“What is the Gospel?”, response by Steve Lawson

Posted: August 29, 2012 by doulos tou Theou in Christian Theology, Christianity, Current Issues
  1. kim/nannykim says:

    I think he makes a few false distinctions . He calls the Catholic gospel a damnable gospel and he infers in his talk that Catholics do not believe in Christ alone or grace alone. This would be a false conception IF he is saying this. Catholics believe that Christ alone is the savior. They also believe that he uses means. The Protestants also believe in means (ie the preaching of the gospel), prayer,Baptism etc. “Christ alone” does not mean there is no church for example. So Christ alone includes his Lordship, the Church he has established, His means of grace etc. Secondly, grace alone—Catholics believe all of their works are done through grace–the grace that Christ gives. It is true that Catholics do not believe in faith alone because they believe faith without works is not a living faith and that a true faith has to have love. I Cor 13 makes it clear that love is essential and James makes it clear that faith has to be living . To say it is damnable to include the transformed life that God does in a believer by his grace is what would be more damnable. (Hey, I just had to get that word once more in here 😉 )

  2. kim/nannykim says:

    Catholics believe in union with Christ and this would entail a participation in Christ—in his suffering, death, and resurrection. The works a Catholic do–are part of that participation and Catholics don’t divorce union with Christ from justification. [even Berkhof states: In the mystical union with their Lord believers are made to share the experiences of Christ. Just as He entered upon His glory by the pathway of sufferings and death, they too can enter upon their eternal reward only through sanctification.” (pg 650)]

    One way a Catholic stated the concept is this: “The good works done in grace are, as it were, contained in that grace, so that our righteousness is contained in, not eclipsed by, the righteousness of God in us. Thus it can be said that the eternal life given to those who die in grace is merited by the good works done in that grace, YET those good works do not complete anything that was lacking in that grace to begin with.’When we follow Christ…with all the means at our disposal, our works become one with His works and are ennobled through grace. That is how He has redeemed us, not indeed through our works but in His works; He has set us free and has redeemed us.’ “

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