Law & Gospel

A collection of resources related to the biblical understanding of the relationship between God's holy law and the gospel of grace.

  • Against the Law by Mark Jones

    FROM TABLETALK | December 2013

    There are few theological aberrations more difficult to define than antinomianism. Some simply look at the etymology of the word and conclude that antinomians are against (anti) God’s law (nomos). Others are a bit more specific, suggesting that antinomians …Read More

  • Grace and Law? by John Sartelle

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2009

    You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace” (Gal. 5:4). When one becomes a Christian there are certain changes that usually take place in his life. It was …Read More

  • Delighting in Our Duty by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2013

    When we think of the law of God, the first thing that should come to mind is love—God’s love for us as fallen sinners, directing us to love Him, enjoy Him, and glorify Him. God’s law is …Read More

  • Preaching Grace by Robert Norris

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2010

    Doctrine is the necessary basis for a sound spiritual life, and defective doctrine almost inevitably leads to a distorted spiritual life. Nowhere is this truth more evident than in understanding the relationship between the old covenant law and the gospel …Read More

  • Preaching Grace by Richard Ganz

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2008

    It was a beautiful, sunny morning. My wife and I were sitting on our porch, enjoying a rare, completely undisturbed moment together, when a white sedan drove up our laneway and stopped a few feet from us. The well-dressed driver …Read More

  • Lighting the Way: The Didactic Use of the Law by Robert Letham

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2011

    In Reformed theology, the law has been seen as the guide for believers in the conduct of their lives. John Calvin described this as its principal use. In this sense, we are talking about the Decalogue — the Ten Commandments — and …Read More

  • Reflecting Sin: The Pedagogical Use of the Law by David Murray

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2011

    Ouch!” That first look in the mirror every morning doesn’t get any easier, does it? In fact, I’d rather do without looking in mirrors at all. And I might get away with it — for a few days. Because …Read More

  • Restraining Sin: The Civil Use of the Law by David VanDrunen

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2011

    Of the three uses of the law, the so-called “civil” use may strike us as the least interesting theologically. It involves no inward transformation of the heart or Spirit-wrought righteousness that is pleasing in God’s sight. By this use …Read More

  • The Goodness of the Law by R.C. Sproul

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2011

    Oh how I love your law!” (Ps. 119:97). What a strange statement of affection. Why would anyone direct his love toward the law of God? The law limits our choices, restricts our freedom, torments our consciences, and pushes us …Read More

  • Our Liberating God by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2011

    Why would anyone love the law of God? Why would we love that which constantly tells us what miserable wretches we are, daily points out all our shortcomings, relentlessly reminds us of all our death-deserving sins, and keeps knocking us …Read More

  • Law and Gospel by Michael Horton

    FROM TABLETALK | October 2006

    As has already been pointed out in this issue, “Reformed” theology just is “covenant” theology. However, that doesn’t necessarily settle the question as to what kind of covenant theology is being espoused. By far the question that has been …Read More

  • The Law of God by R.C. Sproul

    FROM TABLETALK | April 1989

    In giving a summary of what constitutes the true knowledge of God, we showed that we cannot form any just conception of the character of God, without feeling overawed by His majesty, and bound to do Him service. —John Calvin …Read More

  • Walking by the Spirit

    Galatians 5:16–17

    John Calvin comments, “If we would obey the Spirit, we must labor, and fight, and apply our utmost energy; and we must begin with self-denial.” Walking by the Holy Spirit is the denial of the self and one’s fleshly ...Read More

  • The Distortion of Lawlessness

    Romans 6:1-14

    Of all the types of antinomianism, we are perhaps most prone to look for loopholes in the law of God. So, for instance, we may excuse certain behaviors because there is no express command in Scripture against them, even though ...Read More

  • Obedience and Delight

    Psalm 1:1-2

    True love for God’s law is not legalism (adding to God’s rules or demanding that we obey the civil and ceremonial laws fulfilled in Christ). Love for the law makes us try to follow it truly without imposing ...Read More

  • Guided by the law

    Matthew 15:1–9

    Under the old covenant, the covenant community was enslaved to sin and, therefore, burdened by God’s law. In contrast, we live under the new covenant, the era in which God has poured out His Holy Spirit abundantly. If we ...Read More

