Response to Mark Garcia's Review of Covenant, Justification, and Pastoral Ministry

W. Robert Godfrey and David VanDrunen

We thank the editor of Ordained Servant for the opportunity to respond to Mark Garcia's review of Covenant, Justification, and Pastoral Ministry: Essays by the Faculty of Westminster Seminary California (CJPM), edited by R. Scott Clark. The review is sharply critical of many aspects of our book and the reviewer ultimately concludes that the book is so bad that he cannot recommend it to the readership of Ordained Servant. The reviewer states that he stands with the Reformed confessions against the challenges that arise from the Federal Vision and the New Perspectives on Paul, as do all the authors of the essays in our book. Despite significant elements of theological agreement with the authors of the essays, the reviewer rejects the book for what he sees as its many historical, exegetical, and theological errors.

It is a frustrating task to respond to this review, for often the assertions of error are not substantiated with any evidence. Garcia states that "many exegetical arguments" are "problematic," but offers no single example. He suggests that the proponents of the Federal Vision and the New Perspectives on Paul may not recognize themselves in the critique we offer. But he offers only one example of this failure, taken from a single footnote in an essay by Hywel Jones. Jones asks in that footnote whether Norman Shepherd's failure to devote a chapter to justification in his book, Call of Grace, implies that justification is not central to his covenant theology. This single example, the reviewer states, calls into question "our standards for scholarship." In fact, Jones has touched on a very vital point: Shepherd's theology of justification has been the subject of discussion for over thirty years, but in his first book in many years dealing with related subjects he does not devote a chapter to justification. That is telling and noteworthy—or at least footnote-worthy.

Furthermore, Garcia often fails to give the reader of the review any sense of what the essays he is reviewing are actually about. For example, the review does not mention that the essay by Hywel Jones is on the importance of preaching justification by faith alone. Nor does Garcia give any indication as to whether Jones's essay is useful in what it sets out to do.

In order to offer a response to this review, we will first interact with some of the historical issues and then address some of the constructive theological issues that Garcia raises.

Calvin, Lutherans, and Pan-Confessionalism

Garcia is not shy in making sweeping statements that call his own historical and theological judgments into question. He states, "The contributors also seem concerned to shield the Heidelberg Catechism from the opinion, which I happen to share, that for historical reasons it reflects at points distinctly Lutheran theological influences....Yet Clark rightly recognizes that the Belgic Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism both emerge from the backdrop of intra-Lutheran debates over justification in the mid-1560s...." Putting aside the fact that the Belgic Confession was published in 1561 and rests in many ways on the work of John Calvin in writing the French Confession of 1559, Garcia seems content to dismiss two key confessions of many Reformed churches as seriously compromised with the Lutheran infection that he is so eager to avoid. In our experience, those who reject the Reformed confessions are the ones whose Reformed identity and arguments are suspect.

Garcia says that the doctrine of the imputation of the active obedience of Christ is not found "even 'seminally' " in Calvin before the last edition of the Institutes 1559. Garcia is simply wrong. Surely the doctrine is present more than seminally in these words of Calvin in his 1539 Commentary on Romans: "When, however, we come to Christ, we first find in Him the exact righteousness of the law, and this also becomes ours by imputation."[1]

Even more astounding to a historian is Garcia's statement: "For Calvin, Osiander is the only consistent Lutheran." This remarkable statement is not a slip of the pen, but is a reiteration of a conviction. Garcia has written elsewhere: "Calvin evidently perceives in Osiander's aberrant doctrine of justification the inevitable soteriological implications of a consistently held Lutheran Christology and sacramentology. Osiander, in Calvin's eyes, is effectively the only consistent Lutheran, and serves therefore as an ideal foil (remember Osiander is widely rejected by his Lutheran colleagues) for demonstrating what he regards as the dangerous irrationality at the heart of Lutheran ideas about Eucharistic communion with Christ."[2] As Garcia knows better than the Heidelberg Catechism and the Belgic Confession what is genuinely Reformed, so he knows better than all Lutherans and the Formula of Concord what is genuinely Lutheran. Article Three of the Formula of Concord rejects Osiander's justification theology as contrary to confessional Lutheranism. Garcia is aware of this Lutheran rejection of Osiander on justification, but it does not shape his understanding of Lutheranism.

