This article reflects on Karl Barth's Gospel-Law thesis as a resource for comparative and constructive Jewish-Christian interreligious ethics. Barth, a student of Cohen and a contemporary of Rosenzweig, inverts Martin Luther's formulation of the relationship between law and Gospel, and, thus, subverts Luther's problematic opposition between law and grace. Barth claims that “the Law is the task of the Gospel,” and thus reintegrates the law into Protestant theology and ethics. Doing so, he not only affirms a “third use” of the law. He creates an altogether new third way of approaching the law akin to rabbinic halakha. This paper explicates the development of Barth's thesis in the Barmen Declaration (1934) and “Gospel and Law” (1935). It delineates those communal practices of confession that he identifies in Church Dogmatics (1938) as fulfilling this task. And it advocates an “apostolic pragmatism” as a fitting Christian counterpart and complement to Peter Ochs's “rabbinic pragmatism.”

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