(BE) - A Brief Exposition of the Teachings for the New Church Meant by the New Jerusalem in the Book of Revelation

BE 12

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12. Particulars from the Formula Concordiae, concerning justification by faith without the works of the Law. (a) That faith is imputed for justice without works, on account of the merit of Christ which is laid hold of by faith (pp. 78, 79, 80, 584, 689). (b) That charity follows justifying faith, but that faith does not justify as being formed by charity, as the Papists say (pp. 81, 89, 94, 117, 688, 691; Appendix, p. 169). (c) That neither the contrition which precedes faith, nor the renovation and sanctification which follow after it, nor the good works then performed, have anything to do with justification by faith (pp. 688, 689). (d) That it is folly to dream that the works of the second table of the Decalogue justify before God, for with that table we act with men, and not properly with God; and in justification we act with God and appease His wrath (p. 102). (e) If any one, therefore, believes he can obtain the remission of his sins, because he has charity, he brings a reproach on Christ; because he has an impious and vain confidence in his own justice (pp. 87, 89). (f) That good works are utterly to be excluded, in treating of justification and eternal life (p. 589). (g) That good works are not necessary as a meritorious cause of salvation, and that they do not enter into the act of justification (pp. 589, 590, 702, 704; Appendix, p. 173). (h) That the position, that good works are necessary to salvation, is to be rejected, because it takes away the consolation of the gospel, gives occasion to doubt of the grace of God, instills an opinion of one's own justice, and because they are accepted by the Papists to support a bad cause (p. 704). (i) The expression that good works are necessary to salvation, is rejected and condemned (p. 591). (k) That expressions implying that works are necessary unto salvation, ought not to be taught and defended, but rather exploded and rejected by the churches as false (p. 705). (I) That works which do not proceed from a true faith, are regarded as sins before God, that is, they are defiled with sin, because an evil tree cannot bring forth good fruit (p. 700). (m) That faith and salvation are neither preserved nor retained by good works, because these are only evidences that the Holy Spirit is present, and dwells in us (pp. 590, 705; Appendix, p. 174). (n) That the decree of the Council of Trent is deservedly to be rejected, which affirms that good works preserve salvation, or that justification by faith, or even faith itself, is maintained and preserved, either in the whole, or in the least part, by our works (p. 707).


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