Machen Helps Keep Law and Gospel Straight

If he were living, he’d also straighten out the obedience boys:

But what ought to be clearly observed is that that Covenant of Works or Covenant of Life did not offer “salvation.” The word “salvation” implies something from which one is saved. Adam was not lost when that Covenant of Life was given him. On the contrary he had knowledge, righteousness and holiness. The Covenant of Works was not given as a way by which a sinner might get rid of his sin and merit eternal life.

Neither was the Mosaic Law given for any such purpose. It was not given to present, even hypothetically, a way by which a sinner, already eternally under the condemnation of sin, could by future perfect obedience merit the favor of God. And Dr. Charles Hodge surely does not regard it as given for any such purpose.

The root error, or one of the many root errors of the Dispensationalism of the Scofield Bible seems to me to be the utter failure to recognize and make central the fact of the Fall of man. I know that there are salutary inconsistencies in the Scofield Bible. I know that in the notes on the fifth chapter of Romans there is taught, not indeed the orthodox doctrine of imputation, but still some recognition of the universal corruption that has come from Adam’s sin. But by what a back-door even that much of the central Biblical teaching is brought in! As one reads Dr. Scofield’s notes one does not for the most part get the slightest inkling of the fact that anything irrevocable took place when Adam fell. After his Fall man continued to be tested in successive dispensations. See for example the definition of a dispensation which Dr. Scofield gives at the beginning. That is one of the things that seems to me to be so profoundly heretical in this commentary.

It is contrary to the very heart of the Augustinian and Calvinistic view of sin. According to that view — and surely according to the Bible — the guilt of Adam’s first sin was imputed to his posterity. Adam being by divine appointment the representative or federal head of the race. Thus all descended from Adam by ordinary generation are guilty. They are guilty before they individually have done anything either good or bad. They are under the penalty of sin when they are born. Part of that penalty of sin is hopeless corruption, from which, if there is growth to years of discretion, individual transgressions spring. How utterly absurd would it have been therefore for God to offer the Mosaic Law, to such an already condemned and fallen race, as something which, if only obeyed by that already condemned and fallen race, would bring salvation and eternal life!

Hard to love the law when it doesn’t do all that faith in Christ does.

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57 thoughts on “Machen Helps Keep Law and Gospel Straight

  1. Hard to love the law when it doesn’t do all that faith in Christ does.

    Hard to love the law? The Spirit would never say that and He lives in you; and oh, like the rest of us, you wanted a really, really easy war

    -if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature 2 Cor 5 :17a
    -And I will give them one heart, and put a new spirit within them. And I will take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them. Then they will be My people, and I shall be their God. Ez 11:19-20

    Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God. However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you. So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh— for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. Rom 8:1-13

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  2. Scottish Psalter (1650)-Ps. 119:
    97 O how love I thy law! it is
    my study all the day:
    98 It makes me wiser than my foes;
    for it doth with me stay.

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  3. So does this “offer” from Thomas Boston come from “the covenant of grace”?

    Thomas Boston: “Even as when one presents a piece of gold to a poor man saying, ‘Take it, it is yours’; the offer makes the piece really his in a sense nevertheless, while the poor man does not accept or receive it, it is not his in possession, nor hath he the benefit of it; but, on the contrary, must starve for it all, and that so much the more miserably, that he hath slighted the offer and refused the gift”

    Thomas Boston— “This giving, which in light of I John 5:11 is certainly gracious on God’s part, does not, however, put anyone in possession of eternal life. It merely makes it possible for humans to take possession”of eternal life. This giving of eternal life by God in the offer is not to and for the elect, but to and for all who hear the gospel, including those who may be reprobate, and perish. The party to whom eternal life is given by the offer is not the election only, but mankind lost.” In the offer, there is a giving of Christ and salvation to many where there is no receiving, for a gift may be refused.”

    http://www.meetthepuritans.com/blog/more-fruit

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  4. “For I through the law died to the law” Galatians 2:19

    Machen, Notes, p 159 “The law . . . led men, by its clear revelation of what God requires, to relinquish all claim to salvation by their own obedience. In that sense, surely, Paul could say that it was through the law that he died to the law. The law made the commands of God so terribly clear that Paul could see plainly that there was no hope for him if he appealed for his salvation to his own obedience to those commands.”

