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On Forensic Justification, Forensic Righteousness And Forensic Sin(?)

Discussion in 'Bible Study' started by calvin, Aug 25, 2012.

  1. Taken from another thread, ( Sin, Law And Grace by Chris Ekeyi)
    I posted:
    The terminology is not new, however it might take a little thought to get one's head around it.
    Matt 3:15. 'But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.' Nkjv
    What is the righteousness Jesus speaks of here?
  2. I'm going to have to go with God's righteousness. Can't wait to hear your answer, though. :)
  3. Am I right in thinking by "forensic" you mean "imputed or applied" as opposed to "intrinsic" meaning inherent?
  4. No, 'forensic' comes from 'forum' and so though closely related to imputation, is not that.
    But inherent and intrinsic are much the same
    As for Jesus and John the baptist, if it is a task that they must do, how can it be God's righteousness they fulfill?
    In this case, Righteousness is accomplished by doing God's will. May I suggest that for John, his job description was to reveal Jesus....launch His ministry, perhaps? John 1:31. John tells us that he came baptizing with water so that Jesus could be revealed to Israel, and what happened immediately Jesus was baptized? Matt 3:16,17. He was revealed as the Son of God, and began His ministry.
    Next, we have Jesus also needing to fulfill all righteousness.
    I would like to suggest that His job description was to obey the Father. But why Baptism? John's baptism was a baptism of repentance Matt 3:11. What did Jesus have to repent of?
    Nothing. However, He identified with sinful mankind, and because of that act of baptism, He was able to carry that affinity to sinful man to the cross. Had He not laid aside His divine glory and intrinsic righteousness, He could not have represented us as He did represent us. Had He stood afar off and said "I have no need of this baptism of repentance because I am not 'one of them'" Then He would have not been able to stand in our place.

    Some would argue that Jesus was incapable of sin, but that does not square up with his temptation by Satan, who knew that the divine nature is not capable of sin. And since the demons knew who Jesus was it is idle to argue that Satan didn't.
  5. I have to read the rest of the OP slower to get my arms around what you are saying... but there is a thing or two below to drop a note before I crawl into a cave to do the above parts...

    I think Jesus baptism, is a reflection of Levitical priests ritual cleaning in the OT. IT was a requirement for the High Priest to be the High Priest... you are right, it didn't clean anything. And it's not the example for us, because we take John's baptism AFTER the commitment. John was teaching it as a part BEFORE the commitment.

    Temptation isn't sin.... giving into temptation would have been a sin. I'm not sure that the argument, Satan knew he was divine and tempted him because he thought Jesus would give in, therefore Jesus COULD have given in, is an argument.

    Because Satan rebelled against God, knowing He couldn't win, and did it anyway. Satan would be quite the little petulant, "I'll do it anyway, and I'll do it my way," kinda guy.
  6. Forensic sin, meaning, action one could argue was a sin? As in something judged upon a person?


    Intrinsic sin, that human nature that is sinful before it breathes type of theology?

    The fulfilling of all righteousness, or "Right ACTS", would be that of the Priest, who to be a priest was washed, then annointed. Ritual cleansing was pretty important in OT priestly duties.

  7. I had that levitical washing thrown my way once on a roman church forum.....before I was banned:cool:.
    Jesus is/was a priest after the order of Melchizedek not Aaron, and hence not to be confused with the Levitical priesthood. Heb 5:10.

    Agreed temptation is not sin, however it is a little difficult to understand that Satan would go down the temptation road with Jesus just to idle away the time. Sin must have been the end result he was aiming and hoping for. By way of example, would Satan tempt a man to fall pregnant and have a baby knowing it is intrinsically impossible for a man to fall pregnant? No of course not. So would Satan tempt Jesus to sin knowing it was intrinsically impossible for Him to sin?
  8. I never thought of that, so why did he have to fulfill the law?

    It seems to me, to become a recognizable priest to the jewish nation, it would have to be under the laws they lived by, that christ lived/and died by. It seems to me, that Jesus lived by the levitical laws, and that to be a new priesthood, without finishing the old one off...... would disqualify him.....

    I have to think more on your argument, I havent considered it before.

