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Tuesday
Mar152011

Theological Term of the Week

antinomianism
A name for several views that have denied that God’s law in Scripture should directly control the Christian’s life; the belief that obedience to God’s moral law is not necessary for the Christian.

  • Scripture that argues against antinomianism:
    Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ESV)
  • From the London Baptist Confession, 1689, Chapter 19, Of the Law of God:

    6._____ Although true believers be not under the law as a covenant of works, to be thereby justified or condemned, yet it is of great use to them as well as to others, in that as a rule of life, informing them of the will of God and their duty, it directs and binds them to walk accordingly; discovering also the sinful pollutions of their natures, hearts, and lives, so as examining themselves thereby, they may come to further conviction of, humiliation for, and hatred against, sin; together with a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ and the perfection of his obedience; it is likewise of use to the regenerate to restrain their corruptions, in that it forbids sin….

  • From Concise Theology by J. I. Packer:

    It must be stressed that the moral law, as crystallized in the Decalogue and opened up in the ethical teaching of both Testaments, is one coherent law, given to be a code of practice for God’s people in every age. In addition, repentance means resolving henceforth to seek God’s help in keeping that law. The Spirit is given to empower law-keeping and make us more and more like Christ, the archetypal law-keeper (Matt. 5:17). This law-keeping is in fact the fulfilling of our human nature, and Scripture holds out no hope of salvation for any who, whatever their profession of faith, do not seek to turn from sin to righteousness (1 Cor. 6:9-11; Rev. 21:8). 

Learn more:

  1. J. I. Packer: Antinomianism
  2. Phil Johnson: A Primer on Antinomianism
  3. John MacArthur: Is There Such a Thing As a Carnal Christian?
  4. Ernest F. Kevan: The Law Not Abrogated by Christ to Believers
  5. P. G. Mathew: Antinomianism
  6. A. W. Pink: The Law and the Saint
  7. S. Lewis Johnson: Shall We Continue in Sin?
  8. James White: Earnestly Contending for the Faith Against Antinomianism (download audio)

Related terms:

Do you have a a theological term you’d like to see featured here as a Theological Term of the Week? If you email it to me, I’ll seriously consider using it, giving you credit for the suggestion and linking back to your blog when I do.

Clicking on the Theological Term graphic at the top of this post will take you to a list of all the previous theological terms in alphabetical order.

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