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Thread: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert R. Higby View Post
    Mary: The issue here is whether justification has one, two, or three dimensions. I have already given my reasons for a tri-dimensional conviction and believe that Paul in Romans and Galatians supports it. The MERIT and BASIS of our justification is all in the righteousness of God manifested in Christ--we are all agreed upon that.

    1. Eternal Justification or justification purposed and made a complete reality in God's decree as if it were past (Rom. 8:30).
    2. Secured (Ratified) Justification or justification constituted complete in the perfect life (faithful obedience), atoning death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ (Rom. 5:18).
    3. Declared justification or God's faithful declaration that an INDIVIUAL ELECT believer is included in the first two above.

    It is on point #3 that some of us are disagreeing and I am saying that the objective 'faith OF Christ' point of view confuses #2 and #3 as if they were one and the same. If they are the same then we have to go with universalism as the only possible interpretation that is consistent with God's revelation. OR, horror of horrors, with a conditionalism that separates the objective faithfulness of Christ from our individual salvation in such a way that individual assurance is obtained through belief + obedient works.

    I do not believe that 'faith in Christ' is a literal translation where the genitive is used--but it is the EQUIVALENT of 'faith of Christ' if the subjective genitive is what is intended in context. Both the genitive OF and dative IN are used in Paul's argument throughout. The faith of Christ is the faith that comes from Christ, is owned by Christ, and placed by the Holy Spirit within us. Just as the words I'm writing right now come from me and are resident within this post. To say that such words are 'OF' me does not mean that they are not in some sense external to me.
    Thanks Bob for your response! That seems to make more sense to me, I had never heard any of this before. So we have eternal justification where God declares His children saved, and Jesus who completes that justification by being at the cross. And you say that we are a part of all of that. Because if we were not a part of that justification then we would have to give some sort of ourselves apart from Christ to be justified (conditionalism). I have to look up universalism as I dont remember what that means though I remember I disagree with it...

    So then would it be safe to say since we are in Christ, and Him in us, that we have the faith of Christ in us? For you said "The faith OF Christ is the faith that comes from Christ, is owned by Christ, and placed by the Holy Spirit in us." So the faith of Christ, or ya know Holy Spirit has to be in us to be saved right? That is the last part of justification? Or I mean not really last part but combined with it all, justified from the beginning, Christ completed that at the cross, and faith in that from Gods children.

    And maybe a verse like this would also go here:
    Col 1:27, (NASB), to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
    1 Cor 1:30,31 (NASB), But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, "Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord."
    1 Tim 1:14, (NASB), and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith and love which are found in Christ Jesus.

    Thanks,
    Mary
    A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. - Wisdom

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by MCoving View Post
    So then would it be safe to say since we are in Christ, and Him in us, that we have the faith of Christ in us? For you said "The faith OF Christ is the faith that comes from Christ, is owned by Christ, and placed by the Holy Spirit in us." So the faith of Christ, or ya know Holy Spirit has to be in us to be saved right? That is the last part of justification? Or I mean not really last part but combined with it all, justified from the beginning, Christ completed that at the cross, and faith in that from Gods children.
    I'm with you Mary, seems like the ofs and ins can be confusing. Does it mean that the faith OF Christ is the faith that He gives us because HE is the author of it?

    Heb 12:2 "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of God"

    Just a thought!

    Eileen~
    "To those who have no works-phobia, I will state that you are not trembling before the gospel" Robert R. Higby

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by Eileen View Post
    I'm with you Mary, seems like the ofs and ins can be confusing. Does it mean that the faith OF Christ is the faith that He gives us because HE is the author of it?

    Heb 12:2 "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of God"

    Just a thought!

    Eileen~
    Acutally Mary and Eileen, I disagree with Bob on this issue and also it is not speaking of Jesus faith in the verses in which Mary quotes. If you look at the definitions of faith you will see that what many whom translate this as faith of Christ (King James) etc. are speaking of His faithfulness in fulfilling the covenant. If you look at the NET translation at bible.org you will see that they use this translation. Most newer translations prefer a more humanistic involment in justification. Basically how I see Paul usinig faith in these verses (and it is only the ones translated as faith of Christ in the KJV) has to do with

    4102 pi,stij
    pistis {pis'-tis}
    Meaning:

    1) conviction of the truth of anything, belief; in the NT of a conviction or belief respecting man's relationship to God and divine things, generally with the included idea of trust and holy fervour born of faith and joined with it 1a) relating to God 1a1) the conviction that God exists and is the creator and ruler of all things, the provider and bestower of eternal salvation through Christ 1b) relating to Christ 1b1) a strong and welcome conviction or belief that Jesus is the Messiah, through whom we obtain eternal salvation in the kingdom of God 1c) the religious beliefs of Christians 1d) belief with the predominate idea of trust (or confidence) whether in God or in Christ, springing from faith in the same

    2) fidelity, faithfulness 2a) the character of one who can be relied on

    Rom 5:19
    19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. KJV

    Our justification has to do with what our faithful to the covenant Christ did in His life and His death. It is His faithful obedience to the Father (the opposite of the unfaithfulness of the first Adam) which is mostly the story Paul tells of Christ. Our believing is only a side issue (part of the gifts promised to us) to the story.

