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All Articles For A Defense of the Gospel of Grace Against ECT

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In the editorial of February 1, 1999, I described ECT (Evangelicals and Catholics Together) as a uniting of evangelicals and Roman Catholics for fellowship and cooperation in the gospel. The purpose of this influential movement is threefold: to fight the “culture war”; to evangelize the lost; and to realize the oneness of the church. Demonstrating from Scripture that justification is central to the gospel of the glory and grace of God, the editorial charged that ECT compromises, and thus loses, the biblical doctrine of justification as confessed by the Reformation. A more serious charge could not be imagined. This raises...

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Justification by faith alone, as briefly described in the preceding editorial, is the heart of the gospel of grace. This is compromised, and thus effectively denied, by the movement, “Evangelicals and Catholics Together” (ECT). In order to understand what this compromise is, as well as the seriousness of it, we must remind ourselves of the error warned against in the book of Romans and especially in the book of Galatians. The Error of Works-Righteousness in Romans Romans 3 and 4 warn against the sinner’s working in order to be righteous. All our working and all our own works are excluded...

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ECT unites evangelical Protestants and Roman Catholics in the fellowship and work of Jesus Christ. Such union must have a basis. The basis proposed by ECT is the oneness of evangelicals and Roman Catholics in the Christian faith, including the fundamental truth of justification. Therein lies ECT’s fatal compromise of the biblical and Reformation doctrine of justification. For Rome’s doctrine of justification is heresy—the Galatian heresy of justification by works (see the editorial in the March 15, 1999 issue of the Standard Bearer). By uniting on the basis of a common faith, the evangelicals approve Rome’s heretical doctrine of justification....

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The fatal compromise of the gospel of grace by Evangelicals and Catholics Together (ECT) is easily demonstrated. For their cooperation in the culture wars, their working together in evangelism, and their realizing of the unity of Christ’s church, ECT needs agreement of evangelicals and Roman Catholics in the faith. Therefore “Evangelicals & Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the Third Millennium,” the document that first identified ECT to the world and described its mission, confesses the oneness of evangelicals and Roman Catholics in the Christian faith itself. The last line of the opening section, “Introduction,” reads: “The mission that we...

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The preceding editorials have demonstrated that Evangelicals and Catholics Together (ECT) is evangelical compromise of the biblical and Reformation doctrine of justification. By affirming together with Roman Catholics that “we are justified by grace through faith because of Christ,” deliberately omitting the word “only,” the evangelicals compromise with the Roman Catholic doctrine of justification by faith and works. They compromise for the sake of the culture wars, for the sake of evangelism, and for the sake of church unity. But they compromise the truth of justification. How serious is this? A Reformed criticism of ECT would condemn a number of...

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