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Thread: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

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    "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    I thought I would start a new discussion since the "gnosticism" one has gone astray into personal issues.


    It seems to me that the text must be wrestled to make "justification" as used by Paul an objective justification.

    Can "justification before God" be defended -- it seems a misnomer to me. I understand reconcilation, redemption, atonement, etc to be terms for what Christ has accomplished for His people upon the cross. I have no problem with "justifed by faith" because I see justification as having a purely subjective quality -- a declaration.

    God does not constitute a sinner righteous by faith, rather He reveals the righteousness purchased and secured by Christ. How rediculous it seems to DECLARE a sinner righteous before Himself. Does a judge DECLARE a criminal innocent before himself before first viewing the criminal as innocent? That would be commical and would require schizophenia. The criminal is made right before the judge by a true SATISFACTION of the law, not a declaration. Christ SATISFIED the law for the elect. That truth is then declared to the world, and the sinner, at a separate time (subjective justification).

    If we understand that justification requires a JUSTIFER (makes the declaration) and a JUSTFIED (of whom the declaration speaks) and an AUDIENCE (to whom the justifier speaks), then we can plug in a few options:

    1) Christ is the JUSTIFIER, God is the AUDIENCE, man is the JUSTIFIED

    This seems to be the necessary structure of this "justification before God" doctrine. It makes no sense though, because Christ's work did not DECLARE anything, rather it APPEASED by means of satisfaction. God saw in Christ, hanging on the tree, everything necessary to satisfy His justice toward the elect.


    2) God is the JUSTIFIER, creation is the AUDIENCE, man is the JUSTIFIED

    These appears to be the way in which Scripture speaks of one being justified. It is a declaration of an accomplished truth. The sinner is already seen by God as righteous by way of Christ's work. Christ's work was between the Father and Son, and is only made evident to the recipient of it, and all of creation, by revelation/declaration.


    A universal definition of "dikaioo" (applicable to all NT uses) is paramount to understanding any of this. Please provide with your post a CLEAR definition of "dikaioo". Mine is that it is RIGHTEOUS STANDING DECLARED/REVEALED.

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    It seems to me that the text must be wrestled to make "justification" as used by Paul an objective justification. [melted]


    What does this wording of Paul talk about if not objective justification?

    "... and was raised on account of the justification (Gr. Dikaioosis, a noun meaning justification) ..." (Rom. 4:25)

    This Justification here took place before Christ was raised. Meaning it was objective justification. Your pastor W E Best has no problem with this, I think.


    Can "justification before God" be defended -- it seems a misnomer to me.

    Yes it can, with Rom. 3:20, lit. "justified in his sight". The possessive pronoun "his" here of course refers to God.

    I have no problem with "justifed by faith" because I see [B]justification[/B] as having a purely subjective quality -- a declaration.

    Dikaioosis the noun as shown, in Rom. 4:25, refers to an objective reality, which took place at Calvary when Christ died away for His own.


    God does not constitute a sinner righteous by faith

    Agreement. Rather he constituted His elect righteous out of consideration of Christ's faith, at the point of His dying away on the tree.

    the righteousness purchased and secured by Christ.

    I cannot find it said in Scripture that Christ "purchased" righteousness. Purchase means, basically, to buy. So, what do you mean by "purchased the righteousness"?


    How rediculous it seems to DECLARE a sinner righteous before Himself.

    I agree. But I think no one here has depicted Justification Before God as a "declaring". So you are evading the issue.

    Does a judge DECLARE a criminal innocent before himself before first viewing the criminal as innocent?

    Of course not. And neither does God, and no one here has said so.


    The criminal is made right before the judge by a true SATISFACTION of the law, not a declaration. Christ SATISFIED the law for the elect.

    By "the law" what do you mean here? And if you mean the Mosaic Law in its entirety, would you then say that Christ's satisfaction of the Mosaic Law equalled the righteousness with which the elect were justified?

    declared to the world, and the sinner, at a separate time (subjective justification).