Reformed Christians should remember that the Lutheran Formula of Concord uses language remarkably like that of Reformed confessions in seeing an inseparable link between justification and sanctification: "We believe, teach, and confess that, although antecedent contrition and subsequent new obedience do not appertain to the article of justification before God, yet we are not to imagine any such justifying faith as can exist and abide with a purpose of evil, to wit: of sinning and acting contrary to conscience. But after that man is justified by faith, then that true and living faith works by love (Gal. 5:6), and good works always follow justifying faith, and are most certainly found together with it, provided only it be a true and living faith. For true faith is never alone, but hath always charity and hope in its train."[3] As Reformed Christians we must be careful not to misrepresent what Lutherans actually confess as their theological convictions.

Garcia claims to know Calvin's mind on Lutheranism and Osiander even when Calvin has not spoken explicitly. In his 1559 Institutes (3.11.5-12), Calvin does not identify Osiander as a Lutheran or in any way suggest that his doctrine of justification is consistently or inconsistently Lutheran. In one sentence he does link Osiander's theology of justification to his eucharistic ideas, but that one sentence will not support Garcia's contention that Calvin is attacking—in a chapter on justification—all Lutherans' Christology. Surely it is significant that Calvin does not mention Osiander in his long chapter on the Lord's Supper in the Institutes. It is Garcia—alone in history it would seem—for whom Osiander is the only consistent Lutheran.

Garcia's comments about the Heidelberg Catechism and Osiander might be regarded as incidental and relatively unimportant, were it not that they relate to the central thesis of his review, namely that our book is guilty of "pan-confessionalism." He writes: "Speaking generally, the pan-confessional phenomenon is an effort to offer a theological response to problems or proposals from the perspective of what two or more confessional traditions hold in common, accenting areas of agreement and minimizing (and sometimes denying) areas of disagreement....it typically shows little sensitivity to the fuller theological systems of which the various confessional documents are expressions."

Garcia rightly distinguishes "fuller theological systems" from "confessional documents," but gets the relationship wrong. He seems to believe that confessions are derivative summaries of fuller systems. In fact, confessions should not be seen simply as brief summaries of larger systematic theologies.[4] They are the written expressions of the faith of the church, testifying to what unites and characterizes a given church. Systems of theology may seek to explore the implications of confessional traditions, and show significant differences between various elaborated traditions, but those differences cannot deny common confessional convictions or trivialize their importance. The Lutheran and Reformed theologies do have significant differences in many areas. But their confessional agreements on justification cannot be dismissed as Garcia does.

In fact, Garcia seems so fascinated with theological systems that he seems almost contemptuous of confessions: "Comparing the Formula of Concord with the great Reformed confessions highlights an important harmony that should not be minimized. However, this common ground is, we must appreciate, limited to the constituent features of the doctrine as they are expressed in its most simplified form, i.e., in confessional definitions." Garcia seems to grant pan-confessionalism in regard to the confessions, but deny it with regard to what is really important, namely, fuller systematic theologies. We should not, however, view confessions as simplified (or simple-minded) theologies.

More specifically, Garcia writes: "...Calvin, as the leading voice of a broader Reformed representation, inveighed frequently and passionately against Lutheran ideas on Christ and the Supper." This statement misrepresents Calvin and sets him over against the Lutherans generally. Calvin did indeed attack vigorously those like Joachim Westphal whom he regarded as hyper-Lutherans. But Calvin's signing of the Augsburg Confession and his letters to Melanchthon show that he believed that the hyper-Lutherans were not the true Lutherans and that he and moderate Lutherans were fundamentally agreed on the Supper.

Calvin certainly shows his pan-confessionalism when he writes in 1556 to the Lutheran ministers of Saxony and Lower Germany stressing that, in attacking Westphal, he is not attacking Lutheranism. He declares that the Reformed and Lutherans agree fundamentally in religion: "In regard to the one God and his true and legitimate worship, the corruption of human nature, free salvation, the mode of obtaining justification, the office and power of Christ, repentance and its exercises, faith which, relying on the promises of the gospel, gives us assurance of salvation, prayer to God, and other leading articles, the same doctrine is preached by both."[5] Garcia represents Calvin's attitudes to Lutheranism as consistently negative, which is simply not true.

Ironically, Garcia reasons about the relationship of justification and the sacraments just as many strict Lutheran theologians have done, but contrary to traditional Reformed practice. Many Lutheran theologians have argued that since the Reformed get sacramental theology wrong, they must get justification wrong. Garcia knows this because he refers to the Lutheran theologians Quenstedt and Pieper as making this point. He then proceeds in the same way as the Lutherans by insisting that since the Reformed and Lutherans differ on the sacraments, they must differ on justification.

