Law and Gospel

The Divine Command

What is the role of the law in the Christian life? This has been and remains today an issue that lies close to the heart of Christian ethics, as may be seen, for example, in the recent conversations between Lutheran and Reformed theologians in America. Superior biblical exegesis and improvements in historical research have facilitated […]

Deliberation, Holism, and Responsibility: Moral Life in the ELCA

A Special Calling in History [1] In 1998, in a series essay on the 21st century in Atlantic Monthly, Bill McKibben examines the population question and concludes as follows: The bottom-line argument goes like this: The next fifty years are a special time. They will decide how strong and healthy the planet will be for […]

Luther on the Self: A Work in Progress

[1] Reinhard Hütter has argued eloquently for a double center to Luther’s theology, suggesting that an Enlightenment view of “freedom” has badly distorted our understanding of the law in Luther’s work. George Lindbeck has similarly identified a kind of rabbinic appreciation for the law in Luther’s thinking, especially in his Catechisms, which represent the pastoral […]