    I think to know what you mean by "subjective justification", but strictly speaking the noun Dikaioosis is not used to depict this thing. But anyhow, how can it be said that objective justification is "declared to the world" at the point of "subjective justification". This does not make sense. When it is only made known to the individual elect in "the court of conscience" as they say, in the secret chamber of the heart.


    If we understand that justification requires a JUSTIFER (makes the declaration) and a JUSTFIED (of whom the declaration speaks) and an AUDIENCE (to whom the justifier speaks), then we can plug in a few options:

    You are reasoning in accordance with man. Objective justification before God required

    a) individuals that needed to be justified (God's elect)
    b) a basis for justifying (Christ and His faith and blood)
    c) a justifier (God the Father)

    1) Christ is the JUSTIFIER, God is the AUDIENCE, man is the JUSTIFIED

    This seems to be the necessary structure of this "justification before God" doctrine. It makes no sense though, because Christ's work did not DECLARE anything, rather it APPEASED by means of satisfaction. God saw in Christ, hanging on the tree, everything necessary to satisfy His justice toward the elect.


    You are either misunderstanding or misrepresenting this position. At least myself never talks about objective justification, justification before God, as a "declaration". It is rather a constitution.


    2) God is the JUSTIFIER, creation is the AUDIENCE, man is the JUSTIFIED

    These appears to be the way in which Scripture speaks of one being justified.


    Not that simple. Because Paul uses DIKAIOÔ both when touching on justification before God ("objective j.") as well as when touching upon "subjective justification".

    only made evident to the recipient of it, and all of creation, by revelation/declaration.

    Surely you cannot mean that this thing is made evident to all of creation at the time it is made evident to the recipient? This would suggest God is in the business of "revealing" (apokaluptoo) spiritual things even to carnal men, and it contradicts what Paul says in 1Cor. 2. You do seemingly not understand the Pauline usage of "revelation" (apokalupsis)and "to reveal" (apokaluptoo).


    A universal definition of "dikaioo" (applicable to all NT uses) is paramount to understanding any of this.


    Not so. Not necessary. DIKAIOÔ does not mean exactly the same thing in each NT instance. This must first be acknowledged and understood. It derives its sense in each context from the context itself.

    Some contextual senses of DIKAIOÔ in the GNT I believe are ...

    a) to constitute righteous
    b) to evidence as righteous
    c) to vindicate




    Harald

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    What does this wording of Paul talk about if not objective justification?

    "... and was raised on account of the justification (Gr. Dikaioosis, a noun meaning justification) ..." (Rom. 4:25)


    Forgive my unclear thought, harald, in the item of dikaioosis and dikaioo. Paul does use dikaioosis to mean "objective justification" - I agree very much so with this assessment and should have been more clear when expressing my understanding dikaioo differently, as purely a subjective declaration.


    the righteousness purchased and secured by Christ.

    I cannot find it said in Scripture that Christ "purchased" righteousness. Purchase means, basically, to buy. So, what do you mean by "purchased the righteousness"?


    Scripture speaks of us having been redeemed (lutroo) and bought/purchased (agorazo). I spoke of this.


    The criminal is made right before the judge by a true SATISFACTION of the law, not a declaration. Christ SATISFIED the law for the elect.

    By "the law" what do you mean here? And if you mean the Mosaic Law in its entirety, would you then say that Christ's satisfaction of the Mosaic Law equalled the righteousness with which the elect were justified?

    The righteousness worked by Christ on behalf of the elect is far and above meer obedience. I believe there is an infinite positive aspect to it as well (which all the books in the world could not contain).


    But anyhow, how can it be said that objective justification is "declared to the world" at the point of "subjective justification". This does not make sense. When it is only made known to the individual elect in "the court of conscience" as they say, in the secret chamber of the heart.

    Agreed. As also indicated below, I used "world" and "creation" to refer to outside the realm of "before God". Not all of the world or creation.


