Faith Alone?


#1

I got a few questions

  1. What biblical prove do we have that faith alone is wrong.

2.What biblical prove do we have that we must do good works to enter the kingdom of heaven.

3.Protestants, christians, What biblical prove do you have that faith alone is the way to go. ( It wouldn’t be right to only get one side of the story)

Thank You
Ryan


#2

I think one good example would be Matt 25:31-40 “Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me.”

Jam 2:14 What shall it profit, my brethren, if a man say he hath faith, but hath not works? Shall faith be able to save him?
Jam 2:15 And if a brother or sister be naked and want daily food:
Jam 2:16 And one of you say to them: Go in peace, be ye warmed and filled; yet give them not those things that are necessary for the body, what shall it profit?
Jam 2:17 So faith also, if it have not works, is dead in itself.
Jam 2:18 But some man will say: Thou hast faith, and I have works. Shew me thy faith without works; and I will shew thee, by works, my faith.


#3

James 2:14-26
"What does it profit, my brethren, if a man says he has faith but has not works? Can his faith save him? If a brother or sister is ill-clad and in lack of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what does it profit? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead." (This is through vs. 17; it is long, please read the remainder through verse 26).

Phillipians 2:12-14"Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for God is at work in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure."

Romans 2:6-8
"For he will render to every man according to his works; to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; but for those who are factious and do not obey the truth, but obey wickedness, there will be wrath and fury."


#4

[quote=AmandaPS]I think one good example would be Matt 25:31-40 “Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me.”

[/quote]

Yes, in the entire description of the Last Judgment at Matthew 25:31ff, Jesus makes entry into heaven or hell dependent on the good works or lack of them that were done in this life.

JimG


#5

You also need to look at Matthew 7:21, not everyone that says Lord Lord but those who do the will of my father


#6

I heard in a Bible study that Martin Luther changed the meaning in whatever protestant version he had assisted making. The Catholic one said “works through faith” in one part and I think that is what he ommited.


#7

[quote=flick427]I heard in a Bible study that Martin Luther changed the meaning in whatever protestant version he had assisted making. The Catholic one said “works through faith” in one part and I think that is what he ommited.
[/quote]

He added alone after the word faith. It is said that he had to violate a rule of the german language to do it.


#8

[quote=AmandaPS]I think one good example would be Matt 25:31-40 “Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me.”

Jam 2:14 What shall it profit, my brethren, if a man say he hath faith, but hath not works? Shall faith be able to save him?
Jam 2:15 And if a brother or sister be naked and want daily food:
Jam 2:16 And one of you say to them: Go in peace, be ye warmed and filled; yet give them not those things that are necessary for the body, what shall it profit?
Jam 2:17 So faith also, if it have not works, is dead in itself.
Jam 2:18 But some man will say: Thou hast faith, and I have works. Shew me thy faith without works; and I will shew thee, by works, my faith.
[/quote]

The Book of James is an outline of how a follower of Christ is to live out that faith. (ie., practical Christian living.) The devoted service for others is the outcome and proof of faith. It is a consequence of being a follower of Christ. It is not a means of gaining entrance into heaven. For if it were, we could once again work our way there and Christ’s suffering, death and resurrection would be for nothing.
You cannot DO enough or BE GOOD enough to gain entrance into the place where the Father demands perfection.

We do things listed in James because we want please God.
We gain entrance to heaven because Jesus is our ticket. Paid in full with his Blood.

Why did Jesus come? "…That He would bring us to God."
1Peter3:18


#9

[quote=RomanRyan1088]I got a few questions

  1. What biblical prove do we have that faith alone is wrong.

2.What biblical prove do we have that we must do good works to enter the kingdom of heaven.

3.Protestants, christians, What biblical prove do you have that faith alone is the way to go. ( It wouldn’t be right to only get one side of the story)

Thank You
Ryan
[/quote]

Ryan, as you can tell from the responses to your post, there are passages that answer your question. However a major point that you need to understand and be ready to defend is that everything does not have to be proven by the Bible. The great part of being Catholic is the 3 legged stool, Bible, aka Scripture, Tradition and the Magerstirum (sp?) which is the teaching office of the Church. The three all together is what defines the full Catholic truth. I don’t believe that we need to go to the Protestants level to try to put everything in light of the Bible because “Bible alone” is not biblical. God bless you!

Newby


#10

This is from a Post I made on another thread. I hope it’s helpful.

Love and faith are necessary works.

The belief that we are saved by faith alone, and that it is not necessary to love God in order to be saved, is contrary to both scripture and common sense.

We are told in 1Cor 8:3 that “…anyone that loves God is known by him.” If you are not known by God then you are not saved. This is given even greater emphasis in 1 Cor 16:22 where Paul tells us, “Let anyone be accursed who has no love for the Lord.” In James 1:12 we are told that “…the crown of life is promised to those who love him [the Lord].” This same statement is repeated in James 2:5.

And the apostle, John, defines for us what love of God is when he says in 1Jn 5:3 “For the love of God is this, that we obey his commandments.” And Jesus, Himself, says in John 15:10 that “If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.” Obviously, if we do not abide in God’s love we are not saved.

In John’s vision in the book of Revelation, Jesus warns members of the church at Ephesus that they might be destroyed if they do not repent and return to the love they once had. This is very clear in Rev 2:4-5 where Jesus says, “But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember then from what you have fallen, repent and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.” Then again just before addressing the transgressions of the church at Thyatira, Jesus says in Rev 2:19 that, "I know your works, your love and faith and service and patient endurance, and that your latter works exceed the first.” These verses are significant in two ways. They show the necessity of love in the plan of salvation, and they show that both love and faith are referred to as works.

