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The Christian Walk

A sober look at the non-Reformed teachings of NT Wright, advocate for the New Perspectives on Paul.

Why Wright is not Reformed:
A Confessional Understanding of the
Imputed Righteousness of Christ
by Rev. Fred Greco

One of the interesting questions for historical theologians is how theological understanding develops over time in the Church. How is it that the understanding of what the Bible says about salvation, the nature of God or other doctrines have changed? Is it that the Church simply wakes up one morning and decides that its confession of faith is in need of revision? Or perhaps change occurs as the result of some great Hegelian-like antithesis in which the champions of a radical new dogma do battle with and defeat those with a status quo dogma? In the midst of examining the controversy swirling around the New Perspective on Paul, and specifically its popular proponent, N.T. Wright, I have become more convinced that often theological and confessional change occurs as a result of an attempt at subtly redefining key terms rather than a conflict of visions. Thucydides’ observation on politics more than 2,000 years ago has particular relevance to the current controversy on justification:

Words had to change their ordinary meaning and to take that which was now given them. Reckless audacity came to be considered the courage of a loyal ally; prudent hesitation, specious cowardice; moderation was held to be a cloak for unmanliness; ability to see all sides of a question inaptness to act on any. Frantic violence, became the attribute of manliness; cautious plotting, a justifiable means of self-defence.[1]

Such a transformation of well-worn terms is currently underway with respect to Wright’s view of justification. While Wright himself is an Anglican bishop and neither particularly cares to be referred to as “Reformed” nor subscribes to the Westminster Standards or their Continental counterparts, the fact is that many who zealously claim the moniker “Reformed” have expressed great appreciation for Wright and his “more Biblical” formulations regarding justification and attendant doctrines, while at the same time vociferously claiming that there is essentially no difference between Wright’s teaching on justification and Westminster’s.[2] Which is the truth: is Wright essentially Reformed in his doctrine of soteriology or is he offering a new paradigm of justification? Is it necessary to chose between Westminster’s Confession and Westminster’s Canon? It is my contention that Wright is offering a concept of justification that is significantly different (and deficient) from that of the Reformed Confessions and the historic formulations of Reformed theologians.[3] In this paper, three main headings will be briefly addressed: (1) what Wright’s “Reformed” proponents claim for Wright; (2) what Wright really said about justification, especially with respect to the critical issue of the imputation of the active obedience of Christ; and (3) what the historic Reformed Confessional understanding is with respect to justification and the imputation of the active obedience of Christ. It is not within the scope of this paper to do a detailed exegesis of the Biblical data regarding the imputation of the active obedience of Christ to believers, especially in light of the fact that such a task has already been ably completed by Rev. John Piper[4]; rather, this paper will seek to demonstrate that claims within Reformed ecclesiastical circles[5] that Wright’s doctrine of the atonement is essentially identical with historical Reformed teaching are much exaggerated.

Is Wright Really Reformed?

In Confessionally Reformed circles, Wright has been at the center of a maelstrom of controversy. That controversy centers around Wright’s recasting of the classical reformation formulation of the doctrine of justification generally, and imputation in particular. What makes the controversy more intriguing than most, however, is that there are many within self-described Confessionally Reformed denominations[6] are not only great supporters of Wright, but they also are insistent that Wright’s casting of the doctrine of justification is completely within the bounds of Reformed Confessional orthodoxy.[7] It is important to note this distinction – such proponents of Wright do not seek merely to have a place at the ecumenical table for Wright; they desire to have his views be representative (usually through their own ministries) of Reformed orthodoxy.

While many Reformed theologians and pastors such as Dr. Ligon Duncan, Dr. Douglas Kelly, Rev. Richard Phillips and others have expressed public concern and reservations about the influence Wright is having in Confessionally Reformed denominations, a loud cry has gone up from the proponents of Wright that such concern is misplaced, even harmful. Over and over, the assertion is made that Wright’s work is not only fruitful and Biblical, but Reformed and consistent with Reformed Confessionalism. One such instance has been provided by a teaching elder in the PCA: “some have written as if [the New Prespective (NP)] were a grave threat to the Protestant Reformation. In my opinion these claims are overblown. I hope to briefly give some reasons why NP is not a rejection of the Reformed doctrine…The simple fact is that one can be loyal to the Reformed Faith and have something positive to say about NP. NP may or may not be true, but it does not entail heresy on the part of someone who thinks it is or might be.”[8]

