THE

SHORTER CATECHISM

EXPLAINED


QUESTION 32. What benefits do they that are effectually called partake of in this life?

ANSWER: They that are effectually called, do, in this life, partake of justification, adoption, sanctification, and the several benefits which, in this life, do either accompany or flow from them.


Q. 1. "What special benefits do the members of the invisible church (or such as are effectually called,) enjoy by Christ?"

A. They "enjoy union and communion with him, in grace and glory," Eph. 2:5, 6.[38]

Q. 2. "What is the communion in grace, which the members of the invisible church have with Christ?"

A. It "is their partaking of the virtue of his mediation, in their justification, adoption, sanctification, and whatever else in this life manifests their union with him," 1 Cor. 1:30.[39]

Q. 3. How are all these benefits connected with effectual calling?

A. By a connexion established in the eternal purpose and counsel of God, in which all these blessings or benefits are sweetly linked together, Rom. 8:30 -- "Whom he did predestinate, them he also called; and whom he called, them he also justified; and whom he justified, them he also glorified."

Q. 4. What is the connexion between effectual calling and justification?

A. In effectual calling, sinners, being united to Christ by faith, have thereby communion with him in his righteousness, for justification, Phil. 3:9.

Q. 5. How is adoption connected with effectual calling?

A. In virtue of the union which takes place in effectual calling, believers stand related to Christ, as having a new kind of interest in God as his Father; and consequently their Father in him, according to John 20:17 -- "I ascend to my Father, and your Father;" and Eph. 1:3 -- "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Q. 6. What is the blessed effect of this new kind of interest, which Christ, as the head of the body, has in God as his Father?

A. That, by the Spirit of adoption, we may call God our Father, in the right of Jesus Christ, our elder brother, Rom. 8:15 -- "Ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father."

Q. 7. How is effectual calling connected with sanctification?

A. In virtue of the union, which takes place in effectual calling, believers are related to Christ as the Lord their strength, their quickening, and influencing head, "who of God is made unto them -- sanctification," 1 Cor. 1:30.

Q. 8. What is the connexion between effectual calling and a blessed death?

A. In effectual calling, believers are united to Christ, by a union that cannot be dissolved by death, Rom. 8:38, 39.

Q. 9. What is the connexion between effectual calling and a happy resurrection?

A. In effectual calling, sinners are united to Christ, as a living and exalted head, and therefore their happy resurrection is absolutely secured in him, because he is "risen from the dead, and become the first fruits of them that slept," 1 Cor. 15:20.

Q. 10. What improvement should we make of the sweet connexion that is between all these benefits of which the effectually called are partakers?

A. We ought, through grace, in the use of all the means and ordinances of God's appointment, to give all diligence to make our calling and election sure; that having the knowledge of our justification, and adoption, by our sanctification, we may have the comfortable prospect of a happy death, and glorious resurrection, 2 Pet. 1:10, 11.


[38] Ibid., Question 65.

[39] Ibid., Question 69.


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