This study with the title Luther and the Law in the Lutheran Church of Uganda investigates how the Law is understood and interpreted by Lutherans in the Church of Uganda. It studies the Lutheran understanding of the Law from the Reformer, Martin Luther, to the current Lutheran Church. The study also presents the findings from the Ugandan Lutherans. The research question is to find out whether the Lutheran Church of Uganda understands and interprets the Law in the same way as Luther and other Lutherans across the globe. The motivation for doing this research is the contextualisation of the Gospel, that is, to find out whether the social and cultural context of the Lutherans in Uganda affects their understanding and interpretation of the Law.
Luther understands and interprets the Law according to his social context of the sixteenth century. His background is much different and so much removed from the African context the Lutherans in Uganda find themselves in today. Even in Luther we find some conflicts with Paul because of different social contexts. Therefore, can the Lutheran Church of Uganda have the same understanding of the Law as Luther? Are there aspects in the Law s interpretation that are peculiar to the social context of the people of Uganda?
This study keeps in mind the social and cultural context of the people involved in the understanding and interpretation of the Law. This study investigates whether the Lutheran Church of Uganda has its own distinct understanding and interpretation of the Law given its distinct social location and cultural background. This is important because people understand a concept better when it is applied to an environment that is familiar to them. For example, when Paul preaches to the gentiles he strips his gospel of Jewish practices of circumcision and food laws. This, however, did not stand well with his fellow Jews (cf. Gl 2). Jews thought that only those within Jewish ethnicity should be counted among the people of God. This study is interested in finding out whether the cultural context of Lutherans in Uganda influences their understanding and interpretation of the Law.
To achieve this goal, this study presents the Western Lutheran understanding of the Law (Chapter 2), the Law as it is understood by Lutherans in Uganda (Chapter 3), and then compares (Chapter 4) and contrasts (Chapter 5) the two understandings. Chapter 6 summarises the research and harmonises the discrepancies encountered in the study.