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Martyred for the Gospel

Martyred for the Gospel
The burning of Tharchbishop of Cant. D. Tho. Cranmer in the town dich at Oxford, with his hand first thrust into the fyre, wherwith he subscribed before. [Click on the picture to see Cranmer's last words.]

Collect of the Day

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany.
The Collect.

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Daily Bible Verse

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Federal Visionists Are Not Christians: God's Hammer on the Postmortem PCA



Over at the God's Hammer blog Sean Gerety has the guts to point out the logical inconsistency of saying that justification is by grace alone and, at the same time, saying that justification is by grace plus works:

Someone can hold to justification based on works done through faith, something FV proponents claim contributes to our “final justification,” and call the doctrine of imputation, the heart of the Gospel and the “great exchange,” redundant as Peter Leithart has, yet according to the official PCA study report these men are still our “brothers in Christ.”  This was a fatal mistake.  PCA POSTMORTEM
It logically follows that denominations or church communions which deny justification by faith alone are not Christian nor are the people who are members of those churches.  That would mean that Anglo-Catholics, Roman Catholics, and the Eastern Orthodox are all false religions that lead people to hell.  I might even include the majority of Arminians in that assessment.

The law of contradiction means that the essential doctrines of the Gospel cannot be outright denied and preserve the way of salvation which comes only through believing the correct doctrines and information revealed in Holy Scripture.  If the truth is relative, paradoxical, or contradictory then the result is going to be skepticism and heresy.

Charlie

13 comments:

justin said...

Charlie,

Hi!

For clarification purposes, I am no FVer. Those people should go either to Rome or Geneva. Having said that, I have a question to ask.

You said "It logically follows that denominations or church communions which deny justification by faith alone are not Christian nor are the people who are members of those churches."

Your statement above seems to contradict sola fide, and seems to me to add works (ie right doctrine) to faith.

Can you explain how doctrine + faith = sola fide?

I'm not commenting on who may or may not be elect, but it seems to be dangerous ground to add doctrine to faith as a condition of salvation.

The law of noncontradiction states that something cannot be "A" and "Not A" at the same time and in the same sense. The above statement on sola fide "faith alone" salvation contradicts your later statement:

the way of salvation which comes only through believing the correct doctrines and information revealed in Holy Scripture.

I cannot use the principle of sola scriptura to find the above definition of faith.

Like I said, the FVers are walking a middle-road path that seems nonsensical to me.

Nevertheless, it seems that your statement would deem much of the church throughout history to have "unelect" status. I imagine even Augustine himself might fail the "faith + Protestant doctrine test."

Thoughts?

Justin

Charlie J. Ray said...

Doctrine as it is recorded in the infallible Scriptures is absolutely necessary for saving faith. If you do not believe the information recorded in Scripture, then you are not a Christian. You are an irrationalist. Van Til's position is nothing short of neo-orthodoxy. Your statement above arguing that many of the church fathers were not saved would have to be judged on a case by case basis. Augustine, however, would not fail the test since he rejected the doctrine of free will later in life and advocated what can only be called the sovereign grace of God in election and reprobation.

Even Luther argued from logic against free will and against any idea of contradiction in God's mind. There are no contingencies in God's decrees or in His eternal will.

This is why I am a Clarkian Scripturalist. The Bible IS the Word of God, univocally. There are no contradictions, paradoxes, or mistakes recorded in the Bible. When the Scriptures teach that Jesus rose from the dead it does not mean that this is a "doctrine" that is negotiable or non-essential. The point of Christianity is not ecumenical union as your view implies. Rather the point of Christianity is doctrinal, objectively reveal in Holy Scripture. If you do not believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of Scripture and inerrancy it would be hard to see how you could also believe in the perspicuity of Scripture for saving faith. Even a plow boy or a garage mechanic can understand that Jesus died for the sins of His people and that He is the Son of God in the flesh. Matthew 1:21; John 1:1-3, 18;
Romans 1:3-4.

This another reason I am not a theonomist. Theonomists are more loyal to Rome than to Scripture. Maybe you should go ahead and join the Jesuits?

