The follow article by Pastor Rolf Preus was originally posted to The Brothers of John The Steadfast website.
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
This month, we Lutherans celebrate the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation. On October 31, 1517, Martin Luther nailed 95 theses on the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. That event is regarded as the beginning of the Reformation. During the month of October, the teaching and preaching in Bible Class and Divine Service will center on the precious truths brought to light by God’s servant, Martin Luther, beginning 500 years ago.
It was during the Lutheran Reformation of the 16th century that God graciously brought to light a truth long hidden, the truth that enlightens us and clarifies for us everything God teaches us about everything.
That truth, which lies at the heart of our faith, is the teaching of justification by faith alone. To be justified is to be reckoned by God to be righteous or just. We cannot justify ourselves. God justifies us by imputing to us the righteousness of Christ. Apart from this gracious imputation we would remain guilty as sin and under the condemnation of the law. But because of this gracious reckoning we are righteous. The righteousness we have is not our doing. It is what Jesus Christ did for us when he obeyed God’s law perfectly in our stead and suffered on the cross to pay for our sins. It is not our doing. It is Christ’s doing. It is God’s gift to us. We receive the gift through faith alone. We do not become righteous by obeying the law. That is legalism and it is a denial of the gospel. We become righteous, not by doing good deeds, but through faith alone in the gospel.
Published: 08 November 2017 08 November 2017
Last Updated: 08 November 2017 08 November 2017
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