A fatal mistake

“Some of us are tempted to stop with doctrine, and to feel that when we have come to the end of [Romans] chapter 11, we have all we really want out of the Epistle to the Romans. That is fatal. We must take the whole of the Scripture, otherwise we shall miss its balance. And here in this whole section, as we have seen, the apostle is concerned with our practical, daily living.
Why should we be so concerned about this? One great reason is that the glory of God in His great salvation is involved. If we say that we are people who believe what we read in the first eleven chapters, and then live in a manner that is opposed to that teaching, we bring the very doctrine in which we claim to glory into disrepute. People–particularly today – are much more concerned with what we do than with what we say, so the glory of God and of His great salvation is, in a sense, in our hands and people will judge it by what they see in us. If we talk learnedly about justification, sanctification, and glorification but still live like everybody else in the world, then men and women who observe us will inevitably react by turning away from the gospel. But not only that, these truths are so interrelated and intertwined that we can never enjoy the benefits of our great salvation if we do not obey its precepts.” – D.M. Lloyd Jones, Romans 12, p 426.

Dr. David Martin Lloyd-Jones is every bit as correct today in 2017 as he was in October 1966 when these words were first spoken. In an excellent article in the blog–Towards Conservative Christianity, the author explains:

Orthodoxy is right doctrine. Orthopraxy is right actions or practice – the works or fruit that are evidence of orthodoxy in the heart. Orthopathy is right affection – ordinate affection toward God, self and the world around. Each of these exists in a mutually dependent relationship towards the others. Orthodoxy without orthopraxy is the dead faith James described. Orthodoxy without orthopathy is dead formalism or even legalism. Orthopraxy without orthodoxy is undirected pragmatism or innovation. Orthopraxy without orthopathy is dead Pharisaism and hypocrisy. Orthopathy without orthodoxy is sheer enthusiasm or fanaticism. Orthopathy without orthopraxy is sentimentalism and pure emotionalism.

“Faith without works is dead being alone.” Yet, we are saved by grace alone, through faith alone. Let no one say that we must preach grace without a call to works, for such a grace is no grace, and such a gospel, is no gospel. God’s redemptive plan redeems the entire man–body and spirit, transforming our thinking, our volition and our emotions. Let us be Holy as He is Holy. Let us not be conformed but transformed. Let us put off the old man, and put on the new. Let us be salt and light that “they may see [our] good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven”

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