Every Work Excluded (Colquhoun)

One of the great themes of the Reformation - and of the Apostle Paul - was that a sinner is justified not by works, but only by faith in Christ.  In other words, a sinner is justified by faith alone in Christ alone, not by any sort of obedience to the law in any way,… Continue reading Every Work Excluded (Colquhoun)

Paul’s Conversion

In studying Galatians 1:11-24, I came across a some good stuff from two church fathers.  Chrysostom said of Paul’s conversion: “[He] was sobered at the very height of his madness.”  Ambrose, reflecting on how the church in Judea glorified God because of Paul’s conversion, said of v.24, “By these words they ascribe all to divine… Continue reading Paul’s Conversion

The Sledge Hammer of the Law

  Here is more gold from Luther's commentary on Galatians (specifically 3.19). I found this while studying Q/A 3 of the Heidelberg Catechism in sermon preparation.  It has to do with the purpose of the law. "The fatuous [silly] idea that a person can be holy by himself denies God the pleasure of saving sinners. God… Continue reading The Sledge Hammer of the Law

Live by the Spirit (Gal. 5.16)

 This morning (Friday) I had to peel myself away from replays of the Cardinal's epic game six World Series comeback (and I doubt Josh Hamilton actually heard God tell him he'd hit a home run) to do something far more worthwhile: study Paul's exhortation to "live by the Spirit" (Gal 5.16).  This is a great but tough subject. … Continue reading Live by the Spirit (Gal. 5.16)

Legalism: Working for God’s Favor Forfeits It

 In this excellent summary of Christian theology (which I've used to train younger as well as newer Christians), J. I. Packer writes the following about legalism. "Legalism is a distortion of obedience that can never produce truly good works.  Its first fault is that it skews motive and purpose, seeing good deeds as essentially ways to earn… Continue reading Legalism: Working for God’s Favor Forfeits It