Monday, June 20, 2011
Here are Tom’s questions:
If all are declared innocent as UOJ teaches, for what reason are some damned to hell?
People are damned to hell because of unbelief.
Mark 16:16 “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”
John 3:18 “Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of god’s one and only Son.”
If righteousness is not the key to entering heaven, since all are declared righteousness, what IS the key to entering heaven? IS it the faith, or is it the righteousness that is draped over the faithful?
You have been reading too much of Dr. Gregory L. Jackson’s and Brett Meyer’s drivel. The passages that teach universal objective justification are plain to see:
Romans 5:18,19 “Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.”
2 Corinthians 5:21 “God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them.”
There are many more.
The Bible teaches UOJ. But, unlike what Dr. Jackson would have you think, UOJ is never taught in a vacuum. The Holy Spirit always presents it as being received through faith, which is personal subjective justification. For example, in Romans 5, the chapter begins by speaking of being “justified through faith.” Faith in what? Faith in the objective fact that Christ died for the ungodly and that “the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men.”
A simple example of UOJ and PSJ is found in John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son” – UOJ.
“that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – PSJ.
What does a Christian look at when he faces trouble or even death? We look to Christ and his life, death and resurrection for the certainty of our justification before God. We do not look to our personal trust, because it is weak and frail. Personal trust, or faith, is there, but it does not look to itself. It looks to Christ.
So to answer your question, in faith, created in our hearts by the Spirit and not by our own thinking and choosing, we trust that Jesus has draped over us his righteousness.
Dr. Jackson and Brett Meyer will most likely plaster Ichabod the Glory Has Departed with many quotes from the Confessions regarding justification by faith. We certainly agree with those quotes from the Confessions. The people Dr. Jackson has attacked do not teach the error of Universalism. This is a straw man argument he has set up in order to make himself look good and gain a following. Lutherans with a Synodical Conference background do not deny justification by faith alone.
We received a number of other comments, but they were anonymous and were similar to what you wrote, Tom. We would suggest that you read again the essays