    On your Hebrew verse Eillen, it actually only says that Christ is the author and finisher of faith. The word our is not in the original.

    John
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    John, if I accepted your argument (that there is no personal dimension to justification by faith and that it is only in Christ) I would have to be a universalist.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by jmgipson View Post
    On your Hebrew verse Eillen, it actually only says that Christ is the author and finisher of faith. The word our is not in the original.
    Hi John ,

    I see that you are right in that our is not in the original but how does that actually change what it means. Christ is the author of faith and faith is a gift given to the elect only........'by grace you have been saved, 'through faith' and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God'

    I know you are busy right now, perhaps after your company leaves you will have more time to explain what you are getting at. I guess you are using a different definition of 'faith', so in the above you would say that it is 'through faithfulness' and the gift is the faithfulness, not the faith? I found it interesting that you alluded to the fact that you are not believing in the NPP, how is that connected to the 'in' and 'of' controversy, or is it? Just wondered.


    Eileen~
    "To those who have no works-phobia, I will state that you are not trembling before the gospel" Robert R. Higby

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    John you're saying its just faith of Christ right? Not at all faith IN Christ? Do we not have to believe in Christ to be justified? Not as a condition but I mean justification includes God opening our eyes and ears.. thats just part of it. So the verses that are talked about can easily be understood as faith IN Christ. Right? I mean it is also very true that Christ was faithful as you are implying.. but I think Bob is getting at a deeper meaning that included in justification is our believing in Christ.. God opening our eyes. Right?? Some personal aspect.

    And then Bob you say if there isn't some personal aspect.. some faith in Christ then we'd just have universalism. Which I had to look that word up it just means any concept or doctrine that applies to ALL. So Christ was faithful right? the Faith of Christ.. but if we didn't have faith in Christ as part of justification then this doctrine of justification would apply to all? Right? If it JUST meant faith of Christ.. yet justification doesn't JUST mean that it also includes us?? Right John?? I would think you would agree with that... so maybe we are all kinda saying the same things here? Maybe..

    Anyways I've been very blessed by this thread.. thanks to whoever brought it up!! Its really got me thinking... that and the orthodoxy poll.

    Thanks,
    Mary
    A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. - Wisdom

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert R. Higby View Post
    John, if I accepted your argument (that there is no personal dimension to justification by faith and that it is only in Christ) I would have to be a universalist.
    I don’t understand Bob what you are saying. All I am saying is that our faith ( in the sense of our believing and trusting) is what was promised to all that were given to Christ and all He died for. I don’t know how that makes you a universalist but I do understand how it is hard to explain things through typing on a computer. I avoid making this faith above as a condition. It is only one of the wonderful gifts Christ earned for us on the cross. We make to much of the human side of faith and not enough of the divine side. I hope you can see what I mean also by these verses:

    Titus 1:1
    1:1 Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness; 2 In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

    Acts 13:48

    48 And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. (The promise from above)


    Phil 1:29-30

    29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake; 30 Having the same conflict which ye saw in me, and now hear to be in me. (The promise above.)


    Acts 13:38-39

    38 Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: 39 And by him all that believe (the promise above) are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.


    So what I am saying in Acts 13:38-39 is that all that believe (a continue believing) would be the same as saying all that Christ died for, or all those that the Father gave Him would are justified. I am only saying that the all that are believing is an identifier only and not a condition.

    Eileen, and Mary,
    I will get back to you sometime today if possible with some of what you are asking me. I am going back up to talk with the family. By the way Eileen, the reason I brought up the NPP is that there are some men who write about this faithfulness of Christ and because they are NPP men every one who believes in this truth are lumped in with them. I think that some of what these men teach is correct. Just because they go astray on other parts I don’t through the baby out with the bath water. I believe this same thing about other men like Pink, Spurgeon, etc. They have many things they write about in which I disagree, but they also have truth.

    John
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Eileen, Mary,
    Please understand that I am not saying the Bob is not correct in what he is saying. I am saying that I may not understand exactly what he means. I have learned this is a side effect of debating in this type of forum. I am hopefully relaying to you my understanding of the complete story God has given us. I put together this paper I am typing into a telepromter software and getting ready to make some DVD's for my family and my classes. I will try and give you a small picture of what I am speaking of and will add more later. I have put this together from the use of many good writings of men whom I respect. And please do not think this changes my veiw of eternal justification because this is how I believe it all works together. Please feel free to add or bring to my attention anything you may question. This is the way I learn of my own mistakes sometimes. I have not made these DVD's yet so I value your opionion. This is for all.

