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A Reading from the Book of Concord
3 year series

January 31, 2010 - 4th S a. Epiphany

The following reading from the CONCORDIA edition of the Book of Concord is for the LSB series C Epistle, 1 Corinthians 12:31b-13:13 for the 4th S a. Epiphany, January 31, 2010.

It is from Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article V, pages 115-116.

Although loving our neighbor does not justify us before God it is the greatest service a child of God can render to bring glory to God.

Click here for the reading formatted for the back of a standard CPH bulletin.

Pastor Doug May
Socorro, New Mexico

A READING FROM THE BOOK OF CONCORD4TH S A. EPIPHANY
APOLOGY OF THE AUGSBURG CONFESSIONARTICLE V. LOVE AND FULFILLING THE LAW

It would be foolish to imagine that works of the Second Table (in which we interact with humans and not with God) justify us. In justification we interact with God. His wrath must be appeased and conscience must be eased about God. None of these happen by the works of the Second Table.

But [our critics] object that love is preferred to faith and hope. For Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13:13, "The greatest of these is love." It is reasonable that the greatest virtue should justify. Yet Paul, in this passage, properly speaks about love toward one's neighbor and indicates that love is the greatest, because it has the most fruit. Faith and hope have to do only with God. But love has infinite offices outwardly toward humanity. Indeed, let us grant to the adversaries that love toward God and our neighbor is the greatest virtue, because the chief commandment is this: "You shall love the Lord your God" (Matthew 22:37). But how will they conclude from this that love justifies? They say, "The greatest virtue justifies." By no means! For just as the greatest, or first, Law does not justify, so also the Law's greatest virtue does not justify. But the virtue that justifies receives Christ, which brings to us Christ's merits, by which we receive grace and peace from God. This virtue is faith. Faith is not just knowledge. It is willing to receive those things offered in the promise about Christ. (paragraphs 103-106)



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.

These are excerpts from the Book of Concord.



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