Monday, February 02, 2015

Romans 3:21-26 answers Islam, Secularism, and Roman Catholicism



Dr. John Piper applies Romans 3:21-26 to the secular mindset and to the Muslim mindset.  

To be more clear, Dr. Piper does not address Roman Catholicism.  I am making that application, since Roman Catholicism also rejects penal substitutionary atonement.  So, listen to the sermon and see how this passage also shows Roman Catholicism wrong.

Commentors must demonstrate they listened to the whole sermon.  This requires a lot of meditation on the text and deep thinking on the issues that Dr. Piper brought up; and furthermore, why Roman Catholicism rejects penal substitutionary atonement.

Addendum:
Dr. Piper mentions the wall of the 99 names of Allah that he was shown in Dubai and his translator translated one of the names as "capricious".  I think it may be "Al Jabbar", الجبار - from Jabr, جبر , which is the concept of fatalism and destiny.  Al Jabbar means "the irresistable one, the enforcer, the compeller", many times translated more softly to "The Almighty".  Algebra الجبر , Al -Jabr also is from this root.  The idea is, if you plug in the right number, you always get a certain result.  If you do good works for Allah, He rewards you"; but even that is, "Inshallah", "if God wills".  Even that is no guarantee, but Allah is more like an impersonal mathematical formula, but He can explode in anger on you any time He wants.   Combined with other attributes of deception and no standard of who He will forgive, the capriciousness and arbitrariness comes out in daily life in the Muslim world.  Many Muslims have said to me, "we have no standard, no rules; everyone breaks the rules; if you don't get caught, it is considered a high praise."  "Allah knows best"; "what can we do?  everything is decided beforehand by Allah", etc.  I have emailed Desiring God wanting to know which one of the Arabic words that was, for they usually don't translate any of them that way into English, even though  Allah's capriciousness is a practical outworking of Allah's sovereignty and His arbitrary and caprious nature of just forgiving who He wants to and sending to hell who He wants to.  The Christian God (The Holy Trinity) is so different, by giving Himself (the Son voluntarily coming, being incarnated, and voluntarily going to the cross to take our punishment), provides the righteousness/justice at the cross for sin, satisfies God's anger and justice against sin, and provides love for sinners who don't deserve grace. Romans 5:8.  The God of the Bible is both Justice and Love.  The cross and penal substitutionary atonement is the answer to the insecurity and lack of peace and lack of assurance in Islam's caprious Allah.
Here is an article that shows the capricious and deceptive nature of Allah in Islam's texts, the Qur'an and the Hadith and other sources.  See at the bottom of that article also, for more links to other articles on Allah's deceptive nature.  "Allah is the very best deceiver" - الله خیر المکارین Surah 3:54; 8:30: 10:21-22

See also, Allah, the greatest deceiver of them all. 

It is so wonderful that we have the true God, who cannot lie (Titus 1:2; Hebrews 6:18) and cannot sin (1 John 1:5; James 1:13-14; Habakkuk 1:13).  The true God cannot do anything that is against His nature.  At the cross, both His holiness and justice against sin is demonstrated and His love for sinners is demonstrated.  "that He might be both just and the justifier of those who have faith in Jesus"  Romans 3:25-26.  Amazing!

Addendum 2:


Romans 3:25 -

ὃν προέθετο ὁ θεὸς ἱλαστήριον διὰ τῆς πίστεως ἐν τῷ αὐτοῦ αἵματι εἰς ἔνδειξιν τῆς δικαιοσύνης αὐτοῦ διὰ τὴν πάρεσιν τῶν προγεγονότων ἁμαρτημάτων
"whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed;"
Romans 3:25 NASB

"Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; (KJV)

It is translated at the mercy seat in Hebrews 9:5, true; as OT historical background and context demands; but the mercy seat was the place from where mercy is given (from God, when He met with them in the holy of holies in the temple after the sacrifices were performed, after the sacrifice and blood was sprinkled on the mercy seat, etc. thus appeasing and satisfying God's anger against sin; after propitation took place - averting the wrath of God or satisfying the wrath of God or satisfying justice.

The Verb form of this root is used in Luke 18:13 - "O God, be propitious to me, the sinner!"  ("have mercy on me" is possible because God provided the propitiation in the temple sacrifices - context of 2 men going to the temple.)

Hebrews 2:17 - the incarnation and atonement were both necessary - "it was necessary for Him to become flesh and blood, in order that He might be a faithful and merciful high priest in making propitiation for the sins of the people."

related words in
1 John 2:2
1 John 4:10

Revelation 5:9 and 7:9 explains 1 John 2:2 "propitiation for the sins of the whole world"  - that some people from every nation, language, people group, and tribe have been purchased (Rev. 5:9 - "You were slain and did purchase/redeem" = Aorist past tense) by the blood of the lamb. )

Rev. 7:9 and 7:14 - they are clothed in white robes, washed in the blood of the lamb. This shows imputation of Christ's righteousness being counted/imputed to them by their faith in Christ and His atonement.  Romans 3:24-26 - "through faith, justified by the atonement/propitiation in His blood" 

16 comments:

Nick said...

