TGC Review of Justification: Five Views

I just came across Matthew Barrett’s review at TGC of Justification: Five Views.

It’s a good review, covering the book well, focusing mainly on the Protestant vs. Catholic issues.  Barrett comes down on the side of Horton in the end (I like Horton, but I’m rubbing my face with my hands in frustration).

I was still grateful for this generous comment:

Ultimately, however, [i.e., despite the critique of my take on imputation] Bird stands within the Protestant tradition in his affirmation of justification as a forensic declaration of one’s new status, and not one’s moral state. And he affirms that we are incorporated into the righteousness of Christ so that his obedience is counted as ours. Out of all the chapters Bird’s seeks to tackle the text the most, something for which he should be applauded.

I may need to quote this at a heresy trial one day.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Matt

    I am tempted to write, “who gives a rip what TGC thinks?” but I won’t.

    • Amigo

      You were wise not to write that since Michael obviously cares what they think, and considering the popularity of the site, I would expect that quite a lot of people give a rip about what they think, especially in Christian circles. Thus, a comment like that wouldn’t be worth posting.

      • Mike Holmes

        on another note… there are some really smart guys that are a part of it, and so at least considering and hearing what they have to say is worth one’s time. Of course, some will just parrot the views of the historical catechisms and creeds etc, but others, even in agreement, will actually have a well argued view and one that is worth hearing out.

  • Dan Hayter

    Nice. I did think your chapter was definitely the best written – why do so few scholars write wittily? That being said, I am concerned when the standard by which the article is critiqued is historical reformed theology. This seems to be implicit in many critiques of newer formulations of justification. Surely the main question is: is the reading supported by scripture, not does historic protestantism support it.

    • Dan,
      Your point is well made. Why does what is historical immediately take precedence over what is not (necessarily) historical? If we are to be Sola Scriptura Christians, we should be first and foremost concerned with what the Bible says. In all due respect, I think we should be careful when we stray quite far from what is traditionally held. Nevertheless, there is a great deal of scholarship being done by evangelicals that is very good and quite groundbreaking. I think of John Walton on Genesis and some recent (in our lifetime) Pauline scholarship. Good point!

  • MarieP

    Good to read what Matthew Barrett wrote! I’d like to think a small part of it had something to do with commending The Saving Righteousness of God to a fellow co-worker within his earshot! He moved from his desk right across from mine to one at California Baptist University- hope all goes well for him there!