Kolb, Robert. The Book of Concord: The Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2000.
Augsburg Confession XXVI, “Concerning the Distinction among Foods” pp. 74-81.
Note that there is no corresponding article in the Apology to the Augsburg Confession.
Article 26 of the Augsburg Confession observes that in the past certain dietary choices would “earn grace and make satisfaction for sin” (Kolb 2000, 74). This obscured the merit of Christ. By the time of the Augsburg Confession, Melanchthon affirms that the grace of Christ was overcome by rules about food, clothing, and the like (Kolb 2000, 75). The traditions also came to be considered more important than God’s commands (Kolb 2000, 76). The normal ministries of our vocations were devalued. The traditions also served to burden consciences (Kolb 2000, 76). This could lead to despair, as it is impossible to keep the kind of law seen in works. The conclusion is that “No one can earn grace, become reconciled with God, or make satisfaction for sin by observing the aforesaid human traditions. That is why they should not be made into a necessary service of God” (Kolb 2000, 78). The text follows with a series of quotations from the New Testament demonstrating a freedom from dietary laws. Some accused the Evangelicals of prohibiting discipline. That is not the case (Kolb 2000, 79). Christians must suffer but not through their own contrivance. More New Testament passages follow. Diversity in local and individual customs is allowed.