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This is the doctrine that you have been searching for: “Union with Christ”
July 26, 2010, 1:30 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

“Union with Christ is the central truth of the whole doctrine of salvation.” —John Murray

This is a collection of some resources that I’ve come across on the fellow blogger’s site on the doctrine of the believer’s union with Christ. It’s far from exhaustive, so please do let me know in the comments if I’m missing anything you’ve found helpful.

Top Picks

I haven’t read all of these sources, here are some of the top picks:

  1. Michael P. V. Barrett, “Union with Christ: The Security of the Gospel,” in Complete in Him: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying the Gospel (Greenville, SC: Ambassador–Emerald, 2000), 93–118. [Amazon]
  2. Bruce A. Demarest, “The Doctrine of Union with Christ,” in The Cross and Salvation: The Doctrine of Salvation,1 Foundations of Evangelical Theology, ed. John S. Feinberg (Wheaton: Crossway, 1997), 313–44. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  3. Wayne A. Grudem, “Union with Christ,” in Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2004), 840–50. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  4. Michael Horton, “Union with Christ,” in Christ the Lord: The Reformation and Lordship Salvation, ed. Michael Horton (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1992), 107–15. [Amazon]
  5. D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, “Union with Christ,” in God the Holy Spirit, vol 2. of Great Doctrines of the Bible (Wheaton: Crossway, 1997), 106–16. [Amazon | Logos]
  6. John Murray, “Union with Christ,” in Redemption Accomplished and Applied (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1955), 161–73. [Amazon | Google Books]
  7. Robert L. Reymond, “Union with Christ,” in A New Systematic Theology of the Christian Faith, 2nd ed. (Nashville: Nelson, 1998), 736–39. [Amazon | Logos]

Dictionary and Encyclopedia Articles

  1. P. Mark Achtemeier, “Union with Christ (Mystical Union),” Encyclopedia of the Reformed Faith, ed. Donald K. McKim and David F. Wright (Louisville, KY; WJK, 1992), 379–80. [Amazon | Logos]
  2. J. P. Baker, “Union with Christ,” New Dictionary of Theology, ed. Sinclair B. Ferguson, David F. Wright, and J. I. Packer (Downers Grove: IVP, 1988), 697–99. [Amazon | Logos]
  3. Alan Cairns, “Mystical Union,” Dictionary of Theological Terms: A Ready Reference of Over 800 Theological and Doctrinal Terms, 2nd ed. (Greenville, SC: Ambassador–Emerald, 1998), 237. [Amazon]
  4. Peter Dinzelbacher, “Mystical Union,” The Encyclopedia of Christianity, ed. Erwin Fahlbusch, Han Milič Lochman, John Mbiti, Jaroslav Pelikan, and Lukas Vischer, trans. Geoffrey William Bromiley (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003), 3:670–72. [Amazon | Logos]
  5. Henry W. Holloman, “Union with Christ,” Kregel Dictionary of the Bible and Theology: Over 500 Key Theological Words and Concepts Defined and Cross-Referenced (Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2005), 560–61. [Amazon]
  6. Robert P. Meye, “Union with Christ,” in “Spirituality,” Dictionary of Paul and His Letters, ed. Gerald F. Hawthorne, Ralph P. Martin, and Daniel G. Reid (Downers Grove: IVP, 1993), 433–36. [Amazon]
  7. Peter T. O’Brien, “Being ‘in Christ,’” in “Mysticism,” Dictionary of Paul and His Letters, ed. Gerald F. Hawthorne, Ralph P. Martin, and Daniel G. Reid (Downers Grove: IVP, 1993), 624. [Amazon]
  8. R. David Rightmire, “Union with Christ,” Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, ed. Walter A. Elwell (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1996), n.p. [Amazon | Logos]
  9. Mark A. Seifrid, “In Christ,” Dictionary of Paul and His Letters, ed. Gerald F. Hawthorne, Ralph P. Martin, and Daniel G. Reid (Downers Grove: IVP, 1993), 908–09. [Amazon]
  10. J. F. Walvoord, “Identification with Christ,” Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, 2nd ed., ed. Walter A. Elwell (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic), 588. [Amazon | Logos]
  11. Ben Witherington III, “The En Christō Formula,” in “Christ,” Dictionary of Paul and His Letters, ed. Gerald F. Hawthorne, Ralph P. Martin, and Daniel G. Reid (Downers Grove: IVP, 1993), 98–99. [Amazon]

