Faith vs. Works?

If we are saved by grace and can’t earn it through works, why does James say faith without works is dead? Soooo confusing, right? Not necessarily. You didn’t ask for my take on this, but since I’m such a giver, here it is.

Salvation takes no work, besides humility. It cannot be earned through being good, or through works.  Isn’t that awesome news??  Not one of us deserve it, and yet every single one of us can have it.  It takes a realization that we need God and are ready to accept forgiveness for our past, even if we can’t forgive ourselves. It takes a realization that we need more, that life is bigger than we realize, and that we want a purpose. It’s free. And it couldn’t be more simple. It takes a moment. An acceptance. A brokenness. A plea for help. A cry for something more. A yearning for a Holy Spirit to guide and a relationship with the one who gave you breath.

This begins a life of faith. A life that seeks to honor God. A life that realizes that what the world’s been selling isn’t anything we want to buy. A life full of….work.

Salvation is free, but the fruit that we bear because of it takes work.

It takes constant introspection about our actions, how we are perceived, if our heart is right- even in doing good. It takes serving selflessly, which is harder than it sounds.  It takes constant prayer, constant humility, and constant realizations and renewals. It takes work to develop a thick skin, as associating with Christianity you will come up against a lot of haters. You will also be labeled, sometimes rightly, a hater yourself. That’s where the constant introspection and awareness of motives comes in.

Makes me think of this quote by C.S. Lewis:

Faith is wonderful. But without works, it is indeed dead. He’s not saying you can’t have faith without works, he’s just saying it’s pointless.

And what are we without love?  We are no more than an annoyance, a pest, the fly that keeps buzzing around and driving everyone nuts.  And our works are then pointless.

Do the work. Show the love. Don’t be that fly.

I....just found a typo as I was reading this. Is it a good deed to call them and point it out? Hmmm....



23 thoughts on “Faith vs. Works?

  1. I have had a good grasp on this for quite awhile but I’ve never heard it explained quite like this. And I love it. So thank you. (from the person you don’t know, who’s been following your blog for awhile, and is so appreciative of your perspective and awed by your faith)

      1. BTW…the way you handled all that grief you got…very inspiring…you never rise to the bait…but stay true to your belief at that the same time.

  2. I am in awe of your beautiful heart, your unwavering believing and your wonderful tenacity in speaking what you believe without hesitation and with such confidence ! you are an awesome example of a Christian. You are an inspiration for me to be as bold as you are. Keep inspiring and teaching others.

  3. Kim, do you sleep? I see that some of your followers are up reading blogs in the middle of the night! I am usually behind, like the next day. Your wisdom is like reading the best devotionals one can find in published books. Your wisdom comes from above. Thank you for sharing it so freely, plainly and opening with the rest of us. You have credibility that few have so you can stand up to the doubters, detractors and those who refuse to believe in a living, active, healing, giving, faithful God!

  4. Well said…

    It seems to me that James point is not so much that faith without works is not pointless, but is unreal. It is like saying that you are in the water, but people notice that you are not wet. Like claiming you are on fire, but you are not being burned. I’m always reminded of Jesus in John 13-14 telling his Apostles that if they believe they will do as he has been doing and follow His fathers commandments.

      1. I have seen people who tell of thier faith, but thier actions betray thier actual faith.

        Example of what I mean. If you really had faith that a wall was in the way wouldn’t you change your path? If you didn’t change your path I would say you don’t have belief in the wall.

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