    Surely you cannot mean that this thing is made evident to all of creation at the time it is made evident to the recipient? This would suggest God is in the business of "revealing" (apokaluptoo) spiritual things even to carnal men, and it contradicts what Paul says in 1Cor. 2. You do seemingly not understand the Pauline usage of "revelation" (apokalupsis)and "to reveal" (apokaluptoo).

    I did not say "all of" creation. I agree with your statements above, of course.


    Not that simple. Because Paul uses DIKAIO‘ both when touching on justification before God ("objective j.") as well as when touching upon "subjective justification".

    This is where my main point lied, in whether dikaioo is ever used to clearly mean objective justification at any point. Can you provide scripture to this effect?

    It is not so easy for me to assign a dual meaning of "constituted righteous" and "declared righteous" to dikaioo, I suppose. Therein may lie my difficulties.

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Kyle. Thanks for the reply.

    Forgive my unclear thought, harald, in the item of dikaioosis and dikaioo.

    No need to apologize. Accepted nonetheless.

    Scripture speaks of us having been redeemed (lutroo) and bought/purchased (agorazo). I spoke of this.

    OK. In light of this it makes better sense to me. I say so because itself "the righteousness", i.e. the justifying righteousness (Rom. 3:21, 22, 1:17 etc.), was not "bought/purchased" by Christ, as though he had made some payment to God. Jesus' human faith (pistis), which was not a "work", was attributed to Him as righteousness (the case of Abraham in Rom. 4 was a type of this greater happening). With and through this faith-righteousness (cp. Rom. 4:13 "righteousness of faith") "the elect", who were in Him and in union with Him, were justified before God when He hung on the stauros.

    The righteousness worked by Christ on behalf of the elect is far and above meer obedience.

    Again if we would be strict, where do we find it said in Paul's epistles that the righteousness was "worked" (Gr. ergazomai) by Christ ?

    I believe there is an infinite positive aspect to it as well (which all the books in the world could not contain).

    Could you hint a bit as to what you mean by this. And do you mean e.g. Paul has not sufficiently set forth said righteousness in his epistles, but that there is much more to it ?

    This is where my main point lied, in whether dikaioo is ever used to clearly mean objective justification at any point. Can you provide scripture to this effect?

    Yes I can provide. How about these in my opinion quite indisputable instances

    Rom. 3:20, 3:24, 5:9, 1Cor. 6:11, Tit. 3:7, Rom. 8:33, 6:7 (KJV errs by its "freed", Gr. has dikaio&#244, Acts 13:39

    It is not so easy for me to assign a dual meaning of "constituted righteous" and "declared righteous" to dikaioo, I suppose. Therein may lie my difficulties.

    Dikaioô has only one meaning in each context, according to the context. The context limits meaning/sense. It is human tradition which has come up with this notion that "to justify" (in the NT) means "to declare righteous". It does not hold up to the light of the Scripture. Paul warned the Colossians not to be led astray by men's traditions and faulty reasonings etc.

    I will show you instances where dikaioô means other things than "to DECLARE (to be) righteous":

    Acts 13:39, Rom. 3:20, 3:24, 5:9, 1Cor. 6:11, 1Tim. 3:16, Tit. 3:7, Jam. 2:21, Gal. 3:8, Rom. 4:5, Rom. 8:33, Rom. 6:7 (Gr. text), Rom. 3:26, Rev. 22:11


    Harald

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Thanks Harald,

    Again if we would be strict, where do we find it said in Paul's epistles that the righteousness was "worked" (Gr. ergazomai) by Christ ?


    Scripture does not say as much in those same words, yet the idea is portrayed:

    Rom 5:18-19
    (18) So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men.
    (19) For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.

    Through Christ's dikaioma of righteousness, we are justified. Does this not mean that Christ "worked" righteousness?

