Works

Posted on February 23, 2012

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There is the Law in the Old Testament, the Law that consists of sins not to do, and of good to do, and then there is the works of the law, all together called The Law.

Gentiles were not under a covenant relationship with God.  Gentiles did not do the works of the law.  The works of the law does not just mean not to steal, commit adultery, etc.  The works of the law were circumcision.  The works of the law is a written code with regulations, for worship, and an earthly sanctuary.  Gifts and sacrifices were required for worship and the earthly sanctuary.  They are only a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washing—external regulations.  See Hebrews 9:1, 10.

God forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross.

Therefore, we are not to let anyone judge us by what we eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration, or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of what were to come; the reality, however, we find in Christ.  See Colossians 2:14, 16, and 17.

In the Old Testament, Gentiles did not do circumcision and other things, as commanded by God to the Jews, and so in this, the Gentiles did not obey God.  Circumcision was only for the Jews God’s chosen people.  However, through the blood of Christ, the Gentiles were brought near, once being separate from God.  See Ephesians 2:13.

On the Sabbath day, the law said that no one could work, not to even lift objects. Do you see the correlation from Sabbath day no works to no works for being saved?

Jesus is our Sabbath rest, we are saved by faith, and not of by works.

We are saved by Jesus’ blood making us clean and not by our doing the ceremonial works.

A NO WORK rule was in place for the Sabbath day. Faith and NO WORKS save us; however, Jesus says it is UNLAWFUL to do evil on the NO WORK day of the Sabbath, and Jesus said it was LAWFUL to do good on the NO WORK day of the Sabbath, see Luke 6:9.

That PROVES that we STILL HAVE TO OBEY JESUS AND DO RIGHT AND ABSTAIN FROM EVIL.

It is not wrong to do good when you want Jesus to save you!  It is not wrong to abstain from sin when you want Jesus to save you!

For people to misconstrue that no work means we do not have to repent from doing evil before Jesus saves us is absurd.  Jesus tells us to believe and repent, Matthew 4:17.

John the baptizer prepared the way for Jesus.  He came preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke 1:76-80).

We are still to confess that we are sinners, and to repent, to prepare the way for Jesus Christ into our lives.

People misunderstand Paul to their destruction.  That is what Peter says.  Right after Peter says that about people misunderstanding Paul, he then warns us to obey.

2 Peter 3:16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

17 herefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position.

Men misunderstand what Paul says about no works.  Paul is speaking about no works such as circumcision, and other works of the Old Testament Law, like the dietary laws, the various external washings, the observance of special days.  The Jews had to do those things JUST TO WORSHIP GOD.  No one has to do those things anymore, because through faith in Jesus’ blood makes us clean.  The Jews had to work at making THEMSELVES clean to have a relationship with God, but God nailed those works to the cross.  We do not have to do those things to be made clean before God; Jesus makes us clean before God.  God did not nail repenting, confessing, and stop sinning to the cross.  We have to believe and obey God.  We have to repent, confess, and stop sinning.

If you look at any scripture that speaks of no works, you will not find it far away where circumcision is brought up.  That should convince you that no works means we do not have to be circumcised, and not that we do not have to repent of sins.

We have to do something, we have to do what Jesus says, it is light, easy, and not burdensome, but it is still called work.  Jesus’ work is light, easy, and not burdensome.  Believing is a work, John 6:29. What kind of work is believing? It is easy and light, it is as easy as drinking water, 1 Corinthians 12:13.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30.

“Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” Romans 10:11. Is trust a work?

“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:13. Is calling a work?

Is confessing a work? We are to do these things if we want to be saved.

Believing, trusting, calling, confessing, repenting…these are all works, they are light, easy, and not burdensome.

It is a light and easy work to be sorry.  It is a light and easy work to forgive your brother.  It is a light and easy work to ask for forgiveness.

