Holy Spirit: Gospel Sanctifies in Society (1 of 2)

Part 1 of a 2 part series. From Christians in Society: Luther, the Bible, and Social Ethics by William H. Lazareth, © 2001 Augsburg Fortress. Used by permission. For part two, click here.

[1] This chapter will summarize the ethical dimensions and/or implications of Luther’s multifaceted doctrine of justification by faith. While virtually all of the component parts have already been developed in the previous three chapters, the way in which they are coherently integrated within Luther’s theological ethics has been the source of theological and ecclesiastical debate both during and since the Reformation, most especially in the twentieth century (cf. chapter 1 and Afterword).

[2] In our own documented review of Luther’s theological ethics, we have systematically elaborated his highly influential view of God’s twofold rule by law and gospel of both fallen and redeemed humankind within the world’s antagonistic two kingdoms. In Luther’s reading of biblical and especially Pauline eschatology, the Triune God rules all of life by and for righteousness through the power of his sovereign Word. This takes place historically through the continual and dynamic and opposing interaction of God’s law and gospel, each with its own two distinctive complementary functions.

[3] As Creator and Preserver, God employs the law’s theological function to judge the willful and perennial misuse of humanity’s original righteousness in the primal creation (justitia originalis), cf. chapter 5, and its political function to prompt the civil righteousness of rational persons in the realm of fallen creation (justitia civilis), cf. chapter 6. As Redeemer and Sanctifier, God is at the very same time employing the gospel’s salvific function in the cross to reckon the alien righteousness of Christ to faithful persons in the realm of regenerated redemption (iustitia Christi), cf. chapter 7, and its ethical function in the Spirit to empower the Christian righteousness of loving persons to break out into the realm of renewed creation (iustitia Christiana), expounded here in chapter 8.

[4] We have already set the stage for this theological ethical conclusion with our earlier preliminary discussions of God’s command of love before and after the fall in the world’s successive states of pristine (integritatis) and sinful (corruptionis) creation (chapter 3). It remains for us now in this final chapter to support our academic claim that the biblically congruent climax of Luther’s theological ethic is better expressed by God’s gospel than by the law. It calls for reinstatement of God’s sanctifying love command (mandatum) as the second or parenetic use of the gospel (usus pareneticus evangelii) rather than the later designated “third use of the law” (tertius usus legis; see Formula of Concord, VI, in Afterword). It would crown Luther’s preferable evangelical (rather than legalistic or antinomian) approach to the Christian’s ethical obedience to God’s primal will in creation. Our proposal builds exclusively on Luther’s societal application of God’s primal command of love, the Spirit’s ecclesial and vocational sanctification, and the renewed dominion-sharing service (Gen. 1:28) of the universal priesthood of baptized Christians within the divinely mandated ordinances of church and society.1 It will thereby also fulfill our original paradigm and pledge (Preface) to demonstrate the increasingly acknowledged “reconciled diversity” within the ecclesially complementary forces of love and law (Lutheran-Reformed) along with justification and sanctification (Lutheran-Roman Catholic) for more coordinated Christian community involvement.

God’s Command Renewed

[5] As we return to Luther’s Lectures on Galatians (1535), the focus now shifts in the latter half of Paul’s text from doctrine to ethics and thereby in trinitarian plenitude from what God in Christ has done for us and our gracious salvation, to what God in the Spirit does in and through us for our neighbors’ service. In simultaneous interaction, the twofold divine action is historically distinguishable but eternally inseparable, for the Lord is a “glowing oven of love” (gluehende Backofen).

[6] The evangelical foundation remains, of course, “the most joyous of all doctrines: . . . In Christ all sin is conquered, killed, and buried; and righteousness remains the victor and the ruler eternally.”2 After all, this is “the chief doctrine of the Christian faith,” because it witnesses to the gospel promise that “by this joyous exchange with us (froehliche Wechsel), He took upon Himself our sinful person and granted us His innocent and victorious Person.”3

[7] Without in any way compromising the gospel’s unique salvific function in receptive (or passive) faith, Luther follows Paul in moving on now to its ethical or parenetic function in active (or transmitted) love. Faith and love are both divinely intended to be essential in the bi-dimensional Christian life (vita Christiana): “Faith alone justifies. But once we have been justified by faith, we enter the active life . . . in works of love toward the neighbor.”4

[8] Paul’s advocacy of the Holy Spirit’s calling to remove faithful Christians from “the curse of the law” to the “law of love” (lex caritatis) is clear and compelling. Luther first lays the negative foundation for the ethical “office” of the Holy Spirit (officium Spiritus Sancti), by following Paul’s allegorical analogies in Galatians 3­4 of the interim (custodial) tenure and non-salvific role that is assigned by God to the law of wrath in contradistinction to the gospel of Christ. (“What then is the function of the Law? Transgression.”) Luther is untiring in his insistence, here as elsewhere, that “such a proper distinction between the function of the Law and that of the Gospel keeps all theology in its correct use.”5 Indeed, Luther draws the line very sharply: “Whatever is outside Christ and the promise–with no exceptions, whether it is the Ceremonial Law or the Moral Law or the Decalogue, whether it be divine or human–is consigned to sin.”6

[9] Nevertheless, this radical contrast between law and gospel, or works and faith, pertains only with regard to eternal salvation (coram Deo); for “apart from the issue of justification (extra locum iustificationis), no one can adequately praise true good works.”7 The challenge is to make their proper distinction in daily life: “Anyone who would know this art well would deserve to be called a theologian.”8 It is an art based on the eschatological divide between the old age in Adam and the new age in Christ (Romans 5), yet also radically complicated by the historical reality that the Christian coinhabits both ages simultaneously as both righteous and sinful: “Therefore a Christian is divided into two times. To the extent that he is flesh, he is under the Law; to the extent that he is Spirit, he is under the Gospel.”9

[10] Consequently, Luther insists in 1535 that one may not draw the simplistic and dangerous inference that “the Law is worthless” at the expense of “both uses of the Law.” That was precisely the 1525 error of the “fanatical spirits who prompted the peasants’ revolt a decade ago by saying that the freedom of the Gospel absolves men from all laws” (versus the law’s valid political function).10 No, societal and sinful Christians remain in lifelong need of the law, which is “good and necessary,” insofar as they act civilly in society (coram hominibus), and “most important and proper,” insofar as they act sinfully before God (coram Deo).11

[11] In Galatians 3, Luther concludes his analysis of Paul’s limited analogy of the law as “our custodian until Christ came” (3:24) by asking rhetorically, “But what does the Law do in those who have been justified through Christ?” His paradoxical response: At once both righteous and sinful before God, a Christian is at once free from the law in Christ as already righteous but also bound by the law in one’s self as still sinful.

