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The Law in Paul's Letter to the Galatians

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Jewish thinking in Paul's day, then, did take obeying the law to be the means to righteousness.

Little in the Apostle Paul's writings has been debated as intensively in recent years as his understanding of what he calls "the law" (see Rom. 3:21, 31; 1 Cor. 9:8-10, 20-21; Gal. 3; Eph. 2:15; among other verses). This topic is inherently and notoriously difficult because Paul makes equally strong positive and negative statements about "the law." It is hard to know how to reconcile these seemingly opposing statements. And this problem has recently become more difficult because some scholars now claim that first-century Judaism was a religion of grace and not of works-righteousness and then emphasize the continuing Jewishness of Paul's perspective. These new developments have prompted many scholars to present a "new perspective" on Paul that stands in marked contrast to the traditional or "Lutheran" understanding of him.

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Issue: "The Heart of the Gospel: Paul's Message Of Grace in Galatians" Sept./Oct. 2003 Vol. 12 No. 5 Page number(s): 31-36

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