Are you a legalist or an antinomian? Most people would claim they are neither. But many Christians don’t know what to do with God’s law. Jon and Justin talk about the law and the gospel–and how it is Paul could say he delighted in God’s law.
Members’ Podcast: Jon and Justin talk about why it is that so many people leave legalism and head into antinomianism. They also give counsel to those leaving legalism and are wanting to help others do the same.
Justin Perdue: Hi, this is Justin. Are you a legalist or an antinomian? Most people would say they’re neither one, but there is clearly a problem in the church in terms of knowing what to do with God’s law. We’re going to talk about the law and the gospel today, and seek to answer how in the world could Paul say that he delights in the law of God in his inner man? We hope this is encouraging. We hope it’s helpful. Stay tuned.
We have observed that there is a problem in the evangelical church, broadly speaking, with respect to God’s law. At one point, Jon and I absolutely have been here ourselves in the midst of this struggle. It’s only by God’s grace through other people who have helped us see some good things that we are no longer where we once were on this. It’s not that we’ve got it all figured out, but praise God we’re not where we used to be.
There’s this problem in evangelicalism with respect to God’s law. We just don’t know what to do with it. What do we do with God’s law? You see some people on the one side of the equation who are bent towards self-righteousness, who have a reasonable amount of confidence in themselves that they can do the right things, or maybe they’re the kind of people that just tend to do the right stuff often anyway. Those people look to God’s law and don’t have a lot of problem with it because they have deluded themselves somehow into thinking that they can keep it, that they can meet God’s standard or do well enough, that God would look favorably upon them.
Then on the other side of the aisle, you have people who have a more tender conscience, perhaps are aware, in some ways, of their own weakness and they’re in frailty. They look at God’s law and see something that is threatening and condemning, and thereby, deep down, there’s a resentment and a hatred even of God’s law and even of God Himself, because they fear that He’s going to drop the hammer on them at some point.
You’ve got these two camps; one might be referred to as a more legalistic camp that is often characterized by self-righteousness and condescension and the like, and thinking that they can do enough to earn righteousness or be considered righteous in the eyes of God. Then this other side that we might call the antinomian camp, who are comprised of people that have a more tender conscience, that see God’s law as threatening, and thereby hate God and His commandments. There don’t seem to be too many people in between who have a right and biblical understanding of God, His law and His commandments, what He requires of us.
For example, we read the words of Paul in Romans 7. Jon, you may not want to talk about this just yet but I’m just going to go and drop this bomb, set the grenade on the table, and pull the pin. We read the words of Paul in Romans 7:22, that he delights in the law of God in his inner man. Some people might read that and be incredibly puzzled by it, in terms of how a person could say such a thing. Other people might read that and just assume that maybe even a non-Christian could say that, because you hear some people say that Romans 7 is about Paul in an unregenerate state, which we don’t agree with and we’ll explain why.
Jon Moffitt: One of the things that I feel like we have to clarify as new people keep coming to the podcast, and even people that have been here for a while, is that there are categories that people throw around that don’t match up with the theological teachings of the Bible. For years, we have been told that we have an improper view of the law, that we are antinomians…
Justin Perdue: Anti nomos meaning against the law.
Jon Moffitt: One of the things that we want to do in this podcast is clarify the difference between those who are against the law and those who love the law, and then those who are inappropriately using the law, which would be legalists.
Justin Perdue: Those who hate the law, who are against it are antinomians. Those who are, in a 1 Timothy 1 kind of way, not using the law lawfully, that is the legalists. Then there’s something in between, where Paul is, we would argue in Romans 7, where he is a believer who understands that he’s a sinner, but he can still say he delights in God’s law. How is that possible?
Jon Moffitt: One of the things that we probably should start with is a clear definition of what the law is. Then we can identify how people fall off on either side, whether it’s an antinomian or legalism. Why don’t you start with the definition of the law and then I’ll talk about how one can fall off into antinomianism, with misunderstanding the law?
Justin Perdue: What I’m about to articulate is really an answer to what the law is for. If you were really pressed to give one answer—obviously there are multiple things that allow for it, but at its most primary basic level: why did God give the law? We would find the answer to that question most pointedly in Romans 5 and Galatians 3, where the apostle Paul makes it very clear that the law was given to increase the trespass of man. The law was given to, in other words, show us the depth of our corruption, to show us the extent of our sinfulness before the Lord, and to thereby drive us outside of ourselves, to the only hope that we could ever have for salvation, namely, God’s Christ Jesus, who did everything that we need in order to be reconciled to God.