    I am also of the mind that believing itself is a work. It is referred to as such (John 6:29), and it is the fulfillment of an imperitive command by God (Mark 1:15), making it specifically a work of law. I have no problem with this because I know that my faith does not accomplish that which is finished by Christ. The "conditional salvationist" is required to cry foul at faith being a work because it infringes on his condition for salvation, I am not.


    Could you hint a bit as to what you mean by this. And do you mean e.g. Paul has not sufficiently set forth said righteousness in his epistles, but that there is much more to it ?

    You asked if I believed "that Christ's satisfaction of the Mosaic Law equalled the righteousness with which the elect were justified". My reply is that He manifested the full righteousness of Himself in His deeds above and beyond the Mosaic law. These deeds are mostly not recorded (in reference to John 21:25).


    Thanks for the many Scripture references Harald. I will enjoy studying them more closely tonight when I have more time.

    It helps me to talk some of these things out occasionally. I may have a certain idea in my mind that, if it goes unchallenged, grows cobwebs. Thanks for the direction.

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    You're welcome, Kyle.

    Scripture does not say as much in those same words, yet the idea is portrayed:

    Rom 5:18-19
    (18) So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men.
    (19) For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.

    Through Christ's dikaioma of righteousness, we are justified. Does this not mean that Christ "worked" righteousness?



    Now, the one word DIKAIOOMA is that which the version you quoted renders as "act of r.". Thus there is strictly speaking no equivalent for "act" in the Greek. DIKAIOOMA is close to DIKAIOOSIS, but not the exact synonym. DIKAIOOSIS speaks of "justification" in the act or process thereof, because it ends in the -sis termination. DIKAIOO-MA on the other hand would be the immediate result of DIKAIOOSIS, i.e. a "sentence" of justification, or the result of DIKAIOSUN  - "righteousness", "justness". It seems quite clear to me that DIKAIOO-MA here in v. 18 stands in contrast to KATAKRI-MA in the beginning of the verse. KATAKRI-MA here in this verser means "condemnatory sentence". KATAKRIMA is the immediate result of KATAKRISIS, "a judgment against" in the act or process thereof (i.e. "a judging against"), seen in the -sis suffix. So, if KATAKRI-MA here is "condemnatory sentence" then DIKAOO-MA, in contrast, would be "sentence of justification". "act of righteousness" would have likely been expressed by Paul by way of "pragma" (act, deed) + dikaiosunÍ ("righteousness") in the genitive case, as far as I can see.

    And, inasmuch as DIKAIOOMA is followed in this verse by its cognate, DIKAIOOSIS, it would not make sense to make DIKAIOOMA mean "act of righteousness". And, inasmuch as the -ma suffix indicates result it would be "act resulting from righteousness". In this case it would literally be

    "one act resulting from righteousness (DIKAIOO-MA) ... resulted in [a] process/act of justification (DIKAIOO-SIS) of life"

    The genitive "of" of "life" means "marked by" or "characterized by". But here if DIKAOOSIS means the act/process of justification then it does not make good sense to say this act is "marked/characterized by life". It would have made sense to say "act of justification resulted in life", but in this case "resulted in" would not have been expressed by the genitive, but by way of EIS.

    But this problem-fraught verse would begin making sense if one renders DIKAOOMA more literally as "sentence of justification". In this case DIKAIOOSIS which follows after it here must take on the meaning of "a continuous state of justification". Then it would read like this:

    "one sentence of justification ... resulted in [an] ongoing/continuous state of justification characterized/marked by life".

    This makes perfect sense.