    ________

    When we talk about the work of redemption, typically you would think of what took place at the cross. But as you read through scriptures, you are going to find that the work of redemption and the work of salvation are the same thing. What is sometimes in scripture called God’s saving his people is in other places called his redeeming them. So we see Christ is called both the savior and the Redeemer:

    Isa 49:26b “…and all flesh shall know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.”

    Savior means to ‘to deliver or liberate’.

    Isa 60:16b “…and thou shalt know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.”

    There are aspects of salvation that we talk about. We talk about our election. We need to think of salvation as from eternity, to eternity. We talk about justification at the cross, and we talk about being saved at the cross. What we are talking about is being saved from the legal condemnation, the legal penalty of sin. That was accomplished at the cross. But, does that mean that salvation is finished. NO! I have been saved by that work. But, when the spirit comes in regeneration, he is saving me from what? From my ignorance, my darkness, my blindness, my rebellion. So, when we talk about salvation, it is a process, or umbrella of redemption that goes from eternity to eternity. So you ask, where is this in scripture?

    I want to take the time to answer this and other questions brought up by believers. For example, a common question asked today is “when where you saved?” This common question tries to pin eternal life down to some act such as believing, or saying a sinner’s prayer.

    Is this biblical?
    How would you answer this question?
    How are we to understand the salvation of God?



    Turn with me to 2 Timothy 1:9 (Read it)

    “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works,
    but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began.”
    What was given before the world began? God purposed to show grace to sinners He chose in Christ. Also in Titus 1:2 we see eternal life was promised to His elect before the world began.
    In hope of eternal life , which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;
    When did the actual saving occur- in time, or eternity? Matthew 1:21 says, “Thou shalt call His name Jesus for He SHALL SAVE His people from their sins.” While there can be no separating what God purposed in eternity from what actually takes place in time, yet, God’s salvation of sinners must be just. His Son was eternally the Surety and Savior, yet, in order to work out the salvation of the elect, He had to come as a man to live, die, rise again and ascend on high, and thereby ‘BECAME the author of eternal salvation,’ Heb. 5:9. Christ the eternal Son of God, and Surety of His people, became a man, and literally bore their sin in His body, because, ‘without shedding of blood is no remission,’ Heb. 9:22.
    The saving, purposed in eternity, was accomplished in the death of Christ from the legal condemnation that we as God’s beloved ones were under in our father Adam, Rom. 5:19. Our Lord Jesus fulfilled all of the righteous requirements of God the Father to the satisfaction of His justice. Therefore, in 2 Tim. 1:9 the ‘who hath saved us,’ points the sinner outside himself to none other than God Himself, in the person and work of Christ, as his salvation. If God has called (summoned) you by His Spirit, it is because He first saved you by His Son’s blood and righteousness, and that according to His eternal purpose of grace appointed in Christ, before the world began.
    How then does this salvation work in time? Simply it is this:
    1. SALVATION FROM THE PENALTY OF SIN- Those whom God the Father chose and purposed to save in Christ in eternity, He HAS ALREADY SAVED from the penalty of sin through the obedience and death of the Lord Jesus Christ. In 2 Timothy 1:9 ‘Who hath saved us,’ describes a completed action in past time. It is in the death of Christ, that God saved (entirely forgave and completely justified) His people from their sin (Col. 1:14).

    Col. 1:20-22
    Col. 2:14

    2. SALVATION FROM THE POWER AND PLEASURE OF SIN-Those whom Christ has saved from the penalty of their sin by His death, He does in time save (deliver) from the power (authority) and pleasure of sin. This is the work of the Holy Spirit in regeneration. He delivers them from the blindness and deadness of heart, and makes them alive to see and believe on Christ who redeemed, justified, and sanctified them. Eph. 2:8,9-‘For by grace are ye saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves. It is the gift of God.’ The sense is having been saved (by Christ’s death), and being kept in that state of salvation by grace. Faith is not the cause but the evidence of having been saved by Christ, and looks to Him alone, Hebrews 12:2.

    1 Peter 2:9, Col. 1:13, Eph. 5:8

    2 Corinthians 4:6
    “For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” 2 Corinthians 4:6
    When a sinner is born again (born from above), the Holy Spirit removes the veil of blindness from his eyes and causes him to look to Christ and Him crucified as that One who established righteousness for him by His perfect obedience to the Law, and having completely put away his sin by His death.

