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"Absolute sovereignty is what I love to ascribe to God." - Jonathan Edwards

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1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 22: Of Religious Worship and the Sabbath Day - Commentary

...he parallels) here, which were in connection to the first day of the week.

Their example is an encouragement to us that no matter the circumstances, they did not forsake assembling together as a church to worship their risen Lord as God (Heb. 10:25)!

Epistle of Barnabas (ca. 80-120 A.D.)

The Epistle of Barnabas was written no later than 120 A.D., but it is doubted if the author thereof was Barnabas the companion of Paul. Either way, it comes from the first century and beginning of the second, reflecting beliefs at that time. It discusses a lot of things, including the Sabbath. In Chapter 15, we read:

Further, also, it is written concerning the Sabbath in the Decalogue which [the Lord] spoke, face to face, to Moses on Mount Sinai, “And sanctify ye the Sabbath of the Lord with clean hands and a pure heart.” [Ex. 20:8; Deut. 5:12] And He says in another place, “If my sons keep the Sabbath, then will I cause my mercy to rest upon them.” [Jer. 17:24-25] The Sabbath is mentioned at the beginning of the creation [thus]: “And God made in six days the works of His hands, and made an end on the seventh day, and rested on it, and sanctified it.” [Gen. 2:2] Attend, my children, to the meaning of this expression, “He finished in six days.” This implieth that the Lord will finish all things in six thousand years, for a day is with Him a thousand years. And He Himself testifieth, saying, “Behold, to-day will be as a thousand years.” [Ps 90:4; 2Pet. 3:8] Therefore, my children, in six days, that is, in six thousand years, all things will be finished. “And He rested on the seventh day.” This meaneth: when His Son, coming [again], shall destroy the time of the wicked man, and judge the ungodly, and change the sun, and the moon, and the stars, then shall He truly rest on the seventh day. Moreover, He says, “Thou shalt sanctify it with pure hands and a pure heart.” [Ps. 24:4] If, therefore, any one can now sanctify the day which God hath sanctified, except he is pure in heart in all things, we are deceived. Behold, therefore: certainly then one properly resting sanctifies it, when we ourselves, having received the promise, wickedness no longer existing, and all things having been made new by the Lord, shall be able to work righteousness. Then we shall be able to sanctify it, having been first sanctified ourselves. Further, He says to them, “Your new moons and your Sabbaths I cannot endure.” [Isa. 1:13] Ye perceive how He speaks: Your present Sabbaths are not acceptable to Me, but that is which I have made, [namely this,] when, giving rest to all things, I shall make a beginning of the eighth day, that is, a beginning of another world. Wherefore, also, we keep the eighth day with joyfulness, the day also on which Jesus rose again from the dead. And when He had manifested Himself, He ascended into the heavens.

[Scriptural references were added and the footnote references taken away.]

This is certainly interesting in many ways. The author begins by pointing to the Sabbath of the Decalogue and he connects that with the Sabbath at the creation, on the seventh day and God's rest thereon. And then he says something very weird, namely, the idea that the world will be finished in the seventh millennium after the creation. The idea is that the world shall last as long as the days of creation lasted: 6 days work, 1 day rest. Therefore, the seventh millennium is the eternal state (this passage is in no way supportive of the Premillennial sc...


1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 17: Of The Perseverance of the Saints - Commentary

...

That God will preserve us to the end is a sure promise and biblical teaching, but that doesn't mean that it will be an easy ride, not only from the world around us, but also of the remaining corruption in us. Yet through all of this the elect will be delivered into God's kingdom. I refer the interested reader to the following paragraphs in other chapters for a similar discussion, rather than repeating here what I elsewhere have written on (Chapter 15:2chapter 11:5).