As we understand the law rightly—that it was given to increase the trespass, to show us the depth of our sin, and to drive us to Christ—we see in the Lord Jesus Christ, in God’s gospel, the fact that Christ did multiple things for us. He died the death that we deserve because lawbreakers deserve to die. Jesus died a law breaker’s death, and in him, we died to the law—Galatians 2. His death is counted to us. The penalty we deserve, he took for us. The wrath and the condemnation and the judgment we deserve, he took upon himself for us. He fulfilled the penalties of the law in the place of those who trust in him.
Jon Moffitt: Even in God’s sovereignty, in the narrative, Jesus died as a law breaker to Rome as an insurrectionist. He took the place of Barabbas, just to make it as clear as possible.
Justin Perdue: He became a curse for us. He was hung on a tree; cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree. All of these things, Christ did for us so that he could pay the penalty the law requires of every lawbreaker. Not only did Christ do that, he also accomplished everything that we need with respect to the law by fulfilling it for us. Jesus has a perfect record of obedience at the level of his thoughts, his desires, his deeds, his motivation; everything was always perfect in his earthly life. In doing that, he fulfilled the law in a flawless manner. Our record is trash, his record is perfect, and we get his obedience and righteousness counted to us.
A right understanding of the law and the gospel is critical for the Christian life, wholesale, if we’re going to be able to make up and down, and heads and tails of stuff. If we’re ever going to think of God’s law rightly, you’ve got to think of it in these terms.
Talk about how people fall off one side of the other because they don’t understand some of what we’re talking about.
Jon Moffitt: One of the things that happens is that when you start emphasizing the gospel, and you start preaching by grace alone, through Christ alone, there’s no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, immediately people begin to get a little nervous if you don’t emphasize back into that gospel the law. They throw at you, “Hey, be careful, you’re becoming an antinomian.” What their fear is this: “If you’re saying it’s all by grace, and there’s no work necessary, then you are saying that holiness is not necessary.” Then they’ll say if you’re teaching, that you’re an antinomian.
Let’s be clear, historically, on what an antinomian is. An antinomian is one who literally says they do not believe that there is any law or use of the law for the Christian after coming to Christ; there is no need for the law whatsoever. They don’t think it’s necessary to obey any of the commands of Scripture. There’s no moral law. Nothing. They walk by faith and there’s no need to obey. That is a true antinomian. I will agree with that if we’re talking about one’s justification. If we’re talking about your justification, then the law has no use in your justification other than to show you your need for it.
Justin Perdue: To show you your need for Christ.
Jon Moffitt: An antinomian unfortunately says it’s not for your justification, but it’s also not for your Christian walk going forward. That’s a true antinomian. We would have to come in and say that Paul, James, Timothy, and 2 Peter all make it very clear that post-salvation, when Paul says in Ephesians to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, he then describes meekness, patience, gentleness, and love.
Those are commands. Those are laws given to the believer, what we call the third use of the law.
Justin Perdue: Romans 13: love your neighbor, love one another, and thereby fulfill the law.
Jon Moffitt: But those are not part of our justification. We call that the work of the Spirit. We call that the fruit of the Spirit. So the Spirit works within us and therefore we love. When we emphasize justification by faith alone, we literally mean by faith alone.
The danger is immediately people come in and say faith without works is dead. There’s this necessity to always throw that on there. That is where I would say one is falling off on the other side, which is legalism. I know this could sound like a really nuanced conversation, but it’s important for us to understand that when someone says antinomian, you need to understand they mean there is absolutely no obedience and no law for the believer post-salvation. That’s what it truly, really means to be an antinomian. We have to keep that clear.
I love the Martin Lloyd-Jones quote, when he says if you aren’t being accused of being an antinomian after preaching the gospel, you haven’t preached the gospel rightly, because there is no law in the gospel there. Let me say it again. There is no law in the gospel. This is why we talk about law-gospel distinction.