[12] If you consider Christ and what he has accomplished, there is no Law anymore. Coming at a predetermined time, He truly abolished the entire Law. . . . But the law in our members is at war with the Law of our mind (Rom. 7:23), and it interferes so that we cannot take hold of Christ perfectly. . . . So far as we are concerned, then, we are partly free of the Law and partly under the Law. With Paul we serve the Law of God with our mind, but with our flesh we serve the law of sin (Rom. 7:25).12

[13] Luther can also speak of the simultaneity of the Christian’s righteousness and sinfulness either vertically, from the eschatological perspective of qualitative justification (totus-totus), or horizontally, from the historical perspective of quantitative sanctification (partim-partim). That is, one and the same Christian is (as justified) totally sinful in self and totally righteous before God (reputative totaliter iusti et revera totaliter peccatores coram Deo), while yet also (as sanctified) partially sinful and partially righteous within society (partim iustus et partim peccator coram hominibus). Therefore any Christian can and does morally improve (progressus) and develop into more responsible service under the vocational dimension of God’s twofold rule (2 Cor. 3:18). There is where the already/not yet dialectic of God’s inbreaking reign is painfully enacted within every newly baptized Christian. Through our baptismal incorporation into God’s kingdom, we are already totally regenerated by the Spirit’s grace but only partially renewed by the Spirit’s gifts. Our residual sin is no longer reigning (peccatum regnatum) but reigned (peccatum regnans) by God’s indwelling Holy Spirit (Rom. 6:12).

[14] Our paradoxical condition as morally imperfect Christians is therefore not dualistically static. Having spiritually died in Baptism, we now ethically “walk in newness of life” (Rom. 6:4-6). So there is, teaches Luther, a continual growth in grace, since “we have received the first fruits of the Spirit (Rom. 8:23).” Because of the “remnants of sin” within us, however, we will need to experience lifelong “daily mortification (mortificatio) of the flesh, the reason and our powers, and the renewal (vivificatio) of our mind (2 Cor. 4:16).” Reborn Christians will receive daily “new impulses” for actualizing sanctification; there is certainly “true renovation of the forgiven.” Consequently, Christians may boldly live by hope that “we have the first fruits of the Spirit, and that we shall be completely leavened when this sinful body is destroyed and we arise new with Christ, Amen.”13

[15] It is imperative to underscore that the Christian’s daily progress (and regress) is not aimed at demonstrable ethical perfection (pietism) but rather toward hidden spiritual fidelity to the loving will of God (piety). These are not our own autonomous works; they are the Spirit’s “fruits” that evidence fulfilling renewal by the indwelling Christ. After all, the apostolic admonition is that we “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 3:18). That is, our growth is by way of God’s grace and not by our works; we grow theonomously more and more (and not autonomously less and less) in our total dependence on God’s unmerited favor. Moral autonomy is doctrinal heresy. As a “temple of the Holy Spirit who is within you” (1 Cor. 6:19), the Christian moral agent is, in the last analysis, “I, yet not I, but Christ in me” (Gal. 2:20). During our daily sanctification, the indwelling Holy Spirit expels our persisting sinfulness through “purification, expurgation, and recuperation” (purificatio, expurgatio, et sanatio).

[16] As Luther continually insisted, the Christian is always in statu viatoris, that is, on the way to becoming the saint that proleptically one has already been declared to be in Baptism and is already in heaven (Col. 3:3).

[17] Our justification is not yet finished. It is in the process of being made; it is neither something which is actually completed nor is it essentially present. It is still under construction.

[18] This life, therefore, is not godliness but the process of becoming godly, not health but getting well, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not now what we shall be, but we are on the way. The process is not yet finished, but it is actively going on. This is not the goal but it is the right road. At present, everything does not gleam and sparkle, but everything is being cleansed.14

[19] Luther concludes his analysis of Galatians 3 by once again clarifying that the unity and equality that Christians already enjoy “in Christ, that is, in the matter of salvation” (“neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female”) is graciously based on “the garment of Christ, which we put on in Baptism” (coram Deo).15 There is, of course, “a distinction among persons in the Law and in the sight of the world (coram hominibus); and there must be one there, but not in the sight of God, where all men are equal, for ‘all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God’ (Rom. 3:23).” Therefore Luther’s is also not an egalitarian liberation ethic, but a gracious liberation faith. He consciously counters “the fanatical spirits” in his own day with confident trust in our intimate union with the risen Lord: “Christ and faith must be completely joined.” By actively renewing and rededicating our complementary and diversified gifts of the Spirit, “Christ must be, live, and work in us. However, He lives and works in us, not speculatively, but really, with presence and with power.”16

[20] In Galatians 4, it is an affirmation of biblical faith for Luther that “God has sent the Spirit of His Son into your hearts” (4:6). This takes place through the church’s proclamation of the life-transforming gospel.

[21] This happens when through the spoken Word we receive fire and light, by which we are made new and different, and by which a new judgment, new sensations, and new drives arise in us. This change and new judgment are not the work of human reason or power; they are the gift and accomplishment of the Holy Spirit, who comes with the preached Word, purifies our hearts by faith, and produces spiritual salvation in us.17

[22] The preeminent “fruit of the Spirit” is twofold: to trust in Christ for salvation and to live for neighbors in service. On the one hand, there is Christian faith, where we are lords of all. “Let us be satisfied with the testimony of our conscience, by which we know as a certainty that it is a divine gift when we not only believe in Jesus Christ but proclaim and confess Him openly in the presence of the world.”18 It is biblical truth that “no one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except by the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor. 12:3).

[23] On the other hand, there is Christian love, where we are called to become servants of all. “We also discipline ourselves in piety and avoid sin as much as we can.”19 Because “Christ did not establish a new Law to follow the old Law of Moses,” there are no new rules and regulations of conduct to obey, and thereby to demonstrate to the world that one is a Christian.20 In restoring the personalized preeminence of God’s primal command on Maundy Thursday, Christ declared simply, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; even as I have loved you, that you also love one another” (John 13:34). Through his freely willed death on the cross (obedientia passiva et activa), our exemplar Jesus Christ uniquely revealed and fulfilled God’s forgiving and renewing will for humankind.