 

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand

(John 10:27-28)


Footnotes

  1. ^ Wayne Grudem. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1994). p. 788.
  2. ^ Many Scriptural references have been supplied by Samuel Waldron's Modern Exposition of 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith which was apparently supplied by the Westminster Confession of Faith 1646.
  3. a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i Joseph Henry Thayer's Greek Definitions. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. See reference for the Strong's number.
  4. ^ William D. Mounce. Mounce's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words. (Zondervan, 2006). pp. 993-994, number 1011.
  5. ^ Ibid., p. 1289, number 5457.
  6. ^ The Free Dictionary, Discipline
  7. a, b, c, d John Calvin. Commentaries. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  8. a, b, c John Gill. Exposition of the Entire Bible. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  9. a, b Jamieson, Fausset, Brown. Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible (Abridged). Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  10. ^ Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  11. ^ John MacArthur. The MacArthur Study Bible: English Standard Version. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2010). p. 1812, note on 1:3.
  12. ^ Mickelson's Enhanced Strong's Greek and Hebrew Dictionaries. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. G5461.
  13. a, b, c, d, e John Owen. Exposition of Hebrews. in loc. See also Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary on this word here.
  14. ^ “And for this [rite] we have learned from the apostles this reason. Since at our birth we were born without our own knowledge or choice, by our parents coming together, and were brought up in bad habits and wicked training; in order that we may not remain the children of necessity and of ignorance, but may become the children of choice and knowledge, and may obtain in the water the remission of sins formerly committed, there is pronounced over him who chooses to be born again, and has repented of his sins, the name of God the Father and Lord of the universe; he who leads to the laver the person that is to be washed calling him by this name alone. For no one can utter the name of the ineffable God; and if any one dare to say that there is a name, he raves with a hopeless madness. And this washing is called illumination, because they who learn these things are illuminated in their understandings. And in the name of Jesus Christ, who was crucified under Pontius Pilate, and in the name of the Holy Ghost, who through the prophets foretold all things about Jesus, he who is illuminated is washed.” Justin Martyr. Apology, chapter 61.
  15. ^ Grudem, Systematic Theology. Chapter 40, p. 797.
  16. ^ Matthew Henry. Complete Commentary. Hebrews 6.
  17. a, b, c Arthur W. Pink. Exposition of Hebrews. Chapter 24....

1689 Second Baptist Confession of Faith Highlighted

... style="color: #800080;" faith and common grace of temporary believers; and therefore, though it may be many times assailed and weakened, yet it gets the victory, growing up in many to the attainment of a full assurance through Christ, who is both the author and finisher of our faith.
  1. Matt. 6:30; 8:10, 26; 14:31; 16:8; 17:20; Heb. 5:13-14; Rom. 4:19-20
  2. James 2:14; 2 Peter 1:1; 1 John 5:4
  3. Luke 22:31-32; Eph. 6:16; 1 John 5:4-5
  4. Ps. 119:114; Heb. 6:11-12; 10:22-23
  5. Heb. 12:2

Chapter 15: Of Repentance Unto Life and Salvation [Return] [Commentary]

  1. Such of the elect as are converted at riper years, having sometime lived in the state of nature, and therein served divers lusts and pleasures, God in their effectual calling giveth them repentance unto life.
    1. Titus 3:2-5
    2. 2 Chron. 33:10-20; Acts 9:1-19; 16:29-30
  1. Whereas there is none that doth good and sinneth not, and the best of men may, through the power and deceitfulness of their corruption dwelling in them, with the prevalency of temptation, fall into great sins and provocations; God hath, in the covenant of grace, mercifully provided that believers so sinning and falling be renewed through repentance unto salvation.
    1. Ps. 130:3; 143:2; Prov. 20:9; Eccl. 7:20
    2. 2 Sam. 11:1-27; Luke 22:54-62
    3. Jer. 32:40; Luke 22:31-32; 1 John 1:9
  1. This saving repentance is an evangelical grace, whereby a person, being by the Holy Spirit made sensible of the manifold evils of his sin, doth, by faith in Christ, humble himself for it with godly sorrow, detestation of it, and self-abhorrency, praying for pardon and strength of grace, with a purpose and endeavour, by supplies of the Spirit, to walk before God unto all well-pleasing in all things.
    1. Acts 5:31; 11:18; 2 Tim. 2:25
    2. Ps. 51:1-6; 130:1-3; Luke 15:17-20; Acts 2:37-38
    3. Ps. 130:4; Matt. 27:3-5; Mark 1:15
    4. Ezek. 16:60-63; 36:31-32; Zech. 12:10; Matt. 21:29; Acts 15:19; 20:21; 26:20; 2 Cor. 7:10-11; 1 Thess. 1:9
    5. Prov. 28:13; Ezek. 36:25; 18:30-31; Ps. 119:59, 104, 128; Matt. 3:8; Luke 3:8; Acts 26:20; 1 Thess. 1:9
  1. As repentance is to be continued through the whole course of our lives, upon the account of the body of death, and the motions thereof, so it is every man's duty to repent of his particular known sins particularly.
    1. Ezek. 16:60; Matt. 5:4; 1 John 1:9
    2. Luke 19:8; 1 Tim. 1:13, 15
  1. Such is the provision which God hath made through Christ in the covenant of grace for the preservation of believers unto salvation; that although there is no sin so small but it deserves damnation; yet there is no sin so great that it shall bring damnation on them that repent; which makes the constant preaching of repentance necessary.
    1. Ezek. 16:60; Matt. 5:4; 1 John 1:9
    2. Luke 19:8; 1 Tim. 1:13, 15

