The Active Obedience of Christ – No Hope Without It!


On September 8th I posted Is the Christian’s Hope in Christ’s Active Obedience or Their Own Works in response to something Rick Warren had said in a Tweet against the doctrine of Imputation. The intent of that article was not to do an in-depth presentation of the doctrine of the Imputation of Christ’s righteousness at the time of new believer’s justification, but to contrast what the Bible clearly teaches about it with what Rick Warren said. I have been requested to give more of my understanding of the Reformation doctrines that are closely associated with Justification, especially in Imputation of Christ’s active obedience and why it is essential. As I researched this, I ran across an  article I had read about five years ago over at RefomationTheology.com.

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Is the Christian’s Hope in Christ’s Active Obedience or Their Own Works


by Mike Ratliff

ὥσπερ γὰρ διὰ τῆς παρακοῆς τοῦ ἑνὸς ἀνθρώπου ἁμαρτωλοὶ κατεστάθησαν οἱ πολλοί, οὕτως καὶ διὰ τῆς ὑπακοῆς τοῦ ἑνὸς δίκαιοι κατασταθήσονται οἱ πολλοί. (Romans 5:19 NA27)

For as through the disobedience of one man, many were man sinners, so also through one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous. (Romans 5:19 Possessing the Treasure New Testament V1) 

John Gresham Machen (July 28, 1881 – January 1, 1937), on the day before he died, wrote a note to his friend John Murray saying, “I’m so thankful for the active obedience of Christ; no hope without it.” A study of Machen’s other writings make it clear that for him “the active obedience of Christ” refers to Christ’s perfect obedience to the Father during his time on earth which is imputed to all believers who trust in him for salvation. This is the righteousness the Father sees when he looks upon those in “the Body” rather than as we are in this temporal state of being declared righteous, but having to live in this in-between state of being sanctified. The Christian’s hope in their stand before the Father is not in how well they do in this process of sanctification, but rather in the finished work of Christ and his perfect obedience which has been imputed to their account. On the other hand, many so-called Christian leaders who are drenched in pragmatism and whose “gospel” is totally “man-centered” reject this as being “passive” as per Rick Warren’s Tweet on September 6th.

@RickWarren

Rick Warren

Imputation is 1sided but fellowship with Christ is 2sided.Koinonia means PARTICIPATION! God want your passion,not passivity

6 Sep via web

Here is the link to the “Tweet” above. Continue reading