The Priority of Grace: Diving Further into Justification

According to the Bible, humanity is clearly responsible to exercise Spirit-wrought faith in Jesus. When sinners willing place their faith in Jesus, God responds by justifying the sinner for their good and his glory. However, before we talk about the necessity of man acting in faith, we should first remember that justification is by grace.…

More Thoughts on Justification: What is the Formal Cause?

Perhaps another way to clearly note the differences between the Reformation view and the Roman Catholic view of justification is to pay attention to Aristotelian categories of causation. The rediscovery of Aristotle was important to the development of the Western Christian tradition.[1] In terms of justification, Catholic theology differentiates between at least four causes of…

More (Short) Thoughts on Justification by Faith

According to the Reformed Tradition (I’m aware that in the RT some diversity exists), upon the exercise of faith, a person is united to Christ by the powerful working of the Spirit. This union with Christ has at least two results. Calvin would note that union with Christ contains a duplex gratia (i.e. double grace).…

In the Weeds of Justification by Faith Alone: Some Background and Suggested Resources

Historically, in the Western Christian tradition, the good news of the saving message of Jesus Christ has been linked closely to the doctrine of justification by faith alone.[1] In short, according to the Reformed tradition, upon the exercise of faith, a person is united to Christ by the powerful working of the Spirit. Having been…

You Must be a Man to be a Father

My firstborn child turned 10 years old today. Today I have been a father for a decade. So, Dustin, what have you learned? I can sum up the majority of the lessons I’ve learned in this one sentence: if you want to be a father, you have to be a man. And I don’t mean…

What Does Psalm 51 Teach Us About God?

Here are a few lessons Psalm 51 teaches us about God: He is just in His judgments. Our sins our before Him and against Him. He breaks our bones and convicts us of sin. Then He restores us so we can rejoice in our salvation. His mercy is abundant. His love is steady and enduring.…

Don’t Drift from the Gospel

This Sunday I’m starting to preach through Galatians. I think the main thing Paul is doing in Galatians is calling his readers back to the gospel of Jesus Christ. In the theology of Galatians, it seems the gospel is unpacked in terms of justification by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone. In short,…