Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Christ and Authority

This post is part of our ongoing series on Luther’s Two Kingdoms. The differentiation between the jurisdictions of Christ and the temporal authority does not limit Christian activity to the spiritual sphere alone, but dictates the manner in which the Christian wields the sword and obeys temporal authority. Turning to the Biblical passages in question,Continue reading “Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Christ and Authority”

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Luther’s Two Kingdoms: On Temporal Authority

This post is part of our ongoing series on Luther’s Two Kingdoms. Having considered context and terminology of Luther’s Two Kingdoms, let us now turn to his writing on this subject in On Temporal Authority: To What Extent It Should Be Obeyed. Luther begins Temporal Authority by outlining the Biblical basis for understanding the civilContinue reading “Luther’s Two Kingdoms: On Temporal Authority”

Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Applied Ethics?

This post is part of our ongoing series on Luther’s Two Kingdoms. Scholars such as Porter have argued that one of the lasting implications of Luther’s construction involves a radical separation of temporal authority from man’s goals in the kingdom of God.[25] Further, Porter argues that “Luther’s radical separation of the ‘two realms’ or kingdoms—churchContinue reading “Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Applied Ethics?”

Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Sword and State

This post is part of our ongoing series on Luther’s Two Kingdoms Prior to writing Temporal Authority, Luther had rejected the Roman construction of the dichotomous application of the ethical, such as the imperative of the Sermon on the Mount, to commands and counsels,[15] as well as rejecting the view that the Church was theContinue reading “Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Sword and State”

Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Context

This post is part of our ongoing series on Luther’s Two Kingdoms Looking at the broader context of Luther’s theology, we should note several tenets of his theological program that are vital to understanding his church-state construction. As outlined in Freedom of the Christian, perhaps foremost in Luther’s reformation theology was the importance of solaContinue reading “Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Context”

Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Introduction

“Modern church people and theologians have sharply attacked [Martin] Luther’s attitude [concerning the relationship between the Christian and temporal authority] from two perspectives. On the one hand, Luther is accused of having indirectly contributed to the glorification of the orders of creation and to that extent at least making it difficult for Lutherans to takeContinue reading “Luther’s Two Kingdoms: Introduction”

Book Review: The Joy of the Gospel (Pope Francis)

Few people alive today are more popular and polarizing than Pope Francis. No one seems sure quite how to respond to the Bishop of Rome, nor are they sure whose side (if any) he is taking in ongoing theological and cultural debates. Sensational media claims about Francis “revolutionizing” the Catholic faith are overblown, to beContinue reading “Book Review: The Joy of the Gospel (Pope Francis)”

What About People Who Died Before the Incarnation?

A while back, a friend wrote me and asked, “How do you justify [and explain] the people who died before Christ came [i.e., Abraham, Moses, David]?” This struck me as an important and insightful question. In our rush to talk about and theologize heaven and hell, we often pay little attention to people who wouldContinue reading “What About People Who Died Before the Incarnation?”

The Value of Luther’s Two Kingdoms Today

This post originally appeared at The Evangelical Pulpit as part of Patheos Evangelical’s Reformation Day celebration of Martin Luther’s influence on Western Christianity and Civilzation. When we think of Martin Luther, we tend to consider his Ninety-Five Theses, the “here I stand” statement of the Diet of Worms, the importance he placed on justification byContinue reading “The Value of Luther’s Two Kingdoms Today”

Book Review: Leadership Lessons (Hawkins and Parrott)

In Leadership Lessons: Avoiding the Pitfalls of King Saul (Thomas Nelson, 2013), Ralph K. Hawkins and Richard Leslie Parrott outline ten principles for leadership building from the life and failures of King Saul of Israel. Leadership Lessons uses the “worst practices” model of instruction, learning through the examination of the failures of others, much inContinue reading “Book Review: Leadership Lessons (Hawkins and Parrott)”