Thursday, January 23, 2014

Mark Jones' Antinomianism.

Here is a little blog review of Mark Jones' Antinomianism. This is a short but great book dealing with the issue of antinomianism or the denial of the use of the Law of God in the Christian life especially for living and holiness.

I just finished it today and found it stimulating, inviting and convicting all at the same time. This book is only 130 pages but packs quite a punch in such a short amount of space. In my mind, it serves as a good example of how to write theology for a general audience.

Mark Jones is an excellent Puritan scholar so he comes at the topic from the perspective of historical theology but this book does not get lost in the forest of church history. In fact, Jones keeps his eye of practical Christian living today and peppers this book with relevant Scriptures.

Jones' treatment allows him to briefly point to warnings and dangers that can surface today both in the Christian's heart and Christian preaching.

Most helpfully he points a way forward: the person and work of Christ. We are not to separate Christ and his benefits. All of his benefits are important and we cannot minimize sanctification as a subsidiary of justification.

His chapter on assurance is one of the briefest but most helpful treatments I have ever read. He reminds the Christian that they are to go back to the promises of God. While part of assurance can come from looking at our justification, we can equally examine the growth in our life (our sanctification) and have assurance because we have seen God's work in us in the progress of holiness. Here again, Jones centers the chapter in Christ and his benefits for us.

This is an excellent little book that hits at a very important issue for today by coming at it through the lens of church history. Jones' writing is clear, succinct and well paced. His style hits home when addressing the believer. You can easily tell that Jones is both a scholar and a pastor.

This book has much to commend and I would recommend it to anyone interested in issues of Reformed theology, pastoral theology, historical theology or just practical Christian living on the topics of sanctification and the value God's commands to a Christian's holiness.
"The Voyages..." Forays into Biblical studies, Biblical exegesis, theology, exposition, life, and occasionally some Star Trek...