    It is the Spirit’s work to give eyes to see the light of the glory of Christ revealed in the Gospel. He breathes life in those whom Christ redeemed and the Father justified in Christ. The change that takes place at regeneration is the passing from spiritual death to life because of the change that took place at the cross with the removal of the charge of condemnation, and the full imputation of Christ’s righteousness as the Substitute, Col. 2:14. It is through the work of the Spirit that redeemed and justified sinners enter into the knowledge and joy of what Christ accomplished for them even before they knew anything about it. There is not a change in the redeemed sinner’s standing with God as regards his justification because God the Father saw him already fully justified and forgiven through Christ’s blood and righteousness, Romans 4:25. However at regeneration, there is a change from lostness to being found of Christ, death to life, or from darkness to light. It is this necessary work of the Spirit that frees the sinner from the bondage of self-will, ignorance, and rebellion, and brings him to rest in Christ as the only ground of acceptance with God.

    The Spirit reconciles the sinner in his heart to Christ, based on the reconciliation that Christ already accomplished for him with the Father at the cross. (These verses show us the reconciliation at the cross accomplished already. Rom. 5:10; Col. 1:21-22; 2 Cor. 5:18-19) This repentance, or change of heart, mind, and attitude toward God is the gift of God through His Son, Acts 11:18. Up to that point the sinner is at enmity against God in his mind and spirit, although God’s love and favor are toward him already because of Christ. Yet, when the Holy Spirit enlightens him through the preaching of the gospel of Christ’s Righteousness, He gives him faith to believe Christ and enter into the rest and enjoyment of the accomplished work of Christ and His righteousness at the cross. Heb. 2:17


    3. SALVATION FROM THE PRESENCE OF SIN-Those who believe on Christ, through the work of the Spirit, shall yet be saved from the presence of sin, as the ultimate effect of His work on the cross. Acts 16:31, ‘Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.’ The verb tense is future passive, which again speaks of a work entirely outside oneself, a reference to the certain hope of deliverance from the very presence of sin in the day of the believer’s glorification.

    Romans 13:11
    1 Peter 1:5
    Romans 8:23

    What a glorious and blessed state, not to ‘get saved,’ but to know that I’ve been saved through the blood and righteousness of Christ, faith being the inwrought work of the Spirit to deliver me from my deadness and blindness toward Him, and to know that because of His completed work, my hope of everlasting salvation rests entirely on Him as my Surety.








    As I said in the beginning, Salvation or redemption is from eternity to eternity.

    So let me start in eternity: THE REDEMPTION OF SINNERS FORORDAINED IN CHRIST FROM ETERNITY
    All that Christ undertook in time in His great work of redemption was in complete accord with God’s eternal decree to honor His Son as Savior of redeemed sinners.
    This plan of redemption was determined in God's eternal decree. (Ephesians 1:4ff; 3:11; 2 Timothy 1:9). Christ refers to promises made to Him before he tabernacled among us, and often speaks about a commission which he received from the Father (John 5:30,43; 6:38-40; 17:4-12). He is a covenant head, just as Adam was (Romans 5:12-21; 1 Corinthians 15:22).
    In Psalm 2:7-9 the parties of the covenant are mentioned (Father and Son) and a promise is indicated to grant to Him as the heir of all things the full salvation of those given to Him in covenant grace, on condition of HIM fulfilling all that was necessary to satisfaction of God the Father- ‘Thou art my Son (His eternal sonship), ‘this day have I begotten thee’- His humanity- See Hebrews 1:5,6 with Acts 13:33.
    In Psalm 40:7-8 the Lord, the Eternal Son of God expresses his readiness to do the Father's will in becoming a sacrifice for sin. What role does Christ fulfill in this covenant? He is not only the Head but also the Surety of the covenant of redemption (Hebrews 7:22). A surety is one who takes upon himself the legal obligations of another. Christ took the place of the sinner, to bear the penalty of sin and to meet the demands of the law for His people. By so doing he became the last Adam, the life-giving spirit (1 Corinthians 15:45).
    God’s eternal purpose to redeem guaranteed its fulfillment in time
    I would like to look at some scripture which often times is misquoted or taken completely out of context. I not only believe this verse shows the eternal purpose which is guaranteed but also its fulfillment in time.

    Romans 8: 28-32 is giving a summary of how God saves sinners, beginning with God’s purpose, foreknowledge, and predestination (vv. 28,29), their calling (literally naming in election- v. 30), and manifest in their justification and glorification in the person and work of Christ when He died, see vv. 32-34. In Romans 8:30 the verbs are in the aorist tense, (translated as past tense in our English language). Let me expound these verses.