If I'm going to spend 1 hour of my time listening to this sermon, you must assure me that Piper deals with the proper translation of Romans 3:25, specifically the term "Mercy Seat".

Also, I would point out that Romans 3:21-25 paints the entirety of Christ's Work in terms of Suffering, without any hint of Active Obedience being part of the equation.

So if Piper addresses these, I'd be happy to listen. Otherwise, he'll be missing some key elements and thus probably not telling us anything we/I don't already know.

Ken said...

Romans 3:25 -

ὃν προέθετο ὁ θεὸς ἱλαστήριον διὰ τῆς πίστεως ἐν τῷ αὐτοῦ αἵματι εἰς ἔνδειξιν τῆς δικαιοσύνης αὐτοῦ διὰ τὴν πάρεσιν τῶν προγεγονότων ἁμαρτημάτων

Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

It is translated at the mercy seat in Hebrews 9:5, true; as OT historical background and context demands; but the mercy seat was the place from where mercy is given (from God, when He met with them in the holy of holies in the temple after the sacrifices were performed, after the sacrifice and blood was sprinkled on the mercy seat, etc. thus appeasing and satisfying God's anger against sin; after propitation took place - averting the wrath of God or satisfying the wrath of God or satisfying justice.

Verb used in Luke 18:13
Hebrews 2:17

related words in
1 John 2:2
1 John 4:10

Ken said...

whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed;
Romans 3:25 NASB

Ken said...

He does not mention that the word is translated "mercy seat" in other contexts, such as Heb. 9:5 and in the LXX.

He does not address the active obedience issue; he is focusing on the atonement, the cross, suffering, and why the secular mind and Muslim mind cannot comprehend the cross/atonement.

But he does talk about Proverbs 17:15

So, you are free to not listen.

guy fawkes said...

Nick,

About 14 minutes into the talk, Piper did say that unless you had a "biblical regenerate mind" you would not understand his talk.
That's so simple and beautiful, huh? It explains everything. If you don't buy his views, it's because you are not regenerate. The logic is so ironclad.

guy fawkes said...

Ken,

I am listening to the talk as I write.

At 36 minutes and 41 seconds in the talk, Piper talks about David, Bathsheba and Nathan. He forgot to mention that after David was forgiven, God demanded the death of the baby.
Think about it. Punishment after forgiveness. Hmmmmm? Sounds like the Catholic distinction between eternal and temporal punishment.

guy fawkes said...

Ken,

Piper talks about how God sovereignly directs every molecule in the universe.
Fine. The Bible says God knows when a sparrow falls.

Trouble is, God did not sovereignly endow sparrows and molecules with free will.
The Bible is replete with examples of things happening that are contrary to God's wishes.

The guy also forgets to synchronize Romans 3:25 with 1 John 2:2 which says,
"He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world."

Penal Substitution and Limited Atonement hang together.


Piper's talk reminds me of the early Papal encyclical that warned against reading Paul outside the mind of the Church,

"His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort...".

guy fawkes said...

Ken,
Realizing you will probably just discount any criticism as so much spam from an unregenerate cyber troll,( as seems to be standard operating procedure here on Beggars All ), I am going to fire off another comment anyway and ask where Piper addresses Roman Catholicism in his talk. I did leave the computer to get a cup of java without clicking on "pause" and may have missed it.

You and Piper both missed how Calvins God is the capricious God of nominalism while Muslims, since the middle ages, have believed in occasionalism ( check it out online ). No way is this compatible with either sound philosophy or Catholic sacramental theology. But that is an egghead discussion that I don't care to pursue at this point as I suspect my comment is probably going to be ignored, deleted or called cyber spam anyway.

You went on to say contra Nick,

"but the mercy seat was the place from where mercy is given (from God, when He met with them in the holy of holies in the temple after the sacrifices were performed, after the sacrifice and blood was sprinkled on the mercy seat, etc. thus appeasing and satisfying God's anger against sin;"

If I understand you correctly, you seem to be saying the killing of the critter was the part of the sacrifice that appeased God's anger rather than the actual sprinkling of the blood. Am I reading you right?

zipper778 said...

Ken said:

"Commentors must demonstrate they listened to the whole sermon.  This requires a lot of meditation on the text and deep thinking on the issues that Dr. Piper brought up; and furthermore, why Roman Catholicism rejects penal substitutionary atonement."

I do understand Nick's concern being that this video is nearly an hour long. It's hard enough for me to watch this video and I agree with Dr. Piper on many things and I have personally attended the University Reformed Church (assuming that this is the same church from Lansing Michigan). If the video were broken down into parts, it would help me watch it because my only access to the internet is through my phone.

Also, kudos to guy for showing that he has watched the video. It's difficult to commit that much time to something that you disagree with.

