God’s Calling and Choosing

Christians have a tendency to fall into two views. One view is that faith and salvation is 100% grace and works are not involved at all. The other view is that salvation is by grace plus works. However, the Bible is very clear that salvation is by grace through faith. It is a gift of God. However, there are also passages that tell us that works are a vital and necessary part of our salvation. Please read this edifying devotional by Martin Luther. I believe it gives us a very accurate description of works and their role in our salvation.

8 thoughts on “God’s Calling and Choosing

  1. “But someone will say, ‘You have faith and I have works.’ Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” James 2:18. Many Christians become justified and forget that they are running a race. Their train of thought is, “I am saved by faith alone by Christ through grace alone.” which is truth, but then that is where they sit down and fall asleep. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10. God has predestined our good works just as He predestined our salvation. Does that mean we get to spiritually sleep our way through this life? No! God tells us to work out our salvation through fear and trembling. This doesn’t mean to we have to work on being saved, but work on our sanctification through the Holy Spirit’s power. We aren’t saved unto “whatever we want to do” but unto righteousness. Righteousness doesn’t include all the entertainment that this world has to offer us and it doesn’t include how we feel like acting because we don’t feel like dying to self that day. I thank God for His grace because I, of all people, need it. However, grace doesn’t equal excuse. Thank you for the edifying post, Mike. I thank you for your diligence toward Godly things. You are a strong tower for other Christians. God bless you!

  2. Sarah,

    What can I add to what you said? Now, what we must do is give this message to all believers and let the Holy Spirit do His work of making it real and vital to them. God has given me a deep appreciation of the works of Luther. He was not perfect any more than we are, but he also admitted that that was true. His writings are as relevant today as they were in the 16th century. Why? He simply taught what the Bible says. The Bible gives us our solid foundation which is based entirely in Christ.

    Thanks my sister in Christ

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff

  3. Men go after the things they desire, PRAISE God he puts His desire to be holy in His children’s heart. If Jesus be your desire how can you not have the works of faith and fruits of righteousness in your life?

    It’s sort of like being a parent who takes a young child to purchase a gift for the other parent. Jesus purchases the gifts, (for all our good works are really bought with His blood) and we get to gleefully run to the Father and lay our gifts at His feet as we beam with love and joy at the opportunity to do so. What an awesome blessing righteousness is, hallelujah!

  4. Good post, Mike. The original faith that brings salvation to any soul is the gift of God, it is not a work nor can it be. Any so called work poisons any salvation plan. (As a side note I believe that God has given that gift of faith to every man). But how can a man say he has been translated from death to life with no change? As Rebekah was drawn to Isaac by Eliazar without ever seeing him, so will the saved soul fall in love and obedience to his Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. The morning after I was born again the entire world looked and felt different to me. I had a hunger for His Word, I desired prayer, I witnessed, and I felt an over whelming sense of joy. I was born again. I would not want to be in the shoes of a professing Christian who couldn’t understand what I just said. Just so you will also understand me, we didn’t get salvation by works and we cannot lose it by works. What about professors that go into sin? Again, I would not want to be in their shoes. Thanks again, Mike.

  5. terrylynn,

    Yes, our sovereign God makes all we do possible and empowers us to do it yet He loves His children and is greatly pleased when we love Him and serve Him out of that Love. It is such a wonderful thing to realize that we have been adopted by Him. We are in His family and have an incredible inheritance awaiting us in eternity.

    I liked your analogy about the gift.

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff

  6. Rick,

    God makes those changes in our will that draw us to Him and serve Him according to His will. The faith that saves us is the faith He gives us. Amen! False professors are a puzzle, but they are all around us. I lay a lot of the blame for their shallowness and lack of real spirituality on their spiritual leaders. That is why we must be diligent in our serving of Him so that we don’t create an atmosphere that leads to false professions and false assurance.

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff

  7. A life I did not live, and a death I did not die…On this I bank my eternity! I am so thankful that God does it all….that he takes full responsibility for me, His child, and that he will complete the very work he started!

    Thanks Mike! Missed being here…but I see that you are as faithful as ever!

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