    Machen: “This interpretation of Galatians 2;19 yields a truly Pauline thought. But the immediate context suggests another, and an even profounder, meaning for the words.. The key to the interpretation is probably to be found in the sentences, I have been crucified together with Christ, which almost immediately follows. The law, with its penalty of death upon sins (which penalty Christ bore in our stead) brought Christ to the cross; and when Christ died I died, since he died as my representative.”

    Machen: “The death to the law… the law itself brought about when… Christ died that Since He died that death as our representative, we too have died that death. Thus our death to the law, suffered for us by Christ, far from being contrary to the law, was in fulfillment of the law’s own demands. “

    http://www.reformation21.org/blog/2014/05/concerns-about-the-efficacy-of.php

    While the Reformed distinction between law and curse lays the exclusive emphasis on the law in Romans 3:31, Paul’s point in Romans 3:31 accentuates the curse. Romans 3:21-31 is the clearest foundation possible for the doctrine of a definite “limited in extent” atonement, because the apostle there teaches that Christ’s death is a law-work, a satisfaction of law for the sins of the elect. The cross is a penal substitution, a propitiation.

    Propitiation means that the law must be faced. Paul’s gospel does not substitute one kind of righteousness for another kind of righteousness. The gospel is not about an “end-run” around the law. The righteousness of the gospel comes by Christ taking the law head-on, meeting its every demand and satisfying its curse.

    Romans 3 has been all about showing that God’s law cannot be set aside without rejecting God and His righteousness. Justification cannot be a matter of sweeping sins under the rug of a divine forgetfulness. Gospel righteousness is satisfaction of God’s law. This is why Christ had to die. Romans 3:31 is about the “establishment” of the curse of divine law by the cross of Christ.

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  5. Dan, I quote, you reconcile:

    Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? (Acts 15:10 ESV)

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  6. Calvin on Matthew 19:17:

    “Paul lays down a twofold righteousness, the righteousness of the law, (Romans 10:5,) and the righteousness of faith, (Romans 10:6.) He makes the first to consist in works, and the second, in the free grace of Christ.

    Hence we infer, that this reply of Christ is legal, because it was proper that the young man who inquired about the righteousness of works should first be taught that no man is accounted righteous before God unless he has fulfilled the law, (which is impossible,) that, convinced of his weakness, he might betake himself to the assistance of faith. I acknowledge, therefore, that, as God has promised the reward of eternal life to those who keep his law, we ought to hold by this way, if the weakness of our flesh did not prevent; but Scripture teaches us, that it is through our own fault that it becomes necessary for us to receive as a gift what we cannot obtain by works. If it be objected, that it is in vain to hold out to us the righteousness which is in the law, (Romans 10:5,) which no man will ever be able to reach, I reply, since it is the first part of instruction, by which we are led to the righteousness which is obtained by prayer, it is far from being superfluous; and, therefore, when Paul says, that the doers of the law are justified, (Romans 2:13,) he excludes all from the righteousness of the law.”

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  7. Paul, Calvin on Acts 15:10:

    Therefore, those be too foolish who restrain unto ceremonies Peter’s words, whereby the weakness of men to perform the righteousness of the heart is expressed; which doth not only far pass their strength, but is altogether contrary to nature. These men were, I warrant you, deceived by one reason, because the question was moved concerning ceremonies only; but they do remember that Peter did more attentively and more wisely consider as became him, what a labyrinth this error (to look to, but light) did bring with it. The false apostles did avouch, that no man could attain unto salvation unless he did keep the ceremonies. If man’s salvation be tied to works, it shall be no longer grounded in the grace of Christ, and so, by this means, free reconciliation shall fall flat to the ground. Now, seeing that man’s strength is unable to keep the law, all men are subject to the curse which the Lord there denounceth against the transgressors; and so, by this means, all men shall come in danger of despair, seeing that they see themselves guilty of eternal death by the law. Peradventure the false apostles understood these things craftily. But Peter pierceth the very fountain, that he may bring to light the deadly poison of that doctrine; and thus must we do, so often as Satan doth craftily thrust in wicked errors.

