[Covenanted Reformation] Re: Federal view of imputation
Wow. From zero to drama in under 10 seconds.
But as my fren Bin Hurt said quoting his fren Bub Ess, 'we still don't get it.'
"Hard questions? Difficult questions?"
Please. They were anything but.
Rather somebody bent over backward to rehearse all the supposed/hypothetical objections/mis-caricatures to the reformed doctrine and then assumed that they necessarily/very probably were true. Somehow though, the Creator - creature distinction got overlooked and the fact that things didn't tally up to the creature - creature status quo was seen as a significant and deal breaking factor. But again, God is not such a one as we are ourselves that he owes us an explanation or obligation to conform to our notions of how things ought to be (cf. Ps. 50:21).
As regards philosophy and its bearing on the question, contra the assertion that it was necessarily assumed to be relevant: "Theologia non est habitus demonstrativus, sed exhibitivus.
"Theology is not a demonstrative, but an exhibitive habit; theology, considered as a human capacity or disposition, does not follow philosophy in attempting to demonstrate its truths rationally but rather exhibits or explains its truth to the world. The maxim in this form is Lutheran, but the Reformed scholastics concur, particularly in distinguishing theological certainty and the genus of theological knowledge from philosophical certainty and from the genus of philosophical knowledge."
(Muller's Dictionary of Latin and Greek Theological Terms, p. 303)
As re. NT Wright and his jibe at the 'self appointed guardians of orthodoxy', we realize, don't we, that one quotes NT at their own risk? Ole NT is a liar and fraud of the worst sort. We bring this up because we don't know if people take NT seriously or not, particularly in light of the previous on the forum.
FWIW NT's modus operandi is 1. volume and 2. audacity, audacity, audacity. IOW conjure up some arbitrary "national boundary markers" for 2nd Temple Judaism and assert that this really is what Paul is talking about. IOW the New Perspective on Paul throws overboard the classic Reformation doctrine of justification by faith alone all the while sidestepping the fact by claiming that the Reformers misunderstood Paul and forensic justification. Yet this is such an oddball claim to begin with and NT spews it out in such sincere volume, many nominally reformed get taken in by it.
But NPP is nothing more than an appeal by an academic priesthood to Second Temple Judaism scholarship as the infallible authority by which the Scriptures are interpreted contra - mind you - WCF 1:9 and the rule that Scripture interprets Scripture. Rather the question is, if 2ndTemple Judaism was orthodox, why did Christ condemn the teachings of the Jews and the Pharisees as vehemently as he did? Answer, 2ndTemple Judaism was not orthodox and is not relevant to the question of the Reformation doctrine of justification. The historic doctrine needs no remodeling, much more total demolition, which is what NT and the NPP really have in mind.
Like I said, FWIW
> 2. I posed objection two as a difficulty in squaring the whole idea ofI reject that imputation and inheritance are foreign to our normal experience and practice. Actually, it is quite common in the parent-child relationship, so it should not be at all surprising in the Adam-mankind and Jesus-adopted children relationships.
> imputation with how we typically understand justice. My argument was that
> we normally don't work things like that in our everyday holdings of people
> morally responsible. I mean how often do we allow a deal people made
> thousands of years ago to affect our moral standing with another party? How
> often do we allow it that the good or bad merit of others can be made over
> to ourselves? How often do we allow an innocent to be executed for the
> guilty? These are extremely counterintuitive and go directly against almost
> all of our moral practices, yet they stand at the heart of the Reformed
> understanding of the Gospel.
Just some examples:
1. Children who are born to rich parents are born rich; children who are born to poor parents are born poor.
2. Children who are born to mortal parents will be mortal.
3. Children often inherit the genetic diseases of their parents. Children of parents with healthy genes inherit those genes.
4. The children of terrorist parents are more subject to have their house (along with themselves) blown up. (What is it like to be born the child of an Al Qaeda leader? Does the US military really have to wait until the wife and children are out before destroying the house in which a terrorist leader is residing? Do you think that the US military waits until everyone is out except the terrorist leader?)
5. Rich parents buy their children presents which the children never worked for; penniless parents can buy their children nothing.
6. Rich parents often open up a bank account for their children and put money in it for the children (a form of imputation), even though the children never earned it. Penniless parents do not do the same.
7. When a rich couple walks through an orphanage and selects a child, upon adoption that child is immediately rich, even though the child did no more to earn it than the next child that never gets adopted.
8. Parents are under no moral requirement to lay up money to the children of other parents, but they should lay up for their own children, "for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children." But their own children did not do some special work to receive this blessing.
Imputation and inheritance are alive and well in the real world we live and act in. We are very familiar with it in our moral practices. But some people try to suppress the truth in unrighteousness.
- J. Parnell McCarter