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What is the role of our own works in salvation?

What is the role of our own works in salvation?

Ephesians 2 verses 8 – 9 says, “for by grace are you saved, through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast“.

Straight away we can say, we cannot earn salvation through anything we do, because salvation is God’s gift to everyone who believes in Him, repents and confesses their sins and asks for his cleansing. Then we are adopted into His family. The next question to ask after we are saved is – “what now?” If I cannot earn my salvation what does God expect of me?

Transformed

God’s desire for each one of us, after we have become Christians is that He will “transform us into the image of His Son” (Romans 8 verse 29 and 2 Corinthians 3 verse 18). This transformation cannot happen in a vacuum, as God transforms us on the inside, our outward lives will begin to show it. James 2 gives us some insight into this as James writes to those who claim that they have faith, but it seems there is no real evidence for their faith, so in summary of his long answer he says “I will show you my faith by my works…. Faith apart from works is dead.

The good deeds that a Christian does, he does because Christ is working in him and they are a witness to everyone around us – “they will see your good works and glorify your father which is in heaven” (Matthew 5 verse 16). The good deeds that people from other faiths do is very often done in the hope that they will make merit, and somehow be able to get to heaven by all the good things they have done.

So it is plain that good deeds, and good work is important for a Christian to do, not to gain God’s favour, or from man’s own effort, but as an outward sign of the work that Christ has done in our lives and is changing us to be more and more like Christ, and it is done in the power of the Holy Spirit.

How does this Bible teaching speak to you? Please share your thoughts below!

Also read Is the salvation for the whole world?

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Eunice Burden

Eunice Burden

Eunice comes from UK and has been in Thailand 25 years. She and a Thai co-worker wrote a 4 year curriculum for all age Sunday Schools and they also did Sunday school teacher training seminars. She went back to UK for 8 years. Whilst in UK she did various courses including a theology degree and came back to Thailand with OMF in 1999. For most of her time since then she has been involved teaching lay leaders of the Thai, supporting and advising, speaking and teaching in various churches. Gradually over the years she has been invited to join various facilitator teams of the OMF.

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What is the role of our own works in salvation?