  • Law and Gospel

    Matthew 5:17–20

    Answer 86 of the Heidelberg Catechism emphasizes that we do good works because the God who justifies us also gives us His Spirit to conform us more and more to the image of Jesus Christ. Our Lord saves us from ...Read More

  • Law and Gospel

    Romans 3:21-31

    Our relativistic age does not like to hear that there is an eternal, unchangeable law that convicts all people. But the central message of the gospel is that we have broken this law and need to be reconciled to God ...Read More

  • Dying to the Law in Christ

    Galatians 2:20

    Matthew Henry comments on today’s passage: “The doctrine of the gospel, instead of weakening the bond of duty, did but the more strengthen and confirm it; and therefore, though he was dead to the law, yet it was only ...Read More

  • The Legalist Distortion

    Romans 14

    As a modern example of legalism, some Christians have said that it is wrong for believers to consume alcohol. However, while such rules may be motivated by a noble concern that people avoid the sin of drunkenness, Scripture nowhere condemns ...Read More

  • The Gospel of God’s Glory

    1 Timothy 1:11

    Matthew Henry writes, “Much of the glory of God appears in the works of creation and providence, but much more in the gospel, where it shines in the face of Jesus Christ.” True preaching of the gospel must include news ...Read More

  • The Fulfillment of the Law

    Matthew 5:17–20

    The distinction between the civil, ceremonial, and moral laws of the Mosaic code is not so clear on the pages of Scripture. Nevertheless, the distinction is a helpful tool for applying this law to our lives today. We study the ...Read More

  • God’s Law and the Christian with Dr. R.C. Sproul

    The place of the old covenant law in the lives of Christians has been a bone of contention since the first century. The tendency has always been toward one of two extreme errors: either antinomianism or legalism. In this series …Read More

  • The Law & the Gospel by R.C. Sproul

    What is it that we can hate so much, that in turn causes us to love Christ so much? What was it that drove you to the cross? Thinking of these questions in this message, Dr. Sproul explains the role the Law of God plays in the Christian life as he looks at “The Law and the Gospel.”

  • Principle or Custom? by R.C. Sproul

  • The Ethics of Jesus and the Law of God by R.C. Sproul

    Did Jesus criticize the Law of God? Does the Sermon on the Mount contradict the Mosaic Law? Dr. Sproul clears this confusion in this message as he explains the perfect harmony between “The Ethics of Jesus and the Law of God.”

  • Keeping God's Law by R.C. Sproul

    The Bible teaches that if you break one part of the Law, you have broken the whole Law. Jesus explained that anger towards our brother is murder in our hearts, and that lusting after someone is committing adultery in our hearts. Since all of us have committed these sins of the heart, why not perform the deed? Are all sins ...

  • Chapter 19, Sec. 6-Chapter 20, Sec. 4 by John Gerstner

    The Westminster Confession of Faith has, for hundreds of years, served as the doctrinal foundation of the Reformed churches. In this message, Dr. John Gerstner completes his examination of God's law and starts a study on the question of Christian liberty and conscience.

  • Good Advice or Good News? by R.C. Sproul

    In many American churches, the Good News of what Jesus Christ has accomplished for us has been replaced with Good Advice about what we can do for God. We have replaced the proclamation of Christ and Him crucified with an easy-listening legalism of “do more and try harder.” In this message, Dr. R.C. Sproul explains the crucial difference between ...

  • Do Not Cause Another To Stumble R.C. Sproul

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  • Freed from the Law R.C. Sproul

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  • Law & Grace R.C. Sproul

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  • The Antinomian Way of Justification by John Gerstner

    (This is the fourth part of John Gerstner’s Primer on Justification. In this article he discusses the antinomian view of justification) Faith → Justification – Works

  • 2010 Ligonier Pastors Conference - R.C. Sproul (VIII) by Robert Rothwell

    One of the dangers that often goes unrecognized in the church today is the problem of the tyranny of the weaker brother. On Wednesday afternoon at our pastors conference, Dr. R.C. Sproul gave a timely lecture on the subject. His main text was Romans 14. Sanctification The Protestant Reformers …

  • Does God’s Law Change? by R.C. Sproul Jr.

    His law doesn’t change. The application of it does. Theologians wisely distinguish between natural law and positive law. This distinction, however, must be distinguished from natural law and revealed law. The latter distinction separates what we learn about God’s law from the created order, and what we learn from His …

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