The Yoke of Christ

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
The Yoke of Christ
But the yoke of Christ is a summons to [take] the cross, to put the old man to death. Now, His cross is easy once the burden of the Law—that is, sin and death—has been lifted. For if you believe that you are righteous and alive before God, that you are a son and heir of heaven, soon you will say: "If God is for me, who can be against me? (Romans 8:31). Death, where is your sting? Where is your victory and boasting? (1 Corinthians 15:55)." "For who," Peter says, "is there to harm you if you are zealous for the good?" (1 Peter 3:13). What can do any harm when God is so beneficent and gentle? Look at the martyrs, how they laugh at their punishments. Why? Because of the confidence and freedom of their heart. . .. How wonderful is Christ's power in His saints (see Psalm 68:35 [67:36 Vg]), that in the hearts of human beings, through faith, He changes death into laughter, punishment into joy, hell into heaven. For all who believe in Him laugh at and scorn all these evils while the world and the flesh flee them with dread and hate them. That is what Christ calls the easy yoke and the light burden: that is, bearing the cross with joy.

From Annotations on Matthew (Luther's Works 67:146-47)
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