Friday, June 29, 2007

Sola Fide taught by Ambrosiaster long before Luther

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384), wrote while commenting upon 1 Cor. 1:4b: God has decreed that a person who believes in Christ can be saved without works. By faith alone he receives the forgiveness of sins. Gerald Bray, ed., Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament VII: 1-2 Corinthians (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1999), p. 6.

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384), on Rom. 1:11: For the mercy of God had been given for this reason, that they should cease from the works of the law, as I have often said, because God, taking pity on our weaknesses, decreed that the human race would be saved by faith alone, along with the natural law. Gerald Bray, ed., Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament VI: Romans (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1998), p. 23.

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384), on Rom. 2:12: For if the law is given not for the righteous but for the unrighteous, whoever does not sin is a friend of the law. For him faith alone is the way by which he is made perfect. For others mere avoidance of evil will not gain them any advantage with God unless they also believe in God, so that they may be righteous on both counts. For the one righteousness is temporal; the other is eternal. Gerald Bray, ed., Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament VI: Romans (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1998), p. 65.

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384), on Rom. 3:24: They are justified freely because they have not done anything nor given anything in return, but by faith alone they have been made holy by the gift of God. Gerald Bray, ed., Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament VI: Romans (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1998), p. 101.

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384), on Rom. 3:27: Paul tells those who live under the law that they have no reason to boast basing themselves on the law and claiming to be of the race of Abraham, seeing that no one is justified before God except by faith. Gerald Bray, ed., Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament VI: Romans (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1998), p. 103.

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384), on Rom. 4:5: How then can the Jews think that they have been justified by the works of the law in the same way as Abraham, when they see that Abraham was not justified by the works of the law but by faith alone? Therefore there is no need of the law when the ungodly is justified before God by faith alone. Gerald Bray, ed., Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament VI: Romans (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1998), p. 112.

Ambrosiaster (fl. c. 366-384), on Rom. 4:6, "righteousness apart from works": Paul backs this up by the example of the prophet David, who says that those are blessed of whom God has decreed that, without work or any keeping of the law, they are justified before God by faith alone. Gerald Bray, ed., Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament VI: Romans (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1998), p. 113.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Would you happen to be able to post Ambrosiaster's comments on Romans 2:6-10 also?

Thanks,
EL

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restoring the gospel said...

"Would you happen to be able to post Ambrosiaster's comments on Romans 2:6-10 also?"

Not to sound concieted but I'd like to give my interpretation. In verse 6 the Greek word "ergon" when saying we are rewarded according to our works. Yet, these verses are descriptive, not prescriptive. Also, Rom 4 says we're not justified according to "ergon", but faith (present tense) and does so didactically.

Further, verse 13 says "it's the doers of the law who will be justified (future tense)", yet the first part of the verse says "it is not the hearers who will be justified". A Jew never literally believed they were justified by merely hearing the law! The context is making sure you're justified. It's by doing the law ("o nomos") that the Jew knew they were justified. This is also what James teaches in James 2:18, "I will show you my faith by my works".

And Rom 3 didactically teaches that we're NOT justified by "o nomos", which all Roman Catholics fully agree with!

I can't wait to buy Ambrosiaster's commentary!

restoring the gospel said...

"Would you happen to be able to post Ambrosiaster's comments on Romans 2:6-10 also?"

Not to sound concieted but I'd like to give my interpretation. In verse 6 the Greek word "ergon" when saying we are rewarded according to our works. Yet, these verses are descriptive, not prescriptive. Also, Rom 4 says we're not justified according to "ergon", but faith (present tense) and does so didactically.

Further, verse 13 says "it's the doers of the law who will be justified (future tense)", yet the first part of the verse says "it is not the hearers who will be justified". A Jew never literally believed they were justified by merely hearing the law! The context is making sure you're justified. It's by doing the law ("o nomos") that the Jew knew they were justified. This is also what James teaches in James 2:18, "I will show you my faith by my works".

And Rom 3 didactically teaches that we're NOT justified by "o nomos", which all Roman Catholics fully agree with!

I can't wait to buy Ambrosiaster's commentary!