BOOK – Piper on Wright, Conclusion: What is Justification?

Copyright Tony S. Reinke, 2007
I have now come to the end of my series responding to John Piper’s new book, The Future of Justification. Here is a list of the previous posts:

  1. John Piper, N. T. Wright, and Gracious Discernment
  2. John Piper Challenges N. T. Wright on Justification
  3. Piper Explains the Classic View of Justification Versus N. T. Wright’s View
  4. Piper and Wright: Does Justification by Faith Save Us?
  5. John Piper: Is N. T. Wright Preaching Another Gospel?
  6. Legalism Versus Grace in First Century Judaism
  7. Hard and Soft Legalism
  8. Legalism, Racism, and the First Century Jew
  9. 2 Corinthians 5 and Romans 5—Two Critical Passages on Justification
  10. The Christian and the Law
  11. Piper Gets Passionate with the ETS on Justification
  12. Tom Wright’s Response to John Piper
  13. Does Piper Neglect the Resurrection?

I would like to conclude by sharing a great summary quote from Dr. Piper which is a fitting climax to what, at least to me, has been an interesting journey through an important book. I hope many of you will go out and buy this book, but remember, buy Pierced for Our Transgressions first! This book will stretch you, but to be stretched is sometimes a good idea!

So, what is the crux of the doctrine of justification, according to Piper?

“Our only hope for living the radical demands of the Christian life is that God is totally for us now and forever.John Piper Therefore, God has not ordained that living the Christian life should be the basis of our hope that God is for us. That basis is the death and righteousness of Christ, counted as ours through faith alone. On the cross Christ endured for us all the punishment required of us because of our sin. And in order that God, as our Father, might be completely for us and not against us forever, Christ has performed for us in his perfect obedience to God all that God required of us.

This punishment and this obedience are completed and past. They can never change. Our union with Christ and the enjoyment of these benefits is secure forever. Through faith alone, God establishes our union with Christ. This union will never fail, because in Christ, God is for us as an omnipotent Father who sustains our faith, and works all things together for our everlasting good. The one and only instrument through which God preserves our union with Christ is faith in Christ—the purely receiving act of the soul.” (p. 184)

Book photo courtesy of Tony S. Reinke, The Shepherd’s Scrapbook. Used by permission.

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