Monday, April 11, 2011

Commenting on "Lex semper accusat."

Commenting here:

I was just told that I am misunderstanding Paul.  Romans 7 is something people can't deal with.  Simul justus et peccator is the genius of Lutheran theology.  It is also how I know myself to be.


Steve Martin said...

The law DOES always accuse.

The Simul is what really drove the Catholics nuts.

And I guess many Protestants have a hard time with it, as well.

Jonathan said...

Well, when you are on the Law diet program, you are always trying to get better. They are shocked and aghast to hear that likely they won't. What do you mean I can't get better?

They read Paul despairing "O wretched man that I am, who will save me?" as though he is thanking Jesus for being our guide and guru who keeps on the path to getting better.

When Paul is really saying that, because of Jesus, we already ARE! That's the beauty of the simul.

I don't ever want to get on that other program.

Brigitte said...

This below relates obliquely; I thought it was a helpful explanation. The outward man under the law is with us and chafing. Inwardly, we are renewed day by day. There are good distinctions.

Boaz makes some good points on Cranach.

I think FWS has it mostly right. The confessions agree with Aquinas/Aristotelian natural law morality, except, they completely reject Aquinas/Aristotelian anthropology. Contra Aquinas, the will dominates reason, so thoroughly that reason can’t know when it is being dominated. It makes the whole attempt to exercise practical reason rather difficult. Through great effort under the law, good habits can be formed, but even then, the will constantly fights against it, and evil thoughts only multiply. But with Faith, we give up our effort to be good, and seek to be receivers of grace. That change in framework also takes effort in meditation and study of the Word and receiving the Sacrament. But the effort is to receive the means of grace, not to act in accordance with the law. By God’s grace, faith is increased. So internally we are sanctified. That internal sanctification necessarily leads to outward sanctification by external works. But not by outward efforts. Outward efforts are governed by law.

This is where the tree example is so perfect. Faith makes the tree good, and a good tree produces good fruit, externally. It’s not the case that external good fruits make the tree good.

Brigitte said...

There should be a quote starting at: I think FWS has it mostly right.