[24] The world still scoffs, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” (John 1:46)–or the followers of the Nazarene? It cannot see ordinary things being done by extraordinary saints without the eyes of faith. These deeds are acceptable to God “when they are done in faith, a joyful spirit, obedience and gratitude to God.”21

[25] Only in extremes may the cost of discipleship lead to suffering and death in taking up one’s own cross. In opposing the gospel-crusading Peasants’ Rebellion (1525), for example, Luther counseled those who took up the sword in the name of Christ, “Suffering! Suffering! Cross! Cross! This and nothing else is the Christian law!” Then the Christian martyr’s arcane allegiance becomes most publicly transparent. “In a time of tribulation or of the cross and the confession of faith (which is the proper and principal work of believers), when one must either forsake wife, children, property, and life or deny Christ, then it becomes evident that by the power of the Holy Spirit we confess the faith, Christ, and His Word.”22

[26] Through these normally undramatic but faithful and loving external signs, however, every Christian “may believe for a certainty that he is in a state of grace and that his person with its works is pleasing to God.”23 Moreover, faithful Christians may freely throw themselves into the vocational service of others and confidently trust in God’s loving care. “It is a great comfort when Paul says here that the Spirit of Christ, sent by God into our hearts, cries: ‘Abba! Father!’ And when he says in Rom. 8:26 that He helps us in our weakness and intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words.”24

[27] This is “our foundation” for overcoming “the monster of uncertainty” and spiritual assaults (Anfechtungen) when engaging in Christian social action: “The Gospel commands us to look, not at our own good deeds or perfection but at God Himself as He promises, and at Christ Himself, the Mediator.”25 With an air of accomplished finality, Luther declares: “This is the conclusion of Paul’s argument. From here until the end of the epistle he will not argue very much but will set forth commandments about morality.”26

[28] In Galatians 5, Paul begins again with a spirited “defense of the doctrine of faith and of Christian liberty against the false apostles’ advocating circumcision for Gentile Christians. He champions the law-free freedom of grace for which ‘Christ has set us free'” (Gal. 5:1). This is the gospel’s “freedom from the eternal wrath of God. Where? In the conscience.” It is therefore not essentially political, “but theological or spiritual freedom.” It is an eternal liberation “by which we are made safe and free through Christ from the Law, from sin, death, the power of the devil, hell, etc. . . . and in their place it establishes righteousness, peace, life, etc.” Central is the evangelical conviction, prompted in response to the party of Christian Judaizers in Galatia, that “this freedom is granted to us, not on account of the Law or our righteousness but freely, on account of Christ.”27

[29] This elucidation of the salvific function of the gospel is coupled with a citation of the theological function of the law. For Luther, to trust in one’s circumcision is to distrust in one’s Savior before God (coram Deo). “Trust in works and righteousness on the basis of works causes Christ to be of no advantage.” If one admits to the religious significance of circumcision, one is in principle “bound to keep the whole Law” (5:3). For before God, grace and law are mutually exclusive ways of salvation. “Therefore anyone who is a founder or a worshiper of the doctrine of works suppresses the Gospel, nullifies the death and victory of Christ, obscures His sacraments and their proper use, and is a denier, an enemy, and a blasphemer of God and of all His promises and blessings.”28

[30] Most pointedly, once Christ is the end of the law, that also excludes the redemptive value of all of Moses. This is declared to be Paul’s “final conclusion: ‘You must give up either Christ or the righteousness of the Law.'”29 Before God, the law of Moses must bow to the gospel of Christ. “Therefore we do not allow ourselves to be oppressed by any law of Moses at all. We grant, of course, that we should read and listen to Moses as one who predicted Christ and witnessed to Him, also that we should look to him for examples of outstanding laws and moral precepts; but we do not grant him an authority over our conscience.”30

[31] In the face of the salvific dichotomy between grace and law, Paul contends that “through the Spirit, by faith, we wait for the hope of righteousness” (5:5). The tension between faith in a past event and hope for a future consummation is seen by Luther as a further biblical witness to the lifelong pilgrimage about which the “simultaneously righteous and sinful” Christian (simul justus et peccator) confesses: “I am righteous here with an incipient righteousness; and that in this hope I am strengthened against sin and look for the consummation of perfect righteousness in heaven.”31 Hence, Luther concludes: “We have indeed begun to be justified by faith, by which we have also received the first fruits of the Spirit; and the mortification of our flesh has begun. But we are not yet perfectly righteousness. Our being justified perfectly still remains to be seen, and this is what we hope for. Thus as righteousness does not yet exist in fact (in re), but it still exists in hope (in spe).”32

[32] Luther goes on to encourage, “These things are correctly understood when they are put into practice.” Similarly, Paul goes on to develop our own chief concern in this chapter, namely, the second or parenetic function of the gospel–“faith working through love” (5:6). Radically shifting gears, forward from the “office of Christ” to the “office of the Spirit” (and not back to the “office of Moses”), Luther teaches that “in this passage Paul is not dealing with the questions of what faith is or of what avails in the sight of God; he is not discussing justification. He has already done that very thoroughly. But in a brief summary, he draws a conclusion about the Christian life” (coram hominibus).33

[33] “Faith works”: The love of God received by faith is at once conveyed by faith to needy neighbors (the lost, the last, and the least) in society. In the power of the Spirit, a living faith “arouses and motivates good works through love.” This excludes not only the works-righteous but also the lazy, the idle, and the sluggish. “‘Not so, you wicked men’ says Paul. ‘It is true that faith alone justifies, without works; but I am speaking about genuine faith, which, after it has justified, will not go to sleep but is active through love.'”34 Luther joyfully declares that “Paul is describing the whole of the Christian life in this passage: inwardly it is faith toward God, and outwardly it is love or work toward one’s neighbor.” Love is provided its “impulse and motivation” by our confident trust in Jesus Christ, who is both God’s gracious gift for us to accept and God’s ethical exemplar for us to emulate.35

[34] At this point, there follow a number of apostolic admonitions and exhortations about good morals (parenesis). They address Christians both in the flesh as the goading of law and in the Spirit as the guiding of love. “For the apostle makes it a habit, after the teaching of faith and the instruction of consciences, to introduce some commandments about morals, by which he exhorts the believers to practice the duties of godliness toward one another. . . . [Christians] teach morals and all the virtues better than any philosophers, because they add faith.” Luther is building here on his earlier explanation:

[35] The New Testament properly consists of promises and exhortations, just as the Old Testament properly consists of laws and threats. For in the New Testament the gospel is preached, which is nothing else but a message in which the Spirit and grace are offered with a view to the remission of sins, which has been obtained for us by Christ crucified.