Garcia is part of a rather new Reformed theological approach that wants to focus all of Reformed theology on union with Christ. Whatever the exegetical and theological merits of this approach (see below), it ought not to be read back into Calvin as if it were his organizing principle.[6] Calvin does speak of union with Christ, but it is not a central interest of his. At the beginning of Book III of his Institutes, he gives a very brief chapter to a discussion of how the Holy Spirit unites the Christian to Christ through the gift of faith, but his real interest in Book III is faith and its fruit and its source. The Reformed confessions take the same approach as Calvin does. At the risk of appearing unscholarly, we note that no chapter in the Westminster Confession of Faith is given to union with Christ. Scholars must keep track of the forest as well as the trees.

The Relationship of Justification and Sanctification

In addition to his historical critique, Garcia also critiques CJPM on two specific theological issues, the law-gospel relationship and the relationship of justification and sanctification. Though we do not have space to address both in detail, the issues are interconnected[7] and we will focus on the latter. We note here that what Garcia faults for being "Lutheran" views are in fact the explicit views of Calvin, the Westminster Confession of Faith (WCF), Westminster Larger Catechism (WLC), and of the report of the Committee to Study the Doctrine of Justification commended for study by the Seventy-third General Assembly of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church (which "approved the content and reasoning of the report"[8]). As suggested above, if Garcia wishes to aid the church in coming to a better understanding of the profound biblical doctrine of union with Christ, he is welcome to make his exegetical and theological case. But any theology of union with Christ that eliminates the relationship of justification and sanctification in which justification has a certain priority to sanctification is fundamentally flawed, neither being historically Reformed nor accounting for key biblical teaching.

To begin, readers should recognize that Garcia has misrepresented the position of CJPM on these matters at one point. He states: "If we argue, with CJPM, that justification is the cause of sanctification, then we attribute to justification a generative, transformational quality (in that sanctification is generated or produced by justification) and thus, ironically in view of the driving concern in CJPM, compromise the purely forensic character of justification, its nature as a declarative act rather than the beginning of a work." In the quotations from CJPM that Garcia offered in the previous paragraph of his review, there is not any explicit statement that justification "causes" sanctification. We do not believe that that language appears anywhere in CPJM, and it is purely gratuitous for Garcia to say that CJPM attributes to justification a generative, transformational quality. That is not the view of any author of CJPM and was never argued by any of them anywhere in the book. CJPM does not describe justification as containing within itself a generative, transformational power that accomplishes the work of sanctification by its own virtue. Rather, its authors, in various ways, defend the idea that the good works produced by believers in their sanctification are the fruits of justifying faith and that in the ordo salutis justification has a certain priority to sanctification. If Garcia has scruples about the way in which these ideas were expressed in the book, then he could have raised these for readers' consideration. But he seems to have difficulty with the substantive claims themselves.

These substantive claims that Garcia critiques are precisely the positions clearly stated in the WCF, WLC, and the OPC justification study committee report. For example, Garcia singles out three quotations from pages 49-50 of CJPM which refer to "obedience," "sanctification," and "good works" as the "fruit" or "fruits" of "justifying faith." These are examples, says Garcia, of speaking "of obedience in classically Lutheran terms." If this is a classically Lutheran way of speaking, then the WCF is also classically Lutheran. WCF 16.2, for example, states that "These good works, done in obedience to God's commandments, are the fruits and evidences of a true and lively faith...." The WLC speaks in a similar way, of "the good works that are the fruits" of the "faith [that] justifies a sinner in the sight of God...." As the OPC justification study committee report therefore says, "According to the Standards, therefore, good works must always accompany faith. Good works are the fruit and evidence of faith (though faith is not the fruit and evidence of good works)." The study report refers to the discussion in James 2 and Paul's words in Galatians 5:6 (in regard to "faith working through love") in support of this doctrine.[9] The OPC General Assembly has also pointed to James 2 as a proof-text for WCF 16.2.[10]

What about the priority of justification to sanctification in the ordo salutis? Readers are encouraged to see pages 60-62 of the published version of the OPC justification study committee report for discussion of this issue. What CJPM defends is simply the position of this report commended for study by the General Assembly. As one paragraph in the report puts it:

In addition to the doctrine of union with Christ, the idea of the ordo salutis makes clear that justification is prior to sanctification. This is not priority in the sense that one is somehow more important than the other. Neither is it a temporal priority, strictly speaking, for there is no such thing as a justified person who is not also being sanctified. But while justification is the necessary prerequisite of the process of sanctification, that process is not the necessary prerequisite of justification. It is true to say that one must be justified in order to be sanctified; but it is untrue to say that one must be sanctified in order to be justified. Justification and sanctification bear a relationship to each other that cannot be reversed.[11]

We will return momentarily to some matters raised in this quotation. Suffice it to say here that, in asserting and defending a priority of justification to sanctification, CJPM is defending a position taken by the OPC study committee report.

