"Justification" Theologica Prolegomena Class

Posted by Chaplain Cameron Swanson on Tuesday, November 15, 2022 with No comments

 Greetings! 

     AA is one of our classmates and will be presenting a white paper on justification. I remember a quote from Martin Luther which stated that "justification is the chief doctrine upon which the Church stands or falls." I believe I concur with this statement. 

     So it's after 8pm on the East Coast. I'm chilaxin, vibin, coolin, tryna get through this Theologica Prolegomena. So far so good. I appreciate my man AA writing on justification. 

AA: basically, Martin Luther constantly emphasizes that justification is all about comfort and assurance. It is definitely monergistic.  AA quotes some theological articles on the topic. But why justification?

WHY SHOULD I CARE? WHY SHOULD ANYONE CARE? 

     In the Smalcald Articles, Luther makes it clear that justification must be the centerpiece of our theology because justification is the doctrine that explains most clearly how we find our assurance and comfort. But what is justification? And how do we tie this term into other terms such as sanctification

             JUSTIFICATION VERSUS SANCTIFICATION 

     We are so used to justification just being seen as a legal declaration, a legal positioning. Can we use marriage as a metaphor? Legally speaking, there was a change in the relationship between my wife and I (I DEFINITELY married up, haha).  But there was also a tangible shift in reality concerning how we related to life and each other. Through faith as St Peter says, we receive a new, different clean heart. Although sin is not completely dead, God will not hold it against us -- Martin Luther. 

There is truth in justification being a legal, forensic declaration.  But also, we can allude to marriage again. More than just what is reflected on paper, I have a real, and sincere relationship with my wife. We are genuinely connected to each other. Before being married I was single.  My wife Chi was single. But now, we've been recreated as a couple. We are something that has never existed before in the world. 

AT THIS POINT AA FINISHES HIS PRESENTATION.....

        I thought it was a great presentation.  One of the questions that was asked was what passages of scripture was AA looking to in order to discuss justification. He stated that Romans 5 and Galatians were the main ones.  So let's look at Romans 5: 

Romans 5 New American Standard Bible Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we also have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we celebrate in hope of the glory of God.