Sunday, August 24, 2008

"Works Righteousness"

Today I had to listen to a Reformed Pastor wax theological about 'Romanism' in the pulpit. He said in typical 'Geneva-ist' style that Catholics teach 'Works Righteousness' that is absolutely nowhere in the bible. Now to be fair, even good Calvinists know that works righteousness is in the bible, after all Calvin proposed that the Old Covenant was the covenant of works. But as I sat there in church I went through the pew bible finding all the verses which contradicted his statement, there are indeed many new testament passages which show the place of Good works, or the Law of Christ - which is Love, and it's role in salvation. Remember as St. Paul says himself, the greatest virtue is Love (not Faith), and Christ said the greatest commandment was to Love, Love is a work, it is the perfect fulfillment to the law as Romans says, and as such, has a place in our salvation. Salvation is by grace through faith and works/love.

"having been made perfect, he [Christ] became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him" -Hebrews 5:9

"They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.’"- John 14:21

"Also another book was opened, the book of life. And the dead were judged according to their works, as recorded in the books."- Revelation 20:12

"Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for you reap whatever you sow. If you sow to your own flesh, you will reap corruption from the flesh; but if you sow to the Spirit, you will reap eternal life from the Spirit. So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time, if we do not give up."-Galatians 6:7-9

"But someone will say, ‘You have faith and I have works.’ Show me your faith without works, and I by my works will show you my faith. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder. Do you want to be shown, you senseless person, that faith without works is barren? Was not our ancestor Abraham justified by works when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was brought to completion by the works. Thus the scripture was fulfilled that says, ‘Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness’, and he was called the friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. Likewise, was not Rahab the prostitute also justified by works when she welcomed the messengers and sent them out by another road? For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is also dead. " -James 2:18-26

"the work of each builder will become visible, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each has done. If what has been built on the foundation survives, the builder will receive a reward. If the work is burned, the builder will suffer loss; the builder will be saved, but only as through fire. Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple. " - 1 Corinthians 3:13-17

"To this end we always pray for you, asking that our God will make you worthy of his call and will fulfil by his power every good resolve and work of faith, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you" - 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12

"work out your own salvation with fear and trembling" - Philippians 2:12

"Now by this we may be sure that we know him, if we obey his commandments. Whoever says, ‘I have come to know him’, but does not obey his commandments, is a liar, and in such a person the truth does not exist; but whoever obeys his word, truly in this person the love of God has reached perfection. By this we may be sure that we are in him: whoever says, ‘I abide in him’, ought to walk just as he walked."- 1 John 2:3-6

"all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. " - 1 John 3:3

"You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy" - Leviticus 19:2

"Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous" - 1 John 3:7

"How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help? Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action. And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him" - 1 John 3:17-19

"All who obey his commandments abide in him, and he abides in them." - 1 John 3:24

"Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. " - Matthew 5:48

"A certain ruler asked him, ‘Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?’ Jesus said to him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments...He replied, ‘I have kept all these since my youth.’ When Jesus heard this, he said to him, ‘There is still one thing lacking. Sell all that you own and distribute the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me." - Luke 18:18-22

"inherit the kingdom [Heaven] prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?” And the king will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.”" -Matthew 25:34-40


"Every generous act of giving, with every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights" - James 1:17

"for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasure" - Philippians 2:13

"For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life. " -Ephesians 2:10

Thus we are saved by grace through faith - but what type of a faith? a working faith, or faith and works, or as St. Paul says: "faith working in love" (galatians 5:8)

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