N.T. Wright’s Galatians– Part Fourteen

N.T. Wright’s Galatians– Part Fourteen July 19, 2021

Q. In another context, in my Romans commentary, I have stressed that Paul is not an advocate of ‘imputed righteousness’ in the traditional Reformed sense. So we don’t need to go down the rabbit hole of ‘it’s a legal fiction’ or ‘when God looks at me, he simply sees the righteous Jesus’ or even ‘Christ’s obedience to God’s law’ means I am exempt from having to do that, I stand by faith alone. I agree with the idea that Christ’s faithfulness even unto death on the cross makes possible our having right-standing with God, or being declared I’m in right relationship with God. This in no way obviates the necessity that I be obedient to God’s Word, and keep the commandments of the new covenant, nor does it mean I can blow off the warnings of Paul to Christians in Gal. 5 that moral apostasy persisted in can keep one out of the final eschatological state of affairs…. The kingdom. I’m suspect you will not agree with all this, but I would like to hear your take on it.

A. Gal 5 is quite definite, isn’t it? As indeed is Romans 8.12-17. I think if we’d pressed Paul he would have said – as does Hebrews at a similar point – that he was sure that those in whom the spirit dwelt would in fact put to death the deeds of the body.

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