Thursday, September 10, 2020
Transactional faith? Not rich enough!
But here we run into an obstacle. Not only is pistis capable of a richer definition, but the transactional idea of the Christ’s righteousness being imputed to us so that it covers our unclean sins is nowhere to be found in Scripture. There are passages that urge the Christian to “put on the Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom. 13:14) or that affirm that “as many of you as were baptized into the Messiah have put on the Messiah” (Gal. 3:27) and so forth. Meanwhile, there are texts that speak of God counting or reckoning righteousness on the basis of pistis (e.g., Rom. 4:5, 9-11). One passage speaks of the Messiah as having become “wisdom for us from God, and also our righteousness, holiness, and redemption” (1 Cor. 1:30), but the context does not pertain to legal declaration. Finally, several of the passages reviewed above speak of our genuine sharing in the righteousness of God as that righteousness has been manifested or made available through and in the Christ (e.g., 2 Cor. 5:21; Phil. 3:8—9). But these various images are not combined.—Matthew Bates in Salvation by Allegiance Alone, 182–83 (emphasis original)