Announcements for the week of June 23, 2013

13-06-23, Pentecost 5, BA-2013C

Apology, IV. Justification

Finally, we would remind our readers that our opponents counsel pious consciences very badly when they teach that works merit the forgiveness of sins, because a conscience that seeks forgiveness through works cannot be sure that its work will satisfy God. It is always tormented and constantly invents other works and services until it despairs utterly.  Describing this process in Rom. 4:5ff., Paul proves that the promise of righteousness does not depend upon our works because we could never be sure that we have a gracious God. The law always accuses. Thus the promise would be vain and unsure. He concludes that not works but faith accepts the promised forgiveness of sins and righteousness of faith. This is what Paul really and truly means. This offers the greatest consolation to faithful consciences and illumines the glory of Christ, who was surely given to us that through him we might have grace, righteousness, and peace. (Tappert, para. 285)

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