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  8. Good stuff, D.G.

    Here is another good one from Luther on Galatians 3:10:

    “We must bear in mind that to do the works of the Law does not mean only to live up to the superficial requirements of the Law, but to obey the spirit of the Law to perfection. But where will you find the person who can do that? Let him step forward and we will praise him.

    Our opponents have their answer ready-made. They quote Paul’s own statement in Romans 2:13, “The doers of the law shall be justified.” Very well. But let us first find out who the doers of the law are. They call a “doer” of the Law one who performs the Law in its literal sense. This is not to “do” the Law. This is to sin. When our opponents go about to perform the Law they sin against the first, the second, and the third commandments, in fact they sin against the whole Law. For God requires above all that we worship Him in spirit and in faith. In observing the Law for the purpose of obtaining righteousness without faith in Christ these law-workers go smack against the Law and against God. They deny the righteousness of God, His mercy, and His promises. They deny Christ and all His benefits.

    In their ignorance of the true purpose of the Law the exponents of the Law abuse the Law, as Paul says, Romans 10:3, “For they, being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.”

    In their folly our opponents rush into the Scriptures, pick out a sentence here and a sentence there about the Law and imagine they know all about it. Their work-righteousness is plain idolatry and blasphemy against God. No wonder they abide under the curse of God.

    Because God saw that we could not fulfill the Law, He provided a way of salvation long before the Law was ever given, a salvation that He promised to Abraham, saying, “In thee shall all nations be blessed.”

    The very first thing for us to do is to believe in Christ. First, we must receive the Holy Spirit, who enlightens and sanctifies us so that we can begin to do the Law, i.e., to love God and our neighbor. Now, the Holy Ghost is not obtained by the Law, but by faith in Christ.”

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  9. Great post Dr. Hart; no doubt, the Obedience Boys (aka The Gospel Reformation Network in part, along with others) will object, yet, it would seem there are those among their ranks who are on the border of the debate, looking over into Machen’s territory.

    Whenever the majority of the PCA should turn toward being more Reformed and Confessional, there should be a firm proposal put forward, to wit, that the Gospel Reformation Network along with it’s Affirmations and Denials, should be overturned and scrapped as a flawed association, with erroneous commentary and interpretation of the Westminster Confession, and it’s epilogue should be recorded as a misguided affair of the PCA, along with the Embers To A Flame business-venture of Briarwood Presbyterian Church, whom no one wants to disagree with – the Vatican of the PCA.

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  10. Darryl, you might want to re-think citing Calvin. He can come back to bite:

    “…that to profit well in the law of Moses, we must begin at this end, to wit, to have faith in God: and thereunto also wee see that the law is very profitable for us. And we must not do as vile hogs, which always have this word in their mouth, or rather in their snouts: “Oh, all is at an end, we have to beat our heads no more about the old Testament.” We shall see some that are mixed among us, as swine among the sheep and lambs of our Lord Jesus Christ, which will belch out such blasphemies. But on the contrary side, S. Paul pronounces here, that if we read the law of God diligently, and seek in wisdom of Spirit that which is contained in it, it shall serve us for a good instruction, to bring us to faith, as also we see it be experience: for from whence did our Lord Jesus Christ and his Apostles draw their doctrine, but out of Moses? And if we well consider all, we shall find that the Gospel is but a simple expounding of that which Moses preached before. It is true that there was a darkness in the shadows and figures of the law, and that God was not so gracious unto the fathers as to us: yet so it is, that the substance of the Gospel is drawn from thence, and we have the same faith that [pg. 29] they had, which lived before the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Let us therefore at this day profit at the law of GOD, and let us not lose such a treasure, and let us not suffer these villains and shameful creatures to turn us aside from it and rob us of it.” ~ John Calvin Sermons on Timothy & Titus.

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  11. vdm, m, so? I quote Calvin and Machen. You quote Calvin.

    Is that how you argue in court? Don’t you ever argue against the bad Calvin and the bad Machen?

    Or do you prosecute the law like plumbing?

