Each activity (work) of man gains dignity and worth in so far as it leads to beatitude (attainment of God). This is evident in the Bible where it states “Man will be rewarded according to his works” (Matt 16:27), and “Faith without works is dead” (James 2:17).
Justification is the regeneration of the soul by the works of God himself and was made possible by Jesus’s death on the cross. This process takes place by grace, and it can’t be brought about by man’s natural powers or by works of the Mosaic Law; yet, man has a part to play–he must seek this grace. Once justified by God, man can increase in holiness and favor by good works. These good works can be done directly for the glory of God or indirectly by doing good for our neighbor. Our good works bring us merit and these good works will be judged by Jesus (Rev. 20:12).
Natural knowledge is that knowledge which wasn’t made known by a revelation from God. Justification is not sourced by carrying out duties which are naturally known to a reasonable man, and this includes carrying out duties which are part of the moral portion of the Mosaic Law (the Mosaic Law can be classifed as civil, religious, and moral). The moral portion of the Mosaic Law became a source of rebellion for the Israelites because it was impossible to keep without God’s grace, which can be found in the Church’s sacraments.
A Catholic Bible (certainly)