“To Fulfill All Righteousness”: The Saving Merit Of Christ’s Obedience -- By: Richard W. Daniels

Journal: Puritan Reformed Journal
Volume: PRJ 05:2 (Jul 2013)
Article: “To Fulfill All Righteousness”: The Saving Merit Of Christ’s Obedience
Author: Richard W. Daniels

“To Fulfill All Righteousness”:
The Saving Merit Of Christ’s Obedience

Richard W. Daniels

To make things as simple as possible in introducing the topic of this article, we will ask a question not altogether unlike that posed by the Philippian jailor who asked Paul, “What must I do to be saved?” “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” was the apostle’s straightforward answer to this simple question (Acts 16:30-31). Why? Because faith in Christ—which is really a believing into Christ, a closing with Christ, so as to know a union with Him—results in the reception of all things necessary unto salvation. Christ Himself is made by God to be unto us “wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption,” and we “are complete in him” (1 Cor. 1:30; Col. 2:10).

We need have no doubt concerning this in light of the massive case made for it in the book of Romans. The glory of the gospel is that it demonstrates how God has been just in the justification of those who “have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). The sinner is justified—that is, accounted as righteous, judicially declared righteous so that he is subsequently treated as righteous in the presence of the just and perfect Judge of all men, whose law stops every mouth (Rom. 3). This justification is a decree freely made apart from the law to one who does not work and who is not foreseen to be working, indeed, to one who is, as a matter of fact, ungodly (Rom. 4), yet it does not nullify the law but establishes it (Rom. 3:31). Moreover, this decree of justification is perfect and final, there being nothing admitted between it and the state of being at peace with God, in which the believer rejoices in a sure and certain hope of the glory of God (Rom. 5:1-11). The reason for this is that he has been united with Christ, so that what has been true of Christ in relation to the law, as being once under it and subsequently free of it, has happened to the believer, rendering him also dead to the power of sin (Rom. 5:11-7:6).

As a result of this union with Christ, the sinner has also become the recipient of the Holy Spirit, who dwells in him as a seal, not only guaranteeing the future possession of this glory, but operating unfailingly to bring him at last to a state of entire sp...

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