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Open Theology

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Freedom from the Self: Luther and Løgstrup on Sin as “Incurvatus in Se”

Bjørn Rabjerg / Robert Stern
Published Online: 2018-07-18 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/opth-2018-0020


The aim of this paper is to compare Martin Luther and K. E. Løgstrup on the theme of sin and grace, and to argue that while Løgstrup wanted to stay close to Luther in many respects, he nonetheless provides a secularized version of Luther’s picture, according to which we are liberated from our sinfulness not by God’s grace, but by our ethical encounter with other people. This then raises the question of whether Løgstrup’s approach can work, and thus whether this secularized alternative can be made stable and coherent. We begin by focusing on central themes concerning Løgstrup’s relation to Luther. We then outline the key features of Luther’s conception of sin and grace that were important to Løgstrup , and then consider how he develops that conception in a secularized manner. Finally, we discuss problems that might be raised for Løgstrup’s position.

Keywords: K. E. Løgstrup; Martin Luther; sin; grace; The Ethical Demand; Iris Murdoch


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About the article

Received: 2018-05-09

Accepted: 2018-06-04

Published Online: 2018-07-18

Citation Information: Open Theology, Volume 4, Issue 1, Pages 268–280, ISSN (Online) 2300-6579, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/opth-2018-0020.

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© 2018 Robert Stern, published by De Gruyter. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 License. BY-NC-ND 4.0

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