It would be a work if you went and did things in observance of special days, as the Jews had to do.  It would be a work if you went to find an animal to take to the priest when you sinned.  It would be a work to have to make you ceremonially clean just to worship God.  It would be works to go be circumcised.  However, now we just have to confess our sins to God through Jesus Christ.

In Romans 3:20, Paul is explaining that Jews in the Old Testament were justified by obeying the law of circumcision, various external washings, various sin offerings, adherence to the dietary laws, and the observance of special days.  They did not yet have Jesus to believe in, BUT NOW, NO ONE WILL BE JUSTIFIED FROM THE OLD TESTAMENT LAW.  Paul is explaining that we must all go through Jesus now.  Again, Jesus was not known by all in the Old Testament law, the law was not based on faith to be made clean before God, as we are by the law of faith in the New Testament, for Jesus’ blood made us clean; the law in the Old Testament had certain works to do to make oneself clean before God.  No one will be justified in that way anymore.

Sin is never okay, trying not to sin is not a sin, as many denominations teach, they say it makes a works salvation, and thus, it causes one to fall from grace, to be condemned and accursed.  What falseness they teach.

Trying not to sin while searching for God to save us through Jesus is not something that disqualifies us, as many denominations teach, they tell others they will be condemned.  They teach their misunderstandings of the scriptures about no works.  Show me one warning from the Bible that says believe and do not be sorry, or believe and do not confess or you will be condemned.

Keeping God’s commands is what counts, the only thing that counts from the beginning of man, and it is the only thing that counts ever.

To teach man has fallen from grace because he tries to obey God is unstable reasoning.

Faith without deeds is dead; it is never the saving kind of faith.  It is dead.  The only time ‘faith alone’ is mentioned in the Bible is to tell us what kind of faith not to have.   James 2:24 You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone.

Romans 9:31-32 but Israel, who pursued a law of righteousness, has not attained it.  Why not?  Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works.

Romans 8:11 And if by grace, then it is no longer by works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.

Notice that God saves us by faith and not by works; however, in James, we are told about faith and deeds.  God saves us by faith and not by works such as circumcision.  We still have to have faith AND do what God says to do.

James says faith without deeds is useless, James 2:20. So how did that same useless faith become SAVING faith, as taught by many denominations? How did that same useless faith be the kind that turns out to be the most important kind of useful faith there can or ever will be?  It is simple, it cannot be.  Faith without obeying Jesus is dead faith, not the saving kind of faith.  James says in 2:14, “Can such a faith save a man?”  The answer is no, such a faith without obeying Jesus cannot save a man.

Faith without works of the law is what Paul teaches, not faith without sorrow for sins! Faith without circumcision is what Paul teaches in the Bible, not faith with any kind of right action is worthy of condemnation.
James 2:22 You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did.

Our faith is made complete by what we do.

God did not like it when people could keep the part of the law, the being clean through the law part, and still not be right in the heart.  People could sin and not be sorry for their sins, and then give a sin offering.  What did that do?  That a person’s heart could be full of sin and hate towards God yet obey the works of the law and still be called a child of God.

When Jesus came, God gave to all the chance to be called children of God, not through the works of the law, like circumcision, but through faith in Jesus Christ.   God’s Son who shed his blood that make all who come to Him clean, not by blood of rams, lambs, and goats.  When a person wants to be God’s child now, all he has to do is believe.  That does not mean a person can come to Jesus still wanting to sin. That is nonsense.  Why would a person even come to God if they wanted to keep living life in sin?  In fact, that is what the Bible says keeps people from God, the fact that they do not want to stop sinning.

The Pharisees and teachers of the law, they were the  Jews who would not come to God through Jesus, they did not want to give up the working part like circumcision.

A person must understand that they are to have faith in Jesus.  They must not want to sin, they must be sorry for their sins; they must want to be cleansed of their sins just by believing.  There are people all over the world who teach the error that we are only to believe and nothing else, not even to obey by being sorry for our sins!