Chapters or Sections in Systematic Theologies

  1. Louis Berkhof, “The Mystical Union,” in Systematic Theology, 4th ed. (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996), 447–53. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  2. G. C. Berkouwer, “‘Mystical’ Union with Christ” and “Union and Communion,” in The Church, trans. James E. Davison, vol. 14 of Studies in Dogmatics (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976), 84–91. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  3. James Montgomery Boice, “Union with Christ,” in Foundations of the Christian Faith: A Comprehensive and Readable Theology, rev. ed. (Downers Grove: IVP, 1986), 388–98. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  4. Wilhelmus à Brakel, “The Communion of Believers with Christ and with Each Other,” in The Christian’s Reasonable Service, trans. Bartel Elshout (Morgan, PA: Soli Deo Gloria, 1992), 2:86–106. [Amazon | Logos | Monergism]
  5. J. Oliver Buswell Jr., “The Mystical Union,” in  A Systematic Theology of the Christian Religion (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1963), 2:217–26. [Amazon]
  6. Lewis Sperry Chafer, “The Believer’s Position in Christ,” in Systematic Theology (Grand Rapids: Kregel, 1976), 4:92–100. [Amazon | CBD | Google Books | Logos]
  7. Robert Duncan Culver, “The Doctrine of Union with Christ,” in Systematic Theology: Biblical and Historical (Ross-shire, Great Britain: Christian Focus, 2005), 664–70. [Amazon | Logos]
  8. Robert Lewis Dabney, “Union to Christ,” in Systematic Theology (Carlisle, PN: Banner of Truth, 1996), 634–39. [Amazon | Logos]
  9. Millard J. Erickson, “Union with Christ,” in Christian Theology, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 1998), 961–67, 987. [Amazon | Logos]
  10. John Gill, “Of the Eternal Union of the Elect of God unto Him,” in A Complete Body of Doctrinal and Practical Divinity; or, A System of Evangelical Truths, Deduced from the Sacred Scriptures (London, 1796), 1:290–94. [Amazon | Google Books]
  11. Wayne A. Grudem, “Union with Christ,” in Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2004), 840–50. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  12. A. A. Hodge, “Union of Believers with Christ,” in Outlines of Theology (New York: Robert Carter, 1863), 369–74. [Amazon | Archive | Google Books |Logos]
  13. Charles Hodge, “Union with Christ,” in Systematic Theology (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1960), 3:104. [Amazon | Archive | Logos]
  14. Thomas C. Oden, “Union with Christ and Sanctification,” in Life in the Spirit, vol. 3 of Systematic Theology (San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1992), 205–57. [Amazon | Logos]
  15. Robert L. Reymond, “Union with Christ,” in A New Systematic Theology of the Christian Faith, 2nd ed. (Nashville: Nelson, 1998), 736–39. [Amazon | Logos]
  16. Morton H. Smith, “Union with Christ,” in Systematic Theology (Greenville, SC: Greenville Seminary Press, 1994), 2:491–98. [Amazon | Logos]
  17. Augustus H. Strong, “Union with Christ,” in Systematic Theology: A Compendium and Commonplace Book Designed for the Use of Theological Students (Philadelphia: American Baptist Publication Society, 1907), 3:795–809. [Amazon | Archive | Google Books | Logos]
  18. Charles R. Swindoll and Roy B. Zuck, “Discovering the New You in Christ: United with Christ in Sanctification,” in Understanding Christian Theology (Nashville: Nelson, 2003), 961–70. [Amazon | Logos]

Chapters or Sections in Biblical Theologies

  1. James D. G. Dunn, “Participation in Christ,” in The Theology of Paul the Apostle (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1998), 390–412. [Amazon | Google Books]
  2. Herman N. Ridderbos, “In Christ, with Christ: The Old and the New Man,” in Paul: An Outline of His Theology, trans. John Richard De Witt (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1997), 57–64. [Amazon | Google Books]

