Gospel Quotes: Lewis Sperry Chafer on the Gospel in Ephesians

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

I am not a dispensationalist, though I would have some dispensational distinctives in my theology. (For some that disclaimer is necessary before they will read anything written by a dispensationalist!) One man I enjoy reading is Lewis Sperry Chafer, the first president of Dallas Theological Seminary and author of the immense eight volume work, Systematic Theology.

Chafer also wrote The Ephesian Letter, a narrative-style commentary on Ephesians. I am preaching from 2:11-22 this Sunday and came across this quote which bears repeating, especially in light of the previous post of failures in preaching Christ.

"The problem of human depravity and failure is never solved by any plan or process which makes light of sin, or which underestimates the lost estate of man. It is rather solved by the discovery of the marvels of divine grace in Christ Jesus by Whom every need of a lost soul is perfectly met. There is slight need of a Saviour if we are not wholly lost apart from Him. But, on the other hand, having acknowledged the hopeless condition in which grace found us, there is occasion for unceasing thanksgiving to Him who saves to the uttermost" (p. 81).

Later on, Chafer wrote,

"So perfect is the efficacy of the blood of Christ in providing a righteous ground for the divine grace that every desire on the part of God, though prompted by infinite love, can now be satisfied completely in behalf of those who believe on Christ!" (p. 86).

Finally, this last quote is pregnant with meditative opportunities.

"In His flesh, Christ abolished the enmity, 'even the law of commandments' (2:15), and every aspect of law which might seem to provide, because of its meritorious character, a basis of man's responsibility to God. Thus placing the child of God, whether Jew or Gentile, upon a new obligation; not of striving to establish merit, but rather of living in all devotion to Him Whose perfect merit is vouchsafed to all who believe" (p. 88).

What wondrous thoughts on the gospel of Christ and Him crucified...and from a borderline ultra-dispensationalist at that!

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