But if, in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we too were found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Certainly not! Galatians 2:17
How can those who are justified in Christ not be sinners and yet sinners at the same time? For the Scripture asserts both conditions about the person who is justified. John writes in 1 John 1:8, “We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin.” He says the same in 1 John 3:9, “No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning.” In other words, John is saying that believers don’t sin. But if they were to claim they had no sin, they would be lying.
We can see a similar difficulty in the book of Job. God, who cannot lie, says Job is a man of integrity in Job 1:8. Yet Job confesses later in Job 9:20 and other passages that he is a sinner. In Job 7:21 he says, “Why do you not pardon my offenses and forgive my sins?” Job must be telling the truth, because if he were lying to God, God wouldn’t call him a righteous person. So Job is at the same time righteous and sinful.
If we look at faith, God’s laws are fulfilled, sin is destroyed, and no law is left. But if we look at our sinful nature, there is nothing good. Therefore, we must always remember that all of us who are righteous through faith are still sinners.
95 Theses are reproduced in their entirety, with an introduction and explanatory notes to aid readers in discerning the significance of Luther’s call to reformation.
The Ninety-Five Theses is a text that everyone knows, most refer to, but few actually read, writes Stephen Nichols. Nevertheless, it is such a crucial text that it deserves to be read widely. Toward that end, Nichols has prepared this edition with an illuminating introduction, explanatory notes, and several illustrations. Martin Luther has left a legacy that continues to enrich the church through his writings. . ., writes Nichols. All of this may be traced back to the last day in October 1517 and the nailing of the Ninety-Five Theses to the church door.