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. Matthew 16:27.

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Matthew 5:16.

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. John 14:12.

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:8-10.

Every man's work shall be made manifest; for the day shall, declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. I Corinthians 3:13.

So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God. Romans 14:12.

And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. Revelation 22:12.

Jesus did many mighty works but was real careful to give the glory to God, it was not His own works but the works of the Father. In the power of the Holy Spirit, we also do good works, not by works of the law but by Jesus living through us. Abraham is our example of faith but Jesus told the Jews "If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham." While our works are as filthy rags compared to the grace given to make us holy, once we are tasted salvation, we have the responsibility to live right. We are not justified by works but our sanctification is dependent upon walking in the spirit, not in the positional sense only but also in the practical applications of living holy. By acting in His power, we as Christians are no longer under compulsion to do the law but we fulfill the requirements of the law when we do works of love.

James said it best when He made the statement:

What does it profit, my brothers, though a man say he has faith, and have not works? Can faith save him?... Even so faith, if it has not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, You have faith, and I have works: shew me your faith without your works, and I will shew you my faith by my works. James 2:14/17-18.
Luther wanted the entire book of James stricken from the New Testament canon because of those passages, but the fact remains that works will be the determining factor on judgment day. Anyone who disagrees with that is diasagreeing with the plain teaching of Jesus.

Paul wrote to Timothy concerning taking in widows that were: "Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up children, if she have lodged strangers, if she have washed the saints' feet, if she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good work." 1 Timothy 5:10. Follow after good works? Of course.

So how should a Christian react among the many Christian teachers that say that good works are not part of the Christian faith? What they want us to do is choose between faith and good works instead of having the kind of faith that produces good works. The worst of them abuse Christian freedom by using grace as an excuse to live however you want and still be saved. We teach grace aright, so did Paul. God rested from His work on the seventh day but He gave the dominion and creative ablities to us. Our rest is the promised land and you can enter into it right now.

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour. That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men. Titus 3:5-8.

Teachers of cheap grace do not have a holiness doctrine that brings them past justification into sanctification. Once they get into the Holy Place, they do not have the spiritual power to get you into the Holy of Holies. Please people, listen to what Paul and James have to say to us concerning grace and holiness, they said it right, listen to the writers in the Bible and not to the traditions of men that would dissuade you from holiness and complete santification. These false teachers have a great following and many people flock to them but cheap grace is just coming to Jesus for the fire insurance without sufficient grace giving us the Holy Ghost power to live as we should.

Paul's calling to the Gentiles was that they "should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance." Acts 26:20. We are promised the gift of the Holy Ghost if we not only believe but also repent. Without repentance there is no remission of sins, without remission of sins, there is no forgiveness and without forgiveness, it can be argued whether you are truly a Christian. What we have repented from is a system of dead works in the flesh, now that we are saved we are to live for Jesus and that is proved by our love and good works. Not to boast in our works but give the glory to God from where holiness power comes to do good works.

Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works. Hebrews 10:23

James went on to say in chapter 4, verse 17: "Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin." Here is where the rubber meets the road. James is bringing a conclusion to what he has been saying from the beginning. He starts this verse with the word "therefore." So what he is saying in essence is that "I have warned you, ignorance is no excuse. Now that you know, it is sin not to heed what I say." This of course can be applied to many other instances in the Bible where the scripture is plain. Jesus said in John 14:15, "If ye love me, keep my commandments." He also had severe warnings to those servants that did not heed: "And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes." Luke 12:47.

James is not speaking to the world, he is speaking to the twelve tribes who can be every way be seen as the church who comprise New Israel. He has already mentioned in the first chapter that sin brings death. We should know what righteousness is and should do everything we can to follow the way of holiness - anything else is sin. Repentance is the key to holiness and holiness is the key to genuine spirituality. We really do have that position in Christ that gives us the power and authority to be called children of God and God of course is forgiving, but unconfessed sin, once brought to maturity brings death. "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 6:23.

James is setting a pattern here; he who is wise will follow the ways of the Lord. The Father of lights birthed the word of truth in us so that we would know what to obey. If we are to rid ourselves of the filth and evil that has plagued mankind from the beginning, we are to understand exactly what the perfect law of liberty is and that is making the choice to do right. We are all created the same, we all have God given redeeming qualities that can overcome our temporal depravity, we can become the children of God that He has created us for. But we need to do it. We are Christians.

Adoption into the family of God gives us an obligation to live as we ought to. It is not enough to know the word, it is not enough to hear, we need to overcome our fleshly desires and do what we have been taught. Christians should be known by their love, not their disobedience and worldly ways. Our faith should be proven by godly lives and that translates into good works. They say that ignorance is bliss, maybe they're right sometimes but not the way I would go. Jesus said in John 15:22, "If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin." Paul understood that kind of faulty reasoning of ignorance being an excuse and countered it with "For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse." Romans 1:20. So in this case no-one is without excuse but then the point should be made that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. The writer of Hebrews points directly to all of us and states

How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him." Hebrews 2:3.

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