Here on this podcast, Tim and Kathy Keller were interviewed by Eric Metaxas. They had an interesting discourse over the work of grace and man’s responsibility. Do you agree with what Pastor Tim Keller says?
Below is the transcript of one small section in the interview:
Kathy Keller: …people who say their pastor is not preaching the gospel might actually just have spiritual wax in their ears.
Eric Metaxas (host): Really? Is there something they should do about it? Or will grace remove the wax?
Tim Keller: I think Martin Luther himself meditated on Romans 1:16-17 which says, ‘I’m not ashamed of the Gospel for it is the power of God unto salvation.” He said he meditated on it until he broke through. And so in a sense he would say ‘God had to show it to me,’ but he also had something to do.
Eric: See, that sounds like works.
Tim: No, it just sounds like effort.
Eric: What’s the difference between works and effort?
Tim: Works righteousness means, ‘I rely on my effort, in other words, I merit my salvation by my effort.’ But works means I’m simply taking hold of my salvation, not necessarily earning it.
Eric: You have said something incredibly important just now, you realize this?
This is the exact point I have brought up countless times in discussions with my Calvinistic brethren who insist that we teach a works based salvation. Some lessor informed Calvinists insist that we teach that salvation is earned or merited by making a decision to put our trust in Christ, which is simply untrue.
Taking hold of the salvation provided by the grace of God is not meritorious.