Sunday, June 24, 2012

Passive Righteousness

This quote is from Martin Luther, from his Commentary on the Epistle to the Galatians, as quoted in Sonship (World Harvest Mission, 2002). 

Speaking of "Passive Righteousness, he writes:

"It is called 'passive righteousness' because we do not have to labor for it...It is not righteousness that we work for, but righteousness we receive by faith.  This passive righteousness is a mystery that someone who does not know Jesus cannot understand.  In fact Christians do not completely understand it and rarely take advantage of it in their daily lives...when there is any fear or our conscience is bothered, it is a sign that our passive righteousness is out of sight and Christ is hidden.
     The person who wanders away from 'passive righteousness' has no other choice but to live by works righteousness.  If he does not depend on the work of Christ, he must depend on his own work.  So we must teach and continually repeat the truth of this 'passive' or 'Christian' righteousness so that Christians continue to hold to in and never confuse it with "works" righteousness."

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