Chapter 16: Of Good Works [Return] [Commentary]

  1. Good works are only such as God hath commanded in his Holy Word, and not such as without the warrant thereof are devised by men out of blind zeal, or upon any pretence of good intentions.
    1. Micah 6:8; Rom. 12:2; Heb. 13:21; Col. 2:3; 2 Tim. 3:16-17
    2. Matt. 15:9 with Isa. 29:13; 1 Peter 1:18; Rom. 10:2; John 16:2; 1 Sam. 15:21-23; 1 Cor. 7:23; Gal. 5:1; Col. 2:8, 16-23
  1. These good works, done in obedience to God's commandments, are the fruits and evidences of a true and lively faith; and by them believers manifest their thankfulness, strengthen their...

1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 3: Of God's Decree - Commentary

...uo; 19 I am telling you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that I am he. 20 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”

John 15:16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.

Notice that the Lord Jesus makes a distinction between the eleven and Judas in chapter 13, and how He clearly speaks of sovereign election to salvation in Chapter 15. In John 15:16 the Lord chose them for a purpose, namely, to bear fruit, but this is not said of Judas who was not present here (John 13:27-30). There is a distinction between the Lord Jesus choosing the disciples as a group of 12 followers, and choosing them for salvation and this distinction is seen when we compare the instances which speak of the election of the disciples.

Romans 8:29-30 – The Golden Chain Of Redemption

Although I honestly believe that John 6 and the Gospel of John in general, is very strong about God’s sovereignty in salvation, yet the passage that is most associated with Calvinism is Romans 9. It is indeed probably the strongest passage in the Bible on divine sovereignty. The truth of God’s absolute sovereignty is clearly showed there, people will read it and won’t want to believe what is taught there. I’ve had someone respond, after me simply reading Romans 9, in amazement and unbelief, they were like: If we are to take this literally it says that God chooses who gets saved. The point of Romans 9 is clear. People will want to make it be about nations to escape divine sovereignty, but they become inconsistent in their "exegesis" and they will not follow the flow of the text. Let us not forget what comes before Romans 9. The Golden Chain of Redemption is also very strong on divine sovereignty, indeed, Paul talks about it before going in into the discussion about Israel’s unbelief and God's promises in Romans 9-11. We will leave Romans 9 and will not deal with it because it would take too long to deal with the whole chapter. It is plain to anyone who can read what it means. People understand what it means, but do not want to believe it. The difficulty lies not in the text, but in what the text teaches, which is hateful to human nature.

The Golden Chain is a sequence of five things which follow each other and depends on each other. It is found after the great promise of Romans 8:28, which every Christian takes comfort in.

Rom. 8:28-30 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. 29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.

In this passage, we are told about the plan of salvation from eternity past to eternity future. In this Golden Chain, we are promised that God works everything in our lives for our good, because we are called according to HIS purpose. My point is to go through all 5 points of the golden chain and try to explain them and provide biblical support for them.

Important Considerations

All these five things that are described (foreknew, predestined, called...


1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 11: Of Justification - Commentary

...6:39) and there is no way for the Son who always does what the Father pleases to fail in this task (John 8:29). See also chapter 17 on The Perseverance of the Saints where we will Lord willing make a case for that doctrine and also a Scripture List supporting the Perseverance of the Saints.

Renew Their Faith and Repentance

See Chapter 15 paragraph 2.


