Friday, February 11, 2011

Graham Cole on imputation/obedience

In God the Peacemaker, Graham Cole says about Christ's obedience and faithfulness:

"Christ's faithfulness issued in obedience. His obedience constituted his righteousness. His righteousness is put to our account, if we are believers, as the traditional doctrine of imputation maintains. It is put to our account not because of a mere reckoning so by God, but because we are really united to Christ by the Spirit" (p. 118).

8 comments:

jeff miller said...

Praise God from whom all blessings flow! I like it.

John Thomson said...

I have read the book. On the whole I thought it was good. My main criticism is it was fairly rigidly Reformed.

I found his comments on IAO fairly conventional and weak.

Matt Viney said...

'rigidly Reformed'?

I suppose he could be rigidly non-Reformed. There's plenty of those around.

Nick said...

As much as I appreciate someone defending active obedience, it does rather make it sound as if reckoning and union are antithetical. How many serious classic reformed theologians have suggested that imputation takes place without union?

theologist said...

Beautifully put!

John Thomson said...

Hi Matt

'I suppose he could be rigidly non-Reformed. There's plenty of those around.'

I suppose there are and they too are wrong.

Cole writes 'as the traditional doctrine of imputation maintains'. He really means of course 'double imputation'. All 'traditional' evangelicals believe in 'imputation' what many do not subscribe to is double imputation.

I don't particularly wish to detract from Cole's book for on the whole I found it very good. The one other area I found him weak on was new creation. It seemed not a great deal more than a return to Eden. Two quibbles with an otherwise worthwhile (if a little worthy) book.

J. R. Daniel Kirk said...

For all its un-charity, all I can think is "ugh..."

Why is union with Christ insufficient? Why do we have to create this non-biblical category of imputation? Why create this non-biblical idea of his stuff being put in our account? Doesn't the NT have a sufficient store of images and metaphors to adequately communicate the effects of Christ's death for us?

Ugh...

Michael F. Bird said...

Dan, how does "union" make us "righteous"?