And the Spirit & the bride say, come.... Reveaaltion 22:17

And the Spirit & the bride say, come.... Reveaaltion 22:17
And the Spirit & the bride say, come...Revelation 22:17 - May We One Day Bow Down In The DUST At HIS FEET ...... {click on blog TITLE at top to refresh page}

Friday, June 9, 2017

SDA Issues - universal legal justification?

"For a number of years now, a theory known as “universal legal justification” has been making the rounds among Seventh-day Adventists. 

In short, this theory teaches that on Calvary’s cross, Jesus didn’t simply die for the whole human race—something we all believe—thus providing for all a way of salvation should they meet the prescribed conditions found in Scripture. Rather, this “universal justification” theory insists that Christ legally justified the whole human race when He died on Calvary. 
One prominent advocate of this teaching in contemporary Adventism states as follows:
I believe the Bible teaches that God actually and unconditionally saved all humanity at the cross so that we are justified and reconciled to God by that act (see Romans 5:10,18; 2 Corinthians 5:18,19). I believe that the only reason anyone will be lost is because he or she willfully and persistently rejects God’s gift of salvation in Christ (see John 3:18,36)
Elsewhere he writes:
The gospel is the unconditional good news of salvation for all mankind.
 
The difference between this doctrine and the classic Adventist doctrine of salvation is the simple difference between accomplishing and providing. 
*The doctrine of universal legal justification says Jesus actually accomplished everyone’s salvation at Calvary, whether they meet the conditions found in the Bible or not. Unless one takes affirmative action to resist and reject this salvation, so the theory goes, it remains legally intact. 
*The classic Adventist doctrine of salvation, by contrast, teaches that Christ has provided salvation for all, but that this salvation can only become real—legally or otherwise—if the conditions found in God’s Word are fulfilled. 

Illustrating the contrast between these two doctrines is easy. 
*The classic Adventist view is comparable to a man asking a woman to marry him, giving her the choice to either accept or reject his proposal. 
*The doctrine of universal legal justification, by contrast, is comparable to a man announcing to that same woman that he and she are legally married already, and that unless she goes to the courthouse and files for divorce, the marriage remains legally intact.

God’s forgiveness, or justification, is consistently described in Scripture as dependent on the divinely-empowered fulfillment of certain conditions by the sinner. Confession of sin, the forsaking of sin, together with our willingness to forgive those who have wronged us, are listed in the Bible as prerequisites for the divine pardon of human sin:
If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sins, and heal their land (II Chron. 7:14).

He that covereth his sins shall not prosper, but whoso confesseth, and forsaketh them shall have mercy (Prov. 28:13).
Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts, and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon (Isa. 55:7).
For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses (Matt. 6:14-15).
For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified (Rom. 2:13).
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (I John 1:9).

The reason God’s forgiveness can’t be unconditional is because it produces a direct, internal change in the one being forgiven. Too many of us think of God’s forgiveness is analogous to human forgiveness, the latter being in most cases the letting go of a grudge. God’s forgiveness, by contrast, involves not only a legal transaction on God’s part, but also the removal of sin from the heart of the penitent believer. Thus Ellen White declares:
God’s forgiveness is not merely a judicial act by which He sets us free from condemnation. It is not only forgiveness for sin, but reclaiming from sin. It is the outflow of redeeming love that transforms the heart. David had the true conception of forgiveness when he prayed, ‘Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.’ Psalm 51:10.
This explains why God’s forgiveness, or justification, can never be accomplished for anyone apart from the voluntary surrender of the will and the repudiation of sinful practices. God can’t remove from us what we choose to keep." AdVindicate