    Consequently, to support the saying "Christ WORKED the righteousness" by resorting to this noun DIKAIOOMA, as translated "act of r." by some versions, is not the wisest thing to do. Nor can "obedience" be used to support the talk about "Christ working out righteousness". "obedience" here in v. 19 is "HUPAKO ", lit. an "under-hearing". Which "literal" meaning makes not much sense. But to say that it is a hearing or heeding or hearkening which is characterized by meek (in the Scripture sense of the word) subordination does not miss the mark. I believe this noun also includes the connotation of attention, the hearkening is attentive, it is meek, i.e. it only seeks God's honour and glory, it is absolutely not self-assertive, not in the least. So, "obedience" here is not first and foremost a "working" or "work" as though effort of some kind were stressed. Rather "HUPAKO " when used with Jesus Christ must be viewed in the light of Paul's saying "hearing of faith" (cp. Gal. 3), meaning "hearing (intrinsically) belonging to faith". Jesus' "obedience" was a meek and submissive (in the most positive sense of this word) and attentive hearing/hearkening in relation to God and His holy will. Which hearkening always led to His accomplishing God's will and good pleasure to the minutest detail. Adam in the garden "disobeyed" (parakouoo), i.e. he failed to heed, hearkened amiss, i.e. did the exact opposite as Jesus Christ, who "obeyed".

    If it was important for Paul to stress that Jesus "worked out" the justifying righteousness then Paul would surely have used the verb ergazomai or katergazomai in such contexts. But he does not. This constant talk about Christ "working out" a justifying righteousness is thus seen to be a human tradition, which Paul warns about in Colossians 2. I myself have been using such language in my unthoughtfulness. But Paul did not, and myself hopes to correct my language henceforth. Therefore Christ's righteousness, wherewith His elect were justified before God, must be explained in more scriptural terms.

    I am also of the mind that believing itself is a work. It is referred to as such (John 6:29), and it is the fulfillment of an imperitive command by God (Mark 1:15), making it specifically a work of law.

    As for "believing itself is a work". It depends.

    As for John 6:29 it cannot really be used to support the notion that believing is a work. KJV mistranslates it a bit, or perhaps readers generally read amiss. KJV says:

    "This is the work of God, that ye believe"

    The Textus Receptus, on which KJV bases, literally says "This thing is the work of the God, in order that you may believe". TR has hina + subjunctive = "in order that ... may/might/should/would". From John's inspired construct it is seen that "the work of the God" was something which aimed at producing faith (in the acting or "exercise" thereof) in the people. The Greek of TR does not say "This thing is the work of the God, that (hoti) you are believing (which would have required present indicative active of pisteuŰ). As for the verb here it is in the aorist tense in the TR, and in the Byz. Majority text. But in the Alexandrian text it is in the present tense. So the TR verb being aoristic it would be "you may/might/should/would believe once for all" or "come to believe". The Alexandrian being present would be "you may/might/should/would be believing" or "begin believing" or "keep on believing".

    As for the imperative command in Mark 1:15 it is in the present tense, not aorist. Thus lit. "begin believing" or "keep on believing". The verb "to repent" (metanoeoo) is in the present tense as well - "begin changing mind/mindset" or "keep on changing mind/mindset". If fulfilled from a motive of true faith then it would be a "work" but not a "work of law", but a "work in (Gr. EN) righteousness" (cp. Titus. 3:5). If fulfilled from a wrong motive then it would be a "work of law".

    The "conditional salvationist" is required to cry foul at faith being a work because it infringes on his condition for salvation

    I agree. And have thought much the same as you here. True Christ-ward faith, in the active acting of it, is a work, but not a "work of law", but rather a "work in righteousness", which makes it a truly "good" work. The "faith in Christ" of the vast majority of professors of Christ's name is a "work of law". Because they "subconsciously" or consciously conceive of Christ-ward faith as a condition to be fulfilled in order to salvation from sin, or in order to justification before God. To be minded that one has to "exercise" Christ-ward trust or faith before justification before God becomes reality is to be "of law" (Gr. EK NOMOU, no article with NOMOS), and thus one is in the business of performing a "work of law". The KJV translator-revisers and other versions's translators produced a mighty cloak for themselves and other conditionalists by rendering "the works of THE law". Thus they could make the point that "Paul was speaking of works which were related to the Law of Moses". Not so! Paul wrote "works of law" (ergoon nomou, no articles). In this Pauline formula is included also Christ-ward faith in such cases where it is a condition/prerequisite. So, those that have taught that "faith in Jesus Christ" must be a reality before Justification Before God becomes a reality have been "of law", i.e. pure conditionalists. Cursed children, under the curse of THE Law. Such was Martin Luther, such were the vast majority of the Puritans, such have been very many renown "Evangelicals" and Baptists etc. etc. etc.

