Nicole was amazing. And had amazing grace. When he spoke at ETS (he was the founder)... people listened.When they had the Open Theism issue... he was foremost.At the end of his presentation o this in '02... Geisler barged up and endorsed Nicole's Closed Theism.Nicole responded with wry delight, "An Arminian and a Calvinist together... I'm in heaven!"Yet, I don't think he would have said that... to those with this Closed Perspective.
Great article. It's concise, and to the point.
My only problem is the following passage.In fact, the truth of justification by faith alone, contrary to what “New Perspective”authors claim, is most clearly and emphatically taught in both epistles to Romans andGalatians, as many of the fathers of the church, and notably St. Augustine, taught.Is it really true that the early church fathers taught sola fide? My limited studies suggest that while they occasionally used phrases like "only faith" or "faith alone" it was an affirmation that God can accept someone apart from and prior to good works like baptism (etc.). The full idea of forensic justification via the imputed righteousness of Christ wasn't fully understood by them. Moreover, my understanding is that Augustine did deal with proto-solafideans and he rejected them and their doctrine. Not just the kind that taught licentiousness but also the kind that rejected an abuse of grace. Especially since Augustine taught that in addition to faith one still had to "graciously merit" final salvation by one's good works performed by the empowering of God's grace. I'm open for correction if anyone wants to.
BTW, I'm not deny that there those few passages in the church fathers that do suggest that some of them either had an understanding of gratuitous justification or whose views were approaching it. For example, the following quote (from Clement of Rome's 1st [and undisputed] epistle to the Corinthians:And we, too, being called by His will in Christ Jesus, are not justified by ourselves, nor by our own wisdom, or understanding, or godliness, or works which we have wrought in holiness of heart; but by that faith through which, from the beginning, Almighty God has justified all men; to whom be glory for ever and ever.