[36] Then follow exhortations, in order to stir up those who are already justified and have obtained mercy, so that they may be active in the fruits of the freely given righteousness and of the Spirit, and may exercise love by good works and bravely bear the cross and other tribulations of the world. This is the sum of the whole New Testament.36

[37] To add faith to morals is what the distinctive lifestyle of Christians is all about. It is the parenetic use of the gospel (usus pareneticus evangelii) that ensures the inseparability of “promises and exhortations” in the Christian’s mode of sanctification (in loco sanctificationis). Following Paul very closely here, Luther will not resort to either the legalism of works-righteousness or the libertinism of unrighteousness. Paul insists, “for you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love be servants of one another” (Gal. 5:13). Luther deplores “the danger on both sides.” Legalists revert to the bondage of the law; antinomians capitulate to the tyranny of the flesh. Regarding the latter, the anti-Roman Reformer feels at least indirectly responsible for the liberated “people of Gomorrah,” the lax Lutherans who are now unwilling to be ruled “by the gospel of peace.” “They all boast of being evangelicals and boast of their Christian freedom. Meanwhile, however, they give in to their desires and turn to greed, sexual desire, pride, envy, etc. No one performs his duty faithfully; no one serves another by love. This misbehavior often makes me so impatient that I would want such ‘swine that trample pearls underfoot’ (Matt. 7:6) still to be under the tyranny of the pope.”37

[38] Luther struggles to make clear the qualitative difference between Christian freedom and sinful license. For Christians to be liberated from the “curse of the law” (Rom. 10:4) means “faith added”–to be renewed in heart and mind for obeying God’s primal command(ment) of love (John 13:34). Persons in God’s holy and loving image are being recreated to transmit God-like love to others. Persons are not created with God’s blanket permission to do “whatever we please” as a thinly disguised “opportunity for the flesh.” (5:13).38 The gospel is always against the law (contra legem) but never against God’s primal command of love (pro mandatum).

[39] Christians should remember that “while they are free before God before the curse of the Law,” nevertheless, in the Spirit “the apostle imposes an obligation on them through this law of mutual love in order to keep them from abusing their freedom (Rom. 8:3-6). . . . Therefore let everyone strive to do his duty in his calling and to help his neighbor in whatever way he can.”39

[40] God’s loving command is directed to our renewed will (voluntas renatus), not to our feelings, and requires radical obedience as our response. Moreover, our love is to be directed most especially toward “one of the least of those who are members of my family” (Matt. 25:40), for whom Christ died. Nor should we generally expect the world’s adulation. Christians love because they are loving, not because their neighbors are particularly lovable. “You will find many mockers so inhuman and spiteful that they do not refer to the objects of their malice by their proper names, but describe them with some contemptuous nickname like ‘Cockeyed’ or ‘Hooknose’ or ‘Big-mouth.’ In short, the world is the kingdom of the devil, which, in its supreme smugness, despises faith and love and all the words and deeds of God.”40

[41] Luther freely acknowledges that “it is difficult and dangerous to teach that we are justified by faith without works and yet to require works at the same time. Unless the ministers of Christ are faithful and prudent here and are ‘stewards of the mysteries of God’ (1 Cor. 4:1), who rightly divide the Word of truth (2 Tim. 2:15), they will immediately confuse faith and love at this point. Both topics, faith and works, must be carefully taught and emphasized, but in such a way that they both remain within their limits.”41

[42] As the baptized believer’s best ethical guide, Luther advocates the Pauline admonition, “walk by the Spirit” for you are “led by the Spirit and not under the law” (5:16,19). Christian freedom has love as its content and the gifts of the Spirit as its context. For imperfect Christians “on the way” to becoming true Christians, the ethical imperative “walk by the Spirit” is always based on the prior gracious indicative (“led by the Spirit”). Thereby, baptized Christians become on earth what God has already accepted them to be in heaven: saints.

[43] In the Christian’s faithful union with the indwelling risen Christ, the Spirit accompanies the Lord to nurture baptismal regeneration with ethical renovation (Spiritus sanctificans). Yet no moralistic or perfectionistic sanctification is advocated here by either Paul or Luther. Self-improvement bows to the Spirit’s eschatological renewal of death and new life in Christ. Granting the burden of the persistence of sin in the life of the redeemed, the apostolic exhortation is to “receive the gift and the first fruits of the Spirit here (Rom. 8:23) . . . and begin to love.”42 What the law demands but never produces, the Spirit promises and always delivers (2 Cor. 3:18).

[44] We are called and led by the Spirit (“grace”) to join in the ongoing struggle against the flesh (“sin”). To walk by the Spirit means that “by the Spirit you battle against the flesh and follow your spiritual desires.”43 The Christian life requires taking sides between “two contrary guides in you, the Spirit and the flesh.”44 This does not generally mean speaking in tongues or sexual desire, but rather imperfect God-centeredness or total self-centeredness. “If we look at the flesh we are sinners; if we look at the Spirit we are righteousness. We are partly sinners and partly righteous. Yet our righteousness is more abundant than our sin, because the holiness and righteousness of Christ, our Propitiator, vastly surpasses the sin of the entire world.”45

[45] Therefore the apostle has established this as a general exhortation or “rule for the saints: that they should be servants of one another through love, that they may bear one another’s weaknesses and burdens (6:2), and that they should forgive one another’s trespasses (Matt. 6:12-15).”46

[46] When faithful and loving Christians walk by the Spirit and fight back against the flesh, they certainly live under God’s command of love. However, “you will not be under the Law.” Baptized to die and eventually rise with Christ, Christians are “partly flesh and partly Spirit, but in such a way that the Spirit rules and the flesh is subordinate, that righteousness is supreme and sin is a servant.”47 By God’s baptismal grace (Rom. 6:4), the sin that once ruled (peccatum regnans) is now itself ruled (peccatum regnatum) within our new life in Christ. Saints are forgiven sinners in the lifelong process of renewal (iustitia actualis).

[47] Luther recalls poignantly that, as a monk, he “often had a heartfelt wish to see the life and conduct of one saintly man.” He imagined “the sort of saint who lived in the desert and abstained from food and drink, existing on nothing but roots and cold water.” He derived this notion about “unnatural saints” from the sophists and early church fathers before he learned about “ordinary saints” from the apostles.

[48] But now that the light of truth is shining, we see with utter clarity that Christ and the apostles designate as saints, not those who lead a celibate life, who are abstemious, or perform other works that give the appearance of brilliance or grandeur but those who, being called by the Gospel and baptized, believe that they have been sanctified and cleansed by the blood and death of Jesus. Thus whenever Paul writes to Christians, he calls them saints, sons and heirs of God, etc.

