On Law and Gospel

by Jonas Weaver

Now if the ministry that brought death,<span class="crossreference" style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 0.65em; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: top;" value="(M)”> which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory,<span class="crossreference" style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 0.65em; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: top;" value="(N)”> transitory though it was…


The Law had a temporary glory, one which passed away into a newer, more full one. The language we use to discuss this is that of law vs. gospel. While accurate it isn’t quite as blunt as the language of the bible. 

…For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 

What are these letters? …The ministry that brought death,<span class="crossreference" style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 0.65em; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: top;" value="(M)”> which was engraved in letters on stone… 

The letters that kill(ed) are/have passing/passed away, and are now gone/going. 

…The same veil remains when the old covenant<span class="crossreference" style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 0.65em; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: top;" value="(U)”> is read.<span class="crossreference" style="background-color: white; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 0.65em; font-weight: bold; vertical-align: top;" value="(V)”> It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away.

In Jesus there is freedom, a radical freedom, from these letters, this Law. It’s not about a bunch of laws and some euangelion but about death and life. The Law brought death, but no longer because it is taken away. In its stead there is the Spirit which brings life to all. 

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