Friday, May 15, 2009

A firm and certain knowledge

Institutes of the Christian Religion (1559) - John Calvin
Book 3 - How We Receive the Grace of Christ
Chapter 2 - Faith: Its Definition Set Forth, & Properties Explained

Sections 6-7 - Relation of faith to the Word and brief definition of faith
Section 6 - Faith rests upon God's Word
We must receive Christ as the Father offers Him in His Word.
Eph 4:20-21; Isa 55:3; John 20:31; Ps 95:7.
Paul defines faith as obeying the gospel - Rom 1:5.
Faith is knowing God's will toward you, as you see it in His Word.

Section 7 - Faith arises from God's promise of grace in Christ
The Word doesn't automatically produce faith - Gen 2:17; 4:10.
We also need God's promise of benevolence to us, in Christ.
This is why mercy and truth are combined in the Psalms, often.
Ps 89:14, 24; 92:2; 98:3; 100:5; 108:4; 115:1; 40:10-11; 36:5; 25:10; 117:2; 138:2.
Faith is "a firm and certain knowledge of God's benevolence toward us, founded upon the truth of the freely given promise in Christ, both revealed to our minds and selaed upon our hearts through the Holy Spirit."

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