§6 The justification of believers under the Old Testament was, in all these respects

  1. The justification of believers under the Old Testament was, in all these respects, one and the same with the justification of believers under the New Testament. 1
    1. Gal. 3:9; Rom. 4:22-24

All the saints of the Old Testament were justified by grace through faith by virtue of the Covenant of Grace as it was in promise form. This we have argued in chapter 7 under the Mosaic, but especially in chapter 8 about the Retroactive Blood of Christ. See also above in paragraph 3 about Abraham's justification in Paul and in James.

Oh, what amazing grace to know that our justification is not depended upon us. What comfort and what thankfulness to God! Thank You, Lord God King, for everything that You have done for such a miserable wretch like me. All glory to the Blessed Trinity!

 

And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works

(Romans 4:5-6)

 

Footnotes

  1. ^ Many Scriptural references have been supplied by Samuel Waldron's Modern Exposition of 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith which was apparently supplied by the Westminster Confession of Faith 1646.
  2. ^ Wayne Grudem. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1994). Chapter 36, p. 723.
  3. ^ Catechism of the Catholic Church.
  4. ^ Taken from Matt Slick at CARM, The Roman Catholic view on justification.
  5. a, b, c, d Joseph Henry Thayer's Greek Definitions. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. See reference for the Strong's number.
  6. ^ William D. Mounce. Mounce's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words. (Zondervan, 2006). p. 146.
  7. ^ Ibid., p. 374.
  8. ^ The Holy Bible: English Standard Version: The ESV Study Bible. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles. 2008). p. 2265.
  9. a, b Mickelson's Enhanced Strong's Greek and Hebrew Dictionaries. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. See reference for the Strong's number.
  10. ^ Jamieson, Fausset, Brown. Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible (Abridged). Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  11. ^ Explaining Regeneration Preceding Faith.
  12. ^ Grudem, Systematic Theology. Chapter 34, p. 704, n. 10.
  13. ^ 50 Things the Holy Spirit Does.
...

1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 15: Of Repentance Unto Life and Salvation - Commentary

...

Chapter 15: Of Repentance Unto Life and Salvation

In this chapter, we will consider what repentance actually is. Is repentance a gift? Do we repent only when we become Christians? Does repentance always accompany faith? Is repentance necessary for salvation?

I find the division of the paragraphs a bit unhelpful. The Confession speaks of those who are aged repenting unto life (par. 1), Christians repenting of their sins (par. 2) and defines what repentance actually is in paragraph 3. It seems to me that it would have been more natural to begin by defining what repentance actually is and then proceeding with what are now paragraphs 1 and 2. Therefore, I will begin here by giving a definition of what repentance is and then I will try to defend that definition biblically in paragraph 3. Wayne Grudem says that:

Repentance is a heartfelt sorrow for sin, a renouncing of it, and a sincere commitment to forsake it and walk in obedience to Christ.[1]

Thus, repentance is not only a sorrow for our sins against God, it is not only us being sorry for doing what we did, but it the commitment to forsake our sins and instead obey Christ the Lord. But more on this in paragraph 3.

That the Baptist Confession depends and copies from the Savoy Declaration of 1658 can very clearly be seen especially in this chapter, which is wholly different in the Westminster, but almost identical in the Savoy. See the comparison here.


§1 God in their effectual calling giveth them repentance unto life

  1. Such of the elect as are converted at riper years, having sometime lived in the state of nature, 1 and therein served divers lusts and pleasures, God in their effectual calling giveth them repentance unto life. 2
    1. Titus 3:2-5[2]
    2. 2 Chron. 33:10-20; Acts 9:1-19; 16:29-30

In this paragraph, the Confession is speaking about the repentance of those who have lived manifestly wicked lives. The words of Dr. Waldron here are especially helpful:

The Confession makes this distinction out of a desire to distinguish repentance as a crisis experience from repentance as an ordinary grace. All believers are marked by the ordinary grace, but not all believers will know, or need to know, repentance as a crisis experience.

