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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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Christian Virtue and “Meta-virtues”

Christian Virtue and “Meta-virtues”

(p.185) 8 Christian Virtue and “Meta-virtues”
Christian Character Formation

Gifford A. Grobien

Oxford University Press

The new character of the life in union with Christ and formed in the worship of the Church nourishes the fundamental virtues of faith and love. Having established the theological underpinnings of the Christian character and the community setting in which it comes into existence and grows, this chapter considers the virtues of this Christian character and argues for a particular understanding of virtue in view of Luther’s teaching on virtue and good works. Although Luther’s criticism of Aristotelian philosophy was so strong that he rarely even used the term “virtue,” he speaks of “good works” as inclinations that grow out of faith and love. Faith inclines a person toward worship, thanks, and praise of God. Love inclines Christians to see themselves in the place of their neighbors in accordance with the Golden Rule and to act according to the neighbor’s benefit.

Keywords:   virtue, habit, good works, faith, love, the Golden Rule

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