The Battle Over Justification


The doctrine of justification is once again receiving serious attention, both in the academia and in within general Christian audiences. Two of the contemporary debaters leading the way in the resurrected debate over justification are pastors John Piper and N.T. Wright. Arguably, two of the most influential Christian thinkers today. Christianity Today's August 2007 cover story, "What Did Paul Really Mean?" helped take the debate on justification from the academy to the masses. In August of this year, CT focused on the justification discussion between Piper and Wright and it has caused quite the stir! Download a PDF of this article by Christianity Today here to see where the two evangelicals differ on the subject.

Personally, both of these men have had an enormous effect of my life and I praise God for these faithful proclaims and defenders of the Word of God! I have to laugh as read through the columns on Piper and Wright’s points of disagreement because I find myself agreeing with both of them. (Haha, am I allowed to do that?!?!) In fact, the way I would personally answer most of the questions ask by CT to Piper & Wright is a blending of both their individual answers.

Both Piper and Wright seem to be very cordial in the discussion (which is nice to see), but, some of Piper’s supporters have been more than a bit harsh and have misrepresented some of Wright’s positions. (This is unfortunate because Wright and Piper have not done this themselves and it does not represent them well at all.) The best thing to do is to see for yourself what the disagreement is over. With that said, I highly recommend both these book:

John Piper: Pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis. Author of The Future of Justification: A Response to N.T. Wright.

N.T. Wright: Bishop of Durham, Church of England. Author of Justification: God's Plan and Paul's Vision.

Also see:

The Justification Debate: A Primer from Christianity Today (click here for the PDF version)

What do Piper and Wright Have in Common? from Triangular Christianity

Trevin Wax Interview with N.T. Wright (Full Transcript)