Monday, June 4, 2012

Blessed is the man whom the Lord will NOT forgive? (A Silver Bullet against Calvinism)

I'm pretty sure I have discovered another devastating verse against the Protestant doctrine of Imputation. If you have followed this blog or know the basics of Justification by Faith Alone, you know that Protestants interpret "faith is counted as righteousness" in Romans 4:5 to mean "faith transfers the righteousness of Christ to the believer". (Protestants flatly deny that faith itself is what is counted as righteousness.) But is this consistent with how Paul argues in Romans 4:8, using the same term "counted" (Greek: logizomai)?

Consider the verse: "Blessed is the man whom the Lord will not count his sin."
Now the substitution: "Blessed is the man whom the Lord will not transfer his sin."

Clearly, with the substitution, the text is now saying the blessed man is the one who's sins God will not take away. That's plainly absurd, especially considering the verse prior (v7) explicitly says "who's sins are forgiven." Thus, the only possible answer is that "counted" (logizomai) cannot mean "transfer". Instead, "counted" must mean something akin to "regarded," so the blessed man is he who God will not regard as a sinner, but consistency requires a reinterpretation of the prior verses, meaning we must read verse 5 as "faith is regarded as righteousness". This is unacceptable to the Protestant side, and thus they either must embrace a contradiction and shoddy exegesis or abandon their doctrine of Imputation.


Joe Marchand said...

Two classic issues here. (1) Quoting "part" of a verse (taking it out of context), (2) Mis-quoting your supporting verse.

(1) Your verse should read: "And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness."

(2) You've mis-quoted the verse you are trying to argue from. Romans 4:8 actually says (ESV): "blessed is the man AGAINST WHOM the Lord will not count his sin". Another version (NASB) states it like this: "Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord WILL NOT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT".

Heard it all before . . . used to be a Catholic


Nick said...

Hi Joe,

It seems you've totally missed the point I'm making. Nothing that you said here affects how "count" is being read here.

Your two points commit the fallacy of non-sequitor.

So if you "used to be Catholic" and "heard it all before" then that concerns me, because it means you didn't know your Catholic faith properly and traded down.