[49] Therefore saints are all those who believe in Christ, whether men or women, whether slaves or free. And they are saints, on the basis, not of their own works but of the works of God; which they accept by faith, such as the Word, the sacraments, the suffering, death, resurrection, and victory of Christ, the sending of the Holy Spirit, etc. In other words, they are saints, not by active holiness but by passive holiness.48

[50] Luther finds such authentic Christian saints “hidden” among persons in all stations of life. While their lives are “hidden with Christ in God” (Col. 3:3), they quietly confess their redemption in Christ and “do their duty in their callings on the basis of the command of the Word of God.” They are godly, however weak, because they resist the desires of the flesh and do not gratify them. When they sin they seek God’s forgiveness, and when they prevail they sing God’s praise. They struggle with sin continually in their vocations and obtain the victory by that very struggle. Indeed, “justified and sanctified by His death . . . all believers in Christ are saints. . . . Our work on the farm, or in the garden, in the city, or in our home, in battle or in government–what else is it but the work of a “mask” (larva) through which God wants to give us his good gifts? These occupations are the Lord’s masks beneath which He hides Himself and through which He accomplishes His purposes.”49

[51] Commenting pastorally and profusely on each of the vices and virtues of character cited in Galatians by Paul (5:19-24), Luther makes one general observation worthy of special note: “Paul does not say ‘works of the Spirit,’ as he had earlier said ‘works of the flesh,’ but he adorns these Christian virtues with a worthier title and calls them ‘fruit of the Spirit.’ For they bring very great benefits and fruit, because those who are equipped with them give glory to God and by these virtues invite others to the teaching and faith of Christ.”50

[52] By way of concluding this commentary on the “fruit of the Spirit” that characterizes one’s vocational sanctification in Christ, Luther strongly echoes Paul’s dictum: “Against these there is no law” (5:24). The reason: “The Law is not laid down for the just” (1 Tim. 1:9). It also explains why the latter portion of Galatians, as other Pauline epistles, is filled not with rules and regulations but exclusively with loving admonitions, exhortations, and advice for the faithful Christian’s ethical guidance (usus parenesis evangelii). It serves to confirm Luther’s teaching on the ethical function of the gospel for Christians insofar as they are already righteous.

[53] For the just man lives as though he had need of no Law to admonish, urge, and constrain him; but spontaneously, without any legal constraint, he does more than the Law requires. And so the Law cannot accuse and condemn the just; nor can it disturb their consciences. It tries, of course, but when Christ has been grasped by faith, He dispels the Law with all its terrors and threats. Thus it is completely abrogated for them, first in the Spirit, but then also in works.51

[54] In Galatians 6, Paul symbolically designates the normative command of love by which Christians in the Spirit are eschatologically “to bear one another’s burdens,” as the loving “law of Christ” (6:2), in fulfilled contradistinction to the law of Moses. Luther agrees in so many words: “The Law of Christ (lex Christi) is the law of love.” He explains, “For after redeeming and regenerating us and constituting us as His church, Christ did not give us any new law except the law of mutual love (John 13:34).”52 This fulfills the Johannine promise, “the law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:16). Throughout all the God-ordained structures of human life, whether in the institutional church, the state, the family, the arts, the military, business, and every other mandated station of society, there are daily neighbors to be loved, justice to be done, and burdens to be borne. Luther reminds Christians that they are called to “let love be teacher and mistress, to regulate the laws and to turn them toward moderation” as their Spirit-empowered Christian righteousness breaks out into the temporal realm of civil righteousness, voluntarily going the “second mile” (Matt. 5:41). “Here let us not be unkind and severe; but following the example of Christ, who supports and hears such people, let us also support and bear them.”53

[55] So it is, contends Luther, deep in the midst of church and community–“in any area of life”–that we Christians are called to fulfill the loving law of Christ. Our deepest motivation: “The love of Christ urges us on” (2 Cor. 5:14) to provide a public “testimony of faith” (testimonium fidei). Moreover, the primary place where this service is to be enacted is in one’s daily vocation. At the end of every day and life, the Christian’s confession should be: “With my utmost faithfulness and diligence I have carried out the work of my calling as God has commanded me to; and therefore I know that this work, performed in faith and obedience to God, is pleasing to Him.”54

Vocational Sanctification

[56] We have seen consistently in Luther that justification and sanctification represent the bi-dimensional character of God’s reckoned, and effective righteousness for and in us. Whether developed in terms of pardon and power, birth and growth, or declaration and actualization, it is the lifelong renewal of the believer’s regenerated life in Christ that is here at stake. Various interrelated elements of our being, indivisibly accounted and made righteous, can be theologically distinguished but never existentially separated. Against legalists, Luther emphasized the nuanced distinctions; against libertines, he stressed the essential unity. We have documented both.

[57] Luther has little patience with those church leaders who were so preoccupied with eternal salvation in Christ (vita aeterna) that they virtually disregarded their Christian social responsibility for the very world in which Christ loved and for which Christ died. Faith in the Triune God must couple both the justifying and sanctifying dimensions of the twofold rule of God in the world, exclusively otherworldly and socially irrelevant church leaders notwithstanding.

[58] They may be fine Easter preachers, but they are very poor Pentecost preachers, for they do not preach de sanctificatione et vivficatione Spiritus Sancti, “about the sanctification by the Holy Spirit,” but solely about the redemption of Jesus Christ, although Christ (whom they extol so highly, and rightly so) is Christ, that is, he has purchased redemption from sin and death so that the Holy Spirit might transform us out of the old Adam into new men–we die unto sin and live unto righteousness, beginning and growing here on earth and perfecting it beyond as St. Paul teaches (Rom. 6­7).55

[59] Luther never viewed this sanctification in post-Enlightenment terms of humanistic perfectability through moral improvement. Rather, he remained biblically realistic in advocating the need for remissio et sanatio, that is, for a forgiven sinner’s lifelong pardon and renewal by the Holy Spirit. As we have seen, the perpetual promise of growth is not in moral self but in God’s grace (2 Pet. 3:18); that is, paradoxically, the more we grow, the more dependent we become on the gifts granted by the ethical governance of the indwelling Holy Spirit, who always accompanies the church’s holy Word and blessed sacraments. Strengthened by the Lord’s Supper, our new life in the Spirit “continually develops and progresses.” Hence Luther taught: “It is well-known that the new obedience in the justified brings with it the daily growth of the heart in the Spirit who sanctifies us, namely, that after the battle against remnants of false opinions about God and against doubt, the Spirit goes on to govern the actions of the body so that lust is cast out and the mind becomes accustomed to patience and other moral virtues.”56

[60] In his treatise On the Councils and the Church (1539), Luther maintains that Christians, eschatologically, are a holy people who are “to remain on earth until the end of the world. . . . They love eternal life as their true fatherland and life, while they must yet remain and tarry here in exile.”57 Just as individual Christians are “at once righteous and sinful” (simul iustus et peccator), so too the church is “at once holy and sinful” (simul sancta et peccatrix). Therefore Luther characteristically treated sanctification both personally and corporately. It depicts the communal life of the baptized in the lifelong process of actualizing our gifted sanctification here on earth. “Saints” are always described in the plural in Scripture. This is true, whether they are gathered in worship as the church called out (ek-klesis) of this world or participating in service as the church sent into the world.

