the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life

Cultural Dictionary

The letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life definition

A statement made in the New Testament by the Apostle Paul.

Note: The general sense is that strict observance of the letter of the law is far less important than being true to its spirit.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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