Law OR Gospel?

Part IV: Christology
Chapter 20 - Law and Gospel

Lutherans limit the scope of the Gospel too much, excluding any call to repentance or reproof of sin as law, not Gospel.  They say Gospel is indicatives only, no imperatives.  Anti-nomians didn't even go that far, and they appeal to Luther a lot.  They said the moral law is not a rule of life for the believer.

Samuel Rutherford called this "The Spirituall Antichrist."  When they assert there are no conditions to the Gospel, Rutherford flatly denies it - the Gospel requires good works to flow from the justified, as James says, not earning grace but flowing from grace.  The gospel is more than justification by faith alone.  The gospel kills when it is rejected, just like the law does - they are only absolutely opposed regarding justification.

This chapter is under the Christology section, because the Gospel is about Christ in us, transforming us.  Its scope is not only the work of Christ for us.  "Redemption without application is no redemption at all" (332).

I advocate the Reformed view strongly, as opposed to the Lutheran or anti-nomian views, both of which undercut the ongoing application of God's law to our lives.  The Reformed view includes opposing law to Gospel regarding justification, as we see in much of Paul's writings, especially Galatians.  No compromise on justification by faith alone, there.  But it also makes possible a positive application of the law (which we also see in Paul! - Rom 8:4; 13:9-10; 1 Tim 5:18; 2 Tim 3:16-17).

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