    The very sense of the word ‘predestinated,’ implies a plan or purpose to be accomplished in time. The prefix ‘pre’ indicates something ordained before hand, not as already done. The conforming to the image of Christ is what took place in His life of obedience as the God-Man, whereby His elect were ‘made the righteousness of God in Him,’ 2 Corinthians 5:21. That word ‘made’ means literally ‘to become,’ what they weren’t before.
    Those who hold to justification upon faith of the sinner will note that ‘calling’ is put before justification, Romans 8:30. However, the term ‘called’ here is not with reference to regeneration. It is a different word referring to those whom God has ‘named’ in His predestinating grace, and for whom Christ should come and die, in order to justify them. In Romans 8:28, the calling is with reference to the special internal summons or call of the Spirit of grace according to what God has purposed. However, in verse 30 it is another word altogether meaning ‘named.’
    We have these two examples of the word ‘calling’ in English. What you call your children, means, what you namethem. However, you may call (summons) them to the table, but that is different than calling (naming) them: John, Mary, Peter, etc. I believe then that the proper interpretation of verse 30 is that those God predestined, He called ‘named’ in Christ. The picture here is of the High Priest going into the Holiest of Holies with the names of the people on His breastplate. Rev. G.H. Kersten writes in is Reformed Dogmatics (pg 130 vol 1) “Election is the decree of God by which He in perfect sovereignty determined in which persons, known to Him by name in Christ, He has decided to magnify His mercy gloriously unto their salvation, and also by which means He Himself shall bring those persons to salvation. This decree is the book of life, in which the names of the elect are written (Rev. 13:8; 21:27). It shows that Christ in coming did so for a particular chosen people, whom God named in eternal election. (See also Luke 10:20 and John 10:3) The ‘ordo salutus’ (order of salvation) is this. Those God saved, He first predestined in Christ and called (named or elected) to be His, and then justified. The confusion comes in making the justification after the new birth, but the following verses clearly put the time of justification at the death of Christ, vv. 32, 33 for all of God’s elect. The evident conclusion is that what God purposed in eternity, He fulfilled in time in the death of His Son, when you read the entire context. So we read in verse 33: “Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that jusifieth.” They all (even those unborn yet) have been justified at the cross.
    So it is also with the glorification of those whom God predestined and whom He justified by the death of His Son. Their glorification God accomplished in raising His Son from the grave and setting Him on high. Those for whom He died and rose again were glorified in Him when He rose, ascended, and sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on High, Philippians 2:9. This was the very subject of Christ’s prayer in the garden, John 17:22, 24. The glorification here is not a reference to the future state of glory, although that is indeed the end of what Christ accomplished. In this context, however, it is His elect being glorified with the glory of Christ, given Him because of His faithful fulfilling of all the requirements and conditions for the salvation of His people.
    In conclusion, when Paul wrote these words under the inspiration of the Spirit, Christ had already died and fulfilled them by His death. It would seem reasonable then that the Spirit directed him to put the verbs in the aorist tense to show the certainty of what Christ accomplished. This is the most reliable way of interpreting this text, rather than confuse purpose with fulfillment, and trying to make something yet to be accomplished as already done.
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by Eileen View Post
    Hi John ,


    I see that you are right in that our is not in the original but how does that actually change what it means. Christ is the author of faith and faith is a gift given to the elect only........'by grace you have been saved, 'through faith' and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God'

    I know you are busy right now, perhaps after your company leaves you will have more time to explain what you are getting at. I guess you are using a different definition of 'faith', so in the above you would say that it is 'through faithfulness' and the gift is the faithfulness, not the faith? I found it interesting that you alluded to the fact that you are not believing in the NPP, how is that connected to the 'in' and 'of' controversy, or is it? Just wondered.



    Eileen~
    I see this as more in depth than just our faith. This as I understand it is speaking of Christ as the Author and finisher of the faith. Everything emcomposed in what He did and finished for us at the cross.

    John

    John
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    It certainly would seem, based on all that has been said, that we are in full agreement on the principles of how the plan of salvation operates.

    To answer Eileen and Mary's question: yes, the pressing of all the meaning of justification to Christ's faithfulness is characteristic of the NPP. This is because 'faithfulness' includes 'obedience' (even in Hebrews) and the NPP is trying to destroy the historic meaning of SOLA FIDE. Years ago I read "Law and Gospel: Contrast or Continuum" by Daniel Fuller and he basically outlined the same position.

    Those who denied SOLA FIDE as related to personal justification in the church I was raised in (SDA) also exegeted the text in Rom. 3 & Gal. 2 in this manner.

    The conditionalist Primitive Baptists I have exchanged with all agree with this interpretation as well.

    As I have said before in other threads, if it is only a disagreement on the technical rendering of Rom. 3:22a and Gal. 2:16a at stake--we would have no debate to worry about. But the typical 'objective genitive' interpretation is trying to press any use of the word 'justification' in connection with faith to Christ's faithfulness alone. As far as the objective and meritorious basis of our justification this is certainly true, however, that is not the only aspect of justification taught in the Bible. I propose that Paul is often discussing the ongoing and individual aspect of justification and how that is known to the conscience.