In this chapter two types of such a crisis experience are mentioned. The Confession first refers to ‘such of the elect as are converted at riper years having sometime lived in the state of nature’. Scriptural examples of this are Manasseh, Paul and the Philippian jailor. Secondly, it refers to ‘believers [who]…fall into great sins and provocations’. The scriptural examples here are David and Peter.[3]

We simply think of Saul of Tarsus and his dramatic conversion on the road to Damascus. In the sight of the religious Jews his way of life was blameless (Phil. 3:4-6), but in the sight of God, he was a wicked man who was persecuting Him (Acts 9:4). As a persecutor of the Church, it was understandable that the saints had difficulty in believing that the wicked persecutor has been saved and now is a saint. His wicked life was turned upside down by God and he was that his righteousness through the law was worthless. When the Lord saved him, He gave him “repentance unto life.” A beautiful phrase coming from Acts 11:18 which means that repentance is necessary, and in fact, it leads to true life in Christ.

The paragraph does not mean that only those who are “at riper years” and are manifestly wicked are granted rep...


Welcome To The Staunch Calvinist

Welcome to The Staunch Calvinist. This is a place where Calvinistic Theology will be displayed. A place where the Doctrines of Grace will be explained and defended. This is a place where the Sovereignty of God is cherished and promoted. We hope you will be ministered to through the material on the website. Our goal is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ and honor Him. “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” 2 Corinthians 13:14

The following document may help you to understand the Biblical case for ‘Calvinism’: God's Absolute Sovereignty – A case for Calvinism

I have two sections dedicated to the Doctrines of Grace, defining the Doctrines of Grace & defending the Doctrines of Grace which are taken from the document above. In the General section you will find some book reviews and the resources from which I mainly drew the content of the “God’s Absolute Sovereignty” document.

As a Reformed Baptist, I started the 1689 Confession section wherein I seek to explain the chapters and make a case for what is said on a particular subject. As of 18/09/2016 the commentary is complete:

  1. Of the Holy Scriptures
  2. Of God and the Holy Trinity (the attributes of God and a case for the doctrine of the Blessed Trinity)
  3. Of God’s Decree (I make a case for predestination, election, reprobation and absolute sovereignty even over evil and sin)
  4. Of Creation
  5. Of Divine Providence
  6. Of the Fall of Man, Of Sin, And of the Punishment Thereof (Total Depravity)
  7. Of God’s Covenant (1689 Federalism)
  8. Of Christ the Mediator (including a case for the Substitutionary Atonement, Active and Passive Obedience of Christ, Definite Atonement and answers to passages used against the doctrine)
  9. Of Free WIll (with the help of Jonathan Edwards, the consistency of moral agency being found in carrying one's desires, the inconsistencies of libertarian free will, explanation of necessity and inability)
  10. Of Effectual Calling (with a case for infant salvation)
  11. Of Justification (faith is a gift and regeneration precedes faith)
  12. Of Adoption
  13. Of Sanctification
  14. Of Saving Faith
  15. Of Repentance Unto Life and Salvation
  16. Of Good Works
  17. Of The Perseverance Of The Saints (Positive case for the Reformed doctrine and responses to passages such as Hebrews 6 and the like)
  18. Of The Assurance Of Grace And Salvation
  19. Of The Law Of God (Threefold Division of the Law, the Decalogue before Moses, a brief exposition of the Decalogue, ceremonial and civil laws, the abiding moral law under the New Covenant in the OT prophecy and the NT, Threefold Uses of the Law, The Law and the Gospel)
  20. Of The Gospel, And Of The Extent Of The Grace Thereof
  21. Of Christian Liberty And Liberty of Conscience
  22. Of Religious Worship And the Sabbath Day (A case for the Regulative Principle of Worship and the Christian Sabbath)
  23. Of Lawful Oaths And Vows
  24. Of The Civil Magistrate
  25. Of Marriage
  26. Of The Church
  27. Of the Communion of Saints
  28. Of Baptism And The Lord's Supper
  29. Of Baptism
  30. Of The Lord's Supper
  31. Of The State Of Man After Death And Of The Resurrection Of The Dead (Intermediate State Hades, Sheol, Heaven; A Case for Amillennial Eschatology; critique of Premillennialism)
  32. Of The Last Judgment (Endless punishment in Hell contra Annihilationism)
...

A Review of Jeffrey D. Johnson's The Fatal Flaw

...onship with God. Chapter 13 is dedicated to the discussion of this topic along with questions concerning the law, justification and sanctification established by the New Covenant.

