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Belief in God Biblical doctrines Christianity

On Christian Liberty

by John Calvin (abridged)1,2

1. Christian Liberty is an appendix to justification. But there are some who, under pretext of this liberty, cast off all obedience to God, and precipitate themselves into the most unbridled licentiousness [state of indulging in excessive freedom]. Others despise this liberty, supposing it to be subversive of all moderation and morality. In spite of such difficulties arising from this doctrine, we must exert to understand it, in order to obtain internal peace of mind.

2. Christian liberty consists of three parts. The first part is, when seeking justification before God, we should be delivered from the righteousness of the law. Dismissing all thought of our own works to attain justification, let us turn our eyes solely on Christ.

While we are delivered from the claims of the law, before the tribunal of God through justification in Christ; the law, however, remains useful to believers. It continues to instruct, exhort and stimulate us to duty and holiness.