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Debate on Keeping the Law Today

The observance of the law and its loyalty always has concerned humanity, even in the 16th century and today. The Apostle Paul argued that the truth lies not in the law but faith in Jesus Christ. In the book The New Perspectives on Paul, the author examines the attitude of the reformers to Paul’s views, their rightness, and the correctness of the following the Gospel1. The law in Judaism and staying in it requires obedience and following the Law of God. Paul wrote his vision of the system as, “Justification is by faith, not by the works of the law” 2. Although the teaching and the Bible experts cannot agree on what justification really is. Even the Apostle believed that, at the time of the Reformation, the church did not correctly interpret the meaning and true essence of this concept 3. However, from the words of Paul and his supporters, we can conclude that justification is the verdict of God, who looks at people who believe in Christ and does not see their sins4. Thus, God considers the believer innocent, absolves him of his sins, and justifies him.

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In the Epistle to the Galatians, Paul writes that the meaning of the law is that everyone should love his neighbor. This message emphasizes that the Apostle is not against the law, but he is against its imposition. Moreover, the Apostle tries to explain the connection between the law and grace and how to live a Christian life5. The interesting fact is that in the Epistle to the Romans, Paul writes that all power belongs to God6. Accordingly, he calls on the Romans to conform to the local government if it commands the common good. These two writings from Paul suggest that the Apostle approved and supported the civil government.

Bibliography

Chester, Stephen J. Reading Paul with the Reformers: Reconciling Old and New Perspectives. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2017, pp. 30- 230.

Elwell, Walter A., and Robert W. Yarbrough.In Encountering the New Testament a Historical and Theological Survey. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2013, pp. 269–86.

Rendell, Ruth. The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans. Canongate, 2010, pp. 13- 43.

Scott, John A. The New Perspective on Paul. Worcester: Published by Committee on Publications, Evangelical Presbyterian Church in England and Wales, 2005, pp. 4 -135.

Footnotes

  1. Chester, Stephen J. Reading Paul with the Reformers: Reconciling Old and New Perspectives. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2017, p. 34.
  2. Scott, John A. The New Perspective on Paul. Worcester: Published by Committee on Publications, Evangelical Presbyterian Church in England and Wales, 2005, p. 25.
  3. Chester, p. 176.
  4. Scott, p.4.
  5. Elwell, Walter A., and Robert W. Yarbrough.In Encountering the New Testament a Historical and Theological Survey. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2013, p. 280.
  6. Rendell, Ruth. The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans. Canongate, 2010, p. 14.

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