We turn now to the exegetical, theological, and moral reasons for affirming that justification has a priority to sanctification in the ordo salutis. In doing so, it would be helpful to identify exactly where Garcia's own position differs from that defended in CJPM. Garcia seems to come closest to defining the differences as he sees them when he writes of the "Reformed model according to which justification and sanctification come to us as distinct, inseparable, simultaneous benefits of union with Christ, rather than one coming from the other (cf. WLC 69). CJPM urges a model which could have been pulled directly form the Formula of Concord. The Reformed model, however, best reflects the Apostle Paul's own as it is expressed, for instance, in 1 Corinthians 1:30." CJPM obviously does not deny that justification and sanctification are "distinct," nor that they are "inseparable." Presumably, then, the heart of Garcia's concern is that CJPM does not affirm that justification and sanctification are simultaneous blessings of union with Christ, but instead makes the latter come from the former. Does this reflect the view of CJPM? CJPM never denies that sanctification is a blessing that comes in union with Christ and every contributor gladly affirms this idea. Perhaps the word "simultaneous" is the sticking point. The authors of CJPM would undoubtedly be comfortable with this term if it is meant simply to make the point, as the OPC justification report puts it, that between justification and sanctification there is no "temporal priority, strictly speaking, for there is no such thing as a justified person who is not also being sanctified." But if "simultaneously" is meant to indicate that justification and sanctification bear no necessary relationship to each other, as Garcia's review suggests, then there does seem to be a real, substantive difference between Garcia and CJPM at this point.

If we have understood Garcia correctly, then he holds to a position different from that expressed in both CJPM and the OPC justification report, as well as that of Calvin and the Apostle Paul. Perhaps it is too much to hope for, since Garcia has written his review with such an aggressive and polemical tone, but we would ask him and others who are inclined to his views to reconsider their opposition to speaking of a relationship between justification and sanctification. As contributors to CJPM, we hope that readers will consider the relevant discussion in that volume, but here we will summarize very briefly what is at stake that makes this a truly important issue.

Briefly put, then, one key problem with denying a priority of justification to sanctification is that it makes sanctification something other than what it is. The very character and identity of the Christian life are at stake. As Calvin has stated, when discussing the importance of justification, "For unless you first of all grasp what your relationship to God is, and the nature of his judgment concerning you, you have neither a foundation on which to establish your salvation nor one on which to build piety toward God."[12] There is such a thing as the moral life for the non-justified, non-Christian person. He is constantly confronted by God's law (whether in nature or in Scripture) and everything he does is in anticipation of a judgment to come. His moral life can be nothing other than a striving by his own efforts to be right with God. For the Christian, the moral life is radically different. In his justification, the Christian has already passed through the judgment of God. He pursues holiness not in order to be right with God, but as a response to God's gracious declaration that he already is right with him.

Justification is thus decisive for sanctification and Christian ethics. All the work of the Holy Spirit's sanctification in a person presupposes that he has been justified once and for all and that he exists as one who is right before God. Hence, it is only a justified person, never a condemned person, who is sanctified. People progress in their Christian lives as those who are justified. But the reverse is not the case. People are not justified as those who are sanctified—instead, Scripture is clear that it is the ungodly who are justified (e.g., Rom. 4:5). There is a relationship between the blessings of justification and sanctification. This relationship cannot be reversed. Justification has priority to sanctification in this sense. Again, as the OPC justification report states: "While justification is the necessary prerequisite of the process of sanctification, that process is not the necessary prerequisite of justification. It is true to say that one must be justified in order to be sanctified; but it is untrue to say that one must be sanctified in order to be justified."