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  12. D. G. Hart says: prosecute the law

    See? Another reason that it ought not be hard to ‘love the law’
    Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. Matt 24: 12

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  13. The only “bad” Calvin in the quotes we cited is a creation of your mind. Of course, Calvin would have no problem seeing the harmony between them (think context of justification vs. sanctification).

    The real Machen subscribed to WCF Chapter 19:

    “…So as, a man’s doing good, and refraining from evil, because the law encourages to the one and deters from the other, is no evidence of his being under the law: and not under grace.

    VII. Neither are the forementioned uses of the law contrary to the grace of the Gospel, but do sweetly comply with it;[21] the Spirit of Christ subduing and enabling the will of man to do that freely, and cheerfully, which the will of God, revealed in the law, requires to be done.”

    Can’t you follow the good Machen and be more cheerful about the law?

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  14. “…it is of great use to them…discovering also the sinful pollutions of their nature, hearts and lives; so as, examining themselves thereby, they may come to further conviction of, humiliation for, and hatred against sin, together with a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ, and the perfection of His obedience…”

    The law may encourage us toward our duty, yet it provides no power to fulfill its demands for justification or sanctification. How encouraging is something that demands of us something we cannot do? I know what is encouraging, hearing the preaching of the One who fulfilled the laws demands and has broken the chains of sin- both things the law could not do.

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  15. I thought your writing expressed your mind. My mistake.

    Darryl, try to be like Machen (and the WCF):

    >i>“The Gospel does not abrogate God’s law, but it makes men love it with all of their hearts.” J. Gresham Machen, “What is Faith”, p. 192.

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  16. vdm, m, right. You believe in freedom for blasphemy and idolatry, right there with Machen.

    Wait. You also think the magistrate should enforce both tables and so don’t believe in freedom for blasphemy and idolatry.

    That’s right. You don’t have to admit to the inconsistency. All you do is kvetch. But your mind has not been transformed. It’s confused.

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  17. Mark Van Der Molen says: Darryl, try to be like Machen (and the WCF):“The Gospel does not abrogate God’s law, but it makes men love it with all of their hearts.” J. Gresham Machen, “What is Faith”, p. 192.

    and, of course, it’s always ok to even say [unless r2k precludes such direct, overt appeal]….
    ….. try to be like JESUS, or try to be in agreement with His WORD, or try to be in accord with the HOLY SPIRIT

    do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God. Eph 4:30

    always resisting the Holy Spirit Acts 7:51

    do not quench the Spirit 1 Thess 5:19

    he who rejects this is not rejecting man but the God who gives His Holy Spirit to you. 1 Thess 4: 8

    or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test? 2 Cor 12:5b

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  18. Funny dodge, Darryl, when you know I subscribe to Belgic 36, 1958 version. Lines up just fine with Machen.

    The pressing question is why you won’t line up with Calvin, Machen, and WCF Chapter 19, and try loving Christ’s law with all your heart?

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  19. vdm, m, well, as a sinner and a saint, the law works both ways. Or have you become a Wesleyan (read perfectionist)?

    As an aside, the hit piece shows that you really don’t agree with the revisions of either Belgic or Westminster, that you really do want the magistrate to enforce the whole 10 Commandments. Where’s “loving” the law in that? More like “coerce” the law.

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  20. Where’s “loving” the law in that? More like “coerce” the law.

    oh wait, that’s right, from your denom, we learned about God’s impotent, ineffective, ‘one way love’ (tell that to the Triune God) and ‘no strings attached’ – do whatever you want freedom (tell that to Jesus call to count the cost) plan.
    In that case, carry on and disregard that the Lord is more committed to HIs children’s true liberty and healing than we are; that those whom He loves, He reproves and disciplines (Rev 3:19)

    Hebrews 12: 6 FOR THOSE WHOM THE LORD LOVES HE DISCIPLINES, AND HE SCOURGES EVERY SON WHOM HE RECEIVES.”7 It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. 11 All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.

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  21. Ali: oh wait, that’s right, from your denom, we learned about God’s impotent, ineffective, ‘one way love’ (tell that to the Triune God) and ‘no strings attached’ – do whatever you want freedom (tell that to Jesus call to count the cost) plan.

