You say you’re good, then let me see
A faith is dead without the deed.
How can we fail if we believe?
Let’s be who we were meant to be.
Inside Our Skin ~ Emery
Faith is the foundation of all we do. It is the driving force behind our actions, and therefore… it is an action. Faith is not about just saying that we believe in Christ. Faith is making that fact known through what we do. As James says in the New Testament,
But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. (James 1:22)
Of course, you can’t work your way into Heaven. You could do all the good in the world, but without Jesus Christ’s Atonement, and having faith in and using that Atonement, there would be no hope of returning to live in God’s presence. But having faith alone is also not enough. Does God reward laziness? Doubt it. Christ’s Atonement is not a freebie. It’s open to all, but through repentance and good works we must use it.
Here’s the way I look at it. You can agree or disagree, but at least ponder it. We are saved by grace, but we are judged according to our works. Makes sense, right? Well, at the very least it makes sense to me. Here’s something else to think about…
And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. (Revelation 20:12)
They were/are/will be judged according to works. Again, works don’t get us to Heaven. But certainly they play an important role. ‘Cause life is a test, right? So we can imagine that after this life each of us are graded. Let’s say we can get between an A+ and an F. Receving a D- is pretty bad, but it’s still technically passing. But doesn’t it seem unfair that the one with the A+ should get the same reward as the person with the D-? Of course it’s unfair! It wouldn’t make any sense! They both had faith in Jesus Christ, but the A+ showed his or her faith through their works.
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? (James 2:20-22)
James gives Abraham as an example, and explains that faith worked with his works, and that by Abraham’s works was his faith strengthened. Faith is dead without works, and works is dead without faith.
Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also. (James 2: 24, 26)
You say you’re good, then let me see.