Consider the sorts of evidence drawn from Luke 7:47 and Galatians 5:13 presented in the OPC justification report.[13] In Luke 7:47, Jesus says about the sinful woman: "Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little." The very character of her love, that sanctified expression of the Christian life, was shaped by her identity as a forgiven, justified person. Her love was proof that she had been forgiven. If such love was possible apart from the reality of forgiveness, then Jesus' words do not make sense.[14] In Galatians 5:13, Paul writes: "For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another." Paul's appeal to the Christian's freedom here is crucial. In the previous chapters of Galatians, Paul has argued that through justification (and adoption) by faith a person is no longer imprisoned under the law, no longer a slave, no longer a child of the slave woman, no longer seeking to be justified by law. Thanks to our justification in Christ there is freedom. It is this freedom, according to Paul, that is the foundation for our love. We love as those who have been freed through our justification. Both Calvin and Luther spoke eloquently on this point.[15] Thus, Paul and Jesus make the same point: the reality of justification is the foundation for the sanctified Christian life.

A couple of other Pauline verses along the same lines are also worth considering briefly. Romans 6:14 appears in the midst of Paul's discussion of our sanctification, of the reality of our death to sin. He tells us that sin should not reign in our bodies and that we should offer up our members as instruments of righteousness. Then in 6:14 Paul writes: "For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace." For Paul, being "under the law" means being condemned by the law as a covenant of works (see Rom. 3:19; and also Gal. 4:21 and surrounding context). Because of justification a Christian is no longer condemned and hence is not under the law but under grace. In Romans 6:14, then, Paul makes justification, the state of being no longer under the law, the reason and explanation why sin no longer has dominion over us. Sin has no dominion over us because we are not under the law. Romans 7:6 is similar: "But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve not under the old written code but in the new life of the Spirit." Once again we can see the same themes as in Romans 6 and in Galatians 3-5. We have been released from under the law, liberated from captivity—this is the reality of justification. But the purpose or result of this justification (hōste) is the sanctified Christian life: the new life of the Spirit. These verses in Romans may be especially helpful for the present discussion in light of the fact that Paul has much to say about our union with Christ in Romans 6-7. This raises a point worth emphasizing: union with Christ and the priority of justification to sanctification are not competing doctrines, but complementary doctrines.

Hence, in the two epistles in which Paul is especially concerned to expound the doctrine of justification, Romans and Galatians, he describes the sanctified Christian life as one that is founded upon the reality of justification. But he never describes justification as founded upon the reality of sanctification. Just the opposite: God justifies the ungodly (Rom. 4:5). If we wish to understand sanctification in Pauline terms, we must conceive of it as built upon the freedom granted through justification in Christ. But we must not conceive of justification as in any way built upon the sanctifying work of the Spirit.

In light of this we would appeal to Garcia to uphold this sense of priority of justification to sanctification in the ordo salutis. This is not a doctrine to be embraced in place of union with Christ, but our theology of union must be compatible with this doctrine. We ought not begin with an abstract doctrine of union, conceived independently of the concrete blessings of justification, adoption, and sanctification, and then deduce from this abstract doctrine the idea that justification, adoption, and sanctification must be received simultaneously through union without a defined relationship to each other. Union with Christ (or any other doctrine) should not become a central dogma from which we derive everything else. Garcia refers several times to 1 Corinthians 1:30 ("He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom and our righteousness and sanctification and redemption"). Certainly this verse indicates that our justification and sanctification are received in union with Christ, which we gratefully acknowledge. But this verse should not be freighted with more weight than it can bear. Though Paul is not teaching any particular priority of justification to sanctification in this passage, he does teach such a priority elsewhere. Garcia also refers to WLC 69 in support of his position ("The communion in grace which the members of the invisible church have with Christ, is their partaking of the virtue of his mediation, in their justification, adoption, and sanctification, and whatever else, in this life, manifests their union with him"). This statement also rightly connects our justification and sanctification to our union with Christ. But clearly it does not teach that justification and sanctification bear no ordo relationship to each other. If anything, WLC 69 warns us against starting with an abstract doctrine of union from which we deduce the relationship (or lack thereof) between justification and sanctification. The WLC points us precisely to justification, adoption, and sanctification as those blessings that manifest our union. If we want to understand union, then, we must look to our justification, adoption, and sanctification. These blessings show us what our union with Christ is.

A new book recently came to our attention, the first publication of Kerygma Press, entitled A Faith that is Never Alone: A Response to Westminster Seminary California, whose contributors are John Armstrong, Don Garlington, Mark Horne, Peter Leithart, Rich Lusk, Andrew Sandlin, and Norman Shepherd. The endorsement on the back cover by Douglas Green tells of this book's "deep indebtedness to Calvin's emphasis on union with Christ."[16] Garcia has been publicly critical of the Federal Vision movement, yet many writers commonly associated with it seem to agree with him that Calvin's doctrine of union with Christ is the sledgehammer with which to crush CJPM. Perhaps the new interpretation of Calvin on union, in addition to being historically suspect, is not such a clear theological foundation for the historic Reformed doctrine of justification after all. Union with Christ is a biblical doctrine, and many theological traditions, including Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox as well as Reformed, teach some version of it. We all believe in union with Christ, but what makes the difference for how one understands the basics of salvation and the gospel message is the concrete content by which one defines what this union is. A sound biblical and Reformed understanding of union with Christ must include and support the idea that justification is prior to sanctification in the ordo salutis in a very important sense.


