Friday, March 5, 2010

Jonathan Edwards on Justification by Faith Alone

Romans 4:5
And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,...

"It appears, that by him that worketh not, in this verse, is not meant one who merely does not comform to the ceremonial law; because he that worketh not and the ungodly, are evidently synonymous expressions, or what signify the same, as appears by the manner of their connexion; if not, to what purpose is the latter expression, the ungodly, brought in? The context gives no other occasion for it, but to show, that by the grace of the gospel, God in justification has no regard to any godliness of ours. The foregoing verse is, “Now to him that worketh, is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.” In that verse, it is evident, gospel grace consists in the reward being given without works; and in this verse, which immediately follows it, and in sense is connected with it, gospel-grace consists in a man’s being justified as ungodly. By which it is most plain, that by him that worketh not, and him that is ungodly, are meant the same thing; and that therefore not only works of the ceremonial law are excluded in this business of justification, but works of morality and godliness."

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