Vol.XIV No.IV Pg.7
June 1977

?You Know What?

Robert F. Turner

Bro. Turner:

Would you mind commenting on the "doing" of Jesus, as it pertains to our salvation. Tract enclosed. R.H.


The tract, by one of our brethren, reasons that since justification by law necessitates perfect obedience (a scriptural concept, cf. Gal. 3:10-12); that Christ must perfectly obey on our behalf. The later is not proven, nor does it follow. The writer only hints at "imputation" of Christ's perfect life to us, but his theological dream came from there, and leads others there, whether he espouses it or not. (See P.T., Vol. 12, No. 8)

Paul's argument that "freedom from guilt" via law would necessitate perfect obedience to law, does not necessitate the conclusion that God's "perfect law must be vindicated by being kept perfectly in a human life." God wants all men to come to repentance. Must Christ "repent" for all men; and from what would He repent?

Christ's perfect life was necessary — on His own behalf. When He became man He accepted the obligations of man; and living under law, He did indeed keep law perfectly. He thus was qualified as the perfect offering for sin (2 Cor. 5: 21); but our rightstanding with God is on the basis of forgiveness (v.19, Rom. 4: 6-8).

The tract writer thinks the "body" in the Lord's Supper signifies His perfect obedience prior to the cross. 1 Cor. 11: 24 K.J. reads, "This is my body which is broken for you..." 'The A.S. moves "broken" to footnotes, saying, "Many ancient authorities read: is broken for you"; but complete removal of "broken" doesn't change context. And Peter said Christ "bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes so were healed" (1 Pet. 2: 24). It is the body offered on the cross, not in the perfect life, that is given significance in the scriptures "through the obedience of the One" (Rom. 5: 15-19) refers to the "one act of righteousness" (v.18, A.S.), viz., His death on the cross. (Matt. 26: 42) He cites Matt. 5: 17-18, that Christ came to fulfill the law — but fails to show how he got "on our behalf in this or any other passage.

He made the "body prepared of Heb. 10:5-7, refer to the perfect life before His death, when the context says it is a body "offered ... for sins." He seems to ignore the need for Jesus to live a perfect life on His own behalf, as a man; and thereby to qualify as the perfect sacrifice for us.

He uses "saved by His life" (Rom. 5:10) as referring to His life before death, when context (4:25) makes it the resurrected life. The DEATH-LIFE of Christ — in this order — is frequently referred to in Hebrews (7:23, 25; 9:12, 23-24, 28; 10:12) where the redemptive process is discussed. In His resurrected life He is our Advocate when we sin. (1 Jn. 2: 1-2)

The Calvinistic paper, Present Truth, contributed more than drawings to the tract, "A Certain Salvation."