God knows are hearts and if we are truly contrite, Acts 15:8.  The message that saves is a message that says Jesus died for sinners, Acts 11:14. If we hear the message that saves, yet do not believe we are sinners and need to stop sinning, then God will know this.

We have to have Jesus’ teachings and obey so that we can receive the Holy Spirit.  When one hears the message that saves, if you believe the message but do not believe you are a sinner that needs God to forgive you, then you have not repented and this we must do, Acts 3:19;11:18: 17:30; 20:21; 26:20; 2 Corinthians 7:10.

Why is there such a misunderstanding about how Jesus saves us?  We are saved by faith and obeying Jesus.  See Acts 5:32.Works of the law, like circumcision, does not save us.

To believe in Jesus is a work, it is the work God requires, John 6:29.  It is not a work not to sin.  It is not a work to stop stealing; it is not a work to stop cheating on your wife.  Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”  Do you think stop cheating on your wife is a work that will make you weary?  Do you think to stop stealing will make you weary?  No.  Jesus is speaking to those who had the law of works, for them to come to him and he will give them rest, because the works of the law is a written code with regulations, for worship, and an earthly sanctuary. The Jews had to follow these codes and regulations just to worship God.  They had to give gifts and sacrifices as was required for worship and in the earthly sanctuary. They were a matter of food and drink and they had to follow various ceremonial washings—external regulations. The Jews had a lot of work to worship God.

Obeying Jesus’ teachings is not a work in the way circumcision and sacrifices were works.

God’s people were the Jews; they were God’s chosen for following the law of works.  When they sinned, it was the command of God to give sin offerings.  In this written code, a law of regulations, they were God’s people.  However, God was not happy with them when those who gave sin offerings were not sorry, but they had to do them because law required it.  God who knows our hearts saves us when we hear the message and believe, and when we are truly sorry for our sins.  No amount of works, i.e., sin offerings and sacrifices, nor circumcision could really show what was in a person’s heart.  They could do these things and not really be sorry for their sins.  Of course, though, some Jews loved God and were sorry for their sins; these are the Jews who were allowed to come to Jesus when Jesus was on earth.

Read and study all the things the Jews had to do just to worship God:  The Burnt Offering; The Grain Offering; The Fellowship Offering; The Sin Offering; The Guilt Offering; Dietary Laws; Purification After Childbirth; Cleansing From Infectious Skin Diseases; Cleansing From Mildew; Discharges Causing Uncleanness; The Day of Atonement; Rules for Priests; The Sabbath; Firstfruits; The Passover and Unleavened Bread; Feast of Weeks; Feast of Trumpets; Feast of Tabernacles; Oil and Bread Set Before The LORD; the Sabbath Year; The Year of Jubilee; Circumcision.

Colossians 2:14 having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross.

The part of the law that God nailed to the cross, are the ceremonial laws.

The observance of special days, those special days were about Jesus, they were a shadow of what was to come.

We do not have to do the sin offerings, Jesus is the sacrificial Lamb of God, once and for all.

The laws about purification after childbirth, and cleansing from infectious diseases, those laws the Jews had to do just to continue worshiping God.  However, Jesus’ blood makes us clean, and we do not rely on external rituals to make ourselves clean before God.

They are only a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washings–external regulations applying until the time of the new order.  Hebrews 9:10.

The Old Testament means the Old Covenant.  The New Testament means New Covenant.

Hebrews 7:12 For when there is a change of the priesthood, there must also be a change of the law.

We do not have to do the Old Testament Law, but we do have to do what the New Testament Law says.

James 1:25 But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it–he will be blessed in what he does.

The Old Testament is about an earthly sanctuary.  The New Testament is about Spiritual things.

Hebrews 9:1 Now the first covenant had regulations for worship and also an earthly sanctuary.

The Old Testament is scripture, it is God breathed, and it is still and always will be useful.

2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,

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Posted in: Truth Revealed