Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Justification by imputed righteousness

Calvin's Institutes (1559)
Book 3 of 4 - How We Receive the Grace of Christ

Chapter 11:5-12 - Justification by faith: refuting "essential righteousness"

5. We aren't - and don't need to be - united with Christ's essence and substance, to receive His righteousness, as Osiander asserts.

6. Osiander confuses justification and sanctification, forgiveness with regeneration, Christ's imputed righteousness inner holiness of life. This is like saying the sun's light warms the earth. You can't separate the sun's light and warmth, but each does its own thing. Christ is both out righteousness and our sanctification - 1 Cor 1:30. He says justify means "to make righteous," instead of God's declaration of pardon - Rom 4:4-5; 8:33. But "as Paul skillfully contends, there is in justification no place for works."
[I lost the next few sections' notes, due to vacation-y things. Here are the chapter titles.]
7. The significance of faith for justification
8. Osiander's doctrine that Christ is, according to His divine nature, our righteousness
9. Justification as the work of the Mediator
10.It is true that we must be united with Christ to receive His righteousness. This doesn't mean our faith constitutes that righteousness. Osiander claims from 1 Pet 1:4 ("that we might become partakers of the divine nature"), but this is nothing more than the promise, for the future, that "we shall be like Him" - 1 John 3:2.
11. Osiander denies the legal aspect of justification, though 2 Cor 5:19, 21; Ps 32:1 are against him. Sin remains in the justified, until death. Our assurance depends on justification, not on our own righteousness, "For faith totters if it pays attention to works." Rom 7:24; 8:33, 38-39. Though we condemn ourselves justly, we don't tremble at God's judgment, for He will account us pure, by Christ's righteousness.
12. Osiander says justification and righteousness can only come from God, not the human Jesus - 1 Cor 1:30; Phil 2:13. This is false: Col 2:3; John 17:5; Gal 3:13; Heb 2:14; John 17:19; Rom 5:19.

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