Importance of Works?

Discussion in 'Doctrinal Discussions' started by TrueChristian1990, Nov 14, 2015.

  1. Greetings friends,

    I know in the Bible it says something to the effect of "By faith is man saved, not by works" among other things.
    From what I understand, that is the general teaching of Evangelical churches today.
    But it is something I have struggled with. Are not works important along with faith?
    In the Bible Jesus always seems to encourage works along with having faith in him.

    He praises the woman who gave her last coin to charity, commands the woman taken in adultery to "sin no more", tells his disciples to "love one another as I have loved you", and most hauntingly speaks of the "sheep and goats" allegory.

    I guess I've had trouble with the whole "faith alone" aspect of salvation. If that were true, one could technically steal, rape, and kill weekly and still get into heaven, as long as one had "accepted Jesus" at an earlier point. While the above mentioned crimes may seem horrible to human beings, to God it would seem they are just sins, like every other sin. They are "screw-ups" according to the Lord, but not bad enough to keep one out of heaven, since Jesus paid the penalty for these sins on Calvary, many years ago.

    Can someone help me? Am I correct in my perception?
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  2. The Bible in James 2:18, 20, 26
    Says that faith without works is dead. Meaning that if you have faith and your don't do things to show your faith then your faith is not really faith....its just words

    Jam 2:14 — Jam 2:25 kjv
    What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.
    Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
    Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?

    God bless
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  3. As i re read this paragraph from you it seems to me that you have more than one issue on the table. This is about grace. Sin is just sin. Most people in this earth look at sin as one is worse than another, but in God's eyes it is all the same. Not one person goes to hell for any of the aboved mentioned sins. They go to hell for not accepting Jesus as payment for those sins.

    Now this is not to say that a born again person is not responsible to God (through the justice system He has set up) for those acts of evil, but in fact if they are caught they suffer the same punishment by the laws of the land as anyone else, and rightly so. But if they ask for forgiveness and are truly repentant than God does forgive them. Something else to remember also is that when people open their lives up to the devil by sin, they suffer consequences in their own body (sickness and disease) or even open the doors for the devil to send someone to take them out (like a drunk driver or what have you). But that is what happens when a person is trapped by the devil and doing bad things. 2 Timothy 2:26

    Hope this helps
    God bless
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  4. We are to do good things because we are saved......we do not do good things to be saved.
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  5. Works are very important,
    James 2:14-26
    Faith Without Works Is Dead
    14 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? 17 Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

    18 But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without youra]">[a] works, and I will show you my faith by myb]">[b] works. 19 You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble! 20 But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?c]">[c] 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? 22 Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? 23 And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”d]">[d] And he was called the friend of God. 24 You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.

    25 Likewise, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way?

    26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
    But good deeds do not make you saved. this does not mean that you shouldn't practice basic morality, and behaving as a good Samaritan. we are saved by accepting Christ into our hearts and lives,
    Romans 10:10
    10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
    Titus 3:5-7
    5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

    6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;

    7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

    I hope this helped.
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  6. I understand what you mean it is something I struggled with for some time as a child of God. But the answer is so very clear when you decide to discover that our faith is revealed when we have come to know our Savior and HIS works. Discovering further His continual work in us.

    The fact is faith for salvation must be on the finished WORK of Christ. It is more than us "accepting" in fact salvation has little to do with us accepting Christ as it has to do with God the Father accepting Christ's sacrifice on our behalf. If Christ was not an acceptable sacrifice for sin neither could we receive Him or as most say "accept" Him by faith. So faith for salvation depends on the WORKS of Christ and Christ alone for no amount of our own "righteousness" or works, will be acceptable to the Father, for it is filthy rags. So faith in Christ sacrifice alone is by grace.

    "And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work." Romans 11:6

    You have to distinguish the work of Christ for salvation and the work of God in the life of a believer, who is born again, meaning Christ Himself by the power of the Spirit is the new creature that indwells us. So the works we do my friend as a believer are God's and NOT our own works which are done by the energies of our flesh. This is so importand to understand because essentially, just like salvation you will rest entirely on God and you will not desire to be a liar, murderer, etc but rather put those things away from your life (Read Colossians chapter 3)

    So many come to the cross to receive grace then afterwards think they can now "do it," that is works, in the energies of their own flesh and praying God blesses them but more often than not they "burn out" because the works of the flesh NOT acceptable to God. Only Christ and Christ alone is acceptable. Again that is why Christ must be born in a believer by the power of the Spirit so now His works in you are acceptable.

