Justified by Faith Only

From time to time, my wife, my son, and I attend church on Saturday night instead of Sunday morning, especially when I have to work overnight on Saturday.

Tonight was such a night.

The pastor spoke tonight on Galatians 2:11-16, which teaches that we are justfiied (declared just) by faith in Jesus Christ only. The pastor asked the congregation to remember that we are not justfied by works, but by faith alone.

From time to time, we find difficult passages in the Bible which cause us to think that God requires more than faith from us for Him to forgive our sins and declare us righeous, but that is not the case. The problem is that some Scriptures take a lot more effort to interprent and understand.

Recently I wrote a devotional about the will of the Father in Matthew 7:21. If we do not interpret this Scripture carefully, we may come to the wrong conclusion that the Lord is saying that on top of having faith, we must also obey His sermon on the mount to be saved. But this would contradict what is clearly taught in other Scriptures, that salvation is a free gift God gives us when we believe in Jesus Christ (see John 3:14-17, Ephesians 2:8-9).

The fact that God forgives our sins freely when we believe, without requiring us to earn our salvation by obeying His Law, the Law of Moses, shows to us that He is a good God, a benevolent God, a most gracious God; and it fills us with rest and peace.

Questions for Reflection

  • What Scriptures teach that justification is by faith only?
  • Why does justification by faith only give us rest and peace?
  • How should we approach Scriptures that at first glance seem to teach that we must do good works (works of the Law) to be justified?

Reach Out

Are there any Bible passages that seem to you to teach that salvation is by faith and works, and not by faith only? Feel free to share them with me so I can take a look at them and write about them.

Bible Study on Revelation

I am developing a Bible study on the book of Revelation. Here is a link to the lessons I have posted thus far. Let me know what you think!

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©2018, Marcelo E. Carcach. All rights reserved.

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