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Old 03-09-2009, 09:04 AM
 
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Works.. what is their place in a Christian’s life?

In the world around us we see that many, many people who claim to be Christians are works-conscious… whether they are legalistic, or whether they are liberal and permissive, their focus is on works, not on faith. A legalistic person says “I need to do this and this and this and this to be saved.” A liberal Christian says “This doesn’t apply, that doesn’t apply, I don't have to do this or this or this, etc. etc.”.. but both of these views are putting emphasis on deeds, rather than the faith that produces the good works.

Even though we more commonly think of a legalistic person as being self-righteous, yet a liberal or permissive Christian is just as self-righteous… for he is saying “I can choose what to do or what not to do” (emphasis on deeds). “I can live this way (do these deeds) and still be ok, for it’s not what I do that matters, but what’s in the heart.” Altho it is very true that its what is “in the heart” that counts, yet at the same time this statement is denying the fact that true faith in the heart will produce works. “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.”

Is our faith producing good works, or are we looking for our works to produce faith? The latter option is futile.. yet very popular to the carnal man, for true faith and humility go hand in hand, and this is repulsive to our flesh. We can do many good deeds in this life, follow all the commandments, yet if our focus is on “works” rather than on true faith (which will produce works!) it is like tying oranges to an apple tree. Futile, time-consuming, and will not fool anyone in the end. “Many shall say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not…. done many marvelous works? And then He shall say…. I never knew you.” On the other side of the coin, we can have a field full of weeds and claim high and low that “in the place that really matters, our heart, we are a fertile field of grain”.. and these empty words won’t fool anyone either.

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your father which is in heaven.” Jesus is saying here that our good works have a purpose.. to point to, and glorify, God. Really, our good works have very little purpose other than that! He isn’t saying “Do good works, that you appear holy to others” or “Do good works to be saved.” If our works are truly pointing to and glorifying God (not lifting ourselves up), this is a sign that they are a result of true faith. Anything else is weeds… and the troubling part about this is not the weed itself, but where are the weeds coming from? And maybe more importantly... why am I not dealing with them?

So does this mean that once we have attained a place of true faith, we will never have weeds? Not at all, altho many works-conscious people may say that. Once again, what is the emphasis of such a belief? “Our” attainment.. “our” ability to reach a place of holiness where we never do any sinful deeds. Totally backwards focus! True faith realizes our sinfulness, unworthiness and inability to produce good deeds.. and so reaches out to God for justification through Christ. “For by grace are you saved, through faith, and that not of yourself; it is a gift of God.” "Therefore being justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Even tho we as Christians have had our fields made new and fertile, by accepting salvation upon repentance through the saving grace of God, yet we are still in the flesh, and weeds pop up here and there. We cannot prevent them all, but by faith in God, and by the Holy Spirit’s leading, we try to dig up the weeds and not let them flourish. If we focus on maintaining our ground through faith in the saving grace of God, and thus allow fruit to grow, in the end we will hear the words “Well done, good and faithful servant!”

Last edited by cg81; 03-09-2009 at 09:16 AM..
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Old 03-09-2009, 09:24 AM
 
Location: Arizona
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Amen, cg.
True faith yields the fruit of the Spirit - and the fruit of the Spirit yields good works.
Trusting in our good works and our adherence is trusting in ourselves - not the wise thing to do.
Rather, trust in Christ and what He has done, but love and obey Him not merely with words.
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Old 03-10-2009, 07:41 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
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Faith, hope, love; and works may follow.
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:15 AM
 
Location: South Carolina
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Originally Posted by Richio View Post
Amen, cg.
True faith yields the fruit of the Spirit - and the fruit of the Spirit yields good works.
Trusting in our good works and our adherence is trusting in ourselves - not the wise thing to do.
Rather, trust in Christ and what He has done, but love and obey Him not merely with words.

I agee, works alone want get us into Heaven. Obeying Christ and living for Him will.
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:25 AM
 
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Originally Posted by shawn_2828 View Post
I agee, works alone want get us into Heaven. Obeying Christ and living for Him will.

I totally agree good works won't get us into heaven, but the Bible tells us are good works are all we can take with us...

Matthew 16:27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:26 AM
 
Location: Cornelius
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You can adopt a million children, eliminate poverty, feed all the hungry mouths, and all the "good" deeds you want, but you will still fall short of God's glory with no righteous Mediator to speak for you in front of the righteous Judge. Only by the saving grace of God through His only Son Jesus Christ will you be saved!!
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mshipmate View Post
I totally agree good works won't get us into heaven, but the Bible tells us are good works are all we can take with us...

Matthew 16:27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.
Very true.. but our works will be judged according to our faith.

"Lord, Lord.. have we not prophesied.. done many marvelous works?"

"Depart from me.. I never knew you!"
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:52 AM
 
Location: Arizona
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...And let's not aim to be in the "just barely" group.
each man's work will become evident;
for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire,
and the fire itself will test the quality of each man's work.
If any man's work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward.
If any man's work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved,
yet so as through fire.

1Cor 3:13-15
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Richio View Post
...And let's not aim to be in the "just barely" group.
Just a question for discussion.. how can we be assured of this?
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:58 AM
 
Location: Cornelius
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Originally Posted by cg81 View Post
Just a question for discussion.. how can we be assured of this?
A fruitless Christian walks a thin line between heaven and hell. Are they not really saved or are they saved but have weak faith? Been there done that and it's no fun place to be.
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