    As a believer we must show our faith by our works, which is really God working in and through us, Jesus Christ, in the Spirit. I recommend a book called Absolute Surrender by Andrew Murray. Here is a quote and the verses that explain works so well in the life of a saved by grace child of God.

    "The cause of the weakness of your Christian life is that you want to work it out partly, and to let God help you. And that cannot be. You must come to be utterly helpless, to let God work, and God will work gloriously." ~Andrew Murray - Absolute Surrender

    "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure." Philippians 2:13

    "Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, [21] Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen." Hebrews 13:20-21

    As I like to say, "It is HIM it is ALL about HIM." So when I show you my faith by my works (James 2:18) I am showing you Christ.

    "Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone." James 2:17

    Think of it this way, now that you know that the works spoken of in James are God's works in you to will and to do of His good pleasure as He did with Abraham, "Even so faith, if it hath not CHRIST, is dead, being alone." (personal paraphrase)

    There is so much to the Gospel than just a bridge for man to go to heaven. It is also a bridge for God to do His will here on earth as it is in heaven by humbling Himself and indwelling unrighteous people, sanctifying them by His blood, to show forth His works and glorify Himself.

    "He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life." 1 John 5:12
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  7. Good answers
    Cturtle likes this.
  8. On any subject you have to read as many scriptures pertaining to the subject as possible .
    In the case of 'WORKS' the use that Paul uses the word and the use James uses the word is clearly different .
    Paul was speaking in realation to salvation "we are saved by GRACE not fo works lest any man should boast "
    James was speaking about the works of FAITH or of righteousness that comes by faith .
    an unrighteous man cannot do rightoeus works .
    an unsaved man can do a 'good' work. But it does not nor can save him.
    For it is only good in his own eyes .
    Abel offered up a good work .But it was not one of his own doing . But the sacrafice of a lamb. Which foreshadowed the good work fo God acomplished at calvary .
    Cain offered up a 'good' work but it was of his own hands and by the" sweat of his brow"
    Some think a man is saved by Baptism they are not . For baptism is a work of righteousness .
    For Jesus was baptised to "fullfill all righteousness "
    and he already had 'life' whe he was baptised .
    So too any true believer .
    Baptism beign the foundational work of "presenting your bodies a living sacrafice Holy and acceptable to God.............."
    Then there are the works ONCE saved "preordained from before the foundations of the world"
    The children of israel did no work of God till they crossed Jordan.
    The servant of Elijah did not work fo God till he crossed Jordan.
    The <Lord Himself did not work of God till crossed Jorden also.

    in Christ
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  9. Wow, love this, it is so true
    Cturtle likes this.
  10. One CANNOT work their way to heaven. This would mean that God is indebted to man. Salvation is solely the work of Grace by what Jesus did for us. Period. Those that accept Jesus don't go around stealing, raping and killing people. All they're showing is that they're really not Christians to begin with. Jesus died to set us free from sin. Those that remain were never saved to begin with. That's the cold hard truth. Christians do not remain in sin. Yes, they are still sinners, we're born that way. We're not sinners because we sin, we're sinners because that's who we are at birth. A real Christian doesn't want to sin and grows out of it. Read Romans and you'll understand.
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  11. wow, i am going to look for this book
    ScriptureLook likes this.
  12. All his books are worth a good reading and reflecting on also.

    in Christ
    Angela333 likes this.
  13. At some point not only do need to repent of what we have done . We also need to repent of what we are .
    and to conform to what the scriptures say we are; now in Christ .

    For in all those things were were out of Christ .
    is now very different In Christ . as laid out in Ephesians in all those "in's" in the first couple of chapters.

    In Christ
  14. Heb 6:1
  15. Do not take this as a position, but as a discussion point… or feel free to dismiss it as wholly unsound. This also potentially gets close to a subject that has been banned (OSAS) because of the unhelpful arguing engendered. I am not really trying to go there, and I beseech us all to keep posts helpful and respectful. If you ask me today, a reply honest to my understanding today may not be the same as one a month ago, or a month hence.