    WCF 13: I. They, who are once effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart, and a new spirit created in them, are further sanctified, really and personally, through the virtue of Christ’s death and resurrection,[1] by His Word and Spirit dwelling in them:[2] the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed,[3] and the several lusts thereof are more and more weakened and mortified;[4] and they more and more quickened and strengthened in all saving graces,[5] to the practice of true holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.[6]

    II. This sanctification is throughout, in the whole man;[7] yet imperfect in this life, there abiding still some remnants of corruption in every part;[8] whence arises a continual and irreconcilable war, the flesh lusting against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh.[9]

    III. In which war, although the remaining corruption, for a time, may much prevail;[10] yet, through the continual supply of strength from the sanctifying Spirit of Christ, the regenerate part does overcome;[11] and so, the saints grow in grace,[12] perfecting holiness in the fear of God.[13]

    That’s what I learned from my denom.

    And again,

    WCF 15: I. They, whom God has accepted in His Beloved, effectually called, and sanctified by His Spirit, can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace, but shall certainly persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved.[1]

    II. This perseverance of the saints depends not upon their own free will, but upon the immutability of the decree of election, flowing from the free and unchangeable love of God the Father;[2] upon the efficacy of the merit and intercession of Jesus Christ,[3] the abiding of the Spirit, and of the seed of God within them,[4] and the nature of the covenant of grace:[5] from all which arises also the certainty and infallibility thereof.[6]

    III. Nevertheless, they may, through the temptations of Satan and of the world, the prevalency of corruption remaining in them, and the neglect of the means of their preservation, fall into grievous sins;[7] and, for a time, continue therein:[8] whereby they incur God’s displeasure,[9] and grieve His Holy Spirit,[10] come to be deprived of some measure of their graces and comforts,[11] have their hearts hardened,[12] and their consciences wounded;[13] hurt and scandalize others,[14] and bring temporal judgments upon themselves.[15]

    Keep in mind that confessional statements are the heavy lifters in terms of explicating Scripture.

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  22. Jeff says Keep in mind that confessional statements are the heavy lifters in terms of explicating Scripture.
    sdb says: Ali Are you claiming the PCA or OPC teaches antinomianism?

    Sincere question? Is there consequence for a member’s deviation from the confessional statements as a pattern?

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  23. Ali, sincere question — are you going to acknowledge that this:

    “oh wait, that’s right, from your denom, we learned about God’s impotent, ineffective, ‘one way love’ (tell that to the Triune God) and ‘no strings attached’ – do whatever you want freedom (tell that to Jesus call to count the cost) plan.”

    is both slanderous and erroneous?

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  24. Ali: Is there consequence for a member’s deviation from the confessional statements as a pattern?

    There definitely is when TEs do it, and are proven to have done so at trial.

    But CW’s question is on point here. You appear to be connecting some dots. Can you actually point to a statement that deviates from confessional statements, or are you making inferences? And to whom are you specifically referring?

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  25. “the sinner in me doesn’t”
    Then why not testify more about the the saint in you who loves it? Let Machen lead you.

    Do you love Indiana law that doesn’t acknowledge Christ as King? (Have you ever answered this?)

    No, I only truly *love* God’s law. Human laws are a different from divine law, although they should be not contravene it. (See Belgic 36, ’58 version; for your further reading, cf. Francisucs Junius, “The Mosaic Polity”).

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  26. divine law

    Matt 22:36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And He said to him, “‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.***’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”

    (**** A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. John 13:34; I ask you, lady, not as though I were writing to you a new commandment, but the one which we have had from the beginning, that we love one another. 2 John 1:5)

    [note: specifically excluded from above- all about mmmmeeeee]

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  27. so how do you take oaths to uphold laws that don’t acknowledge divine law?
    Wow, you still haven’t listened to Alan Strange’s Reformed Forum interview? He has a nice section explaining the Covenanters. Since you won’t read Junius, I’d encourage you can go learn some Reformed history from Alan.

    You’re right, this is fun.

