Contend Earnestly: Five Solas of the Reformation - Solus Christus - Part II

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Five Solas of the Reformation - Solus Christus - Part II

Christ Alone is our Mediator

As the Roman Catholic faith would agree in principal to our first point we must push the envelope, per se, to further this thought of Solus Christus that states that Christ alone is our Mediator between God and man. We further assert that He alone is our Mediator and not a pope, not a priest, not Mary, not a saint, not a sacrament and not a mass.

So what is a mediator? We see this usage in 1 Tim 2:5

For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,

This word “mediator” means one who intervenes between two, either in order to make or restore peace and friendship, or form a compact, or for ratifying a covenant. In the Hellenistic period it meant “the neutral whom both parties could trust and who also guarantees agreement” So in reality to us, Christ is the one whom both God and man can put full trust in, to settle the disagreement. Which is that there is wrath due upon us for our sin and, because of Christ, that debt is paid by the imputation of His righteousness.

Again, there is only one mediator between us and God. Before Christ we were separated from God, said to be enemies of God, God haters and said that without Him that our foot would slip in due time in Deut 32:35.

for through Him we both have our access in one Spirit to the Father.
Ephesians 2:18

This Greek word “through” means “because of or on account of” and the word “access” means, when pertaining to God: that relationship with God whereby we are acceptable to him and have assurance that he is favourably disposed towards him.

Not only is Jesus Christ our only way of access and our only Mediator but is said to be our only Advocate with the Father. Let’s go through these verses then expound:

by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh
Heb 10:20

My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous;
1 John 2:1

Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us.
Romans 8:33,34

Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.
Hebrews 7:25

What is amazing about Jesus Christ is that not only did He die for us and is our only way to God but He also is the One that intercedes on our behalf.

So what is this Advocate and intercessor on our behalf?

Advocate: (Parakletos) (also used of the Holy Spirit) summoned, called to one’s side, esp. called to one’s aid. A one who pleads another’s cause before a judge, a pleader, counsel for defense, legal assistant, an advocate. B one who pleads another’s cause with one, an intercessor. of Christ in his exaltation at God’s right hand, pleading with God the Father for the pardon of our sins. in the widest sense, a helper, succourer, aider, assistant. of the Holy Spirit destined to take the place of Christ with the apostles (after his ascension to the Father), to lead them to a deeper knowledge of the gospel truth, and give them divine strength needed to enable them to undergo trials and persecutions on behalf of the divine kingdom. (Strongs)

Because of these truths in the Bible the reformers realized that going to a priest or to ask a saint or the virgin Mary to intercede for them on their behalf, was a slap in the face to the Lord Jesus Christ. It was saying that Christ could not do His job correctly and that we don’t have access to the Father through Christ but that we need another advocate or another to intercede. If this is true, why ask in Jesus name? Why ask anything in Christ’s name if it isn’t sufficient? Revelation 1 and 1 Peter 2 both call us priests ourselves, the saints. If this is true then we have direct access to our High Priest, Jesus Christ, who lives to make intercession for us.

Christ Alone is to be Glorified

As we take a look at this we must understand where we come to here and is something that is changing in our culture and was not ultimately understood fully by the reformers. It really started with the Great Awakening of Lordship Salvation, with the false ways of evangelism that was started with Charles Finney and then countered biblically with Asahel Nettleton in the early 19th century. It is now coming down the road with popular evangelistic tools like Campus Crusade for Christ, the name it and claim it gospel with Benny Hinn, and all of TBN, and also The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren. These all center on, “God has a wonderful plan for your life”

These all drive to self esteem and the improvement of life instead of what we are called to do in our lives for Christ: Surrender to Christ and deny ourselves

We used to use the word surrender all the time in the English language. It means to “
give into the hands of another to be used for their purpose and power”

Instead most, now, use the word, “commit.” Commit your lives to Christ, commit your ways to Him. This word was not even apart of the English language before the 19th century.

But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.
Romans 6:17,18

It is said that when a new word is used it replaces another in the language. Anyone want to guess what word “commit” replaced? Surrender.

In our text of Romans 6:17 the word that is used is committed, the actual Greek word that is used is the word surrender.

We are called to surrender to Christ, He is our Lord, we are His slaves. We are called to be humble, which means to lower one’s self to abasement or to a low esteem. We are called to deny ourselves, Paul said that it is not he who lives but Christ who lives in me. What happens when you commit to something? You can commit to a job, a diet and so on. What happens when you surrender in a war? The difference between surrendering and committing to Christ is the difference that commitment can be negated where surrendering cannot.

We are not called to a wonderful plan or a high self esteem that the world would think of, but we are called to a life that is spiritually wonderful and spiritually high in Christ’s esteem not our own.

And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.
Mark 8:34,35

Solus Christus denies this gospel of the “you gospel” and turns that on its head and says like Isaiah did, “Here am I, send me

The only time that you will understand God’s love for you, and understand the grace and mercy that He bestowed on you is when you understand how filthy and sinful you are with absolutely no hope without Christ. Once you understand this, how low and that you are like Paul said, “the chief of sinners” only then, can you start to comprehend the love of Christ.

It is not a “me gospel” but a “because of Him gospel” We will be hated, persecuted, spit upon, killed, hurt and despised, but all for the cause of Christ and the hope and assurance of Christ’s voice, “Well done good and faithful servant

When we see that the whole sum of our salvation, and every single part of it, are comprehended in Christ, we must beware of deriving even the minutes portion of it from any other quarter. If we seek salvation, we are taught by the very name of Jesus that he possesses it;270 if we seek any other gifts of the Spirit, we shall find them in his unction; strength in his government; purity in his conception; indulgence in his nativity, in which he was made like us in all respects, in order that he might learn to sympathise with us: if we seek redemption, we shall find it in his passion; acquittal in his condemnation; remission of the curse in his cross; satisfaction in his sacrifice; purification in his blood; reconciliation in his descent to hell; mortification of the flesh in his tomb; newness of life in his resurrection; immortality also in his resurrection; the inheritance of a celestial kingdom in his entrance into heaven; protection, security, and the abundant supply of all blessings, in his kingdom; secure anticipation of judgment in the power of judging committed to him. In fine, since in him all kinds of blessings are treasured up, let us draw a full supply from him, and none from any other quarter. Those who, not satisfied with him alone, entertain various hopes from others, though they may continue to look to him chiefly, deviate from the right path by the simple fact, that some portion of their thought takes a different direction. No distrust of this description can arise when once the abundance of his blessings is properly known.
Institutes of the Christian Religion – John Calvin


Anonymous said...

very good. You may have seen it already, but I came across a blog pointing to the Household Saints Kit. I blogged about a couple of days ago here.

Seth McBee said...

What do I say to that? amazing...

I also saw on James White's site on one of the video debates that a Catholic he was debating admitted, after being asked by a fellow priest, that you can literally buy your way into heaven.

James White simply asked, "Then why did Christ die?"

Seth McBee said...

good thoughts josh...

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