    In many churches, there is a concept of a defeated Christian. Very similar to a carnal christian, but taken to extremes. This is one that has truly accepted the Lord, but instead of allowing the Lord to lead him, falls into the same sinful acts. This is a miserable life, consisting of failure after failure, often accompanied by self recrimination.

    We are being perfected, but we are not perfect yet. The phenomenon of recurring sin in the life of a Christian is not rare. This is that same phenomenon taken to an extreme. Many whose sinful lives before acceptance find they have created for themselves situations and personality traits that make turning away for good difficult.

    A Christian’s sin nature is left behind when he enters His Kingdom. A defeated Christian misses all these things, and will enter the Kingdom only as a ‘simple’ soul, all else discarded, while those that have progressed in faith will retain what was truly of the Lord.

    As for those that have done vile things in the estimation of others, as well as in the eyes of the Lord; if the Lord is satisfied with their acceptance, I will not second guess, but I would not advise any to deem it wise to live as the unsaved after one has accepted an become His creature.

    As far as fairness, that really does not enter into it at all. Any grace I may be accorded by our Lord is an outright gift. If I were treated fairly, I would be doomed.

    As for good works, my observation is that the process of my own perfection, such as it may be, lies in part, in doing ‘good works’, learning to see His hand in the lives of others, sometimes being that hand (not really to my credit, but still wonderful to see). As I have stated before, one of my guiding principles or concerns lately is to be a blessing to those around me. This may be a selfish conceit on my part because I recognize the benefits to my relationship with the Lord. This has nothing to do with gaining my salvation, only with its consequences, so no justification by works is involved.

    So, one summary point is that salvation is quite a different concept from the perfection of the person. Good works cannot accomplish the first (salvation), but is often the means of developing the second (perfecting in faith). By same token, not performing good works, or even continuing in sin, does not mean one is not saved; only in a profoundly sad situation.
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  16. As i was meditating on the subject of what we think of as sin, the Holy Spirit reminded me of 1 Samuel 15:23a. It says that rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.

    I think something that we forget is that the Bible says that while our spirit is reborn upon salvation...which is accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior. But it says in Romans 12:2 we must renew our minds. Our minds are not automatically reborn to think like God thinks. This is something we have to do (Is 55:7-9). And in my opinion i think @Siloam explained this very well.

    God bless
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  17. Perchance the reason for what you have stated is that we are already perfect going onto perfection.
    While it is thought that we are imperfect beign perfected .
    Some one may say Paul says he has not yet reacched perfection how then can he be perfect or then I?
    But did he not say he was speakign to those made perfect?
    A word search on the word perfect is very interesting.
    "..........That ye maybe perfect and entire wantign nothing"
    Remember we are a new creation in Christ Jesus .
    Was not Adam perfect in his creation?
    How much the more in the new?
    Have we all arrived then? No.
    But are we not born of an "Incorruptable seed"?
    and the first Adam created of a "corruptable seed"?
    and is not each seed predestined to brign forth fruit after its own kind?
    The first a corruptable seed to brign forth corruption unto death and the incorruptable seed to bring forth righteosness unto life?
    Thus a sapling is perfect yet not yet perfected and it doth not appear what we shall be but we know when we see him we shall see Him as |he is .
    The Gospel is more radical than most people suppose .
    It is not then the old man reborn.
    It is the old man crucified with Christ dead and buried as the only fittign place for it .
    and God IN Christ raising a completely new new man not after the image of the first Adam or as scripture puts it "shapen in iniquity" a "child of disobedience " BORN in sin .
    But a new creation ,old things passed away and behold all things have become new. a child then of obedience and BORN in the image of God .
    For Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost . Though man was CREATED in the image of God he is BORN in the image of Adam . "Shapen in iniquity"
    Jesus even as it is written is the express image of the invisible God. He then that recieves Him and is BORN of the Word and the Spirit of God has the image of God in Him for Christ dwells in his heart and we are by the grace of God renewed daily in the image of Him. "And have put on the new man which is renewed in the knowledge after the image of Him that created him" Col 3:10
    1Cor 15:49 "as we have born the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavnly"
    2Cor 4:16 " But though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed daily ...."
    That is very interesting for does it not say in John 3:16 we shall not perish?
    This body we have at present passeth away . Yet it has been redeemed (yet to be revealed) but the inward man is renewed constantly even as in the earthly type to soem extent our outward body renews itself .
    So our inward body/man after the image of God is renewed daily by the same Spirit that raised up Jesus from the dead .
    and eevna s we need to feed the outward and earthly body with the bread of earth. So too and much more do we need to feed the spiritual man with the true bread that comes from heaven.
    We are to be made conformable to Jesus Christ.
    Was he not made perfect " and beign made perfect he became the author of eternal salvation to all that obey him" Hebrews 5:9
    Was not the Lord perfect even at his birth?
    and was not to BE king but was" BORN king of the Jews."
    "That the man of God may be pefect....." 2Tim 3:17
    and Hebrew 13;21 and others is worth thinkign about.