I very much enjoyed these two chapters and benefited from his insights and was strengthened in my position.

In chapter 14 he lays out the nature of the New Covenant in contrast to the Mosaic Old Covenant. The differences include federal headship, theocracy, carnal perpetuity. He furthermore examines a few things like substitutionary atonement, the efficacy of infant baptism and nature of the Church in light of the knowledge gained about the nature of the New and Old covenants.

Chapter 15 is titled “The Meaning of Circumcision.” Here he brings up the two texts most often used by Paedobaptists to make the connection between baptism and circumcision. Those are Genesis 17:10 and Romans 4:11. He examines Romans 4:11 and shows the difference between Abraham’s circumcision and infant circumcision. He furthermore argues that the covenant of circumcision was pertaining to the natural seed of Abraham and not the spiritual seed.

This leads us to the next chapter which is titled “The Error of Integrating the Flesh with the Spirit.” In chapter 16 he seeks to show “the impossibility of applying this verse [Romans 4:11] to new covenant baptism without mixing physical and spiritual realities in the process.” (p. 195)

Covenantal Dichotomism

This book is dividing into two parts. The first was the Fatal Flaw where the Paedobaptist Covenant Theology is examined and combated. The second part is dedicated to the study of continuity and discontinuity between the covenants of God.

Part 2 is a very quick read containing small chapters exploring the connection between the various covenants of God. He focuses on the Abrahamic, Mosaic and Davidic.

Throughout his work (part 1 as well as part 2), Johnson tried to establish and make clear the distinction between Abraham’s twofold seed. So here he also shows and stresses that. It is crucial not apply those things which pertain to the fleshly seed of Abraham to the spiritual seed.

I very much enjoyed the second part also. It was a quicker read, but nonetheless helpful and biblical.

Johnson believes that the covenant with Abraham concerning the fleshly seed under which circumcision was included was a covenant of works. On the other hand the covenant concerning Abraham and his Seed was a covenant of grace as Abraham did not need to do anything. It was a covenant of grace, not the Covenant of Grace (as I seek to capitalize). The Abrahamic Covenant was both conditional and unconditional. It was unconditional for him. He did not do anything to earn such great promises by God, but his fleshly seed had to obey to receive the blessings.

The Abrahamic Covenant had a dual nature and it depended from which perspective we looked upon it. “…I hold that God’s promises to Abraham in Genesis 12 and 17 cannot be separated. I believe that these promises recorded in these two chapters are a part of the same covenant. However, the Abrahamic Covenant is in essence two covenants in one. The promises of Abraham have two dimensions. In that the covenant has two fulfillments, two participants, two conditions…For Abraham and his spiritual seed, it was an unconditional covenant of grace. For Abraham’s natural seed, including Christ Jesus, it was a covenant of works.” (pp. 216-217)

Chapter 6 of part two was also enjoyable. It ...


1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 18: Of the Assurance of Grace and Salvation - Commentary

...g>
  1. Heb. 6:11-12; 2 Peter 1:5-11
  2. Ps. 51:8, 12, 14; Eph. 4:30
  3. Ps. 30:7; 31:22; 77:7-8; 116:11
  4. Isa. 50:10
  5. 1 John 3:9; Luke 22:32; Rom. 8:15-16; Gal. 4:5; Ps. 42:5, 11

True believers may sometimes fall into great sins whereby they come to the false conclusion that they were never saved in the first place, rather than realize that we all are sinners and we need to renew our repentance before God and go to Him and beg for cleansing in Christ’s blood and forgiveness (see Chapter 15). We sometime wonder how long God can tolerate us, we are amazed at how wicked we sometimes can be, yet the Lord does not smite us in His righteous wrath.

Some get their assurance “shaken, diminished and intermitted” because they neglect the means of grace by which we come to know our assurance, for example Bible reading and communion with God in prayer. They get a season in their life where they are not that interested (anymore) in the things of God, yet because they're true believers, they will not fall away from the faith and apostatize (see chapter 17), but rather will come again to repentance and seek God earnestly. They cannot go on sinning, because God's Seed is in them which makes it impossible for the born again believer to live a life of continual sin (see comments on 1John 3:9 here). Even in our low times God will not forsake us, even if we forsake Him. He is always on our side even if we think or feel that He is not and therefore He will not leave us in our sin, but rather lead us back to Him as the Good Shepherd that He is does for the straying sheep.