    It is not only salvation that is ongoing, it is justification which is a dimension of salvation. Declared justification begins at the moment faith is given to an elect soul and continues from thereon to eternity. It has special significance on the day of judgment when God will publicly declare who his individual elect are before the entire universe of souls.

    The issue here is how salvation is secured to the conscience of the elect--by a faith that is CONVICTION of the truth or a faith that consists of imitation of Christ's faithfulness (works). Remember that in the Greek there is no difference between 'belief' and 'faith'--that is a distinction in translation only.

    I believe that if justification is limited only to its meritorious basis in the finished work of Christ--all of humanity are logically included. If there is no further declaration of justification to the consciences of individuals of their inclusion in that (through the gift of belief alone)--we simply presume that we are included based on God's covenant faithfulness and the fact that every aspect of justification is complete once for all.
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert R. Higby View Post
    It certainly would seem, based on all that has been said, that we are in full agreement on the principles of how the plan of salvation operates.

    To answer Eileen and Mary's question: yes, the pressing of all the meaning of justification to Christ's faithfulness is characteristic of the NPP. This is because 'faithfulness' includes 'obedience' (even in Hebrews) and the NPP is trying to destroy the historic meaning of SOLA FIDE. Years ago I read "Law and Gospel: Contrast or Continuum" by Daniel Fuller and he basically outlined the same position.

    Those who denied SOLA FIDE as related to personal justification in the church I was raised in (SDA) also exegeted the text in Rom. 3 & Gal. 2 in this manner.

    The conditionalist Primitive Baptists I have exchanged with all agree with this interpretation as well.

    As I have said before in other threads, if it is only a disagreement on the technical rendering of Rom. 3:22a and Gal. 2:16a at stake--we would have no debate to worry about. But the typical 'objective genitive' interpretation is trying to press any use of the word 'justification' in connection with faith to Christ's faithfulness alone. As far as the objective and meritorious basis of our justification this is certainly true, however, that is not the only aspect of justification taught in the Bible. I propose that Paul is often discussing the ongoing and individual aspect of justification and how that is known to the conscience.

    It is not only salvation that is ongoing, it is justification which is a dimension of salvation. Declared justification begins at the moment faith is given to an elect soul and continues from thereon to eternity. It has special significance on the day of judgment when God will publicly declare who his individual elect are before the entire universe of souls.

    The issue here is how salvation is secured to the conscience of the elect--by a faith that is CONVICTION of the truth or a faith that consists of imitation of Christ's faithfulness (works). Remember that in the Greek there is no difference between 'belief' and 'faith'--that is a distinction in translation only.

    I believe that if justification is limited only to its meritorious basis in the finished work of Christ--all of humanity are logically included. If there is no further declaration of justification to the consciences of individuals of their inclusion in that (through the gift of belief alone)--we simply presume that we are included based on God's covenant faithfulness and the fact that every aspect of justification is complete once for all.
    This is where we part Bob. Declared justification is at the cross when the law is fulfilled in Christ. When the just penalty is dealt out, all that are in Christ are declared justified before the law. There is no other declaration I see in scripture given by God when we come to the gift of faith. The fruit of our justification is our believing as I tried to show above. This I cannot accept as another declaration of God.

    John
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Bob wrote: I believe that if justification is limited only to its meritorious basis in the finished work of Christ--all of humanity are logically included. If there is no further declaration of justification to the consciences of individuals of their inclusion in that (through the gift of belief alone)--we simply presume that we are included based on God's covenant faithfulness and the fact that every aspect of justification is complete once for all.
    __________________


    I am not sure I understand what you are aluding to here Bob. I see no reason why you would have to attribute every occurance of faith to the LUTHER view of faith. I only see that Paul is giving us the wonderful story of the unfaithful man as opposed to the faithful man, What His faithful work in His life and death did to satisfy the law, and how the Holy Spirit opens our eyes to this truth through the new birth and faith (believing). I do not see how this can be called justified by faith in Romans and justified by the faith of Christ in Galatians. I does not connect.