[61] On the one hand, Luther first analyzes the chief marks of God’s holy and catholic people, the church (ecclesia sancta catholica): God’s Word, Baptism, Sacrament of the Altar, Office of the Keys, Public Ministry, Divine Worship, and the Sacred Cross. These are “the seven principal parts of the great holy possessions whereby the Holy Spirit effects in us a daily sanctification and vivification in Christ, according to the first table of Moses.”58

[62] More directly related to our more immediate concern in theological ethics are the “additional signs whereby the Holy Spirit sanctifies us accordingly to the second table of Moses.” These are summarized in the Decalogue, “which we need not only to apprise us of our lawful obligations, but also to discern how far the Holy Spirit has advanced us in his work of sanctification and by how much we still fall short of the goal, lest we become secure and imagine that we now have done all that is required. Thus we must constantly grow in sanctification and always become new creatures in Christ. This means ‘grow’ and ‘do so more and more’ (2 Pet. 3:18).” Unlike works of the law, which are good in appearance but evil in the heart, fruit of the Spirit is created while lust resists, but the Spirit of grace is nevertheless victorious. Or again, in terms of the Christian’s lifelong struggle between the “old man” in Adam and the “new man” in Christ (Rom. 5:12-21): “It mortifies the old Adam and teaches him patience, humility, gentleness, praise and thanks, and good cheer in suffering. That is what it means to be sanctified by the Holy Spirit and to be renewed to a new life in Christ.”59

[63] We shall now explore both the ecclesial and the societal dimensions of sanctification in turn. First, sanctification, or making holy the unholy, is the work of the Triune God preeminently attributed to the Holy Spirit (officium Spiritus Sancti) in Luther’s interpretation of the Third Article of the Creed in his Large Catechism (1529). Luther’s doctrine of the church here is governed by the sanctifying activity of the Holy Spirit through holy things, the divinely ordained means of grace. Christians are transformed by the gospel from without (extra nos), that is, when proclaimed from within the church. As in Christ, so in the church of Christ: The finite encompasses the infinite in the power of the life-giving Spirit (spiritus vivificans).

[64] Luther treats “the holy Christian church” and “the communion of saints” as synonymous. The Holy Spirit makes “saints” (holy ones) by testifying about Jesus Christ: “He first leads us into his holy community, placing us in the church’s lap, where he preaches to us and brings us to Christ.”60 What God has graciously done for us in Jesus Christ must now also be faithfully received in us through the Holy Spirit. “In order that this treasure might not remain buried but be put to use and enjoyed, God has caused the Word to be published and proclaimed, in which he has given the Holy Spirit to offer and apply to us this treasure, this redemption.”61

[65] So for Luther, the scriptural ordering of the affirmations of faith in the Third Article is pneumatologically ecclesiocentric: First the life-giving Holy Spirit proclaims the gospel; then is born the holy Christian church or the “communion of saints,” who have been vivified by the gospel and granted God’s gracious gifts of forgiveness, resurrection, and eternal life. In effect, the church is the “daughter of the Word” and embodies as proleptic “first fruits” the communal dimension of God’s gracious justification and sanctification of an unrighteous world.

[66] Luther summarizes his evangelical catholic understanding of salvation (salus) by the Holy Spirit within the Christian church under four headings. First, the church is unique by virtue of its Head, Jesus Christ. It is the incomparable “workplace of the Holy Spirit” who, with the Word of God, grants forgiven sinners the gift of faith to enable them to confess the saving lordship of Jesus Christ. It is the Holy Spirit who speaks “in, with, and under” the preacher’s faithful proclamation of the living Word of God (viva vox evangelii). An evangelical sermon becomes a redeeming and sanctifying means of grace precisely because “faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes by the preaching of Christ” (Rom. 10:17). So, for Luther, no Spirit, no Word; no Word, no church; no church, no salvation. The Holy Spirit, Luther declares,

has a unique community in the world, which is the mother that begets and bears every Christian through the Word of God, which the Holy Spirit reveals and proclaims, through which he illuminates and inflames hearts so that they grasp and accept it, cling to it, and persevere in it. . . . For where Christ is not preached, there is no Holy Spirit to create, call, and gather the Christian church, apart from which no one can come to the Lord Jesus Christ.62
[67] Second, the holy Christian church is to be understood as a communion, or community, of saints. It is a holy Christian people gathered about God’s Word in order to become strong in the faith and in the fruit of the Spirit. Here each baptized saint becomes a part and member, “a participant and co-partner” (cf. 2 Cor. 1:19) in all its divine blessings. “Until the last day,” it is an anticipatory and efficacious sign of God’s sanctifying reign in Christ through the power of the Spirit. This is the “sum and substance” of the “communion of saints” for Luther.

[68] I believe that there is on earth a holy little flock and community of pure saints under one head, Christ. It is called together by the Holy Spirit in one faith, mind, and understanding. It possesses a variety of gifts, and yet is united in love without sect or schism. . . . The Holy Spirit will remain with the holy community or Christian people until the Last Day. Through it he gathers us, using it to teach and preach the Word. By it he creates and increases holiness, causing it daily to grow and become strong in the faith and in its fruits, which the Spirit produces.63

[69] Luther views the church here in eschatological conflict with God’s created but fallen world. On the one hand, the church is certainly “a holy little flock” under its Head, Jesus Christ. It will not idolatrously pander to survive. On the other hand, God has raised Jesus from the dead and will continue to act as the Holy Spirit, “causing it daily to grow.” So there are also divine grounds for churchly hope as God’s people remain faithful. In a theology of the cross, however, we dare not confuse eschatological hope and ecclesiastical optimism. God’s true church–as God’s true Son–is hidden to all but the eyes of faith (Deus absconditus). In a theology of the cross, divine victories usually look like human defeats, just as human defeats miraculously turn into divine victories amid a sinful and fallen world.

[70] Third, the Spirit’s work of increasing human holiness in the Christian church concentrates on the forgiveness of sin. Christ’s victory on the cross has dethroned but not destroyed human sin. Outside the church, it still reigns; inside the church, sin no longer reigns, but its all-pervasive persistence in the life of the redeemed is in need of daily forgiveness.