Another approach often taken when discussing Wright and the Westminster Confession is to state that while Wright may not use the precise language of the Westminster Confession (after all, why should he, he is not Presbyterian, or so the argument goes), the content of Wright’s teaching, when properly understood, is in accordance with the Westminster Confession. Thus Wright’s position on the righteousness of God is aligned with Westminster’s:

At this point it may be helpful to remind Presbyterian readers that the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms speaks of imputing “the righteousness of Christ” not “the righteousness of God.” What we have here, other than a preference for “reckon” rather than “impute,” is simply a disagreement with the Westminster Assembly’s prooftexts, not its actual doctrine. Since Wright affirms the incarnation he naturally believes that the representative obedience and suffering of Christ is the representative obedience and suffering of God. Nevertheless, he doesn’t think that is what Paul is specifically discussing when he uses the term “the righteousness of God” in his epistles.”[9]

Oftentimes such an alignment of the Reformed formulation of justification with Wright’s doctrine of justification takes the form of comparing Wright’s description of the covenantal relationship between the Christian and God with the Reformed doctrine of union with Christ. An appeal is made to Paul’s doctrine of union with Christ as the real center of soteriology, and then by identifying Wright’s covenantlism with union with Christ, statements by Wright such as “in terms of the place of justification within Paul’s thought, I have already indicated that it cannot be put right at the centre, since that place is already taken by the person of Jesus,”[10] can be reconciled with the clear Reformational principle that the doctrine of justification is the article on which the church stands or falls. An example of the correlation of Wright’s teaching with the doctrine of union with Christ by a Reformed seminary professor is instructive:

I fundamentally agree with the analysis that sees Wright’s approach to Paul as compatible with Calvin’s emphasis on union with Christ. At Westminster Seminary, union with Christ – rather than justification by faith – is viewed as the organizing center of Pauline soteriology. This emphasis – along with the tradition of redemptive-historical hermeneutics and the consequent subordination of ordo salutis to historia salutis in soteriology – should encourage a sympathetic reading of Wright, at least in those strands of Confessional Reformed theology are more indebted to Calvin than to Luther… At the very least, I believe that a judicious appreciation and appropriation of much of Wright’s theology is consistent with a commitment to the Westminster Standards, when interpreted from a redemptive-historical and union-with-Christ perspective. Putting it more optimistically, I believe that Wright’s work has the potential to contribute considerably to the enrichment and development of the redemptive-historical strand of Confessional theology.[11]

What Wright Really Said

If, then, the foregoing statements are taken at face value, one is tempted to ask why such a controversy surrounds Wright and his proponents in Reformed circles. After all, it has been argued that Wright uses Confessional ideas, if not Confessional language; where Reformed theology desires to stress Calvin above Luther, Wright is an able assistant; and Wright’s formulation of the doctrine of justification is no threat to Reformed orthodoxy. But the problem is that Wright, while using language reminiscent of Reformed doctrine, such as “justification,” “righteousness of God” and “faith,” actually pours different content into the meaning of the words. The shell is kept, but the substance is changed. Just like the politicians of Thucydides’ day, substantive change occurs without a change in terminology.

First, we can see in What Saint Paul Really Said that Wright is clear that he desires to change the historical Reformed understanding of the phrase “the righteousness of God.” He begins by pitting the Jewish understanding of the phrase against the Reformational understanding. This righteousness of God, Wright states, can only have one meaning, God’s covenantal faithfulness: “[f]or a reader of the Septuagint, the Greek version of the Jewish scriptures, ‘the righteousness of God’ would have one obvious meaning: God’s own faithfulness to his promises, to the covenant…God’s righteousness is thus cognate with his trustworthiness on the one hand, and Israel’s salvation on the other.”[12] Wright is plain in his rejection of the Reformed view of this righteousness as a status given to the believer by God. Such a view, according to Wright, is the result of a failure to understand he Jewish background to the term:

Despite the quite clear background to the term [righteousness of God] within Judaism, a great many readers of Paul have supposed that it meant something quite different…The basic distinction here is between those who see ‘the righteousness of God’ as referring to God’s own righteousness and those who see it as referring to a status of righteousness which humans have before God…Ever since Martin Luther, many Christians have celebrated the phrase ‘the righteousness of God’ as denoting that status which humans have, on the basis of faith, as result of the gospel.[13]