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  28. this is fun?
    sheesh
    well, anyway, it’s a good study in question dodging

    Question dodging -the intentional avoidance of answering a question.
    This may happen when the person questioned either does not know the answerand wants to avoid embarrassment, or when the person is being wants to avoid giving a direct response. Overt question dodging can sometimes be employed humorously, in order to sidestep giving a public answer in a political discussion. A false accusation of question dodging can sometimes be made as a disingenuous tactic in debate, in the informal i of the loaded question. A common way out of this argument is not to answer the question (e.g. with a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’), but to challenge the assumption behind the question. This can lead the person questioned to be accused of “dodging the question”. Often the aim of dodging a question is to make it seem as though the question was fulfilled. The person who asked the question feeling satisfied with the answer,unaware that the question was not properly answered.

    -DGHsays : Hard to love the law when it doesn’t do all that faith in Christ does.

    -MVDMsays: you might want to re-think citing Calvin.
    -DGHsays: so? I quote Calvin and Machen. You quote Calvin. Is that how you argue in court?
    -MVDMsays: Can’t you follow the good Machen and be more cheerful about the law?
    -DGHsays:so you are a mind reader. Does that work in court too?
    -MVDMsays: I thought your writing expressed your mind.try to be like Machen (and the WCF):“The Gospel does not abrogate God’s law, but it makes men love it with all of their hearts.”
    -DGHsays: right. You believe in freedom for blasphemy and idolatry, right there with Machen. You also think the magistrate should enforce both tables and so don’t believe in freedom for blasphemy and idolatry.
    -MVDMsays: Funny dodge, the pressing question is why you won’t line up with Calvin, Machen, WCF 19, and try loving Christ’s law with all your heart?
    -DGHsays: if you hold to the revisions, you do so with fingers crossed. And you complain about dodging.
    -MVDMsays: Your silly hit piece aside, crickets are still chirping on your loving the law.
    -DGHsays: well, as a sinner and a saint, the law works both ways. Or have you become a Wesleyan?
    -MVDMsays:as a sinner and a saint, the law works both ways. ”But do you love it?
    -DGHsays: the sinner in me doesn’t. Do you love Indiana law that doesn’t acknowledge Christ as King?
    -MVDMsays: “the sinner in me doesn’t” Then why not testify more about the the saint in you who loves it? No, I only truly love God’s law. Human laws are a different from divine law, although they should be not contravene it.
    -DGHsays: if human laws are different from divine, why do you want divine law written into human law?
    -MVDMsays: Human laws are not to contravene divine law. Might help you honor Machen’s legacy and love the law more
    -DGHsays: so how do you take oaths to uphold laws that don’t acknowledge divine law?
    -MVDMsays: you still haven’t listened to Alan Strange’s Reformed Forum interview?
    -DGHsays:so you are a ventriloquist with Alan Strange on your knee? Or do you ever answer a question yourself?

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  29. You may have noticed, but Alan is quite alive and is no one’s puppet. But the picture you paint is pretty funny, coming from someone who uses dead Machen as his personal Charlie McCarthy.

    As to your question on oaths, you must think non-Covenanter Machen had his fingers crossed too:

    “In the political and social discussions of the day, God’s law has ceased to be regarded as a factor that deserves to be reckoned with at all…[But] of one thing we can be sure—a nation that tramples thus upon the law of God…is headed for destruction.”
    J. Gresham Machen, “Education, Christianity, and the State” — pp. 140, 141

    “The Christian cannot be satisfied so long as any human activity is either opposed to Christianity or out of all connection with Christianity. Christianity must pervade not merely all nations, but also all of human thought. The Christian, therefore, cannot be indifferent to any branch of earnest human endeavor. It must all be brought into some relation to the gospel. It must be studied either in order to be demonstrated as false, or else in order to be made useful in advancing the Kingdom of God. “ J. Gresham Machen, “Christianity and Culture”, Princeton Theological Review, Vol. 11, 1913, p. 1

    Stir up love for Christ’s law. Show the departed Machen a little respect.

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  30. “Psychological projection is a theory in psychology in which humans defend themselves against their own unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others.[1] For example, a person who is habitually rude may constantly accuse other people of being rude. It incorporates blame shifting.”

    Darryl, take it as loving advice that you can find treatment for this.

    Have you said you love the law yet?