This linkage is also made by Paul in Galatians 5:6 where we read, “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision is of any avail, but faith working through love." Likewise, Paul tells us the importance of love when he says, “So faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love”(1 Corinthians 13:13). Paul also says in Corinthians 13:1-13 that “IF I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing….Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends; as for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For our knowledge is imperfect and our prophecy is imperfect; but when the perfect comes, the imperfect will pass away. …So faith, hope, love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”


#11

Clearly, as these Bible passages show, if you do not have works, you do not have a true faith. Catholic Christians (or any others) do not earn their way to heaven. However, if there are no “works” in your life, your faith is dead.


#12

James Akin reconciles this very well in his book The Salvation Controversy. I would recommend it to anyone who has ever wondered about this issue, because it is definitely a crucial tenet of our faith.


#13

[quote=ralphinal]He added alone after the word faith. It is said that he had to violate a rule of the german language to do it.
[/quote]

And knowing this, that makes a pretty weak argument for a protestant to say “faith alone”.


#14

I guess you can see by now that there is not another side to this story! Much proof for the Catholic position and nothing from the other side.


#15

[quote=martino]I guess you can see by now that there is not another side to this story! Much proof for the Catholic position and nothing from the other side.
[/quote]

Oh, be serious! :slight_smile:

Just because a bunch of Protestants didn’t jump in doesn’t say anything about whether they’ve worked on the issue for the past 500 years.

Elsewhere on the forums, I forget where, I saw some objection to the Protestant distinction between “faith alone” and “faith that is alone.” The difference is very real and should help Catholics to understand the Protestant position. If you don’t see the difference, stare at it until you do.

MariaG, who is Catholic, stated it precisely when she wrote “Catholic Christians (or any others) do not earn their way to heaven. However, if there are no ‘works’ in your life, your faith is dead.” I cannot say how well her words agree with the Magisterium, but they do agree completely with Evangelical views of “faith alone.”

Although Protestants may not live up to the doctrine, that is still the doctrine.


#16

Kevan,

MariaG, who is Catholic, stated it precisely when she wrote “Catholic Christians (or any others) do not earn their way to heaven. However, if there are no ‘works’ in your life, your faith is dead.” I cannot say how well her words agree with the Magisterium, but they do agree completely with Evangelical views of “faith alone.”

FYI:
In my opinion, she’s right on the money!!! :thumbsup:

2025 We can have merit in God’s sight only because of God’s free plan to associate man with the work of his grace. Merit is to be ascribed in the first place to the grace of God, and secondly to man’s collaboration. Man’s merit is due to God.

Peace,
Scott


#17

here,

catholiceducation.org/articles/apologetics/ap0024.html

and here,

catholiceducation.org/articles/apologetics/ap0056.html

you will find these interesting… :thumbsup:


#18

Kevan,

The view of not earning your way to heaven is completely in line with Catholic teaching. As someone who at one time went to a Evangelical Church, I understand what you mean by faith alone. But at one time, historically, that term was used differently. There was a great thread somewhere with good dialogue on this subject. “Ticket to Heaven” was the name. It gets into very technical nitty gritty of this issue. But most of the disagreements, in my opinion, are a matter of semantics.

Catholics say Faith without works is dead.
Protestants say Faith alone.

Catholics think Protestants are saying that once “saved” you don’t have to “walk the walk”. (BTW some historically were saying that). Most of the Christians I studied with meant Faith alone like you. You can’t earn your way to heaven, but you will be known by your fruits.
God Bless


#19

The New Testament is loaded with this stuff. I read this just last night! Matthew 25:41-46

“Depart from me, you who are cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels” (sounds like hell)

“For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat,” etc. “whatever you did not do for the least of one of these”

Read the whole passage in context and see how the acts of charity relate to the afterlife. This is just the passage I read this week.

By the way “faith alone” does appear in the Bible (the book of James). Everyone should look it up. James 2:24


#20

Actually, Maria, you make a good point. Today’s Evangelicalism is crawling with people who say that you don’t have to walk the walk; and, as you say, they do base it on a species of “faith alone.” (In their defense, I’ll concede that they usually do walk the walk, despite their theology.)

That kind of antinomianism is fairly recent in Protestantism. Before the 20th century, Protestants tried to maintain the connection between “faith alone” and “faith that is not alone,” meaning (for the sake of any bewildered readers) only faith makes the connection with God, but it has to be the kind of faith that changes the heart and life; it can’t be one of the other kinds which allow the believing person to continue in sin. “Faith that is alone,” that is, a faith that doesn’t produce good works, is a counterfeit faith. St. James said that even demons have that kind of faith.

Historic sola fide didn’t deny that real faith produces works; it just denied that those works had any justifying merit. Only faith (“sola fide”) had justifying merit. And, in fact, even “merit” is often considered too strong a term, since it could imply that you’ve become good enough for God to let you in.

The primary motive behind preaching faith alone is to contradict the idea that “I must work harder; I hope I will be saved when I die; I’ve done much good, but I’ve failed in many ways; perhaps I can do a great work of mercy to help my score.” Against such fears (and don’t tell me they aren’t out there, because I’ve sat down with folks just like this), Protestantism cries out (words which I’ve also sung in Catholic liturgies) “Behold the lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” :bible1:


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