by John Flavel
Flavel discusses the age old question, that since we are saved by grace alone, does it matter how we live as Christians? Why can't we just live any way we want? In this short treatise on “antinomianism” (meaning, “against the law”), Puritan John Flavel takes on this critical topic and demonstrates from Scripture and reason why Christians are obligated to obey the law, even though we are under grace. The person who professes grace but denies the necessity of the moral law denies the very doctrine he or she supposedly professes. So, should Christians continue in sin so that grace may abound? “God forbid!” Discover in these pages the necessity of the moral law in the life of the believer and see how it is integrally tied to the whole of the Christian life.
THE design of the following sheets, cast in as a Mantissa to the foregoing discourse of Errors, is principally to discharge and free the free grace of God from those dangerous errors, which fight against it under its own colours; partly to prevent the seduction of some that stagger; and, lastly, (though least of all) to vindicate my own doctrine, the scope and current whereof hath always been, and shall ever be, to exalt the free grace of God in Christ, to draw the vilest of sinners to him, and relieve the distressed consciences of sin-burthened Christians.
But, notwithstanding my utmost care and caution, some have been apt to censure it, as if in some things it had a tang of Antinomianism: But if my public or private discourses be the faithful messengers of my judgment and heart, (as I hope they are) nothing can be found in any of them casting a friendly aspect upon any of their principles, which I here justly censure as erroneous.
Three things I principally aim at in this short Appendix.
1. To give the reader the most probable rise of Antinomianism.
2. An account of the principal errors of that sect.
3. To confirm and establish Christians against them by sound reasons, backed with scripture-authority.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1. The Rise of Antinomianism.
2. The Doctrinal Errors of Antinomianism.
3. Error 1: Justification from Eternity.
4. Error 2: Faith a Believing we are Justified.
5. Error 3: Blind Believing we have Believed.
6. Error 4: No Need to Pray for Pardon of Sin.
7. Error 5: God sees no Sin in Believers.
8. Error 6: No Fatherly Chastisements for Sin.
9. Error 7: Sin really transferred to Christ.
10. Error 8: Believers need not fear Sin.
11. Error 9: Absolute 'Covenant' of Grace — Confounding the Covenant of Grace and Covenant of Rede
12. Error 10: Sanctification no Evidence of Justification.