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We may view many things as instrumental in man's salvation. God's grace is one, Christ's substitutionary atonement is another. Regeneration by the Holy Spirit with a new birth is also involved.
Those are things God does for man.
But man has one responsibility:
trust in the Savior.
Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved.
For by grace you have been saved through faith, & that not of yourselves, not of works lest any man should boast.
Most clearly good works & keeping commandments is denied as salvific.
The reason is obvious:
we cannot & do not keep God's commandments. There is none who does good, no not one. All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags.
I understand that we are SAVED by faith apart from works so that we may not boast.
However, we are JUSTIFIED by works and NOT BY FAITH ALONE.
What do YOU think the difference between the two (SAVED and JUSTIFIED) is?
Personally, it is obvious what the REAL answer is.
1) We are saved from Hell by our living faith in God. This faith MUST have works as well otherwise it is dead. (James 2:26) However, at this point, it is still just God's grace and our faith in him.
2) We are justified unto righteousness or unto heaven by our works. These are the keeping of God's commandments to the best of our ability and doing God's work (Opus Dei) as much as we can.
The above points are unarguable. The below is a logical conclusion.
3) Because we see the diffreence between the two, it logically results that if we have faith but NOT works, then we are saved from Hell but NOT justified unto heaven. Where after death would we go then if we did not merit Hell but did not earn heaven yet? Simple.
Arch, you claim: "However, we are JUSTIFIED by works and NOT BY FAITH ALONE."
THE LORD CLAIMS:
"We reckon therefore that a man is justified by faith apart from the works of the law. " Rom 3
"We being Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, 16 yet knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, even we believed on Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the law: because by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified." Gal 2
" 23 But before faith came, we were kept in ward under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24 So that the law is become our tutor to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25 But now faith that is come, we are no longer under a tutor. 26 For ye are all sons of God, through faith, in Christ Jesus." Gal 3
"3 But the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote his breast, saying, God, be thou merciful to me a sinner. 14 I say unto you, This man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be humbled; but he that humbleth himself shall be exalted." Luke 16
"by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified in his sight; for through the law cometh the knowledge of sin. 21 But now apart from the law a righteousness of God hath been manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; 22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ unto all them that believe; for there is no distinction; 23 for all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God; 24 being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 25 whom God set forth to be a propitiation, through faith, in his blood, to show his righteousness because of the passing over of the sins done aforetime, in the forbearance of God; 26 for the showing, I say, of his righteousness at this present season: that he might himself be just, and the justifier of him that hath faith in Jesus. 27 Where then is the glorying? It is excluded. By what manner of law? of works? Nay: but by a law of faith. 28 We reckon therefore that a man is justified by faith apart from the works of the law. 29 Or is God the God of Jews only? is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yea, of Gentiles also: 30 if so be that God is one, and he shall justify the circumcision by faith, and the uncircumcision through faith." Rom 3
"For if Abraham was justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not toward God. 3 For what saith the scripture? And Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned unto him for righteousness. 4 Now to him that worketh, the reward is not reckoned as of grace, but as of debt. 5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is reckoned for righteousness. 6 Even as David also pronounceth blessing upon the man, unto whom God reckoneth righteousness apart from works, 7 saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, And whose sins are covered." Rom 4
" 8 But God commendeth his own love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, shall we be saved from the wrath of God through him." Rom 5
" 8 But God commendeth his own love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, shall we be saved from the wrath of God through him. " Rom 8
" 4 Ye are severed from Christ, ye would be justified by the law; ye are fallen away from grace. 5 For we through the Spirit by faith wait for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith working through love. " Gal 5
" not by works done in righteousness, which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, 6 which he poured out upon us richly, through Jesus Christ our Saviour; 7 that, being justified by his grace, we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life." Titus 3
Arch asks: "What do YOU think the difference between the two (SAVED and JUSTIFIED) is?"
Salvation (Soteriology) is the more general term. Under that topic one studies the atonement, substitution, redemption [buying out & setting free], reconciliation [complete change], new birth, regeneration, election, obtaining eternal life, justification, etc., everything Christ does for us wretched sinners.
Justification is a declaration of righteousness, as a judge would give a verdict at the end of a trial, but not our mere "not-guilty," nor merely forgiven, it is a declaration that a man is righteous. And I do not exclude the actual making of a person righteous. Not mere just-as-if-I-had-never-sinned by positive righteousness.
Our works earn us a decree of condemnation, but Christ's atonement & substitution for us places His righteousness to our account. As a part of salvation justification is by faith. We trust Him to recreate us & transform us with a new nature, as well as give us the gift of eternal life.
Arch says: "1) We are saved from Hell by our living faith in God. This faith MUST have works as well otherwise it is dead. (James 2:26) However, at this point, it is still just God's grace and our faith in him."
Salvation is not first of all salvation from the Lake of Fire; it is obtaining a new birth, being made a new creature: As 2 Cor 5 says, old things are passed away, behold, all has become new! Reconciliation in Greek (katallaso word group) means a complete change. Kata- preposition prefixed to intensify; it literally means "down" but is used like our "up" in "eat it up." Completeness is implied. All- is the root for "other." We are completely "other-ized." Note that God is never "reconciled," for He is immutable & cannot be changed.
Genuine faith indeed does result in good works & proves that the faith is genuine.
Arch said, "2) We are justified unto righteousness or unto heaven by our works. These are the keeping of God's commandments to the best of our ability and doing God's work (Opus Dei) as much as we can."
Utterly contrary to God's Word. Judgment in the Bible is always by works; yes. But salvation & justification are only by faith before God's bar of justice & our need of change. In man's eyes yes, our works declare we are righteous. We do not keep God's commands to the best of our ability. "God be merciful to me a sinner" is part of our faith. Man is sinful by nature. The works of the Adamic human nature (flesh) are only sins -- Gal 5.