[71] Luther helpfully clarifies that “apart from the Christian church” here really means “where the gospel is not.” God’s inbreaking reign is sacramentally centered in but not structurally limited to the divided and broken institutionalized churches that all call themselves “Christian.” So Luther is not speaking ecclesiastically about institutional church membership as such. Rather, he is witnessing ecclesiologically to the impact of the gospel in the kingdom of Christ, whatever its hidden boundaries may be in the world. Hence Luther could also consistently affirm a non-Roman but nevertheless catholic view of the ecclesial dictum of Cyprian: “outside the church no salvation” (extra ecclesiam nulla salus).

[72] Further we believe that in this Christian church we have the forgiveness of sins, which takes place through the holy sacraments and absolution as well as through all the comforting words of the entire Gospel. . . . Meanwhile, because holiness has begun and is growing daily, we await the time when our flesh will be put to death, will be buried with all its uncleanness, and will come forth gloriously and arise to complete and perfect holiness in a new, eternal life. Now, however, we remain only halfway pure and holy. The Holy Spirit must always work in us through the Word.64

[73] Luther is confident that this is the sanctifying “office and work” of the Holy Spirit: “to begin and daily increase holiness on earth through these two means, the Christian church and the forgiveness of sins. Then, when we pass from this life, in the blink of an eye [God] will perfect our holiness.”65 Based solidly on the witness of the Holy Scriptures, Luther interprets sanctification, or holiness, as a divine spiritual gift that continually works in and through us as ethical “fruit of faith.”

[74] Finally, it is important for our missional outreach to hear Luther’s doctrinal witness to “the resurrection of the body and life everlasting.” Christ’s work of redemption is already an accomplished reality, but the Spirit’s work of sanctification is not yet completed. Through the Word and by the Spirit, more persons are to be brought into the community of saints. Clearly it is the unique pneumatological mission of God (missio Dei) to speak and work through the church, to build it up, and to guide its mission throughout history into eternity. Luther writes:

For creation is now behind us, and redemption has also taken place, but the Holy Spirit continues his work without ceasing until the Last Day, and for this purpose he has appointed a community on earth, through which he speaks and does all his work. For he has not yet gathered together all of this Christian community, nor has he completed the granting of forgiveness. . . . Now we wait in faith for this to be accomplished through the Word.66

[75] Of special significance for Christian theological ethics and a major part of the Holy Spirit’s unceasing work is to empower the vocational sanctification of Christian believers. Since the Spirit’s divine mission is “to glorify me, because he will take what is mine and declare it to you” (John 16:14), Christ’s teaching in the Sermon on the Mount is of decisive importance for the Christian community. The Spirit’s fusion of Christian faith and love serves to correlate our evangelical vocation (call) to eternal salvation and our daily occupations and avocations (callings) to service.

[76] A series of sermons on Gospel lessons in Matthew preached in Wittenberg during the extended pastoral absence of his friend and collaborator, Johannes Bugenhagen, was the seminal origin of Luther’s Commentary on the Sermon on the Mount (1532). Since the text’s editors are unknown and therefore its reliability unverifiable, we will intentionally limit ourselves here to Luther’s brief conclusion that is wholly consistent with our completed analysis of his lectures on Galatians. It illumines a major biblical insight into how we are to contextualize Christian love within our daily vocations for Luther’s theological ethics. “‘So whatever you wish that men would do to you, do so to them; for this is the Law and the Prophets’ (Matt. 7:12). With these words He [Christ] completes what He has been giving in these three chapters, and wraps it all up in a neat package where it can all be found. . . . This is stated briefly and learned easily, if we only were diligent and serious in acting and living according to it.”67

[77] Luther believes that Christ’s single “Golden Rule” (“Do unto others. . . .”) is both a memorable “short sermon,” but also “such a long sermon that it would be endless” if expanded by all that it implies. Central to Luther’s theological ethic is the conviction that the new life in Christ is governed by the Spirit’s singular gift of love as the evangelical alternative to any strict adherence to the rigid rules and regulations of a codified manual of moral conduct. Moral axioms are at best the regulative attempts of any given culture-conditioned group to try to obey the one normative command of love that the Lord God reveals to all historical ages and writes for every sinful human creature “in his own heart, in fact, in his whole life and activity.”

[78] The book is laid in your own bosom, and it is so clear that you do not need glasses to understand Moses and the Law. Thus you are your own Bible, your own teacher, your own theologian, and your own preacher.

[79] If you are a manual laborer, you will find that the Bible has been put in your workshop, into your hand, into your heart. It teaches and preaches how you should treat your neighbor. Just look at your tools–at your needle or thimble, your beer barrel, your goods, your scales or yardstick or measure–and you will read this statement inscribed in them. Everywhere you look, it stares at you. . . . All this is continually crying out to you: “Friend, use me in your relations with your neighbor just as you want your neighbor to use his property in his relations with you.”68

[80] When Luther assures Christians against all moralistic clericalism that “you are your own Bible,” this is surely no license for immoral autonomy. Rather, Christians are “entirely free with regard to everything” in finding persons and places to love in the Spirit: “Do what you see fit to do, for God is with you” (1 Sam. 10:7). The tools and instruments of our daily vocation (Beruf) at once remind disciples in three ways “how to live and behave.”

[81] First, persons made in God’s image “have no right to do business with their property and manage it as they please, as though they themselves were the lords of all.”69 Luther reminded believers earlier in his paradoxical descriptions of The Freedom of a Christian (1520): “A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all.”70 The gospel announces that God’s baptized saints are lords in faith on account of Christ and that they are also servants in love on behalf of our neighbors. These are the two inseparable dimensions of our reintegrated new life in the Spirit–the salvific and parenetic functions of the gospel–that dare never be confused or separated.

