Crooked Finger (crookedfingers) wrote,
Crooked Finger

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the life of faith

"LIII. The seventh practice concerns the use of faith, for which reason it is said that faith is at work (Gal.5:6), and that we walk by faith (2 Cor.5:7), and also live by faith (Heb.2:4; Rom.1:17; Gal.3:11; Heb. 10:38): "The life I live, I live by faith in the Son of God" (Gal.2:20). In general, this means to us nothing else than this: having received God and the Mediator, committing our whole self to them, depending on them in all necessities, and in return giving them our whole self, with all that is ours. In specific, it involves three acts, one essential act-receiving God and the Mediator, on which we spoke expressly above-and then two subsequent acts, namely, first confident dependence, and next obedient submission. (1) In dependence, in any misfortune or difficulty, whether spiritual or temporal, and especially either in an uncertain circumstance, when we lack all the supports of our trust, we walk not by sight but by faith (2 Cor.5:7). That is, we perceive clearly our own need and impotence (Luke 15:16-17), we go out of ourselves, as it were (Heb.13:13), being persuaded of the all-sufficiency, goodness, and faithfulness of God and the Savior (Phi. 4:12-13; Rom. 8:36-37). We await his help (Rom. 7:24-25) with patience, resting on (a) his all-sufficiency (Gen.17:1), by which he is a buckler and a shield (Ps. 84:11);(b) his goodness (Ex. 34:6-7), by which he who did not spare his own Son will with him graciously give us all things (Rom. 8:32); and (c) his truthfulness and faithfulness in his promises (Rom. 4:19-20; 2 Tim. 2:13).

On the other hand, (2) in obedient submission, faith lives by (a) obedience (Rom. 1:5), by which we show our faith in works (James 2:18), we walk by faith (2 Cor.5:7), not by our own impulse but by the divine command (Deut.12:32), nor by our own strength, but in the power of God (1 Cor. 15:10; Gal.2:20), urged on not by worldly desire, but by the divine promises (2 Cor. 7:1). And (b) the merit of Christ, in which all faith's works are dyed, so to speak, that they may please God (Heb. 11:6; Rom. 14:23; Heb. 10:22), and thus by a more certain faith they speed toward God." pg. 39 Petrus Van Mastricht 'Theoretical-Practical Theology-Faith in the Triune God' Volume 2

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