    John
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    I will quote what I believe is the root of it. This comes from Faith of Christ by Richard B. Hays page 284:

    “It is not easy to decide whether the difficult dia, pi,stij (through faith) in Romans 3:25 refers to God’s faithfulness (probably not directly), Christ’s faithfulness in accepting death on the cross (the likeliest option), or the faith whereby hearers of the gospel receive the atoning benefits of Christ’s death ( since dikaiosu,nh qeo,j [“God’s righteousness] is, after all, manifested for all who believe,” 3:22). If Paul means the last of these three possibilities, he certainly has not made himself very clear. The emphasis of the whole passage is on God’s action in putting forward Jesus Christ the Messiah, who enacts the faith-obedience that Israel failed to render, who thereby glorifies God as faithless human creatures had failed to do and constitutes, through His resurrection, the beginning of a new humanity, whom God has predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son”(8:29). Because this manifestation of God’s saving righteousness has taken place apart from the law, through Christ’s action, the new humanity includes Jews and Gentiles without distinction. Nonetheless, the faithfulness of Jesus is at the same time the manifestation of God’s covenant faithfulness to Israel, as Paul will argue in Romans 9-11 and 15:8-9.

    The paragraph concludes in 3:26 with the affirmation that God’s act of putting forth Jesus Christ was undertaken “so that God himself might be just precisely by justifying the one who shares the faith of Jesus.

    John Gipson
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert R. Higby View Post
    Mary: The issue here is whether justification has one, two, or three dimensions. I have already given my reasons for a tri-dimensional conviction and believe that Paul in Romans and Galatians supports it. The MERIT and BASIS of our justification is all in the righteousness of God manifested in Christ--we are all agreed upon that.

    1. Eternal Justification or justification purposed and made a complete reality in God's decree as if it were past (Rom. 8:30).
    2. Secured (Ratified) Justification or justification constituted complete in the perfect life (faithful obedience), atoning death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ (Rom. 5:18).
    3. Declared justification or God's faithful declaration that an INDIVIUAL ELECT believer is included in the first two above.

    It is on point #3 that some of us are disagreeing and I am saying that the objective 'faith OF Christ' point of view confuses #2 and #3 as if they were one and the same. If they are the same then we have to go with universalism as the only possible interpretation that is consistent with God's revelation. OR, horror of horrors, with a conditionalism that separates the objective faithfulness of Christ from our individual salvation in such a way that individual assurance is obtained through belief + obedient works.

    I do not believe that 'faith in Christ' is a literal translation where the genitive is used--but it is the EQUIVALENT of 'faith of Christ' if the subjective genitive is what is intended in context. Both the genitive OF and dative IN are used in Paul's argument throughout. The faith of Christ is the faith that comes from Christ, is owned by Christ, and placed by the Holy Spirit within us. Just as the words I'm writing right now come from me and are resident within this post. To say that such words are 'OF' me does not mean that they are not in some sense external to me.
    I don’t agree with this because I believe when Paul wanted us to understand it as faith in Christ, he spelled it out for us. There is a difference in how the Holy Spirit words things and I believe for a purpose and that is our understanding.

    Galatians 3:26 26 For <1063> ye are <2075> (5748) all <3956> the children <5207> of God <2316> by <1223> faith <4102> in <1722> Christ <5547> Jesus <2424>.


    1722 evn en {en}
    Meaning: 1) in, by, with etc.
    Origin: a primary preposition denoting (fixed) position (in place, time or state), and (by implication) instrumentality (medially or constructively), i.e. a relation of rest (intermediate between 1519 and 1537); TDNT - 2:537,233; prep

    Also see Col. 1:4 and 2:5.

    You might think it makes no difference, but I truly believe there is a difference in the idea of faith being conveyed by the Spirit.

    John
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    JG: The paragraph concludes in 3:26 with the affirmation that God’s act of putting forth Jesus Christ was undertaken “so that God himself might be just precisely by justifying the one who shares the faith of Jesus.

    Like the robot in Lost in Space, I'm crying DANGER, DANGER, DANGER!

    The cults and conditionalists have made it very clear what it means to 'share the faith of Jesus': perfect works. So justification is by the faithfulness of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all who are faithful in obedience like Christ (perfect works) then?
    I got four things to live by: don't say nothin' that will hurt anybody; don't give advice--no one will take it anyway; don't complain; don't explain. Walter Scott

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    I agree with Bob we cannot try and compare ourselves to Jesus. He was perfect and God, there was no possible way of him straying the course, He was perfectly obedient. I believe that we must be careful with using our words as there are so many different understandings of justification out there, and we dont want to confuse anyone. Our faith can never be that of Jesus' faith, we will never in and of ourselves be perfect like Him. If it wasnt for Christ in us we wouldn't have any faith at all. It is because of what Christ did and because of Him being in us that we are justified.

    Also I was just thinking about something... not to sidetrack this thread too much but religious people talk about Jesus' faith and obedience alot, it is true He was that. But He could never have been anything else, right?? I mean its His character to be faithful and obedient and to carry through with His Will. Is not Jesus God as well? Its like saying Jesus is faithful to Himself, and obedient to His own will. Right? I've heard some pastors who have preached that Jesus could have sinned.. or could have not stayed the course, or not been faithful. But this is absolutely ridiculous thinking to me. Just because Jesus was man in the flesh doesn't mean He gave up being God! Sorry just a side note....