Lord, lead us to test ourselves in light of Your Word and in light of Your work in us and for us in Jesus Christ our precious Lord and Savior. Lord, we are grateful for this blessed assurance that is ours in Jesus Christ. Thank You, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Glory to the Triune! SDG.

 

 

I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life

(1 John 5:13)

Footnotes

  1. ^ Many Scriptural references have been supplied by Samuel Waldron's Modern Exposition of 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith which was apparently supplied by the Westminster Confession of Faith 1646.
  2. ^ Sam E. Waldron. A Modern Exposition Of The 1689 Baptist Confession Of Faith. (Darlington: Evangelical Press, 2013). pp. 279-280.
  3. a, b John Calvin. Commentaries. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  4. ^ John Gill. Exposition of the Entire Bible. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  5. ^ Matthew Poole. English Annotations on the Holy Bible. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. In loc.
  6. ^ Joseph Henry Thayer's Greek Definitions. Taken from the TheWord Bible Software. See reference for the Strong's number.
  7. ^ William D. Mounce. Mounce's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words. (Zondervan, 2006). p. 1106, number 1010.
  8. ^ ibid., pp. 1106-1107, number 1011.
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1689 Baptist Confession Chapter 32: Of the Last Judgment - Commentary

Chapter 32: Of the Last Judgment

Now we come to the last chapter of the Confession, which deals with the last day, particularly, the Last Judgment. Is there a Day of Judgment? How will we be judged? Will believers be judged? Will angels also be judged? What is the relation of works to the judgment? What is Hell? Is it never-ending torment or annihilation? Who is the one who torments? How is God's glory manifested in Heaven and Hell?


§1 All Persons That Have Lived Upon The Earth Shall Appear Before The Tribunal Of Christ

  1. God hath appointed a day wherein he will judge the world in righteousness, by Jesus Christ; to whom all power and judgment is given of the Father; in which day, not only the apostate angels shall be judged, but likewise all persons that have lived upon the earth shall appear before the tribunal of Christ, to give an account of their thoughts, words, and deeds, and to receive according to what they have done in the body, whether good or evil. 4
    1. John 5:22, 27; Acts 17:31[1]
    2. 1 Cor. 6:3; Jude 6
    3. Matt. 16:27; 25:31-46; Acts 17:30-31; Rom. 2:6-16; 2 Thess. 1:5-10; 2 Peter 3:1-13; Rev. 20:11-15
    4. 2 Cor. 5:10, 1 Cor. 4:5, Matt. 12:36

The Day of Judgment is not the day which will determine the destinies of men; their destinies were fixed at the time they died (Heb 9:27; see here). We deny the doctrine of soul-sleep, the righteous pass from this life into the Intermediate State in bliss, while the wicked go into misery upon their deaths. But what is then the difference between what the wicked and righteous experience now in the Intermediate State and what they will experience after the Day of Judgment? Well for one, they were already judged at death and their judgment was private (Heb 9:27), but the Day of Judgment is public in which the secrets of men will be disclosed. Second, the joy and also the misery of men in the Intermediate State is bodiless. Their bodies lie rotting in the grave, while their souls are in places of peace or anguish. At the Day of Judgment, all the dead will be resurrected, their souls uniting with their bodies, and then come to appear before the throne of God. The difference then is that their everlasting punishment or their everlasting bliss is in body and soul, while in the Intermediate State it is in the soul alone. Moreover, the wicked will then be publicly condemned before the world, and the righteous publicly rewarded before the world, and all heaven will bless and praise God for His righteousness.

The Day Of Judgment

There is a Day of Judgment, fixed by God's decree that it should come to pass, in which all people that have ever lived will come and stand before Him to give an account of their words, thoughts, and deeds. This is a day which should rightly awaken fear and awe. For some it will be terrible, for others it will be joyous and victorious. The Confession here borrows much from biblical passages to form its statement in paragraph 1. The first passage which it alludes to is Acts 17:31. We read:

Acts 17:30-31 The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, 31 because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”

Christ The Judge

There was a time when God let the nations go their way, but now that the Christ has come and suffered for all kinds of men, the peo...