Posted by: Standing Solus Christus | December 23, 2007

Lord’s Day Quote: Michael Horton

In other words, anyone who thinks that grace offers liberty for sin is actually not taking grace seriously enough.  God has done far more in Christ than justifying the wicked.  Precisely by justifying us, he has made every good and perfect gift that he has for us fully guaranteed in Christ.  Every person who has been baptized into this Second Adam’s death (which grants forgiveness) is also baptized into his resurrection life (new birth and sanctification).  Who would want to be identified with a supposed “savior” who remained in the grave?  How would that differ from being “in Adam”?  No, says Paul, the good news is that we are not identified with a dead prophet, but with a living priest-king who triumphed over sin’s guilt and power.  The gospel is the answer to both:  that is the point that antinomians and legalists miss in their own way.   Through the preaching of the gospel, the Holy Spirit grants faith to sinners and this faith not only justifies, it sanctifies.  Every good work proceeds from this justifying faith that looks to Christ alone and draws upon our union with him.  We must not find our justification in Christ and our sanctification somewhere else.  We find everything – salvation from sin’s guilt and power, the love of God and neighbor, the new life and ripening fruit of good works, the gifts of the Spirit, and the kingdom to come – in Christ alone.  And it belongs to every believer, even the weakest, at every moment.  As the Heidelberg Catechisminstructs in Question 36, “How does the holy conception and birth of Christ benefit you?”  Answer:  “He is our mediator, and with his innocence and perfect holiness he removes from God’s sight my sin – mine since I was conceived.”

Michael Horton,  “Union With Christ: The Double Cure” from Modern Reformation Vol 15, No 4 July/August 2006 


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