    Mary

    ps: I know I talk alot.. I dont have much else to do when I am home, I love to be in the Word and talking about theology. I have my whole life... if I didn't have to work this is all I'd want to do. haha
    A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. - Wisdom

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    John,

    I have printed your paper and did a cursory reading this morning and will read it again in the coming days. Thank you for sharing it as I know you have put much thought and work into it. I can’t keep up with all the posts even in this thread so just a short response.

    I don’t quite understand though how your paper relates to the ‘in’ and ‘of’ discussion and I don’t agree with this statement regarding faith:

    We make too much of the human side of faith:

    I’m not sure how we make too much of the human side of faith as it is a part of salvation according the Eph 2:8 …..’By grace you have been saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God’.

    On the Romans passage:

    “But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; (Romans 3:21)

    “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference. (Romans 3:22)

    I believe the righteousness of God was now manifested (clearly apparent to the sight or understanding) in the person of Christ, by His obedience and it is the righteousness imputed to the elect, the only righteousness that stands before God. The only ones who can ever ‘see clearly’ or ‘understand’ that manifestation of the righteousness of God (in Christ) are those who are given the gift of personal faith, for it is only by personal faith that Christ can be comprehended, seen, or understood. Isn’t that what declares (to make known) to us our justification before God, the faith that is given?

    “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written. The just shall live by faith. (Romans 1:17)

    The Gospel reveals the righteousness of God and the Gospel comes to us in power and in Truth and we know of it only by our faith, not the personal faith of Christ, but the faith that Jesus Christ is the author of.

    I don’t imagine I am even close to understanding what you are saying John, as you said…the forum leaves much to be desired in the way of communication.


    Eileen~
    "To those who have no works-phobia, I will state that you are not trembling before the gospel" Robert R. Higby

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by jmgipson View Post
    This is where we part Bob. Declared justification is at the cross when the law is fulfilled in Christ. When the just penalty is dealt out, all that are in Christ are declared justified before the law. There is no other declaration I see in scripture given by God when we come to the gift of faith. The fruit of our justification is our believing as I tried to show above. This I cannot accept as another declaration of God.
    Justification in Christ is a constitutive justification. However, the Holy Spirit testifies to each regenerate believer by faith that the inidividual IS justified in Christ's life and death. If this is not a declarative justification, then what is this?
    This is my signature.

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    I understand it to be a subjective declaration to the elect, while the objective declaration was made at the cross.

    IOW; God has objectively declared all of the elect justified at the cross (due to Christ's faithfulness), however, each elect individual comes to a personal (subjective) knowledge of this declaration as applying to himself at God's appointed time via the gospel coming in power through the Holy Spirit at regeneration (faith of/in Christ=believing). The elect one, prior to regeneration, has no personal awareness of God's objective declaration at the cross.

    Is this the two declarations being discussed here or am I muddying the waters?

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    Re: "faith in Christ" vs "faith of Christ"

    Quote Originally Posted by MCoving View Post
    I agree with Bob we cannot try and compare ourselves to Jesus. He was perfect and God, there was no possible way of him straying the course, He was perfectly obedient. I believe that we must be careful with using our words as there are so many different understandings of justification out there, and we dont want to confuse anyone. Our faith can never be that of Jesus' faith, we will never in and of ourselves be perfect like Him. If it wasnt for Christ in us we wouldn't have any faith at all. It is because of what Christ did and because of Him being in us that we are justified.

    Also I was just thinking about something... not to sidetrack this thread too much but religious people talk about Jesus' faith and obedience alot, it is true He was that. But He could never have been anything else, right?? I mean its His character to be faithful and obedient and to carry through with His Will. Is not Jesus God as well? Its like saying Jesus is faithful to Himself, and obedient to His own will. Right? I've heard some pastors who have preached that Jesus could have sinned.. or could have not stayed the course, or not been faithful. But this is absolutely ridiculous thinking to me. Just because Jesus was man in the flesh doesn't mean He gave up being God! Sorry just a side note....

    Mary

    ps: I know I talk alot.. I dont have much else to do when I am home, I love to be in the Word and talking about theology. I have my whole life... if I didn't have to work this is all I'd want to do. haha
    I am not sure what this means about comparing ourselves to Jesus so I won't go any further with this Mary.

    John
    The grace which saves us is eternal to us, as is also our election in Christ. Those who are in Christ have everlasting life by that virtue alone and it is also plain Scriptural teaching that when God loves, He loves with an everlasting love and therefore draws His own to Him. (Jeremiah 31:3). Now there can be no eternal saving grace, no eternal election in Christ, no experience of God's eternal love where a soul is not justified. These aspects belong together as integral parts." …John Gill

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