Controversy has arisen among some theologians of the Augsburg Confession about the righteousness of Christ or of faith, which God credits by grace, through faith, to poor sinners for righteousness.
One side contends that the righteousness of faith, which the apostle calls God's righteousness, is God's essential righteousness. They say this is Christ Himself as God's true, and essential Son, who dwells in the elect by faith and moves them to do right. And so He is their righteousness.
Against this, others have held and taught that Christ is our righteousness according to His human nature alone. In opposition to both these groups it has been unanimously taught by the other teachers of the Augsburg Confession that Christ is our righteousness not according to His divine nature alone, nor according to His human nature alone, but according to both natures. For He has redeemed, justified, and saved us from our sins as God and man, through His complete obedience. The righteousness of faith is the forgiveness of sins, reconciliation with God, and our adoption as God's children only on account of Christ's obedience. Christ's obedience alone—out of pure grace—is credited for righteousness through faith alone to all true believers. They are absolved from all their unrighteousness by this obedience. (paragraphs 1-4)
Condensed from CONCORDIA: THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS, copyright 2005,2006 by Concordia Publishing House. Used by permission. All rights reserved. To purchase a copy of CONCORDIA, call 800-325-3040.