alien righteousness

Belgic Confession Article 22: About Justifying Faith and about Justification in Faith

We believe that the Holy Spirit imparts true faith indwelling within our hearts so that we arrive at a true knowledge of such a great mystery; a faith that embraces Jesus Christ with all His merits and claims Him as made our own. For it is necessary that either all the things that are required for our salvation are not in Christ, or, that if all things are in Him, then he who possesses Christ by faith also has perfect salvation at the same time. And therefore it is a wholly horrendous blasphemy against God to assert that Christ is less than sufficient, but also that other things likewise are needed. For it would follow from here, that Jesus Christ is only Savior in part. And therefore we deservedly say with blessed Paul, “We are justified by faith alone, or by faith apart from works of the Law.” Otherwise, properly speaking, we by no means understand faith itself, through itself, or from itself, to justify us; it is as if it were no more than an instrument by which we lay hold of Christ our righteousness. Therefore our righteousness is Christ Himself, Who imputes all His own merits to us. Truly faith is the instrument by which we are bound to Him in fellowship and the communion of all His good works, and also preserved in the same, to the point that all those, having been made ours, are more than enough for the absolution from our sins.

 

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