    Satan defied God, do you think he knew he would fail? Or do you think he had reason to think he could succeed? If he thought he could succeed, then it is likely he thought he could succeed with christ. If he knew he would fail, then not being able to succeed wasn't a deterrent. Either way its logical....
  9. He had to fulfill the law for you and me.
    The Levitical priests were never commissioned to fulfill the law, just administer the cultic aspects of it as far as I can see. It was up to each individual to obey the law.
    I can't think of anywhere Jesus was recognized as a priest. He was recognized as a rabonical teacher, but not a priest John 1:38. for example.
  10. So, if he had to fulfill the law for you and me, for the jews to recognize Him as their new High Priest, psalms 110, why would you think he would not be fulfilled under the law? I think its whack, but its not illogical and its a worthy argument. But it rings as awkward to me, as my position does to you....

    He died under the law. Thus was under the law. He was to become high priest, if we can't agree there we are stuck. If we agree there then to be high priest after, he would have to be anointed as their priests were for them to recognize Him. There is no other reason for him to be baptised. He was ritually cleansed, and had oil too, didn't he? The priests were cleansed ritually then annointed....

    I will have to review some, thanks for the brain work. :) if u ever wanna chat get my email, a few on here have it, I'm sure they would give it over. I've asked to delete my account. Very few reasons to stick around. But I've enjoyed your posts..
  11. Hi Calvin,

    Let me try and propose another possibility. If we study the nature of Satan we can come to the conclusion that Satan is a "fallen angel" in that sometime in the past he sinned against God and was tossed out of his position as an archangel. Therefore Satan has the same, maybe less (due to the destructive results of sin), attributes of angels. From a biblical study on angels it is apparent that they have a limited knowledge of the future. They do not posses the same infinite wisdom or foresight that God has, otherwise they would be like God which they are not. It is also evident from Revelation that Satan is weaker than the other angels as he is easily bound up by an angel sent by God. So we can conclude that Satan is an angel, limited in knowledge and foresight and possibly even more limited than the holy angels who still serve God.

    So in light of the true nature of Satan, it is possible that he did not know if Jesus was really the Messiah hence the reason he tested Jesus in the wilderness. So it is not a question of did Jesus have the capacity to sin, but more the point of Satan trying to check out if Jesus really was the promised Messiah. After the third attempt he left Jesus as a defeated foe.

    If we look at the scriptures carefully, the first two attempts of Satan began with a question "If you are the Son of God...". The last attempt Satan was driven away by a command from Jesus (Matt. 4:1-10).

    Maybe this will be of some clarity.
  12. G'day Kevin, You might be right. But, how would you explain the fact that Jesus was taken by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil V1. He was not taken there to teach the devil the futility of his (ol' Nick's) situation. It was to be tempted. So I can't see any purpose in subjecting Jesus to temptation unless he was capable of being tempted and presumably capable of yielding to that temptation. see also Heb 2:18. and Heb 4:15. The last passage also fuels my thinking that Jesus identifies with us in John's baptism.
  13. Good thoughts Calvin!

    It seems to me that the question is....."Why was Jesus baptized?

    1). Jesus identified Himself "completely" with sinful humanity.

    Isaiah 53:12...
    "Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath
    poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many,
    and made intercession for the transgressors."

    Christ was holy and had no need to repent-----it is US who need to repent and confess.

    2). Water baptism is symbolic of Death.

    Matthew 20:22....
    "But Jesus answered and said, Ye know not what ye ask. Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of, and to
    be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with? They say unto him, We are able.

    Christ's death was a baptism and He entered into death for you and me.

    3). At this time He was set aside for His office of a "priest".

    2 Corth. 5:21
    "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in

    There was SIN ON Him, but there was NO sin IN Him!!! Our sin was PU ON Him, not in Him. Therefore we are saved by being IDENTIFIED with Him. He identified Himself with us in baptism.

    2 Peter 3:21
    " The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but
    the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ".

    To be saved then means TO BE IN CHRIST! HOW DO WE DO THAT????

    By the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

    WATER baptism is a testimony to this.

    4). Matthew 3:16-17 thens tells us..........

    "And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto
    him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven,
    saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

    This then confirms it all by a manifestation of the Trinity.