In fact, Wright derides the historical Reformed understanding as not merely mistaken, but somewhat foolish: “But the righteousness they have will not be God’s own righteousness. That makes no sense at all. God’s own righteousness is his covenant faithfulness, because of which he will (Israel hopes) vindicate her;”[14] and again: “Despite the long popularity of [the view that the righteousness of God refers to a righteousness given to humans], the overwhelming weight of Jewish evidence, including many passages in scripture that Paul either quotes or alludes to, push us decisively into [the fact that] ‘the righteousness of God’ must refer to God’s own righteousness.”[15] It would appear from the foregoing that, regardless of how one exegetes the Biblical passages in question, it should be clear that (as it is to Wright at least) Wright differs in a substantial way with the “popular” understanding of this important term. Throughout chapter 6 of What Saint Paul Really Said, Wright not only belabors this difference, he stresses it by constructing and continually referring to a chart that clearly divides the two interpretations into opposing camps. For Wright, righteousness is not at all about a believer’s status; it is merely about God’s faithfulness: “[s]econd, the covenant status Paul now enjoys is the gift of God: it is a dikaiosune ek theou, a ‘righteousness from God’… Paul here is referring to the status of covenant membership; it is the gift of God, not something acquired in any way by the human beings involved”[16]

That brings us to the second clear distinction that Wright draws between himself and Reformed theology – the matter of imputation, especially the imputation of the righteousness of Christ to the believer. As we shall see below, the doctrine of the imputation of Christ’s active obedience to the believer has been stressed throughout the Reformed Confessional tradition. Such a doctrine has long been a source of comfort for the Reformed; it is not unusual that a man as learned as J. Gresham Machen could say on his deathbead, “thank God for the active obedience of Christ, no hope without it.” But for Wright, such a doctrine is a matter of derision: “If we use the language of the law court, it makes no sense whatever to say that the judge imputes, imparts, bequeaths, conveys or otherwise transfers his righteousness to either the plaintiff or the defendant. Righteousness is not an object, a substance or a gas which can be passed across the courtroom.”[17] According to Wright, the countless Reformed commentators and exegetes (not to mention the proof texts of the Westminster Standards) have foolishly taken 2 Corinthians 5:21 out of its proper context. The verse, according to Wright, has nothing to do with Christ’ righteousness being imputed to the believer, it is instead a commentary on Paul’s apostolic ministry:

What Paul is saying is that he and his fellow apostles…are not just talking about God’s faithfulness; they are actually embodying it… If, however, you insist on reading 2 Corinthians 5:21 with a meaning [of] ‘imputed righteousness’ – you will find, as many commentators have, that it detaches itself from the rest of the chapter and context, as though it were a little floating saying which Paul just threw in here for good measure.”[18]

1 Corinthians 1:30 (NKJV), “[b]ut of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God–and righteousness and sanctification and redemption” is of no help in supporting the doctrine of the imputation of Christ’s obedience either. Wright speaks of such a use of the text by Reformed theologians with obvious disdain: “It is difficult to squeeze any precise dogma of justification out of this shorthand summary. It is the only passage I know where something called ‘the imputed righteousness of Christ’ a phrase more often found in post-Reformation theology and piety than in the New Testament, finds any basis in the text.”[19]

Finally, after having redefined the righteousness of God and the ground of justification by removing the imputed righteousness of Christ from the believer, Wright distances himself from the Reformational understanding of justification by faith. He states matter of factly that the Reformational view of justification has stunted our understanding of Paul: “This popular view of ‘justification by faith’ [i.e. Lutheran and Reformed view, that which owes a good deal both to the controversy between Pelagius and Augustine and between Luther and Erasmus], though not entirely misleading, does not do justice to the richness and precision of Paul’s doctrine.”[20] While he gives to the Reformed tradition with one hand (“not entirely misleading”), he immediately takes away with the other, stating that “baldly put, if you start with the popular view of justification, you may actually lose sight of the heart of the Pauline gospel.”[21]

