Monday, April 20, 2015

True Antinomianism

Last week, I posted a devotional blog about the grace of God at work in the life of Tamar, who was ancestor to Jesus Christ:

The account of Judah and Tamar, filled with deception and incest, demonstrates the grace of God, in that Jesus our Savior came from the line of Judah through Tamar. Under law, those two would have been killed, yet the dispensation of grace was at work then, and is at work now in our lives because Jesus!

The following comments were posted afterwards:

Justin Esthay Antinomian dispensationalist garbage.

  • Justin Esthay Oh, I dunno, maybe because of the Biblical context, two millennia of history, and simple reason that refute your sentiment.

    Paul writes about the Cross, and the grace of God shed upon us through Jesus' death and resurrection:
    "For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God." (1 Corinthians 1: 18)
    The preaching of the Cross is foolishness the a world where death reigns, where the god of this world has still blinded them to the glorious goodness of God and His Gospel:
    "In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them." (2 Corinthians 4: 4)
    But back to First Corinthians, where we learn that the wisdom of men, the reason of this world, is come to naught in the Cross:
    "20Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? 21For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. 22For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: 23But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; 24But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God." (1 Corinthians 1: 20-24)
    Mr. Esthay suggests that "simple reason" refutes the grace of God.
    Reason is nothing in the face of Almighty God, and in Jesus we find true and consummate Wisdom, for to us that is the first thing that Jesus becomes!
    Grace is not reasonable, not rational, in that we are bound in a finite world. Yet God our Daddy is not finite, but infinite, and He demonstrated His love for us in giving His Son to die for us, to rise from the dead on our behalf, and to minister for us (and as us!) at the right hand of God the Father.
    "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God [lit. Christ]" (Romans 10: 17)

    Faith comes by hearing the Word about Christ and Him Crucified.

    We cannot create faith from within ourselves. It is not a product of reason, but revelation.

    So, what about this antinomian jab? Is it really the case that the Gospel of Grace is antinomian?

    What does the Bible teach?

    27Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith. 28Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. 29Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also: 30Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.
    31Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law."
    The grace of God establishes the law.
    Let us never forget, either, what the law was for:
    "Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. 20Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin." (Romans 3:19-20)
    The law was the standard of God's righteousness, which no one could keep. The law would point out to us that we are all guilty, in need of a Savior.
    Check out also these passages:
    19Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. 20Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one. 21Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. 22But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
    23But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster." (Galatians 3: 19-25)
    The law was added, brought in later (Romans 5: 20), not to make us holy, but rather to reveal how deeply sinful man is, and his need for a Savior as absolute.
    Faith was the trainer, the schoolmaster which showed us our need for a Living Savior, and once we have this Savior, we are no longer under law,  but rather  under grace (Romans 6: 14).
    Another passage will affirm the true purpose of the law:
    "8But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully; 9Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, 10For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine; 11According to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust." (1 Timothy 1: 8-11)
    The law was not written for righteous people, for people who have been saved and sanctified, but for sinners.
    No one can keep the law, and anyone who teaches otherwise, that the law is a set standard which men and women are called to keep, are actually subverting, watering down the law, reducing God's Holy Standard.
    Ironically enough, true antinomianism is not appealing to grace ahead of the law, but rather teaching people, contrary to Scriptural truth and revelation, that the law is a standard which we are called to keep!

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