Scripture is so plain and clear that even a child can read and understand the Gospel from the OT and NT Scriptures. 2 Timothy 3:15-16

Charlie J. Ray said...

if we wish to safeguard a doctrine of verbal revelation. Truth Is Propositional Verbal revelation – with the idea that revelation means the communication of truths, information, propositions – brings to light another factor in the discussion. The Bible is composed of words and sentences. Its declarative statements are propositions in the logical sense of the term. Furthermore, the knowledge that the Gentiles possess of an original revelation can be stated in words: “Those who practice such things are worthy of death.” The work of the law written on the hearts of the Gentiles results in thoughts, accusations, and excuses which can be and are expressed in words. The Bible nowhere suggests that there are any inexpressible truths. To be sure, there are truths which God has not expressed to man, for “the secret things belong to the Lord our God”; but this is not to say that God is ignorant of the subjects, predicates, copulas, and logical concatenations of these secret things. Once again we face the problem of equivocation. If there could be a truth inexpressible in logical, grammatical form, the word truth as applied to it would have no more in common with the usual meaning of truth than the Dog Star has in common with Fido. It would be another case of one word without a single point of coincidence between its two meanings.

Gordon Clark (2011-07-02T18:48:21+00:00). God's Hammer: The Bible and Its Critics (Gordon Clark) (Kindle Locations 711-722). The Trinity Foundation. Kindle Edition.

Charlie J. Ray said...

Forgive the typos. I might add that since faith is a sovereign grace of God granted only to the elect, believing or assenting to the doctrines of the Bible is not a "work". It is a grace. Ephesians 2:8-9 clearly shows that faith is not a work the elect do but a grace of God. The "work" of faith is done by God Himself:

Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent." (John 6:29 NKJ)

Charlie J. Ray said...

Chapter 14: Of Saving Faith

1. The grace of faith, whereby the elect are enabled to believe to the saving of their souls,1 is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their hearts,2 and is ordinarily wrought by the ministry of the Word:3 by which also, and by the administration of the sacraments, and prayer, it is increased and strengthened.4

See also: WLC 72 | WSC 86


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

1 Heb. 10:39.

2 2 Cor. 4:13; Eph. 1:17,18,19; Eph. 2:8.

3 Rom. 10:14,17.

4 1 Pet. 2:2; Acts 20:32; Rom. 4:11; Luke 17:5; Rom. 1:16,17.

2. By this faith, a Christian believeth to be true whatsoever is revealed in the Word, for the authority of God Himself speaking therein;1 and acteth differently upon that which each particular passage thereof containeth; yielding obedience to the commands,2 trembling at the threatenings,3 and embracing the promises of God for this life and that which is to come.4 But the principal acts of saving faith are accepting, receiving, and resting upon Christ alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.5

See also: WLC 72


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

1 John 4:42; 1 Thess. 2:13; John 5:10; Acts 24:14.

2 Rom. 16:26.

3 Isa. 66:2.

4 Heb. 11:13; 1 Tim. 4:8.

5 John 1:12; Acts 16:31; Gal. 2:20; Acts 15:11.

Charlie J. Ray said...

Westminster Confession of Faith

Charlie J. Ray said...

6. The whole counsel of God, concerning all things necessary for His own glory, man's salvation, faith and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced from Scripture: unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new revelations of the Spirit, or traditions of men.1

1 2 Tim. 3:15,16,17; Gal. 1:8,9; 2 Thess. 2:2.

WCF, Chapter 1, Of the Holy Scriptures...

Brandon R. Burdette said...

This post is a straight-shot.

What do Galatians 1:8,9 say?

"But though we, or an angel from Heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be ACCURSED.

As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be ACCURSED."

Those who teach and believe in the false gospel of justification by faith + works are ACCURSED, and do not believe the true Gospel of salvation by faith alone in Christ's merits.

That convicts most of American 'Christianity' of being false and cursed, since 'churches' today teach salvation and assurance by personal sanctification.

Great notification, Charlie!

Charlie J. Ray said...

I'm afraid my pastor friend is not a true believer. He thinks the Anglo-Catholics are "Christian" men. They are not. They are false teachers.

Charlie J. Ray said...

and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. (2 Timothy 3:15 NKJ)

Charlie J. Ray said...

Amen, Brandon....

Charlie J. Ray said...

justin, since saving faith is knowing and understanding the information in the Scripture and assenting to that doctrinal information, I would like to know what other kind of revelation, apart from special revelation in Scripture, can lead to saving faith? It certainly is not in general revelation in nature (Romans 1:18-32) or in false churches (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).

Charlie J. Ray said...

Article VI
Of the sufficiency of the Holy Scripture for Salvation

Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation: so that whatsoever is not read therein, nor may be proved thereby, is not to be required of any man, that it should be believed as an article of the faith, or be thought requisite or necessary to salvation. . . .

Article 6

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