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Sunday, October 2, 2011

Universal, Objective Justification

In discussions and correspondence with various conservative Lutherans, I pointed out initially that the doctrine of Justification starts out with God and is Universal and Objective.  But their response was not immediately an affirmation of this most joyful doctrine (the Gospel itself) but rather that  "it must be accepted in faith".  Although this is true, they are sowing the seeds of faith as a work.  I believe that if I were to speak the words of this doctrine to Walther himself, he would immediately utter a prayer for us both: God grant that you and I may always believe this!

Now here is what God says on the subject:
Romans 5:18
Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
2 Cor 5:19
To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.
And this was the teaching of Martin Luther, C.F.W. Walther and Franz Pieper that made them great!

Away with all the teaching that puts into question God’s Grace!  Away with all teaching that hints of faith as a condition!  Faith in Romans 1:17 is ONLY saying NOT BY WORKS OF THE LAW!  ONLY BELIEVE!

Faith is NOT a condition!  Lord, I do believe, help thou mine UNBELIEF!  All I can claim is unbelief- that is mine!  No, the faith of the Bible is God’s work- John 6:29:
This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent”.

All who would follow up the proclamation of universal grace/ universal justification with the teaching of faith that leaves the question as to whether faith is a condition are leaving only doubt about the original proclamation.  It springs from the same source as what produced “in view of faith” (intuitu fidei).

(read Walther's 1872 essay section on faith- and Walther's 1874 Western District essay)

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