The Historical Reformed Formulation

Having seen what Wright clearly teaches regarding the imputation (or lack thereof) of the righteousness of Christ (or rather the covenantal faithfulness of God), the question remains whether Wright is actually opposing the historical Confessionally Reformed view of justification. Is he simply overstating his case, and in reality teaching simply a modified form of the doctrine of justification by union with Christ as his proponents claim? The answer is found in a brief survey of the Reformed Confessions and significant Reformed theologians. The theological discussion of both the active and passive obedience of Christ is firmly rooted in the Reformation. Both Luther and Calvin understood the significance of Christ’s obedience as the Author of salvation. Luther’s expression of his understanding of the significance of the obedience of Christ may best be implied with his use of the terms the “passive righteousness” or “righteousness of faith.” Luther argued for a salvation that solely rested on Christ’s work of righteousness,

I seek not active or working righteousness, for if I had it, I could not trust it, neither dare set it against the judgment of God. Then I abandon myself from all active righteousness, both of my own and of God’s law, and embrace only that passive righteousness, which is the righteousness of grace, mercy and forgiveness of sins. I rest only upon that righteousness, which is the righteousness of Christ and the Holy Ghost.[22]

Calvin’s affirmation of the relationship between Christ’s obedience and His work of salvation is more particular:

Now someone asks, ‘How has Christ abolished sin, banished the separation between us and God, and acquired righteousness to render God favorable and kindly toward us?’ To this we can in general reply that he has achieved this for us by the whole course of his obedience. This is proved by Paul’s testimony: ‘As by one man’s disobedience many were made sinner, so by one man’s obedience we are made righteous’ Romans 5:19. In another passage, to be sure, Paul extends the basis of the pardon that frees us from the curse of the law to the whole life of Christ: ‘But when the fullness of time came, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law, to redeem those who were under the law’ Galatians 4:4-5 … In short, from the time when he took on the form of a servant, he began to pay the price of liberation in order to redeem us.[23]

The Reformed have emphasized the active obedience of Christ is best understood in the context of Christ’s federal headship and his living under the law, especially as demonstrated in the parallel of the federal headships of Adam and Christ in Romans 5:12-21.[24] Christ as our representative under the law satisfied the two demands of the law; the obligation of fulfilling it and the curse of breaking it. The active obedience of Christ refers to the obligation of fulfilling the law. All of this must be viewed through the covenant that God made with Adam called the covenant of works. Under the covenant of works God promised Adam eternal life upon the condition of perfect obedience and the curse of death upon disobedience. The importance of Christ subjecting Himself to the law and perfectly fulfilling it enables Him to be our representative of “perfect and perpetual obedience.” Theologians have described the representative nature of Christ’s perfect obedience with the terms “substitutionary obedience,” “vicarious obedience,” or “active obedience.” That is to say that the imputation of Christ’s righteousness to the elect rests on the active obedience of Jesus. Therefore, the active obedience of Christ may best be summarized as every action that Christ did to fulfill the will of God (John 8:29).

Even as early as the 1560 Scots confession, a distinction was made between the “justice” of Christ, referring to His active obedience and His satisfaction, or sufferings and death:

And therefore it behoved us to apprehend Christ Jesus, with his justice and satisfaction, who is the end and accomplishment of the law, by whom we are set at this liberty, that the curse and malediction of the law fall not upon us, albeit we fulfill not the same in all points. For God the Father, beholding us in the body of his Son Christ Jesus, accepts our imperfect obedience, as it were perfect, and covers our works, which are defiled with many spots, with the justice of his Son. (1560 Scots Confession, Ch. 15)

If we understand the term “justice” to refer to the active obedience of Christ, which is reasonable given the previous distinction between his justice and his satisfaction, then those who maintain that the doctrine of the imputation of active obedience of Christ was a 17th century novelty are simply saying that based on the fact that it was articulated differently in the 16th century than it was in the 17th.

In classical Reformed formulations, it was understood that if the passive obedience of Christ were the only emphasis placed on the atoning work of Christ and His active obedience were denied, then Christ’s atonement would be insufficient for salvation of the elect. This insufficiency would rise from Christ’s inability to meet the requirement of the covenant of works – perfect obedience to the law of God. If Christ did not actively obey the will of God with all of His life then he would be incapable of perfect obedience. But since Christ is our mediator under the covenant of grace and fulfills the covenant of works through His active obedience, both He and the elect participate in God’s plan of redemption and bring glory to God. This is true even when at times Reformed theologians seem to fail to emphasize the active obedience of Christ. Calvin serves as a good example of this phenomena. If we were to begin reading Calvin’s comments on imputation in a sermon on Melchizedek, we might imagine that Calvin doesn’t see justification as the imputation of Christ’s whole obedience but only the remission of sins (mere pardon:

What then is the meaning of these words: That faith is imputed for righteousness? It is this, that God putteth it into an allowance for us, so that thereby our sins are not imputed unto us: for the one cannot be understood without the other: and therefore the imputing of righteousness, is the cause why our sins are no more imputed unto us to judge and condemn us. For the imputing of righteousness, is in sum, mere pardon and absolution.”[25] (p. 104)

However, Calvin’s thought must be understood in the context of the Roman Catholic debate over justification, as to whether justification was a moral renewal of the person or a legal declaration of pardon? A few sentences later, Calvin explains:

And therefore this righteousness which Moses here speaketh of, is not a quality that we are to look for in men: but a favor which God beareth unto us, when as it pleaseth him to bury our sins in the bottomless sea of his mercy, and not once look after them again: and accept us as if we had absolutely accomplished the law. And why is that? Forsooth, because Jesus Christ is righteous, and his perfect righteousness is imputed and allowed unto us… And God vouchsafeth it even as well as if we ourselves had wrought the same in our own persons. And thus we see what the meaning of this word Righteousness is[26]

So, Calvin does not here view justification as mere pardon over against the imputation of Christ’s perfect obedience. He was not debating active and passive obedience. He was addressing other views of justification that confuse sanctification with justification. So, in that sense, justification is not moral renewal but mere pardon (i.e. God’s declaration of acquittal). But when explaining what was included in justification, he does not hesitate to say that we are counted as obeying the law perfectly only for the holiness of Christ imputed to us – Christ’s obedience during his life and death.

This is remarkably similar to Westminster’s formulation of justification, as set forth in the Larger Catechism, questions 70-72:

Q70: What is justification? A70: Justification is an act of God’s free grace unto sinners, in which he pardoneth all their sins, accepteth and accounteth their persons righteous in his sight; not for any thing wrought in them, or done by them, but only for the perfect obedience and full satisfaction of Christ, by God imputed to them, and received by faith alone.

Q71: How is justification an act of God’s free grace? A71: Although Christ, by his obedience and death, did make a proper, real, and full satisfaction to God’s justice in the behalf of them that are justified; yet inasmuch as God accepteth the satisfaction from a surety, which he might have demanded of them, and did provide this surety, his own only Son, imputing his righteousness to them, and requiring nothing of them for their justification but faith, which also is his gift, their justification is to them of free grace.

Q72: What is justifying faith? A72: Justifying faith is a saving grace, wrought in the heart of a sinner by the Spirit and word of God, whereby he, being convinced of his sin and misery, and of the disability in himself and all other creatures to recover him out of his lost condition, not only assenteth to the truth of the promise of the gospel, but receiveth and resteth upon Christ and his righteousness, therein held forth, for pardon of sin, and for the accepting and accounting of his person righteous in the sight of God for salvation. (emphasis added).

The Westminster Confession is in harmony with the catechism, teaching that both “the obedience and satisfaction of Christ” (note the similarity to the 1560 Scots’ “justice and satisfaction”) are “imputed” to believers in the act of justification (WCF 11.1). It is also no coincidence that the proof texts for that portion of WCF 11.1 include both 2 Corinthians 5:21 and 1 Corinthians 1:30, both of which Wright (as we have seen) unilaterally declares as inapplicable to justification and imputation. Saving faith, according to the Westminster Confession, over against Wright, consists in resting on both “Christ and his righteousness,” (WCF 11.2) seeing that “Christ, by his obedience and death, did fully discharge the debt of all those that are thus justified, and did make a proper, real, and full satisfaction to his Father’s justice in their behalf. Yet, inasmuch as he was given by the Father for them; and his obedience and satisfaction accepted in their stead (WCF 11.3, again with 2 Corinthians 5:21 as proof text). Over and over the Westminster divines were careful to include the dual references to the obedience and satisfaction of Christ; such an emphasis is not only missing in Wright, but as we have seen, it is pushed aside.