[82] Societally, Luther also cites here the benefits of the political function of the law (“territorial and civil law”) in constraining irresponsible and disobedient people to carry out their civic duties “in a proper and orderly way.” It is a violation of the Golden Rule by Christians and non-Christians alike, for example, if we corrupt the common good by not “taking and offering only good merchandise” and thereby practicing economic injustice.71

[83] Second, Christ’s command of reciprocal love “intends to appoint you as our own witnesses to make us afraid of ourselves.” “Love one another” can also serve the law’s theological function. It provides a built-in universal standard for our consciences to use in making us “blush in shame” when accusing us of lying to and stealing from our neighbors. God’s law blames:

“Look here, what are you doing? According to the usual fair-business practice, you ought to put such and such a price on this. But you are putting on a much higher price. Or the way you are debasing and misrepresenting this merchandise, you would not want to have someone else sell you something like that.” How it would annoy you if someone charged you a gulden for something barely worth ten groschen!72

[84] Third, Luther concludes that the responsible and realistic application of this Golden Rule to the challenges of the common life can provide the Christian, inspired by “the mind of Christ,” with “a daily sermon in your heart . . . from which to understand all the commandments and the whole Law, how to control and conduct yourself personally and socially.”73 We are called in obedient love to imitate not what Jesus did in his own unique calling as our Savior, but rather why and how he did what he did in our own temporal callings as responsible neighbors. In other words, the ethical choice is ours. The same primal command of love (mandatum) can be employed in the service of either the gospel insofar as one is already righteous, or the law insofar as one is still sinful. Moreover, it can also be employed both personally or socially, whether intimately as benevolence or corporately as justice, depending on how many neighbors are being served. Finally, it may even be employed by God to compel some degree of compliance by nonbelievers who are motivated solely by enlightened self-interest.

[85] As Christians diligently carry out the practical, routine operations of daily life in concrete ethical decision-making (Stuendelein), Christ teaches us faithfully to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread” (Matt. 6:11). In response, we are graciously provided with our own working neighbors who also serve us as effective channels of God’s preserving and caring love for humanity. This provision of God-pleasing societal justice and domestic well-being is normally (except for “heroic men,” viri heroici, periodically sent from heaven) the temporal duty of civil authorities and responsible citizens. We act under God’s twofold rule of Christians and non-Christians alike under the law of Caesar within God’s mandates of preservation. Indeed, so important was vocational sanctification for Luther that he made it a distinguishing feature of Reformation faith. In the Preface to the Smalcald Articles (1537), written as his theological “last will and testament” for the postponed Council of Mantua/Trent (1545ff.), Luther could boldly cite “an understanding of the various walks of life [vocation, callings] and true works,” as the ethical corollary of “the pure Word of God and the right use of the sacraments” in an evangelical summary of the heart of the Christian life.74

For the second part of this two part series, click here.

End Notes

1 Translated primary sources cited in this chapter from the American edition of Luther’s Works (hereafter LW), ed. Jaroslav J. Pelikan and Helmut T. Lehmann (Philadelphia: Fortress and St. Louis: Concordia, 1955-86), include Treatise on the Sacrament of Penance (1579), Treatise on the New Testament (1520), The Babylonian Captivity of the Church (1520), Open Letter to the Christian Nobility of the German Nation (1520), The Freedom of the Christian (1520), Treatise on Good Works (1520), Commentary on 1 Corinthians 7 (1523), The Large Catechism (1529), The Small Catechism (1529), Commentary on the Sermon on the Mount (1532), Against the Heavenly Prophets (1525), On the Councils and the Church (1539), and Lectures on Galatians (1535).

2 LW 26:280-81 (1535).

3 LW 26:283-84 passim (1535).

4 LW 26:287 (1535).

5 LW 26:331 (1535).

6 LW 26:333 (1535).

7 LW 26:334 (1535).

8 LW 26:342 (1535).

9 Ibid.

10 LW 26:343 (1535).

11 LW 26:348 (1535).

12 LW 26:349 (1535). D. Martin Luthers Werke, Kritische Gesamtausgabe (hereafter WA or WATR for the supplementary Tischreden), ed. J. F. K. Knaake, Karl Drescher, and Konrad Burdach (Weimar: Boehlau, 1883), WA 8:67 (1521).

13 LW 26:350-51 (1535).

14 WA 39/1:252 (1537); LW 32:24 (1521).

15 LW 26:354 (1535).

16 LW 26:357 (1535).

17 LW 26:375 (1535).

18 Ibid.

19 LW 26:375-76 (1535).

20 LW 26:367 (1535).

21 LW 26:376 (1535).

22 LW 46:29 (1525); 26:376 (1535).

23 LW 26:379 (1535).

24 LW 26:380 (1535).

25 LW 26:387 (1535).

26 LW 26:394 (1535).

27 LW 27:3-6 passim (1535).

28 LW 27:10-11 (1535).

29 LW 27:17 (1535).

30 LW 27:15 (1535).

31 LW 27:22 (1535).

32 LW 27:21 (1535).

33 LW 27:29-30 (1535).

34 LW 27:30 (1535).

35 Ibid.

36 LW 27:47 (1535); 33:150 (1525).

37 LW 27:48 (1535).

38 LW 27:30 (1535).

39 LW 27:49-50 (1535).

40 LW 27:59 (1535).

41 LW 27:62-63 (1535).

42 LW 27:65 (1535).

43 Ibid.

44 Ibid.

45 LW 27:68 (1535).

46 LW 27:66 (1535).

47 LW 27:73-74 (1535).

48 LW 27:81-82 (1535).

49 LW 27:82-83 (1535); 26:95 (1535); WA 31/1:436 (1532); 17/2:192 (1525).

50 LW 27:93 (1535).

51 LW 27:96 (1535).

52 LW 27:113 (1535).

53 LW 27:114 (1535); 2:340 (1535).

54 LW 27:119-20 (1535).

55 LW 41:114 (1539). Earlier versions of some material in the remainder of this synthetic chapter and the Afterword may be found in my “Priest and Priesthood” in Julius Bodensieck, ed., The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, vol. 3 (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1965), 1964-966; “Love and Law in Christian Life” in Carter Lindberg, ed., Piety, Politics and Ethics: Reformation Studies in Honor of George Wolfgang Forell (Kirksville, Mo.: Sixteenth-Century Journal Pub., 1984), 103-17; and coauthored with Peri Rasolondraibe, Lutheran Identity and Mission (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1994), 43-48, 71-75.

56 LW 12:381 (1532). See also Robert Kolb and Timothy J Wengert, eds., The Book of Concord (Minneapolis: Fortress, 2000), 469 (1529), hereafter BC.

57 LW 41:148 (1539).

58 LW 41:148-66 passim (1539).

59 LW 41:165-66 (1539).

60 Kolb and Wengert, BC, 435-36 (1529).

61 Ibid., 436 (1529).

62 Ibid., 437-38 (1529).

63 Ibid., 437-38 (1529).

64 Ibid., 438 (1529).

65 Ibid., 439 (1529).

66 Ibid.

67 LW 21:235 (1532).

68 LW 21:236-37 (1532).

69 LW 21:238 (1532).

70 LW 31:343 (1520).

71 LW 21:238 (1532).

72 Ibid.

73 LW 21:239 (1533); 27:60-61 (1535).

74 LW 13:154-55 (1534); Kolb and Wengert, BC, 299 (1537).