    But what more. When it comes to "experiential justification", or more Scripturally "a being justified from within faith", the Pauline maxim which excludes "works of law" is also operative, in force. A truly Spirit-converted (through Paul's gospel) individual does not conclude or reckon or assume or presume that he is righteous before God as if reasoning thusly, "I believe the truths set forth in the Gospel, and I firmly believe that Christ's atonement was limited only to God's elect, and that they were justified in and by Him when He died, and that this is the true Gospel and only valid Gospel there is, and I believe it, meaning I must be justified before God, and consequently regenerate, seeing that faith in the Gospel is a fruit of regeneration, which is a fruit of justification".
    Such is not to be "justified from within faith of Christ and absolutely not from within works of law" (cp. Gal. 2:16, Gr. text). But rather it is a work of law, a subtle legal effort, a sinner concluding/reasoning that he has been justified before God, and this conclusion being based on the fact that he believes the gospel message (and this sort of believing is only in the letter thereof).


    Harald

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Harald and melted:

    May I ask for a definition of Justification?

    1) Forgiveness of sins
    2) Pardon
    3) Redemption


    Is there anything else it entails?
    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
    GALATIANS 5:22

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Thanks Harald. I much enjoyed your post until the last part. Maybe I fail to understand the point you convey, but I seem to agree with this:

    "I believe the truths set forth in the Gospel, and I firmly believe that Christ's atonement was limited only to God's elect, and that they were justified in and by Him when He died, and that this is the true Gospel and only valid Gospel there is, and I believe it, meaning I must be justified before God, and consequently regenerate, seeing that faith in the Gospel is a fruit of regeneration, which is a fruit of justification"

    This is something I might say. I do not yet understand why it is wrong (as you claim, if I understand rightly). It seems to corrently claim objective justification in Christ on the cross and experiential/subjective justification by God delivered faith in the gospel of the Lord and His work.


    Joe, I will let Harald answer as he appears to have a better grasp on the issue than I.

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Quote Originally Posted by melted

    Joe, I will let Harald answer as he appears to have a better grasp on the issue than I.
    Give it a shot Melt!!!!!!

    IT is painless!!!!!!!!!!!
    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
    GALATIANS 5:22

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Harald and melted:

    May I ask for a definition of Justification?

    1) Forgiveness of sins
    2) Pardon
    3) Redemption


    Is there anything else it entails?
    [JK]


    As for Paul and his teaching I believe that at some occasions when he treats of God's elect's Justification before God he emphasizes one aspect of Justification. But not to the exclusion of other aspects of it. Like when he says in Rom. 5:9 lit. "justified now in the blood of him". Here he emphasizes the discharge/acquittal aspect. At other occasions when he mentions Jesus' human faith he emphasizes the constitution aspect (constituted spotlessly righteous through Jesus' human faith). Then at other occasions when neither the blood nor the faith is directly involved then I believe he talks about Justification generally. My understanding of JBG as set forth by Paul is that it involves, basically, the following

    a) the discharging of the lapses in and by means of the blood of Jesus Christ
    which automatically means
    b) acquittal of all charges ("non-imputation of sins")
    c) the being "positively" constituted spotlessly and perfectly righteous and just in God's sight, in Christ, in and through His human faith-righteousness
    d) the being adjudged to life (eternal, spiritual) on account of C


    Harald

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Thanks Harald. I much enjoyed your post until the last part. [melted]


    You're welcome, Kyle. I am sorry if the last part was not enjoyable to you. But I believe I spoke an important truth as respects "declarative j.".