The authors of CJPM regret both the tone and substance of Garcia's review, which in fact is not really a review of our book so much as an occasion for him to express his own views. We regret especially that the church has been told not to read a book that defends a precious doctrine currently under assault and that reflects a wholehearted support for the teaching of the Westminster Standards and the actions of the 2006 OPC General Assembly. CJPM is certainly not above criticism, but we encourage readers to study this book for themselves, and we continue to hope that it may be instructive and encouraging for many in the OPC and beyond.


[1] John Calvin, Calvin's Commentaries: The Epistles of Paul the Apostle to the Romans and to the Thessalonians, Rom. 3:31 (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976), 81.

[2] Mark A. Garcia, "Imputation and the Christology of Union with Christ: Calvin, Osiander, and the Contemporary Quest for a Reformed Model," Westminster Theological Journal, 68 (2006): 242-43.

[3] "The Formula of Concord, Article Three, Affirmative Section Eight," in Philip Schaff, The Creeds of Christendom (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2007), 3.118.

[4] See W. Robert Godfrey, "Westminster Seminary, the Doctrine of Justification, and the Reformed Confessions," in The Pattern of Sound Doctrine, ed. David VanDrunen (Phillipsburg: P&R, 2004), 127-148.

[5] John Calvin, "Second Defense of the Sacraments," in Selected Works of John Calvin (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1983), 2.251.

[6] An excellent recent article, which addresses many issues relevant to the present essay, has called this approach "the new perspective on Calvin." See Thomas L. Wenger, "The New Perspective on Calvin: Responding to Recent Calvin Interpretations," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 50 (June 2007): 311-28.

[7] Evident, e.g., in the fact that the quotation on law and gospel that Garcia highlights as problematic on pages 252-53 of CJPM is in fact a discussion of critically important matters of the relationship of justification and sanctification.

[8] Justification: Report of the Committee to Study the Doctrine of Justification (Willow Grove: The Committee on Christian Education of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, 2007), 7.

[9] Justification, 62.

[10] See The Confession of Faith and Catechisms of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church (Willow Grove: The Committee on Christian Education of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, 2005), 68.

[11] Justification, 60-61.

[12] John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, ed. John T. McNeill, trans. Ford Lewis Battles (Philadelphia: Westminster, 1960), 3.11.1. This is quoted (in a different translation) in Justification, 61, which also quotes Francis Turretin as stating: "Justification stands related to sanctification as the means to the end." See Institutes of Elenctic Theology, trans. George Musgrave Giger, ed. James T. Dennison, Jr. (Phillipsburg: P&R, 1992-1997), 2.693.

[13] Justification, 61-62.

[14] See the discussion of this passage in CJPM, 402-07.

[15] Justification, 62. Quoting from Calvin's Institutes 3.19.4-5, the report states here: "Following Paul's lead, Calvin reflects upon why the Christian's freedom, far from discouraging good works, in fact enables them. He writes: 'Being constantly in terror so long as they are under the dominion of the law, they are never disposed promptly to obey God, unless they have previously obtained this liberty'; and later: "How can unhappy souls set themselves with alacrity to a work from which they cannot hope to gain anything in return but cursing? On the other hand, if freed from this severe exaction, or rather from the whole rigour of the law, they hear themselves invited by God with paternal lenity, they will cheerfully and alertly obey the call, and follow his guidance.' For Calvin, no one can hope to begin pursuit of the good works that God requires, nor in the way he requires, apart form the peace of conscience gained only in justification."

[16] This information is taken from href="http://www.reformedcatholicism.com/?p=1365 (2 November 2007).

W. Robert Godfrey, an ordained minister in the United Reformed Church, is the president of Westminster Seminary in California. David VanDrunen, an ordained minister in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, is Robert B. Strimple Professor of Systematic Theology and Christian Ethics. Ordained Servant, December 2007.

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Ordained Servant: December 2007

Natural Law: Is it a Reformed Idea?

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