Finally, it is not merely a 17th century English peculiarity to stress the active obedience of Christ. The Reformed tradition speaks with one voice about the importance of this doctrine. Two final Confessional statements will suffice. First, the Belgic Confession makes clear that it is not merely by confessing Christ as Lord (per Wright) but by receiving His merits, that is, His righteousness that we are saved:

We believe that, to attain the true knowledge of this great mystery, the Holy Spirit kindles in our hearts an upright faith, which embraces Jesus Christ with all His merits, appropriates Him, and seeks nothing more besides Him…However, to speak more clearly, we do not mean that faith itself justifies us, for it is only an instrument with which we embrace Christ our righteousness. But Jesus Christ, imputing to us all His merits, and so many holy works which He has done for us and in our stead, is our righteousness. (Belgic Confession 22)

The Second Helvetic Confession goes even further, with a paragraph devoted to “Imputed Righteousness:

For Christ took upon himself and bore the sins of the world, and satisfied divine justice. Therefore, solely on account of Christ’s sufferings and resurrection God is propitious with respect to our sins and does not impute them to us, but imputes Christ’s righteousness to us as our own (2 Cor. 5:19 ff.; Rom. 4:25), so that now we are not only cleansed and purged from sins or are holy, but also, granted the righteousness of Christ, and so absolved from sin, death and condemnation, are at last righteous and heirs of eternal life. Properly speaking, therefore, God alone justifies us, and justifies only on account of Christ, not imputing sins to us but imputing his righteousness to us. (Second Helvetic 15, emphasis added)

Clearly then, after a review of Wright’s soteriology and that of the Reformed Confessions, it becomes clear that if nothing else, there are significant differences between the two positions. And that realization clears the way for a better and more accurate analysis of Wright’s views, without the difficulty of a false correlation with Reformed orthodoxy.

——————————————————————————–

[1] Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War III.82 (trans. Richard Crawley)
[2] Perhaps the best and most compelling example of this can be found on the webpage of a PCA Teaching Elder, Mark Horne, in his “N.T. Wright on the Atonement, a Brief Statement.”
[3] By “Reformed Confessions” and “Reformed theologians” I am referring specifically here to the Westminster Confession and English theologians of the 17th century, since it is the Confession of a great many of Wright’s proponents that would claim to be “Reformed,” although reference will be made to pre-Westminsterian theologians of great significance such as Calvin and Ursinius.
[4] John Piper, Counted Righteous in Christ (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2002)
[5] The scope of such Reformed ecclesiastical circles (and their formal affiliation with the Westminster Confession) can be readily seen on the internet mailing list “Wrightsaid – What N.T. Wright Really Said,” moderated until recently by PCA TE Mark Horne, and now by an OPC member, Barb Harvey, (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Wrightsaid/) which is self described as “aimed primarily, but not exclusively at ministers in the PCA and OPC and other Evangelical Reformed denominations.”
[6] By Confessionally Reformed denominations, here, as before, I refer most pointedly to the PCA, OPC and URC.
[7] The comments of Douglas Green of Westminster Theological Seminary (PA), who “would like to take
this opportunity to express my deep appreciation for Wright’s work. Reading Wright has stimulated my thinking in many areas. More importantly, it has fed my soul.” (“Wright – A Westminster Seminary Perspective”) and PCA TE Rich Lusk “That is the most succinct and accurate and balanced summary of Wright and the New Perspective I have read to date are typical of the admiration for Wright in Reformed circles. (Both found on the “Wrightsaid” internet list).
[8] Mark Horne, “Getting Some Perspective on the New Perspective” (emphasis added)
[9] Mark Horne, “N.T. Wright on the Atonement” (emphasis added)
[10] N.T. Wright, What Saint Paul Really Said. (Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1997).
[11] Douglas Green, op cit. (emphasis added)
[12] Wright, p. 96.
[13] Wright, p. 100. It is clear from the context (not to mention the accompanying chart) that Wright espouses the first view he sets forth. That the Westminster Confession espouses the second is clear from {cite}.
[14] Wright, p. 99 (emphasis in original)
[15] Wright, p. 103.
[16] Wright, p. 124.
[17] Wright, p. 98.
[18] Wright, p. 105.
[19] Wright, p. 123 (emphasis added).
[20] Wright, p. 113.
[21] Wright, p. 113 (emphasis added).
[22] Martin Luther, Commentary on Galatians, p. 18 (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House Company).
[23] John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, II.16.5
[24] Piper is especially instructive here.
[25] John Calvin, Sermons on Melchizedek & Abraham p. 108 (Old Paths Publications, 2000 (original 1592))
[26] Ibid, p. 104-105.

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