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Thread: Faith and Works: The Relationship between Faith, Works, and Salvation in the NT

  1. #11
    tWebber tabibito's Avatar
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    Ephesians 2 says that we are saved by grace. Faith is not active in salvation, it is no more than a conduit. in so far as the limits of the relevant statements in Ephesians are concerned.)
    Ephesians 2:4 by grace you are (in a state of) having been saved.
    Ephesians 2:8 by grace you are (in a state of) having been saved, through faith.
    και εκζητησατε με και ευρησετε με οτι ζητησετε με εν ολη καρδία υμων

  2. #12
    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    My go to verse on this is in Ephesians 2, and it's by Grace through Faith that we are saved. I don't think your OP addresses Grace.


    Quote Originally Posted by tabibito View Post
    Ephesians 2 says that we are saved by grace. Faith is not active in salvation, it is no more than a conduit. in so far as the limits of the relevant statements in Ephesians are concerned.)
    Ephesians 2:4 by grace you are (in a state of) having been saved.
    Ephesians 2:8 by grace you are (in a state of) having been saved, through faith.
    I would disagree, however, that faith is "no more than a conduit".
    John 3:36, “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.”
    How do you "believe in the Son" without faith?
    --- this space intentionally left blank ---

  3. #13
    tWebber tabibito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post




    I would disagree, however, that faith is "no more than a conduit".
    John 3:36, “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.”
    It was a late addition, which may have been made after you began to respond, but I did specify "insofar as the limits of the relevant statements in Ephesians are concerned."
    How do you "believe in the Son" without faith?
    How do you believe in the Son without believing what he taught? And could it be that John 3:36 underscores that by stating that the disobedient will not see life?
    και εκζητησατε με και ευρησετε με οτι ζητησετε με εν ολη καρδία υμων

  4. #14
    God, family, chicken! Bill the Cat's Avatar
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    It's pretty simple. When we marry our spouse, do we not naturally want to care for them and do things for them?


    Without a clear-cut definition of sin, morality becomes a mere argument over the best way to train animals --- Manya the Holy Szin --- The Quintara Marathon ---

    I may not be as old as dirt, but me and dirt are starting to have an awful lot in common --- Stephen R. Donaldson ---

  5. Amen Cow Poke amen'd this post.
  6. #15
    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill the Cat View Post
    It's pretty simple. When we marry our spouse, do we not naturally want to care for them and do things for them?
    When somebody tells me they can be a Christian without going to Church, I'll say, "yeah, and you can marry a wife and never live with her".
    --- this space intentionally left blank ---

  7. #16
    tWebber tabibito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill the Cat View Post
    It's pretty simple. When we marry our spouse, do we not naturally want to care for them and do things for them?
    And if we don't - it comes as no real surprise [to anyone else] if the outcome is a divorce.
    και εκζητησατε με και ευρησετε με οτι ζητησετε με εν ολη καρδία υμων

  8. Amen Bill the Cat amen'd this post.
  9. #17
    tWebber
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    Because I believe God chooses us and makes us alive when we were dead, that is, before we believed, not after (logically, not temporally), I think faith can be broken down one more step. Beyond atoms, protons, and neutrons, you find quarks at their heart. Beyond faith (as a conscious and personal action), you find God entering a heart and binding it to him, giving it a spark of spiritual life that is its inner connection to God (the vine and the branches, the only source of life). That connection and life that comes from God, not from us, and which is at the real heart of our connection to Christ’s redemption and justification of our sins, displays itself immediately and invariably as faith, trust in God (not just the “open hand” that receives God’s gifts, but the hand that opens to receive those gifts because God animated it). It is God’s gift of life, not our “gift” to God of our faith and trust, that saves us, but the two are inextricably joined. (I can't believe I'm saying this, but in that regard, I think Tabibito got this right: Faith is not active in salvation, it is no more than a conduit. We are saved through faith, not by or because of faith, as if faith was the one and only activity that counts as a good work that causes God to save us).
    Faith then inevitably (though more slowly) results in a measure of sanctification and holy living. You can’t have one without the other (faith and good works). And there are many ways in which Scriptures take a holistic approach to things, so that, unless the context and the immediate point being made requires it, they do not disect spiritual life and faith and works into three distinct parts, but treat them as one whole, indivisible unit.
    I think justification in Scriptures has two meanings, being recognized as holy and free of all condemnation before God (because he declares us so), and being recognized as blameless by the world (ourselves or others), because we’ve done nothing wrong (or we had a good excuse, as it was when a man wanted to ‘justify’ himself when he asked Jesus “Who is my neighbor?” He knew his own life and actions weren’t perfect, but maybe excusable).
    James does not contradict Paul, but uses “justify” in this second sense. You can’t present yourself to the world as blameless by faith alone; they can’t see your faith. You are shown blameless by faith that shows itself through works.
    James is correcting the same wrong idea that Paul was accused of teaching and had to correct when he insisted that justification by grace through faith does not mean we can go on sinning, as if good works were optional to one who is saved.
    Good works are necessary in the sense faith necessarily results in good works, not in the sense that good works are a deciding factor in justification before God or in salvation.

  10. #18
    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    That's pretty good. I like to add that my "relationship" doesn't change, in that he's still my father, but the "fellowship" is strained.
    That is a better way to put it.

  11. #19
    tWebber tabibito's Avatar
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    James is correcting the same wrong idea that Paul was accused of teaching and had to correct when he insisted that justification by grace through faith does not mean we can go on sinning, as if good works were optional to one who is saved.
    Yes. That idea was circulating and had to be addressed. Paul was being misrepresented as thoroughly then as he still is. Peter also took issue with the way Paul's writings about salvation, in particular but not exclusively, were being wrested (2 Peter 3:16).

    Faith then inevitably (though more slowly) results in a measure of sanctification and holy living.
    There is nothing inevitable about it - the person has to put into effect, the power made available through the Holy Spirit to bring it about.

    Good works are necessary in the sense faith necessarily results in good works, not in the sense that good works are a deciding factor in justification before God or in salvation.
    That is not what "a person is justified through actions and not through faith alone" means. (with a further note: "justified" does not mean "saved")

    Galatians 5:16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. So - if we are gratifying the desires of the flesh, are we walking not by the Spirit? It seems so ... Romans 8:13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

    Of course, it does happen from time to time that translations make it seem that the person does something, where the Koine texts show that the person actually receives it - but usually referring back to the Koine is frowned upon.
    Last edited by tabibito; 05-23-2019 at 07:43 AM.
    και εκζητησατε με και ευρησετε με οτι ζητησετε με εν ολη καρδία υμων

  12. #20
    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tabibito View Post
    Ephesians 2 says that we are saved by grace. Faith is not active in salvation, it is no more than a conduit. in so far as the limits of the relevant statements in Ephesians are concerned.)
    Ephesians 2:4 by grace you are (in a state of) having been saved.
    Ephesians 2:8 by grace you are (in a state of) having been saved, through faith.
    Grace is the undeserved and unmerited favor of God. It is the what God bestows on us when we have faith in him. It is salvation itself: unmerited (no works), undeserved (we are still sinners), favor (salvation). So yeah it still means we are saved by faith alone.

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