Arch, so you postulate something not in the Bible, namely purgatory. But am I correct that you are saying that you are saved from Hell by trusting Christ as Savior? If you really believe that, I think I might have to regard you as a Christian, even if you are confused on Purgatory.
You postulate a condition where a man has faith, but not works. That is impossible. Faith without works is dead. There is a purging event called the Judgement Seat of Christ (Bema). There the Christian's works are to be judged; some will be saved, but as through fire. And the Christian is not burned or punished; his lousy works are burned up & he loses reward.
The Lord indeed chastises his children in this life, but not as receiving payment for sins; not for retribution. Christ took all our sin on the cross. He suffered for us the just for the unjust that we might have the righteousness of God. Read Rom 5 you will see that being IN CHRIST is the only thing that brings righteousness. (Just as being IN ADAM made us all sinners.)
He who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin. I take it from Prophet Peter that thus when we die, we no longer sin. We shall see the One Who died for us, Who paid for all our wickednesses, with marks in his hands & feet glorified.
Fortunately for you, you have Christ defined correctly as 2nd person of the Trinity. You do have somewhere in your mind that He died for your sins.
Now Arch (tell me if you want me to call you something else),
If you have never made that Call for salvation of Rom 10:13, do it now.
Take the knee and call out: "Lord Jesus, I trust you as my Savior. Save me now."
I have been saved:
2 Timothy 1:9
I am being saved:
1 Peter 1:9
I hope to be saved:
1 Corinthians 3:15
1 Corinthians 5:5
This is the Christian answer. This is salvation.
There are 3 tenses to salvation, past, present, and future. "Hope" in the English sense of the word is misleading. The Christian has a sure future. We may know that we HAVE eternal life (1 John).
As John says, they shall never perish, neither shall anyone pluck them out of My hand.
The end of Romans gives an unbreakable chain of events:
Foreknown, foreordained, called, justified, glorified.
29 For whom he foreknew, he also foreordained to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren: 30 and whom he foreordained, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not also with him freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth; 34 who is he that condemneth? It is Christ Jesus that died, yea rather, that was raised from the dead, who is at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or anguish, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 Even as it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; We were accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
"The Christian has a sure future" you say.
I believe in Christ, have acknowledged Him as my Savior, and have FAITH in Him. Therefore, I am saved.
Now tomorrow, if I murder, cheat, lie, steal, commit adultery, take the Lord's name in vain, and worship an idol, am I still saved?
You say "once saved, always saved". Therefore, according to you, I can do as I please now that I have been saved without fear of Hell.
1) Have you read the Bible through? How many times?
2) Have you read the apocrypha through? How many times?
I'm not sure exactly how many times to be honest. Does it matter anyway?
Often I've found that I know more on Scripture than others having read it far less times than those who have it many more than I!
Please answer my last question though, would i be saved if I was once saved and then went out and committed all of those sins?
Are you ducking, Arch.
Give us a straight answer:
Have you ever read the Bible all the way through?
Have you ever read the Apocrypha all the way through?
Why do I have to pull teeth to get an answer.
I ask, because if you haven't read the Apocrypha, how can you say it is self-evidently God's word? or were you just borrowing my language insincerely?
What diff does it make if you have read it?
Well, its tough to say something is self-evidently God's word if you never read it.
Now Arch, I already answered your question. If you want me to validate an absurdity built into a question, I won't do that for you.
Bearing a certain fruit does make a tree. A tree doesn't become a peach tree by bearing peaches. But we know the tree by its fruit. A peach tree bears peaches because it is a peach tree.
for by grace have ye been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not of works, that no man should glory. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God afore prepared that we should walk in them.
Strange it is when an unsaved man, who has no good works, wants to insist on good works for salvation. Strange when an unsaved man is concerned about a saved person sinning. But really in view of man's sin it is not so strange, since sinners want to pretend that they are good.
Thou shalt call His name Jesus, for He SHALL SAVE HIS PEOPLE FROM THEIR SINS.
Salvation is salvation from sins, not just a ticket to Heaven. Now you ask, what if a person who is saved is not saved. That is an absurd question.
To answer the fisrt question: I have not read ALL of the Bible straight through.
Second: The apocrypha is nonexistent, so no, I have not read a nonexistent thing. If, however, you meant deuterocanonical, then yes, I have read them.
You say that one who is saved will not commit the horrible atrocities that I listed. Do you mean that one who is saved will never sin?
Let me reword my earlier example:
Say one is saved after having called on the name of Christ and accepting Him as their savior.
Later in their life, they completely renounce Him for whatever reason.
Is that person still saved?
I have seen it happen so do not say that it is impossible for such an event to occur.
And do not use the cop out saying that the person was never saved in the first place.
No Arch, I don't mean that a Christian never sins. In many ways we all stumble.
But a Christian is saved. He is saved from sin. Therefore, he cannot as a manner of life commit gross sin. He cannot both be saved from sin & not saved from sin. Thou shalt call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sin. 1 John indicates that apostasy proves a person was never saved.
Your questions seem based on absurd assumptions. What if a saved person is not saved? You have not seen it happen. And you cannot be sure that another person was ever saved because you cannot see into their hearts.
" They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they all are not of us."
Now don't accuse God's word of a cop out or pretend to know more than He.
You can't be both saved & not saved, Arch. If you habitually sin in gross ways, scripture is clear that you are not saved.
God's grace has never made me feel like sinning. I love Him because He first loved me. He paid for all my sins on the cross, why would I despise his grace & act an ingrate?
Salvation is first a change of nature; old things pass away, all becomes new. Then it is eternal life including Heaven.