Church. State.

Here are a few great lines from article 28 of the 1530 Augsburg Confession.

“…the Church’s authority and the State’s authority must not be confused.  The Church’s authority has its own commission to teach the Gospel and to administer the Sacraments [Matthew 28:19-20].  Let it not break into the office of another.  Let it not transfer the kingdoms of this world to itself.  Let it not abolish the laws of civil rulers.  Let it not abolish lawful obedience.  Let it not interfere with judgments about civil ordinances or contracts.  Let it not dictate laws to civil authorities about the form of society.  As Christ says, ‘My kingdom is not of this world’ (John 18:36).  Also, ‘Who made Me a judge or arbitrator over you?’ (Luke 12:14).  Paul also says ‘Our citizenship is in heaven’ (Philippians 3:20).  And, ‘The weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds.’ (2 Corinthians 10:4).”

I see that the Westminster (CA) bookstore carries the paperback edition: Concordia: The Lutheran Confessions for around $17.  There is also a hardcover edition – check it out at CPH for around $32.  I haven’t compared the two, but I think there’s a slight difference (though the text should be the same).  Either way, this is a great resource.

shane lems

2 thoughts on “Church. State.”

  1. This is similar to Article 37:

    The King’s Majesty hath the chief power in this Realm of England, and other his Dominions, unto whom the chief Government of all estates of this Realm, whether they be Ecclesiastical or Civil, in all causes doth appertain, and is not, nor ought to be, subject to any foreign Jurisdiction. Where we attribute to the King’s Majesty the chief government, by which Titles we understand the minds of some slanderous folks to be offended; we give not to our Princes the ministering either of God’s Word, or of the Sacraments, the which thing the Injunctions also lately set forth by Elizabeth our Queen do most plainly testify; but that only prerogative, which we see to have been given always to all godly Princes in holy Scriptures by God himself; that is, that they should rule all estates and degrees committed to their charge by God, whether they be Ecclesiastical or Temporal, and restrain with the civil sword the stubborn and evildoers.
    The Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in this Realm of England.

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