Justin Perdue: We need to understand that these two camps, as we’re describing them—one being the antinomian camp, one being the legalistic camp—just to describe them a little bit more before we pivot here, the antinomian is a person who understands something of God’s holiness, understands something of the requirements of the law, and thereby sees that he or she can’t quite do that. There is this threatening judgment, this exacting thing going on with the law., And that person has not rightly understood the work of Christ in his or her place, and thereby has this disdain deep down in his or her heart for the law, and thereby is running away from it as fast as he or she can. That is the project of antinomianism; it’s to plug our ears, scream at the top of our lungs, and run away from the law because deep down we hate it. That’s that side. But then on the legalistic side, you have people who actually, though they love to talk about holiness and obedience and all these things, they have not understood the holiness of God because they don’t understand what he actually requires and how everything that they have ever done is tainted with sin. They have dumbed down the law to a level of thinking that they can fulfill it and keep it, and so they have lacked understanding as well, and have also not seen the gospel in terms of the work of Christ in their place.
Neither of those places is where we want to be. What we see presented in Scripture is something different, where it is very clear that Christ has accomplished everything that is necessary for us to be saved, he has paid our debt, paid our penalty, accomplished our righteousness, given us his own holiness. We are safe and we are secure.
We can then say we love God’s law. What in the world does that mean? What in the world does that look like? For example, in Romans 7:22, Paul says that he delights in the law of God in his inner man. A couple of thoughts on this from me: there are people out there who will say that Roman 7 is Paul writing about his unregenerate state or about a non-believer with this whole situation wanting to do good but can’t; not wanting to do evil, but you do evil; whenever you want to do good, evil lies close at hand; having a desire to do what’s right but can’t pull it off; you delight in the law of God in your inner man, but you see in your members another law waging war against your mind.
When Paul writes in those ways, people will say he’s talking about somebody who isn’t a Christian, to which I would say that’s clearly not true on multiple levels. Look at the flow of the letter, first of all. Another observation is, how does a person who naturally is opposed to God and doesn’t delight in the things of God, doesn’t even understand the things of God naturally, 1 Corinthians 2, how could such a person delight in God’s law? I don’t think it’s possible.
Second observation, which is more relevant to our conversation today, only a person who has been justified, forgiven, and absolved could ever make such a statement that they delight in God’s law. Why? Because unless you know that you’ve been declared righteous, unless you know that you’ve been forgiven of sin, and unless you know that you have been absolved of all guilt because of Christ alone, by the means of faith alone, you could never say that you delight in God’s law because God’s law condemns you, and God’s law threatens you, and God is still your judge. Thereby, unless you know that you’ve been justified, forgiven, and absolved, you’re going to hate God’s law and you’re going to hate him, frankly. Paul clearly, in Roman 7, is writing as a believer who understands his position, his identity, he knows he’s justified—that’s his status; Romans 5—he knows his identity, he’s united to Christ; Romans 6. Yet here’s his experience, but he can say he delights in God’s law because he knows that he’s justified, forgiven and absolved of guilt.
Jon Moffitt: We have to say the law is rejected. Rightly understood. There are many people today who will change the law of God. They will change the law of God and they will say things like, “I think God just requires people to be a good person, then God will let them come into heaven.” They just change the requirements of the law, and they like that law. “A good person? I’m better than most.” We change the law.
The weight of the law should crush everyone, absolutely crush them. When someone says they know what God requires, and it doesn’t crush them as an unbeliever, then that’s not God’s law; that’s your law. That’s your misinterpretation of God’s law. Someone should hear it as an unbeliever and go, “That’s ridiculous. No one can do that.” Now you understand God’s law. “Well, then I don’t like God.” Exactly. Then you are redeemed, pulled out from underneath the weight of the law, and all of a sudden you look down at the law from God’s view—not underneath the weight of it, but looking down upon it—and you’re say, “Wow, this is beautiful. This is glorious. This is the nature of God. This is what God looks like within a broken humanity.” This is the perspective we should have.
Justin Perdue: The law in its threatening first use sense is characterized by statements such as this: you must be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect; if you break the law in any way, you’re guilty of breaking all of it—James 2; if your works are going to contribute to your salvation, then you need to keep the whole law—Galatians 5; those who do these things shall live by them—Leviticus 18:5; Deuteronomy 27:26—anybody who does not keep everything that’s written in this law is cursed. This is how the law speaks.
To your point, Jon, if we understand that rightly in terms of what the Lord requires—and Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount makes it very clear that it’s not just some external conformity, it’s actually at the level of the heart and the mind—then yes, we read that and we hear that and we say we hate that because that because that is our death sentence. I’m ruined. What can I do? At that point, you are ready to hear the gospel, because then the message of the gospel is this: everything that the law is pointing out, that weight that’s impossible for you to bear, Christ took that; he bore that. He said, “You know what? That burden that you can’t bear? I’m happy to take that. I’ll carry it for you. I will pay your penalty because you deserve it. And I will accomplish your righteousness because you need it. Trust me. It’s done. You’re safe. You’re secure. You’ll live with God forever. You will be bodily resurrected. Imperishable. Incorruptible. You will forever obey God perfectly and rejoice in him perfectly, and I have secured that for you.” To which we say, hallelujah! Praise the Lord. Right. That’s the law and the gospel distinction that we’re talking about.
