The God Who Justifies the Ungodly

Romans 4 is an explosive passage of Scripture. It oozes good news. Romans 3 paints a bleak picture for us all. Paul tells us we are all rushing forward to one inescapable moment—-the day we stand before our Creator face to face. A day “appointed” according to the writer of Hebrews. A day of accountability for […]

Creation Apart from Works

We are dust. We must never forget our origins. Our existence is marvelous. We started from a clump of mud. God’s creative, forming, breathing energy was infused into the dirt as he fashioned a creature to bear his image—simply phenomenal. This is a cornerstone of our reality. Life and death, joy and sorrow are located […]

The Remedy for Fear

If there is one thing that should strike fear in a heart it is the certainty of divine judgment and the potential of eternal punishment. In a sane person every other fear bows to this great terror. Accountability in the face of omniscience and holiness is a sobering reality. The gospel of God is tremendous […]

Falling Upward and Doing Nothing

Gerhard Forde was a Lutheran theologian that taught as a seminary professor for 40 years. He wrote some very insightful material on the doctrine of justification and the theology of the cross. He was a strong proponent of the radical grace of the gospel. He understood the original sin to be a an upward lunge […]

The Gospel and Humor

What does the gospel have to do with humor. Tim Keller gives an insightful answer to this question in an article titled: The Gospel and Humor. Here is a portion of this article. “Does the gospel have an effect on our sense of humor?” The answer has to be yes—but why and how? Your humor has […]

Original and Gifted Righteousness

Genesis 2:16-17 “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, ‘You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.’” Luther’s Commentary “From this same original righteousness also it arose that Adam loved […]

Both Judge and Justifier

We had a really good conversation last week in one of the detention centers about justification. Justification is being declared righteous in God’s sight on account of Christ’s perfect life and death. I posed the question: who will stand as your Judge on the last day? Most answered the Father. In truth the Son is […]

The Pervasive Problem of Self-Justification

Oswald Bayer in his book Living By Faith: Justification and Sanctification says something strikingly true about the human race. “The world of the court is not a special world of its own, but just a particular instance—a very striking one— of what is being done always and everywhere…to be recognized and justified; to cause ourselves to be […]

Justification and the Future

What does justification have to do with the day of judgment? Mark Seifrid answers the question well. “The day of judgment has been brought into the present in Jesus Christ crucified and risen.” It is a piece of the future brought into our present. The cross and resurrection is the courtroom where God condemns and […]