The Lutheran's Confession
Helping Lutheran's Reclaim Their Witness
Does the law have any role in our life other than helping us to see our need for a Savior? Some people would like to say, “No.” They would contend that now that we have been called, gathered and enlightened by the Gospel, the law has served its purpose. It is replaced by the Gospel. What a disastrous impact this false teaching has had on the Church and our culture!
In Article VI of the Formula of Concord we confess, “[Christians] have been redeemed by the Son of God so that they may practice the law, day and night (Ps. 119:1). For our first parents did not live without the law even before the fall. This law of God was written into the heart, for they were created in the image of God.”
Christians want to meditate on God's law. As children of the kingdom of heaven we do not want to follow the pattern of the world that would “perform service to God on the basis of their pious imagination in an arbitrary way of their own choosing.” We look to the law of God to constantly light our way.
But the Law is not a tool that can coerce us by fear of punishment. We do not fear its threats even though it shows us our sin because our faith is not in our ability to keep God's law perfectly but in the perfect work of Christ that is shared with us through the means of grace.
The Gospel frees us to love our neighbor with the Law as our guide.