It’s so clear, biblically, that that conversion—coming from death to life, etc.—has to happen for a person to ever be able to say that they delight in God’s law. For example, consider the patterns of some of the words in the Psalms: Psalm 130:4 reads this way: “But with you,” speaking of God, “there is forgiveness, that you may be feared.” Listen to that sequence. With the Lord, there is forgiveness of sins, and the fact that the Lord forgives sins—think Exodus 34, He’s a God merciful, gracious, and slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and sin. Because that’s who God is, that actually leads his people to reverence Him, to fear Him, and to love Him.
Psalm 119:32 says that we will run after God’s commandments when God has enlarged our heart. When He has done something internally for me, I will run after His commandments. It’s exactly what Paul was saying in Romans 7 that because he knows he’s safe, and because he has been justified, forgiven, and absolved, he can now look to God’s law and say he delights in it. It’s good. It’s wonderful. Why? Because it no longer condemns him. It no longer threatens him because Christ has removed its sting, and now he can look to it as the perfect, holy, righteous, all good guide for his life. In other words, this allows us to then look at the law and use it in the third use kind of way: as the perfect guide for the life of the Christian.
Jon Moffitt: The other side of this, and this is where there’s a confusion between law and gospel, the antinomian pretty much rejects the law after justification, the legalist confuses the law and the gospel and collapses them together. You have one abandoning law and you have one mixing the law. It’s really important to understand this because, again, antinomian is one to reject the law after justice. There’s no use for it and they hate it. The legalist then mixes law and the gospel.
Here’s a great example of this: yes, we are saved by faith alone, and they will preach that from the mountain tops, but they will call your salvation or your assurance into question based upon your level of obedience to the law. It’s highly confusing because they will say, “Sola fide. Faith alone.” But then they say you have to do this, this, and this, which is law. Anytime you say you must do something, this is law, in order to do an order for this result, which is your assurance, that’s a mixture of the law and gospel.
Please be very clear on what we’re saying: Christians are called to obey. It is actually not a call, it’s a promise: those to whom the spirit indwells, there will be obedience. To what level is varying; it’s a varying level. There’ll also be struggle against sin. I love saying this because it throws people off: God expects you to sin. Otherwise, 1 John 1:9 would not be in the Bible.
Justin Perdue: James 5:16: confess your sins to one another.
Jon Moffitt: This is how to identify if you’re a legalist: if you are seeing that there are absolute requirements for you to perform in a certain way, basically you were to lose your justification or you do not have justification… There are two kinds of legalists: there are those who use the law to gain salvation, and there’s those who use the law to maintain salvation. There’s probably no one listening to this podcast, unless you maybe come from a Roman Catholic background, who is using the law to try and gain justification, your salvation. But there are plenty of people who use the law to try and affirm it or maintain it.
Justin, what are your thoughts on that explanation of legalism?
Justin Perdue: I agree with you. I have something else in my mind that’s related to something you were saying even about antinomianism.
At the heart of antinomianism too—and this is just my thought and observation here—is a lack of understanding and is a misunderstanding even of the gospel and what Christ has accomplished for us. I get this mainly from Romans 5 and 6. A lot of times people think that the antidote to antinomianism, being against the law, is to preach the law—and I don’t think that’s right. I think that the antidote to antinomianism is actually to preach the gospel and to clarify who we are now in the Lord Jesus Christ. It’s all about identity. That’s how Paul responds. He realizes that the gospel that he has laid out in the first several chapters of Romans would lead a person to ask the question, “So, we can just sin now, right? Because not only has Jesus accomplished all these things for us, that the righteousness of God has revealed apart from the law, for all those who have faith in Christ and in God justifies the ungodly by faith. Not only is all that true, you just said that the law came in to increase the trespass, but we’re sin-abounded, grace-abounded all the more. So, should we just sin?” Paul answers by no means. He doesn’t say, “By no means because here’s what the law says.” He says, “By no means because here’s who you are now: you have been united to the Lord Jesus Christ; you’ve been baptized into him. This is what your baptism was about. You’ve been united to him in his death. You in him, you died to the law. His death is your death. You’ve been united to him and his perfect life, and in his resurrection. This not only secures your resurrection, but means that even now, you are raised to walk in newness of life, and you are no longer under the dominion of sin, and you’ve become obedient from the heart. In other words, obey because you can. Obey because you want to, for the first time in your life. Remember who you are now; you’re not who you used to be.” That’s his response. So I think that antinomian out there who is running as fast as he can away from the law, because he hates it, has not fully understood the work of Christ in his place, and has not fully understood his new identity, and who he is, and that he’s not who he used to be.
