The Nature of Saving Faith

LORDSHIP AND THE NATURE OF SAVING FAITH

“We must properly distinguish between justifying faith and spurious faith… The consequences of remaining in deception are too enormous to neglect self-examination. There is a faith which will not save, and men must be warned of its fatal consequences. We are justified by faith alone, but true faith has distinguishing traits… This saving belief is in the whole Christ, the Christ of the Bible—the only Mediator who right now is Prophet, Priest and King of His church… This saving faith must reach the whole man. It must reach his mind—that is what he thinks with. It must reach his emotions, or affections—that is what he feels with. It must reach his will—that is what he decides with and acts with.” (Ernest Reisinger)

For more on this subject, visit Founders Ministries.

 

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The True Tabernacle

THE TRUE TABERNACLE

“Both the Old Testament tabernacle and the Mosaic covenant were mere shadows of the eternal reality that in due season fulfilled and surpassed them. They were ‘true shadows’ in that they correctly bore a relationship to that which they imaged. But, proper and necessary as they were in God’s redemptive plan, they were not the final reality… the true Mediator in the true sanctuary keeps our hearts united to Him in this new covenant relationship by which, for time and eternity, He is our God and we are His people. This is the basis of the church’s life and mission on earth, and all its joy in heaven!” (Douglas Kelly)

For more on this subject, please visit the Biblical Theology page.

 

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Union with Christ, Justification, and Regeneration

UNION WITH CHRIST, JUSTIFICATION, AND REGENERATION

“The special work of the Spirit is to apply the benefits of Christ’s mediation to the elect. There is a strict correspondence between Christ’s work and the Spirit’s work. For this reason, regeneration must never be considered apart from Christ; positively stated, regeneration must always be understood in relation to union with Christ… The risen Savior first apprehends the elect and makes them alive by His Spirit operating as the Spirit of Christ, so they can receive from Christ all the benefits of the work He accomplished on their behalf, as their mediator. Faith is only possible because Christ, through the Spirit, has joined Himself to the sinner. In response, the sinner exercises faith toward Christ, as an effect of regeneration. With the union complete, the sinner receives from Christ everything that Christ merited, including justification, adoption, and sanctification.” (Joel Beeke)

For more on this subject, please visit the Systematic Theology page.

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The Mediator: God and Man

THE MEDIATOR: GOD AND MAN

“Man in innocence could not penetrate to God without a Mediator, much less could he after the fall…

It deeply concerned us, that He who was to be our Mediator should be very God and very man. If the necessity be inquired into, it was not what is commonly termed simple or absolute, but flowed from the divine decree on which the salvation of man depended… Our iniquities, like a cloud intervening between Him and us, having utterly alienated us from the kingdom of heaven, none but a person reaching to Him could be the medium of restoring peace. But who could thus reach to Him? Could any of the sons of Adam? All of them, with their parents, shuddered at the sight of God. Could any of the angels? They had need of a head, by connection with which they might adhere to their God entirely and inseparably. What then? The case was certainly desperate, if the Godhead itself did not descend to us, it being impossible for us to ascend. Thus the Son of God behooved to become our Immanuel, i.e., God with us; and in such a way, that by mutual union His divinity and our nature might be combined; otherwise,  neither was the proximity near enough, nor the affinity strong enough, to give us hope that God would dwell with us; so great was the repugnance between our pollution and the spotless purity of God. Had man remained free from all taint, he was of too humble a condition to penetrate to God without a Mediator. What, then must it have been, when by fatal ruin he was plunged into death and hell, defiled by so many stains, made loathsome corruption; in fine, overwhelmed with every curse? It is not without cause, therefore, that Paul, when he would set forth Christ as the Mediator, distinctly declares Him to be man. There is, says he, ‘one Mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus’ (1 Tim. 2:5). He might have called Him God, or at least, omitting to call Him God, he might also have omitted to call Him man; but because the Spirit, speaking by his mouth, knew our infirmity, he opportunely provides for it by the most appropriate remedy, setting the Son of God familiarly before us as one of ourselves. That no one, therefore, may feel perplexed where to seek the Mediator, or by what means to reach Him, the Spirit, by calling Him man, reminds us that He is near, no, contiguous to us, inasmuch as He is our flesh. And, indeed, he intimates the same thing in another place, where he explains a greater length that He is not a high priest who “cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15).” (John Calvin)

For more on this subject, please visit the Systematic Theology page.

The Greatest of Our High Priest

THE GREATEST OF OUR HIGH PRIEST

“What makes a mediator effective is His acceptability to both parties who need to be reconciled to one another… as God, He can speak to God on equal terms; as man, He knows how to represent us perfectly… Jesus, the Son of God, a High Priest, who by virtue of possessing those two natures is perfectly qualified to bridge the gulf between a holy God, and a sinful humanity.” (Arturo Azurdia III)

For more on the subject, visit Spirit Empowered Preaching.

 

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