Posted by: trbccoffeebreak | April 5, 2022

The Need For Deeds

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10

The heated theological dispute of faith alone versus faith-plus-works has been raging for centuries—even millennia. In fact, this very topic is why Martin Luther launched the Reformation just over 500 years ago. But God’s Word is clear: “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). As for me, I will rest in this undeniable Truth.

That being said, we believers are actually not to literally rest! Once saved by grace, we are called to respond to our salvation with good works—to demonstrate our faith so others can recognize we are Christians. In fact, the very next verse from the Apostle Paul in Ephesians says, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10). This topic is a big theme in the book of James as well—a book that some point to on the “do-to-be-saved” side of the argument. But James simply exhorts that our faith justifies us to God (He sees/knows our heart), but we cannot be justified to men without deeds. In other words, if you tell me you’re saved but nothing at all changes about your life, then there remains the question of your true salvation.

When we truly surrender to Jesus Christ, we are a new creation—the old nature has passed away and a new has come (2 Corinthians 5:16). Our desire, as directed by the Holy Spirit living in us upon our profession of faith, is to glorify God through our actions. We want to walk in obedience because Jesus paid the price for our sin…not so that we can earn our way to heaven. By doing good works and bearing fruit, we please God and grow in our faith (Colossians 1:9-12). During His ministry on earth, Jesus also taught that true believers would be known by their fruit (Matthew 7:15-20).

Don’t get me wrong, friend, once we surrender to Christ, we will not be perfect or always do the right thing. In this fallen world, we will be in constant battle with our unredeemed flesh, the world system, and the enemy of the soul—Satan. Until we are fully glorified with a new body (woohoo!), either when Jesus calls us home or He returns, we must continue to pursue holiness. And we do this by studying—and obeying—God’s Word and spending time with the Lord.

Salvation is not the end game of our life on earth. If it were, as soon as we were saved, the Lord would snatch us up to heaven! Once saved, we must do. We are to be salt and light—to demonstrate God’s amazing love and grace to others so that they see our good works and give glory to God (Matthew 5:13-16).

“Lord, let my deeds give You glory and point others to You, as I live a life of love in response to Your love for me.”

For His Glory,

Julianne Winkler Smith
TRBC Women’s Life

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