1 Corinthians 1:30, that Jesus has become to us wisdom from God, he is our righteousness, he is sanctification and redemption for us, he’s secured everything, he’s everything. It’s in understanding that where we can actually look at the commandments of God and say those are good; they’re not a burden.
Jon Moffitt: He who began a good work in you will complete it. You’re realizing that’s a wonderful promise.
Justin Perdue: It is a wonderful promise. The commandments are good because we can look to them and they no longer come across like a trip to the DMV, or they no longer come across like I’ve just been sentenced to the electric chair. They come across now as being good for me. This is actually the way that I want to live now, and this is how I’m called to live because of Christ and what he did for me. Now I am going to love my brothers and sisters, and aim to orient my life in such a way that I’m good for them. Then God, of course, gets the glory for that. I look at the commands and they’re good. This is how we can understand the third use of the law, and it’s not threatening in any way. As Calvin has said a long time before us, he calls the law our kind adviser in Christ.
I think when the apostle Paul says in 1 Timothy 1, that we uphold the law as long as it’s used lawfully, I think he’s got all of this in mind; that we use the law lawfully in its first use, we preach it and all of its holiness to drive sinners to Christ, and then we uphold it in the Lord Jesus because it’s no longer a threat to us, and we see it as good and not a burden.
Jon Moffitt: I’m going to walk through the three intentions of how one understands the law, to summarize what Justin just said. The antinomian says no obedience is necessary and that’s out of flat out ignorance. They’re like, “No obedience. Do whatever you want. God’s grace has got you covered.”
Justin Perdue: “Just love Jesus and you’re good.”
Jon Moffitt: Right. Paul says may it never be. Very clearly, he says, may that not be your attitude. Second attitude, legalism requires obedience out of fear of loss. You best obey or you will lose something; whether it be God’s affection, your assurance—it could be a number of things. The legalist sees the requirements to obedience out of fear. The way the New Testament describes obedience to the believer is out of response to their justification and love.
Here’s a great example of this: we read this passage all the time, but I think it’s helpful. 2 Peter gets done talking about love, mercy, kindness, dignity, holiness, and affection toward your brother. If you’re not doing this, he says in 2 Peter 1:9, “For whoever lacks these qualities is so near-sighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.” Peter says your lack of obedience is your forgetfulness of your justification. You’ve been set free. You are cleansed. This is no longer who you are. He’s pointing to your affections for Christ. 2 Corinthians 3: when we look at the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ, you’re transformed into His image. We look at the beauty of Jesus; that’s our motivation to love our brother, to obey God’s law.
When I was in the independent fundamental Baptist world, I didn’t fully understand what the law was. Sometimes when people hear us say law, they’re thinking ceremonial law, they’re thinking Old Testament law. What we mean are the moral commands given to the New Testament church like patience, meekness, mercy, loving, longsuffering, etc. These are the commands that we are referencing to, which are the things that horizontally, you do to your brother. Love God, love your neighbor.
Justin Perdue: When we talk about the law, we’re not talking about the ceremonial law, or the civil law that governed the nation of Israel—Jesus has fulfilled all that, and they’ve been abrogated in him. What we are referring to is God’s moral law, that it could also be called the law of creation that God wrote into creation when he made the world. This is why Paul will use language like in Romans 5 of how death reigned from Adam to Moses even though the law had not been given, because all the giving of the law to Moses is the writing down of the moral law on tablets of stone. It already existed. The moral law transcends any kind of redemptive-historical epoch in that way. So we uphold the moral law, even the Decalogue, the 10 Commandments, as a guide for life. That’s what we mean: the imperatives in the New Testament and also God’s moral law that transcends, and those imperatives in the New Testament are really just an unpacking and a reflection of that moral law. I think there’s a lot of confusion out there as to what we even mean when we say law,
Jon Moffitt: For those of you that might be new to this, in our tagline, we say, “From a Reformed perspective”. Some of you might be saying, “I’ve never heard it explained this way before. This is so new. Where are you guys getting this?” We believe it’s very biblical, but the way in which it was brought to us to help us see this clearly is from men that have been defending God’s word for hundreds of years, and then they end up writing clarification documents for us called confessions. Everything that we’re describing for you, and being able to understand the difference between an antinomian and a legalist, and rightly dividing the law from the gospel, is understanding the categories of things like justification, sanctification, glorification that come to us from our confession. Justin and I both hold to the 1689 London Baptist Confession, which is an adjustment from the Westminster. We would highly recommend either of those and find a true that uses these because it helps keep the Christian firmly resting on the sufficiency of Christ. When we’re there, we find that rest, then obedience is not a burden.
