Westminster Assembly

Westminster Assembly

Acts 6:4

"But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the Word."

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1 Timothy 4:6-16

" If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained. But refuse profane and old wives' fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation. For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe. These things command and teach. Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity. Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery. Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee." 1 Tim 4:6-16 (KJV)

"The Difference Between Justification & Sanctification; Or, Righteousness Imputed & Grace Imparted" by Ralph Erskine (1685-1752)

Thursday, December 30, 2010
1. In Justification, God loves us, and shows his love in Christ; in sanctification we love God, and show our love to him: for the sum of active holiness is love, which is the fulfilling of the law.

2. In justification, we have the favour of God; in sanctification, we have the image of God and the special part of his image is love.

3. In justification, we are passive, as when God set his love upon us; but in sanctification, we are active, while his love causes us to act in loving him.


4. Justification is God's act of love without us, in and through the merit and righteousness of Christ imputed to us; sanctification is God's work of grace within us, by the Spirit of Christ imparted to us as a Spirit of love, as well as of other graces.

 5. Justification is perfect, equal, and always the same, like the love of God the original cause, and the righteousness of Christ the meritorious cause of it; but sanctification is imperfect, unequal, and changeable, for the love of the saints is up and down.

6. Justification is the cause, sanctification is the effect; even as God's love is the cause of our love.

7. Faith in justification is an instrument, receiving Christ as the Lord our righteousness, and apprehending the love and mercy of God in him; but faith in sanctification is an agent, employing Christ as the Lord our strength, to enable us to manifest our love to, him.

Thus we see the priority of divine love and favour, and acceptation and justification, before any work of ours; and so how any can maintain that actual gospel repentance, which must be a work of ours, and a piece of sanctification at least, doth go before and is necessary in order to justification, let the judicious reader consider, without receding from our standards, and binding their faith to the belt of any fallible creatures, councils, or acts. That legal repentance, or humiliation and conviction, and sense of sin, do go before justification, in order of divine operation, is plain; and that habitual sanctification or regeneration is also precious, is not denied but that gospel repentance, or any part of actual sanctification, is necessary in order to justification and pardon, I do not see how it is possible to maintain that, without running into the Roman camp, and fighting with Popish weapons, and inverting the order of our text, making any part of our love to God necessary first, in order to God's loving us. But sure God's method of doing will stand in spite of earth and hell; "We love him. because he first loved us."







 

1 comments:

{ Patience } at: December 30, 2010 at 10:30 PM said...

It's so amazing how God works in our lives. I was just having a confab with an Anglican (Episcopalian) minister, his wife and a reformed lady over lunch. We were discussing what N.T.Wright has been saying about Justification and the implications thereof. I must have missed the memo because, gladly, I don't really go near his writing. I rather like the saying "If it's new it's probably a heresy". I was really glad to see and read this post. Thank you!

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