Chapters or Sections in Other Books

  1. Michael P. V. Barrett, “Union with Christ: The Security of the Gospel,” in Complete in Him: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying the Gospel (Greenville, SC: Ambassador–Emerald, 2000), 93–118. [Amazon]
  2. Bryan Chapell, “United for Life,” in Holiness by Grace: Delighting in the Joy That Is Our Strength (Wheaton: Crossway, 2001), 39–65. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  3. Bruce A. Demarest, “The Doctrine of Union with Christ,” in The Cross and Salvation: The Doctrine of Salvation,2 Foundations of Evangelical Theology, ed. John S. Feinberg (Wheaton: Crossway, 1997), 313–44. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  4. Richard B. Gaffin Jr., “Union with Christ,” “Union and Justification,” and “Union with Christ and the Resurrection,” in By Faith, Not by Sight: Paul and the Order of Salvation (Waynesboro, GA: Paternoster, 2006), 35–41, 58–68. [Amazon | Logos]
  5. Richard B. Gaffin Jr., “Union with Christ: Some Biblical and Theological Reflections,” in Always Reforming: Explorations in Systematic Theology, ed. A. T. B. McGowan, 271–88. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2006. [Amazon]
  6. Anthony A. Hoekema, “Union with Christ,” in Saved by Grace (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1994), 54–67. [Amazon]
  7. Michael Horton, “Union with Christ,” in Christ the Lord: The Reformation and Lordship Salvation, ed. Michael Horton (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1992), 107–15. [Amazon]
  8. Abraham Kuyper, “The Mystical Union with Immanuel,” in The Work of the Holy Spirit, trans. Henri de Vries (New York: Funk and Wagnalls, 1900), 333–37. [Amazon | Google Books | Logos]
  9. D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, “Union with Christ,” in God the Holy Spirit, vol 2. of Great Doctrines of the Bible (Wheaton: Crossway, 1997), 106–16. [Amazon | Logos]
  10. Robert A. Morey, “Union with Christ,” in Studies in the Atonement (Las Vegas, NV: Christian Scholars, 1989), 89–102. [Amazon | Logos]
  11. John Murray, “Union with Christ,” in Redemption Accomplished and Applied (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1955), 161–73. [Amazon | Google Books]
  12. Benjamin B. Warfield, “Communion with Christ: ‘Conferences’ in the Oratory of Princeton Seminary,” in Faith and Life (London: Longmans, 1916), 415–27. [Amazon | Archive | Logos]

Books

  1. J. Todd Billings, Calvin, Participation, and the Gift: The Activity of Believers in Union with Christ, Changing Paradigms in Historical and Systematic Theology (New York: Oxford University Press, 2008). [Amazon]
  2. Carl E. Braaten and Robert W. Jenson, eds., Union with Christ: The New Finnish Interpretation of Luther (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1998). [Amazon]
  3. Mark A. Garcia, Life in Christ: Union with Christ and Twofold Grace in Calvin’s Theology, Studies in Christian History and Thought (Waynesboro, GA: Paternoster, 2008). [Amazon]
  4. Michael S. Horton, Covenant and Salvation: Union with Christ (Louisville, KY: WJK, 2007). [Amazon]
  5. Kye Won Lee, Living in Union with Christ: The Practical Theology of Thomas F. Torrance, vol. 11 of Issues in Systematic Theology (New York: Peter Lang, 2003). [Amazon]
  6. Walter Marshall, The Gospel Mystery of Sanctification: Growing in Holiness by Living in Union with Christ, ed. Bruce H. McRae (Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2005). [Amazon | Google Books]3
  7. Samuel B. Schieffelin, Children of God and Union with Christ (New York: Board of Publication of the Reformed Church in America, 1896). [Amazon]
  8. Lewis B. Smedes, Union with Christ: A Biblical View of the New Life in Jesus Christ, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1983). [Amazon]
  9. Augustus H. Strong, Union with Christ: A Chapter of Systematic Theology (Philadelphia: American Baptist Publication Society, 1913). [Archive | Google Books]
  10. Dennis E. Tamburello, Union with Christ: John Calvin and the Mysticism of St. Bernard, Columbia Series in Reformed Theology (Louisville, KY: WJK, 2007). [Amazon | Google Books]
  11. J. Stephen Yuille, The Inner Sanctum of Puritan Piety: John Flavel’s Doctrine of Mystical Union with Christ (Grand Rapids: Reformation Heritage, 2007). [Amazon | RHB]

Journal and Magazine Articles

  1. Craig B. Carpenter, “A Question of Union with Christ? Calvin and Trent on Justification,” WTJ 64:2 (Fall 2002): 363–86. [Logos]
  2. Mark A. Garcia, “Imputation and the Christology of Union with Christ: Calvin, Osiander, and the Contemporary Quest for a Reformed Model,”WTJ 68:2 (Fall 2006): 219–51. [Logos]
  3. Don Garlington, “Imputation or Union with Christ? A Response to John Piper,” RAR 12:4 (Fall 2003): 45–102. [Logos]
  4. Michael S. Horton, “Union with Christ: The Double Cure,” Modern Reformation, July–August 2006, 6–11.
  5. S. Lewis Johnson Jr. “Studies in the Epistle to the Colossians, Part VII: The Complete Sufficiency of Union with Christ,” BSac 120:477 (January 1963): 13–23. [Logos]
  6. Kevin Woongsan Kang, “Justified by Faith in Christ: Jonathan Edwards’s Doctrine of Justification in Light of Union with Christ,” WTJ 65:2 (Fall 2003): 360. [Logos]
  7. Paul Louis Metzger, “Luther and the Finnish School: Mystical Union with Christ: An Alternative to Blood Transfusions and Legal Fictions,” WTJ 65:2 (Fall 2003): 201–13. [Logos]
  8. Vern S. Poythress, “Ezra 3, Union with Christ, and Exclusive Psalmody: Part 1,” WTJ 37:1 (Fall 1974): 74–94. [Logos]
  9. Vern S. Poythress, “Ezra 3, Union with Christ, and Exclusive Psalmody: Part 2,” WTJ 37:2 (Winter 1974): 218–35. [Logos]
  10. Donna R. Reinhard, “Ephesians 6:10–18: A Call to Personal Piety or Another Way of Describing Union with Christ?” JETS 48:3 (September 2005): 521–32. [Logos]
  11. Seng-Kong Tan, “Calvin’s Doctrine of Our Union with Christ,” Quodlibet Journal 5:4 (October 2003).

