Ursinus or the FV on Law/Gospel?

The official Federal Vision joint statement says this on page 6: 

“We deny that law and gospel should be considered as a hermeneutics, or treated as such…. The fundamental division [between law and gospel] is not in the text, but rather in the human heart.”

Ursinus: “The doctrine of the church consists of two parts: the Law, and the Gospel, in which we have comprehended the sum and substance of the sacred Scriptures.”  “The duties of the ministers of the church include in general, 1) A faithful and correct exposition of the true and uncorrupted doctrine of the law and gospel, so that the church may be able to understand it” (Zacharius Ursinus, Commentary on the Heidelberg Catechism trans. G. W. Williard [Phillipsburg: P&R, n.d], 2, 572).

I trust extended comment is not needed, yet I want to be sure to point out that the FV says the law/gospel division is “in the human heart” while Ursinus says it is in “the Scriptures.” 


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2 Replies to “Ursinus or the FV on Law/Gospel?”

  1. Great post. It’s also very clear in his Large Catechism(http://links.christreformed.org/doctrinevision/ursinus_project.pdf):

    “36 Q What is the difference
    between the law and the gospel?
    A The law contains the covenant of nature
    established by God with man in creation;
    that means,
    it is known by man from nature,
    it requires perfect obedience of us
    to God,
    and it promises eternal life
    to those who keep it
    but threatens eternal punishment
    to those who do not.
    The gospel, however,
    contains the covenant of grace;
    that means,
    although it exists,
    it is not known at all from nature;
    it shows us
    Christ’s fulfillment of that righteousness
    which the law requires,
    and its restoration in us
    through Christ’s Spirit;
    and it promises eternal life
    freely on account of Christ
    to those who believe in him.”


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