Seesaw between Faith and Works
Many pastors and churches neglect the topic of “works” like it is an archaic concept or a borderline sacrilegious heresy that does not belong in the Christian doctrine. The scriptures (Ephesians 2: 8-9) say salvation is a free gift and its not anything of ourselves (e.g., by works). So the works we do don’t save us and faith is outlined as the overarching mechanism for salvation. But, does that mean you can get drunk, smoke weed, whore your body with multiple people and just believe on Christ and be saved? God is not mocked! You don’t do works in order to be saved, but because you have been saved the desire to do the Lord’s work should be manifested in you! The very next verse, Ephesians 2:10, says we are created in Christ Jesus unto good works! You cannot do all those sinful things, plead the blood, and believe you are operating in faith. The Bible says God searches the heart of man and you will have to answer to Him in judgment (see Romans 8:27 and Revelation 2:23)! He knows all your repenting and confessing are just so you can go back and live your life riddled in sin that you don’t want to give up. Again, God is NOT mocked.
Peter says in 1 Peter 2:15-16, “For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.“
Don’t use your freedom as a blanket that you use to hide your willful sin under! And I must honestly say, that many Christians today fall into this category of believer.
James 2:17-26 is the perfect scripture for how our faith and our works should go hand in hand.
James 2:17-26 says, “ 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? For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.”
It is imperative as Christians that we do more than just say we “believe” we have to go out and do God’s Will!
Truly the scriptures say in 2 Peter 3: 9, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward,not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
And Matthew 9: 37, “Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few.”
Therefore, there is WORK to do! Not only do we need to gather and prepare for the harvest, but we also have to keep the body of Christ on one accord. In Ephesians 4 Paul discusses different roles of Christians (i.e., apostles, prophets, evangelists, and pastors/teachers) and what purpose they serve.
In Ephesians 4: 12-13, he explains, “For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ”
Therefore a Christian should never, NOT be busy! (double negative used for emphasis). If we are not attempting to add unto the Kingdom then we should be edifying the body of Christ! We cannot simply go to church, try not to cuss, and think we are good people! In the book of Revelation, it says this type of believer (lukewarm) is going to be spit out of God’s mouth because they were neither hot nor cold (Revelation 3:16). God is looking for an on FIRE and WILLING people who are prepared to do His work! We need to take on the readiness of the prophet Isaiah.
In Isaiah 6: 8 he says, “Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.”
Our Father is looking for a people who will “love not their life even unto death”(Revelation 12:11) because his Word says “whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it” (Matthew 12: 25). It is time to be a Radical people, a generation prepared to please our loving, faithful Father in heaven. We need to desire to hear on that great and final day, “Well done thou good and faithful servant!” (Matthew 25: 21).
Missed the last section? Read it here: Letter to a Lost Nation – 3/5
Read the next section here: Letter to a Lost Nation – 5/5