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Christian Character FormationLutheran Studies of the Law, Anthropology, Worship, and Virtue$
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Gifford A. Grobien

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198746195

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198746195.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use.date: 16 May 2022

Christian Righteousness

Christian Righteousness

Justification by Faith and Ethical Formation

(p.1) 1 Christian Righteousness
Christian Character Formation

Gifford A. Grobien

Oxford University Press

This chapter presents an overview of the question of ethical formation in relation to the Christian teaching of justification by faith alone. Lutherans in particular are seen as struggling with this relation and are often viewed as struggling to present a developed moral theology. The distinction between law and gospel opens up language of “two kinds of righteousness,” which risks separating justification from good works. Both “justification” and ethics are related to righteousness. Their contradistinction has served systematic theology well in emphasizing the graciousness of justification. In moral theology, however, this contradistinction may lead to disjunction, when, in fact, Christian ethics cannot be understood theologically without vigorous roots in justification. Rather than setting justification and ethics separately or at odds, one could investigate how both the activity of God to reconcile humanity to himself, and also the active human response to this reconciliation, give full expression to “righteousness,” theologically understood.

Keywords:   justification, law and gospel, two kinds of righteousness, function/use of the law, love, agape

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