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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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Twofold Righteousness in Early Lutheranism

Twofold Righteousness in Early Lutheranism

(p.34) 3 Twofold Righteousness in Early Lutheranism
Christian Character Formation

Gifford A. Grobien

Oxford University Press

This chapter explains justification and the two kinds of righteousness among early Lutherans. The Lutheran Confessions speak of justification as both forensic and regenerative. Forgiveness on account of Christ is proclaimed to hearers, and in that proclamation faith is created to receive the forgiveness as it is announced. Faith is no power or quality in itself, but receives the merits of Christ. Thus, Christ himself gives form to faith. Christ’s merits forgive through imputation and regenerate to new spiritual life. In this new life and its accompanying qualities, a Christian is empowered to act righteously. This imputed and imparted righteousness is commonly called the two kinds of righteousness, taught by Luther at various points both early and later in his career. This conception of two kinds of righteousness suggests that ethical progress—the growth of the regenerate life—develops out of forensic justification, and is compatible with it

Keywords:   justification, faith, Christ, regeneration, two kinds of righteousness, Martin Luther

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