White Horse Inn

whi.jpgThe one Christian radio program that I regularly listen to from the United States is White Horse Inn. The description of the program from their web site is:

The White Horse Inn is a nationally syndicated radio talk show hosted by Michael Horton, Rod Rosenbladt, Kim Riddlebarger and Ken Jones. On the air since 1990, the show features a regular roundtable discussion of Christian theology and apologetics.

This year they are going through the five “solas” of the Protestant Reformation:

  • Sola Scriptura — Scripture alone
  • Solus Christus — Christ alone
  • Sola Gratia — Grace alone
  • Sola Fide — Justification by grace alone through faith alone
  • Soli Deo Gloria — For God’s glory alone

Here are some quotes from the September 9, 2007 program, Justification by Grace Alone Through Faith Alone:

Believing doesn’t save anybody, no matter how deeply or sincerely one does it, and no matter how positively that believing may improve one’s life. Rather, Christ saves and faith can only be said in a sort of shorthand to save because it clings to Christ as the savior. So faith, like the gospel that creates it, doesn’t well up within us, but comes to us from the outside as a gift, and it is saving only because it has Christ as its object and content.

“If only I had more faith.” How many times have we heard dear Christians, believers for so many years, say that “If only I had more faith.” For a lot of people justification by faith really means that we are saved by the amount of faith or the quality of faith, rather than by faith in its act merely of clinging to Christ. Instead of faith in Christ we end up with faith in faith.

“Get your act together” is what religion is for. Religion is there to help us pull ourselves together; and Jesus says, “Actually, I’ve come to claim the people who can’t pull themselves together; I’ve come to justify the wicked and save sinners.

We are not saved by our works, nor by our sincerity in belief. As Paul says in Romans 3:21-26:

But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. (ESV)

All of their programs are available as MP3 files at their web site.

Grace and Peace

P.S. Sometimes these guys (Reformed, Lutheran, Reformed Baptist) pick on my denomination, the Evangelical Free Church of America. In the program I quoted from, for example, they lump the E-Free with those who preach self-help messages rather than the Gospel. Like their respective denominations, the EFCA is a diverse body. We have churches that go with whatever the latest fad is in Evangelicalism, and others who deeply care about and proclaim justification by grace alone through faith alone on a regular basis. A few minutes after criticizing the Free Churches, they quoted approvingly from D.A. Carson, who is a professor at… the EFCA’s seminary, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.

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