    I do not yet understand why it is wrong (as you claim, if I understand rightly). It seems to corrently claim objective justification in Christ on the cross and experiential/subjective justification by God delivered faith in the gospel of the Lord and His work.

    The example of what a man may think in his heart is an example of wrong/false assurance. The man who thus reasons does not do wrong, per se, in that he believes the Scripture's testimony that God's elect were justified ("objectively", i.e. before God) in and by Christ on the "cross" (a vertical (wooden) stake, Gr. stauros). Every one who comes within the sphere of Paul's gospel is duty bound to believe this truth. Because it is what God has testified concerning Christ and His redemption. But, where the man in the example goes wrong is when he begins to derive assurance of having been justified (before God) from within (or based on) the fact that he believes the objective truths stated concerning Christ's redemption on the tree. Such a man takes to himself assurance by the method of reasoning and drawing conclusions, which conclusion (the onus being "I have been justified before God in Christ") is based on the fact that he believes the objective truths which the Scripture states concerning Christ's Redemption. Such an assurance of having been justified before God in Christ's Person is false on many accounts:

    a) it is the man who originates this assurance, not God, not God's Spirit
    b) he obtains this assurance from within a "work", here it is: reasoning and drawing conclusions, a mental effort. Thus this assurance ("declarative j.") is not "from within faith"
    c) the basis of his assurance is something which he himself does, i.e. believes the objective truths set forth in the gospel message
    d) such an assurance, or, "declarative j." is seen to be, basically, "from within faith in the gospel". And being so it is not as Paul says "from within faith of Christ"

    Perhaps other negative things could be said against such false assurance. Paul nowhere says that "declarative justification" comes via "faith in the gospel" or via "faith in Jesus Christ". The false scheme of obtaining assurance which I have here briefly touched upon is basically diametrically opposite to that which Paul sets forth.
    Paul teaches that declarative or evidential justification comes about via "being revealed (apokaluptoo) from within faith to faith", Rom. 1:17. In the Pauline and Scriptural scheme evidential justification comes to a redeemed and justified sinner via direct revelation, and owing to this the one who is given the revelation automatically believes. He/she believes due to having been Divinely revealed as justified in Christ on the tree. In the false scheme belief comes before assurance is taken by force. In the Scriptural scheme declarative justification comes before believing on Christ.
    So, a person who has been (declaratively, evidentially, experientially) justified from within faith, in the Scripture way, can truly say, "I was justified from within faith, therefore I believed". Evidential justification (involving impartation of Divine assurance) from within faith preceedes believing on Jesus Christ.
    In the false scheme a man, in the energy of the flesh, sucks to himself assurance like a sponge, from within a mental "work", reasoning/concluding (to have been justified in Christ at Calvary) based on his/her believing some objective truths of the gospel.

    The Divine method of granting assurance of Justification before God in Christ's Person at Calvary has ever been special and personal direct revelation. Paul states this most clearly in Rom. 1:17 by "Seeing that righteousness well-pleasing to God in it is being revealed from within faith to faith, in keeping with how it has been written: "But the righteous from within faith, he shall have life in himself". This is well corroborated by what he says in Gal. 3:23.

    At least 3 times in Romans Paul used the formula "ek pisteoos" (from within faith) when touching on evidential justification. Maybe 5, or even more. And 3 times in Galatians.


    Harald

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    Re: "Justification before God" a misnomer?

    Hebrews 10:22 speaks of the assurance of faith. Does not this give a defination for subjective justification evidenced within the believer?


    22let us (A)draw near with a sincere heart in (B)full assurance of faith, having our hearts (C)sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies (D)washed with pure water.

    let us draw near with a sincere heart in the assurance that faith brings,25 because we have had our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience26 and our bodies washed in pure water. 10:23 And let us hold unwaveringly to the hope that we confess, for the one who made the promise is trustworthy.
    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
    GALATIANS 5:22

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