Conference Papers

  1. B. Dale Ellenburg, “‘In Christ’ in Ephesians” (paper presented at the 48th National Conference of the Evangelical Theological Society, Jackson, MS, November 21–23, 1996).
  2. J. L. Terveen, “Union with Christ: Pauline Christological Touchstone in Colossians 2:8–15″ (paper presented at the 54th National Conference of the Evangelical Theological Society, Toronto, ON, November 20–22, 2002).
  3. Robert B. Thieme III, “Union with Christ” (paper presented at the Northwest Regional Conference of the Evangelical Theological Society, Portland, OR, April 4, 1987).

Dissertations and Theses

  1. J. Todd Billings, “Calvin, Participation, and the Gift: The Activity of Believers in Union with Christ” (ThD diss., Harvard University, 2005). [Proquest]
  2. Farouk T. Boctor, “Union with Christ in the Work of Father Matta El-Meskeen” (ThM thesis, Westminster Theological Seminary, 1995).
  3. Mark D. Brock, “The Relationship of Spirit Baptism to Union with Christ” (ThM thesis, Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary, 2005).
  4. William Borden Evans, “Imputation and Impartation: The Problem of Union with Christ in Nineteenth Century American Reformed Theology” (PhD diss., Vanderbilt University, 1996). [Proquest]
  5. Bruce Alan Forsee, “The Role of Union with Christ in Sanctification” (PhD diss., Bob Jones University, 1985). [Proquest]
  6. Wayne D. Griffith, “The Influence of Union with Christ on the Relational Practice of Pastors” (DMin diss., Covenant Theological Seminary, 2005).
  7. Kevin Woongsan Kang, “Justified by Faith in Christ: Jonathan Edwards’ Doctrine of Justification in Light of Union with Christ” (PhD diss., Westminster Theological Seminary, 2003). [Proquest]
  8. Thomas L. Holtzen, “Union with God and the Holy Spirit: A New Paradigm of Justification” (PhD, diss. Marquette University, 2002). [Proquest]
  9. Marcus Peter Johnson, “Eating by Believing: Union with Christ in the Soteriology of John Calvin” (PhD diss., University of St. Michael’s College, 2007). [Proquest]
  10. Kevin Dixon Kennedy, “Union with Christ as Key to John Calvin’s Understanding of the Extent of the Atonement” (PhD diss., The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1999). [Proquest]
  11. Kevin E. Murphy, “The Mystical Union as Manifested by Saint John of the Cross and Saint Teresa of Avila” (MA thesis, University of Wyoming, 1966). [Proquest]
  12. Jonathan D. Paver, “Union with Christ in the Theology of Dr. John Owen (1616–1683): With Special Emphasis on Its Impact on Sanctification and a Christian’s Duty” (MA thesis, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, 1996).
  13. Robert Dean Peterson, “The Atonement as Mystical Union with Christ in the Thought of Horace Bushnell” (PhD diss., Saint Louis University, 1984). [Proquest]
  14. Mark Stephenson, “Clinging to God in the Night: A Reformed Critique of the Teachings of St. John of the Cross on Spiritual Darkness and Union with Christ and Applications for Ministry” (ThM thesis, Calvin Theological Seminary, 2005).
  15. Dennis Edward Tamburello, “Christ and Mystical Union: A Comparative Study of the Theologies of Bernard of Clairvaux and John Calvin” (PhD diss., The University of Chicago, 1990). [Proquest]
  16. Steven Walker, “Union with Christ and the Sacraments: Clarifying the Federal Vision Theology of Douglas Wilson and Peter Leithart” (MA thesis, Reformed Theological Seminary, 2007).

Last updated on March 22, 2009.

Footnotes

  1. See my review.
  2. See my review.
  3. The one on Google Books is the original, entitled The Gospel-Mystery of Sanctification, 12th ed. (New York, 1811).

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