The Glory Has Departed
Norma Boeckler, Artist in Residence
Bethany Lutheran Worship on
Thursday, April 16, 2015
Martin Chemnitz the Senior Editor of the Book of Concord, Or
Rambach the Halle Pietist?
Boycott the Emmaus Conference
For the whole process or act of the reconciliation of man the sinner with God is simply and clearly represented, as it were, with the word justify. For this matter is not handled incidentally or lightly, but seriously and, what is more, before the court of God and God Himself the judge. For the Law summons us to the tribunal of divine judgment, where it not only accuses us of sin, but completely convicts us. And since before that just court of God every mouth is to be stopped and the whole world [is to be] subject to God (Ro 3:19), therefore Moses pronounces against us the sentence of death and condemnation. 2 Co 3:7, 9; Dt 27:26.
Therefore when our conscience, now convicted of sins and therefore made subject to eternal death and damnation, anxiously looks about for something with which to oppose this just judgment of God, so that it might avoid and evade the broad sentence of damnation, it finds nothing at all. But finally God Himself, rich in mercy, sets His Son before us in the Gospel as atonement. Romans 3:25.
And those who through faith take recourse to that Son the Mediator, and apprehend Him by faith—those the Father justifies from the charge placed by the Law and from the sentence of condemnation; that is, He absolves [them] for the sake of Christ, and, by imputation of the obedience and death of Christ, declares [them] righteous and awards them life eternal. Romans 8:33–34. And this is the process or act of the justification of a sinner before the judgment seat of God, so that he appeals from the throne of the strict justice of God to the throne of grace in the blood of the Son of God, as Gerson describes the matter of justification by the apt simile of forensic appeal.