I tell people that if their church or their Christian faith has them exhausted, then you are not in alignment with Jesus when he says, “Come to me and I will give you rest. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” When I hear anyone who is preaching a burden upon someone, and they aren’t giving them the relief of Christ, often that comes from someone who isn’t understanding the historic faith which has been handed down to us, that which has been affirmed and fought for, and I would say recovered during the Reformation. This is why we like the word “reformed” and we’re even starting a ministry called Semper Reformanda, “always reforming”. We want to help people continue moving this Reformation forward.
Justin Perdue: All of this language comes from the era of the Reformation. Some of this language would come from Martin Luther and our Lutheran friends as well. There is agreement between confessionally Reformed folks and our Lutheran friends about this distinction between law and gospel. I trust that pretty much everything that we have said today, our Lutheran friends would agree with, as we have tried to maintain the distinction between the law and the gospel, and even this idea that until one knows that he has been forgiven and counted righteous and absolved of guilt, there’s no way in the world we could ever delight in the law of God.
I agree with Jon. If you’re in a church context where commandments and imperatives are made to sound threatening, scary, and burdensome, then there is a theological problem there. You know that you’re on the right track when, as far as Christians are concerned when we’re talking to one another in Christ, when imperatives, commands, and even God’s law becomes a joy and not a burden because we know that the threat has been removed and the heaviness has been taken from us. Now we have been set free in the Lord Jesus Christ unto righteousness, and we get to do all of these good things that we actually want to do in our hearts. We have become obedient from the heart. In our inner man, we delight in God’s law and we want to live in accord with it. That’s how we talk as believers. It’s a much, much different tone, and a much, much different posture. Sin is still taken seriously, and yet it’s not just fear and dread and judgment all the time.
Jon Moffitt: I would dare to say that most people listening to this podcast have been in a legalistic context and struggle with legalism. One of the things that we do is a second podcast. Right now it’s called the members’ podcast, but we’re going to be changing all of this very soon. Stay tuned for those. But in this next section, what I want to do is maybe help someone to process through this resting in Christ out of legalism, or maybe you’ve been listening to the podcast for a while and you’re wondering how is it that you can help people.
We did a podcast I’d recommend called The Slow Death of Pietism. We’ll put it in the notes. You should listen to that. Processing this information is really tough—and it’s everywhere. The mixture of the law and the gospel legalism is everywhere. The unfortunate thing happening right now is that people just throw out the word “antinomian”. When we’re trying to be biblical using a Reformed perspective, people say antinomian. No, that’s not antinomianism, and actually you’re promoting legalism. I don’t like just throwing words back and forth. How about we just sit down and take the time to walk through these terms, and walk through the Bible, and make sure that we are not allowing our emotions to drive this conversation? We can look at things from the text and ask ourselves, are we hearing in our words, the words of Christ when he says, come to me and you will find rest? I will tell you the legalist and the antinomian—neither of them are finding rest there.
Justin Perdue: One other thought, too, is that there is a tendency for people to swing on a pendulum from legalism to antinomianism, and there is a reason for that. We’re going to talk about that, perhaps some in this area. There is a reason for that, and it’s very clear.
If you would like to listen to us talk about that and some other stuff in the members’ podcast, and you’re not even sure what the members’ podcast is, you can find information about that on our website, theocast.org. We hope that a number of you make your way over to the members’ area to continue this conversation with us. For those of you who may not, for whatever reason, be able to make it over there, we hope that this conversation even up to now has been clarifying for you and encouraging, and that it has pointed you to Jesus Christ and what he has accomplished in your place and has helped you see that the law of God is good because it no longer threatens or condemns you.
It’s always a pleasure for us to be able to speak with you in this way. We look forward to having another conversation.