The Good News of the Judgment

The Third Use of the Law and the Judgment Hour
William Diehl

When one turns from the Ten Commandments as the standard of Christian moral conduct (the Third Use of the Law) one is left with existentialism and antinomianism. The spirit of the Law (love) must expand and deepen the meaning of the letter of the Law but never replace the letter of the Law.

Paul was not an Antinomian! If the letter of the Law is replaced and superceded by the spirit of the Law then we destroy the meaning of the death of Christ upon the cross. Rather than an Atonement and a Redemption we are left with only a Moral Influence view of the crucifixion of our Lord.

Make no mistake, if we discard the Third Use of the Law, we discard the Second Use (to bring the unconverted to conviction of sin and in need of a Savior) as well and the Law is abolished by the cross rather than fulfilled by the cross.

Some teachers within the Christian church have even now turned away from the Pauline view of the Atonement and turned to the Moral Influence view and have thereby completely discarded the Gospel and emasculated it of its power to save to the uttermost from the guilt and power of sin. In other words, not only is Sanctification given an entirely newly definition, but Justification is given a new definition which is not really new but only a new twist on the old teaching of justification by works of our own righteousness.

This is why the Protestants are reaching out the hand so readily to embrace the Papacy. They now have rejected Justification by Faith Alone because they have rejected the Law of God which points out and defines sin and the need to be justified by an imputed righteousness which Christ provided us in His perfect life and death upon the cross of Calvary. Make no mistake about it, those who reject the Law reject the true Pauline Gospel as given to us in Romans and the other great epistles of the New Testament.

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