catechism 21) “for the sake of Christ’s merits” (Heidelberg Catechism 84) “if they did not rest on the merit of the suffering and death of our Savior” (Belgic Confession, . . . Continue reading →

Heidelcast 32: D. G. Hart On Union With Christ


The doctrine of union with Christ has been a controversial issue in Reformed circles for several years. On the surface, judging by the older Reformed writers and by the Reformed confessions, it is difficult to see exactly why the doctrine of union . . . Continue reading →

Semi-Pelagianism and Faith as the Instrument of Existential-Mystical Union with Christ (5)

Part 4. In part 4 we saw that William Perkins taught that believers are given new life by the Spirit and by the same Spirit given faith and through that faith united to Christ. It is particularly useful to be aware of . . . Continue reading →

Semi-Pelagianism and Faith as the Instrument of Existential-Mystical Union with Christ (Pt 3)

Part 2 That faith which secures eternal life; which unites us to Christ as living members of his body; which makes us the sons of God; which interests us in all the benefits of redemption; which works by love, and is fruitful . . . Continue reading →