Faith and Works

“Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food.  If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” James 2:15-17

Make no mistake about it; salvation is from God, fully and completely. The Bible is crystal clear—we are saved by grace alone, through faith alone. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)

We have no merit in our salvation and in the passage above James is not saying that we do. What he is saying is that salvation brings with it responsibility. We are not saved by good works, we are saved for good works. “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10) The Bible also says that we are Christ’s representatives, “as though God were making his appeal through us,” (2 Corinthians 5:20). What we do matters, not for our salvation, but for our witness. When it comes to demonstrating our faith, actions speak louder than words.

If you claim to be a Christian you can be sure that your classmates, co-workers, neighbors, friends, and family are watching you and your claim of faith in Christ will be verified or denied by what you do; by how you live. “What good is it,” James asks, “if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds?” (James 2:14) It’s no good, he says. The proof that your faith is genuine is demonstrated by your actions.

Having begun as a guest speaker in 2005, Dan was appointed Interim Pastor in 2008 and has been serving Maple Root Baptist ever since. As a small group leader and Chaplin for the Connecticut Tigers, Dan has a heart for the lost and the God that saves them.

Dan Kinnaman

Pastor, Maple Root Baptist Church