Review of By Faith, Not by Sight

2012/09/25

By Faith, Not by Sight: Paul and the Order of SalvationBy Faith, Not by Sight: Paul and the Order of Salvation by Richard B. Gaffin Jr.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Gaffin has produced a fine study of Paul’s thought, showing how the tensions between the already/the not-yet and this-age/the-age-to-come are integral to Paul’s teaching on salvation. By unpacking texts such as II Corinthians 4:16 and Colossians 3:1-4, Gaffin explains how sanctification and justification come into their full Biblical light when seen in what Christ has done and what He will do for us, even until He comes again. Basically, Gaffin brings out the significance of Christ’s resurrection for justification and sanctification, brilliantly holding historia salutis and ordo salutis together. The integration of systematic theology and biblical studies set out in By Faith, Not by Sight is not only impressive in itself. It is a model for how to benefit from two disciplines in concert that are often pitted against each other. Probably no part of the book better illustrates this than the forth chapter, in which Gaffin makes a stunning proposal regarding the difficult issue of the relation of justification by faith and the judgement according to works at the Last Day. Gaffin guides the reader through the shoals with wisdom, boldly taking on the matter of a future aspect of justification without foundering on a legalistic recasting of individual justification. Excellent!

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