Ken said...

Yes, the Bible teaches some kind of distinction between eternal punishment and the temporal punishments and effects of sin in this life.

A murderer who has been convicted of first degree murder, can be forgiven / saved in prison by repentance and faith in Christ; but they still have to be executed. (temporal punishment)

The death of the baby and many other consequences of David's sin was God's discipline on him. ("the sword shall not depart from your house" (2 Sam. 12:10-14); Absolom's rebellion, Tamar's rape by Amnon(2 Sam. 13), Absolom's taking of David's concubines and having sex with them in broad daylight, etc. (2 Sam. 16:21-22)

Ken said...

Guy,
Thanks for watching and interacting with some of it.

The sacrifice and the blood sprinking on the mercy seat are all "one unit". I don't see an important issue in trying to separating them.

Piper did not mention Roman Catholicism. He showed how the secular mind and the Muslim mind collides with the atonement.

I added an application to Roman Catholicism, becuase of rejection of penal substitionary atonement and other RCs I have debated with who use Proverbs 17:15 as against penal substitutionary atonement.

Ken said...

Guy,
See my second comment, where I include 1 John 2:2 - "And He is the propitiation of our sins, and not for ours only, but for the sins of the whole world."

Revelation 5:9 and 7:9 explains that - that some people from every nation, language, people group, and tribe have been purchased (Rev. 5:9 - "You were slain and did purchase/redeem" = Aorist past tense) by the blood of the lamb. )

Rev. 7:9 and 7:14 - they are clothed in white robes, washed in the blood of the lamb. This shows imputation of Christ's righteousness being counted/imputed to them by their faith in Christ and His atonement. Romans 3:24-25 - "through faith, justified by the atonement/propitiation in His blood"

Ken said...

Zipper - I appreciate what you said; good spirit and attitude with our debate opponents.

guy fawkes said...

Ken, ( and Zipper )

Just because Catholics don't agree with PS should not lead one to think Catholics don't think sin was addressed on Calvary. Remember, PS is just a twist on St.Anselm's Satisfaction theory.

We do indeed need to look at just what constitutes sacrifice as PS is not sacrifice. Nor is it even satisfaction. Rather it is simply punishment, even if vicarious punishment.

In the OT, the destruction of the gift offering was mainly to render it unusable by the donor. In the case of animals, the animal had to die only in order to extract the life giving blood which was then sprinkled on the altar and people alike to show that God and man now were restored to a familial relationship.
At no time was the animal killed in the stead of the human. Nor were sins transferred to the animal victim. In the case of the scapegoat, it was not the sacrificial victim. Rather, the other, "innocent" goat was.

If someone could not afford an animal, a bag of flour could be substituted. This shows that death was not necessary for sacrifice.

One should also recall that the priest did not slay the victim. A Levite would immolate the victim and only then would the oblation be presented to God by the priest.

We speak of the sacrifice of Isaac or the sacrifice of Abraham although Abraham did not really slay Isaac. It was the inner disposition of Abraham and Isaac that God found pleasing, not death.

Adam's disobedience was more than repaired by the New Adam's obedience. ( We won't digress to the roles played by Eve/New Eve right now ).
One tear or drop of blood shed at the circumcision would have been sufficient to atone for all the sins of the world.

We must never posit necessity to God. God could have accepted far less than every drop of Christ's blood as the ransom price. It is important to also recall that Christ's sacrifice did not move the father to love us. It was because God already loved us that He chose the price He chose.

But now I am getting away from PS.

PS makes for some major Trinitarian problems. Calvin's view that said Christ suffered separation from God and went to hell is in no way compatible with sound Christology nor with the OT sacrificial system.

Yes, I am aware of how Calvinists interpret the passages that say Christ died for all men. Still, the fact that the Second person of the Trinity assumed the same human nature all men share should be proof enough He also died to save all who share that common human nature that fell in Adam. Remember, Christ came to restore what was lost in Adam and not just to atone for our personal sins.

guy fawkes said...

Ken,
This piece by Nick currently running over on Creed Code Cult should answer the business of the putting on/imputation of Christ.

http://www.creedcodecult.com/clothed-in-christ/

Ken said...

Guy,
We talked about Penal Substitutionary Atonement before as it relates to Leviticus 5, 16, Isaiah 53 and NT texts that say "Christ bore / carried our sin"

Leviticus 5 and 16 are further developed in Isaiah 53, so that the suffering servant's atonement is the combination of being a guilt offering that is slaughtered (Isaiah 53:8-10) and the scapegoat of having the sins confessed over and laid onto him - Isaiah 53:6 - "the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him".

And several NT texts say "Christ bore our sins" = bore them in His body on the tree - 1 Peter 2:24 - combines the carryingn away of Lev. 16 - transfered sins to Him, and slaughtered (for Thou was slain and did purchase for God by Your blood" - Rev. 5:9, etc.)