    So we are perfect on the way to perfection.
    For the incorruptable seed is perfect and that which grows from it then is also perfect yet it does not atain or reach that perfection for which God has called it and which in its season it will be manifested .
    How else can we be transformed by the renewal of our minds if we do not understand by the Word of God what God has wrought in us ?
    "For as a man thinketh so he is "
    if then in his mind he is as an "old man" then his life will reflect it .
    Despite the fact of what God has done .
    Before times it was the mind of man that ruled . But when we pray "thy kingdom come " It should be understood ';my kingdom go.'
    Now the mind of God should rule and govern our thinking and how may we knwo that ?
    By the Word of God and the Spirit of God by which were BORN .

    in Christ
  18. If you look at Romans and underline all the different facets of sin;like" the deceitfulness of sin "etc . When you have finished the quite a long list soem idea of sins nature is manifested and truly awful.

    in Christ Jesus
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  19. #19 Cturtle, Nov 15, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2015
    And praise God He has given us the ability (the Blood and sacrifice of Jesus, who conquered the power of sin over us, Romans 6:14; 1 Cor. 15:57 ) and the wisdom through His Word (2 peter 1:3) in how to walk pleasing the spirit instead of the flesh. Galatians 5:16
    God Bless
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  20. There are the works of the flesh.
    and there are the works of God.
    Man cannot do in the flesh what God has decreed must be done by the Spirit .
    God said to Abraham "I will give you a son" Abraham listened to his wife who pointed out that she was too old or gettign to old as also was he to have children. and like Adam obeyed his wife rather than trusted in God.
    The result was Ishmeal and the consequences not only for Israel but also now the whole world is havign to live with the consequences of man tryign to do in the flesh what God has decreed must be done in the Spirit.
    For the son of Promise was to be of Gods doing .When it was impossible for either Abraham or Sarah to conceive a child by the power of their flesh.

    We are to learn to walk by faith even as our father Abraham had to. For his faith was not perfected as soon as he believed . But with each revelation or rather lively knowledge fo God from "God almighty" God everlasting ",God the most high and the just and moral govener of the whole universe his faith grew till he was able to offer up the son of promise believeing that God would raise him up from the dead . Which he recieved as in a shadow.
    There are works that have rewards ,that no unsaved man can do .
    We are not saved by works .
    But we are called unto good works through faith "preordained form before the foundations of the world "
    it is not our own works which we then ask God to bless.
    They are the blessed works of faith and labours of love that a man may work as a "co-worker" with God .
    and God is not unjust to foget our labours of love .
    ALL will face judgment .
    The unrighteous and the wicked unto condemnation. Who are not BORNagain.
    and the righteous as to what SORT of work we have done . Not unto condemnation but unto rewards .
    If they be of wood hay and stuble we shall suffer loss .
    If they are of heaven of gold silver and such we will be rewarded .

    Some will recieve crowns and there are crowns for different things . A maryters crown will only be rewarded to those who genuinely " sought a better resurection".
    You can lose your rewards for it is written make sure no one takes your crown .That is not losing your salvation.But losing your reward or Crown because of neglect or folly .
    To be in the Bride is to win the prize . The bride is not the prize ,the Lord is .
    For even as the main body had an inheritence .The one tribe of Levi had no inheritence for the Lord God was thier inheritence.
    No man can claim it for themselves . Not even Paul did so. and John the Baptist the greatest of all born of women counted himself but "the FRIEND of the Bridegroom"
    Paul finished the race as we all must do . But who wins the prize is for another to judge .

    in Christ

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