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  31. It’s Tuesday, still singing since Sunday, cw? Just for you then: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWXWgbMDedY
    on this election day -we all might need the encouragement/help- and, of course, in hopes DG, though he is having fun, might answer mvdm’s plea – “Can’t you follow the good Machen and be more cheerful about the law…be like Machen (and the WCF) and try loving Christ’s law with all your hear…why not testify more about the saint in you who loves it… Have you said you love the law yet?”‘ in the affirmative 🙂

    How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers. Psalm 1:3

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  32. “How utterly absurd would it have been therefore for God to offer the Mosaic Law, to such an already condemned and fallen race, as something which, if only obeyed by that already condemned and fallen race, would bring salvation and eternal life!”

    Hard to love the law when it doesn’t do all that faith in Christ does.

    So clearly the law dgh finds hard to love is the Mosaic law.

    Paul tells us that, ‘The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.” and that ” you also died to the law through the body of Christ”. In the same “breath” he also says he delights in God’s law. A curious juxtaposition. I have to say it seems to me that it is hard to love the power of sin that we died to. Perhaps law is used differently throughout scripture? Now you ask if Darryl loves Christ’s law. Are you equating Christ’s law and the Mosaic law? Or are you suggesting that love of Christ’s law entails love of the Mosaic law (what dgh says is hard to love)?

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  33. vdm, m, you can keep going on about loving the law but without your showing love for me it’s well kind of hollow. But not the rake that keeps hitting you in the face.

    And then you have the nerve to go to a non-Reformed cite for psychological projection’s definition. Every square inch, not so much.

    Neo-Calvinism as complaint. Not very inspirational.

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  34. Darryl, I show my tender love in trying to help you not confuse Machen and Calvin with C.I. Scofield or T. David Gordon.

    And it pains me to see the rake you keep you stepping on is you still won’t say you love God’s law.

    Move loving advice: meditate on Psalm 19 (which predates Neo-Calvinism).

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  35. Sdb, nope. The law we died to is inclusive of the entire mosaic code, fangs and all. But every time you think you’re out, the neo-nomians want to drag you back in. They not only do not understand the difference but they don’t love the law of Christ, apparently.

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  36. Mark, don’t look now but you’re being really politically correct with this “say you love God’s law” jazz. What, the expression is some sort of magical term that is the litmus test for true faith or something? trump wants “radical Islam,” you want “say you love the law!” Peas in a PC pod.

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  37. D. G. Hart says: you have to love me.

    🙂 David or Daniel or Ezra or whoever it was: I hate double-minded people, but I love your law. Psalm 119:113

    that same God-lover psalmist:
    16 I shall DELIGHT in Your statutes; I shall not forget Your word.
    24 Your testimonies also are my DELIGHT;They are my counselors.
    35 Make me walk in the path of Your commandments, for I DELIGHT in it.
    40 Behold, I LONG for Your precepts; revive me through Your righteousness.
    47 I shall DELIGHT in Your commandments, which I love.
    48 And I shall lift up my hands to Your commandments,which I LOVE;
    70 Their heart is covered with fat, but I DELIGHT in Your law.
    72 The law of Your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces.
    77 May Your compassion come to me that I may live, For Your law is my DELIGHT.
    92 If Your law had not been my DELIGHT,Then I would have perished in my affliction.
    97 O how I LOVE Your law! It is my meditation all the day.
    111 I have inherited Your testimonies forever, for they are the JOY of my heart.
    119 You have removed all the wicked of the earth like dross; Therefore I LOVE Your testimonies.
    127 Therefore I LOVE Your commandments above gold, yes, above fine gold.
    129 Your testimonies are WONDERFUL; therefore my soul observes them.
    131 I opened my mouth wide and panted, for I LONGED for Your commandments.
    140 Your word is very pure, Therefore Your servant LOVES it..
    143 Trouble and anguish have come upon me,yet Your commandments are my DELIGHT.
    159 Consider how I LOVE Your precepts; revive me, O LORD, according to Your lovingkindness.
    162 I REJOICE at Your word, As one who finds great spoil.
    163 I hate and despise falsehood, but I LOVE Your law..
    167 My soul keeps Your testimonies, and I LOVE them exceedingly.

    Jesus (paraphrase): Love me? Love my law.

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