17 October 2011

The Macro-Significance of Union with Christ

John Calvin:
We must understand that as long as Christ remains outside of us, and we are separated from him, all that he has suffered and done for the salvation of the human race remains useless. (Institutes, 3.1.1.)
Jonathan Edwards:
The Scripture is very plain and evident in this, that those that are in Christ are actually in a state of salvation, and are justified, sanctified, accepted of Christ, and shall be saved. . . . But those that are not in Christ, are not united to Him, can have no degree of communion with Him. For there is no communion without union. The members can have no communion with the head or participation of its life and health unless they are united to it. (A Treatise on Grace)
Adolf Schlatter:
[T]he spiritual process occurring in us through faith can never by itself provide the grounds for God’s justifying verdict. It can do so only because it establishes our union with Christ. The believer’s righteous status is based on the placing of his confidence in Christ. Because he has been laid hold of by Christ and clings to him and has been made his possession, the believer is justified. (Theology of the Apostles, 235)

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