    JESUS comes out of the water, THE SPIRIT OF GOD desends upon Him from heaven, and the Father speaks!!!!

    Jesus is identified with His people so that we can be identified with the Savior!

    WHAT A KING HE IS !!!!
  14. Of course Jesus had to fulfill the Law!! You are absolutly correct!

    It is especially important to note how the word is used in. Context: “abolish” is set in opposition to “fulfill.” Christ came “...not to abolish, but to fulfill.” Jesus did not come to this earth for the purpose of acting as an opponent of the law. His goal was not to prevent its fulfillment. Rather, He revered it, loved it, obeyed it, and brought it to fruition. He fulfilled the law’s prophetic utterances regarding Himself . Christ fulfilled the demands of the Mosaic law, which called for perfect obedience under threat of a “curse” . In this sense, the law’s divine design will ever have an abiding effect. It will always accomplish the purpose for which it was given.

    Jesus as priest is seen in 2 Corth. 5:21.......
    "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."

    Hebrews 4:14
    "Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession."

    Hebrews 6:20
    "where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek" ".
  15. Yes, thanks for your input Major.
    I believe that in fulfilling the law, Jesus became the source of forensic righteousness for those who trust in His promises.

    Any thoughts on how this ties in with forensic justification?........anybody?
  16. Calvin, I apologize for derailing your thought above but I have questions. :(
    I haven't read Leviticus recently, and I know there were many ritual washings, but I don't remember seeing anything like immersion being Law...I know there were "mikvehs", and that ceremonial washing of self, clothing, even pots and such was commanded. Cal you please point me to the law that required immersion for repentance in Mosaic law, cuz I'm lost on this one!
    Thanks so much,
  17. Hmmm..I've been thinking this one over, so thanks for the new ideas! I've always thought of Christ's fulfilling the Law as equal with fulfilling God's righteous commands...and in my mind God's will = God's righteousness. I'm actually still trying to grasp that Christ didn't do it (be baptized by John) to fulfill God's righteousness...(even it it was written in God's commands in the Law.) Help?
  18. So then........."Justification means , LEGALLY NOT GUILITY, correct?

    What does "Forensic Justification" entitle?

    It has been said that :
    "The term forensic is from forum; ' a court'. The ground of a judicial or forensic justification, invariably is and must be universal obedience to the moral law. If but one crime or breach of the law is alleged and proved, the court must inevitably condemn, and can in no such case justify or pronounce the convicted just." (Christian Research Institute, by Charles Finney).​
    If we turn to the New Testament, the Greek verb translated 'to justify' is dikaioo. That word is used by Paul in a forensic or legal sense; the sinner is declared to be righteous"
    (cf. Rom.3-4).

    It is not my faith that would cancel out the faithfulness of God. The Jew failed. Does that mean God failed? NO!
    God's promise to send Israel the Redeamer was not defeated by their willful disobedience and rejection. All of HIs promises for the future of the nation will be fulfilled to God's glory in spite of their UNBELIF!

    Now, I personally thank God that His promises to me do not depend on my faithfulness. If it had, I and everyone else would be in real danger right now.


    Because the faithfullness of God is TRUE and cannot be changed!!!!

    Romans 3:4....
    "God forbid; yea let God be TRUE but very mand a liar, as it is writen, that thou mightest be JUSTIFIED in thy sayings and mightest overcome when thou art judged".

    But then the Gospel justification is not in the legal sense; rather, it is "apart from the law" as stated in Rom. 3:21 and "by grace".

    Rom. 3:24.
    "Being JUSTIFIED FREELY by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus".
  19. and, from post#2:
    It seems the confusion must come from a slight difference in emphasis. Your original thought as interpreted by me was that they, (Jesus and John) were achieving God's righteousness, not carrying out His righteous commands as you now say. And to the later I agree.
    You firstly posted:
    Is there a problem with Matt 3:15?
    There is no record of Jesus querying John's ministry.
    Must everything John and Jesus did be first written in the Law? or exactly detailed in the prophets? Isa 40:3.
    Was the calling of the twelve written in the Levitical law?
  20. Major I'm going to bed I'll reply in the morrow...my tomorrow that is:)

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