Question about Ephesians 2:8-10


#1

In these verses it is written that "by grace yer are saved, not by works - lest any man should boast". Yet I have read elsewhere (can't remember exact verse now) that "we will be judged
according to our works".
This seems contradictory and confusing.
Are we saved by grace thru accepting Christ's Blood at the Cross or thru our works??
If so, what kind of works??
Or thru the grace of God??
Could someone shed some light on this please?
Thank you.


#2

[quote="GM1258, post:1, topic:338628"]
In these verses it is written that "by grace yer are saved, not by works - lest any man should boast". Yet I have read elsewhere (can't remember exact verse now) that "we will be judged
according to our works".
This seems contradictory and confusing.
Are we saved by grace thru accepting Christ's Blood at the Cross or thru our works??
If so, what kind of works??
Or thru the grace of God??
Could someone shed some light on this please?
Thank you.

[/quote]

Ephesians 2:8-10 also says "equipped for every good work"

The basic cliff notes:

We are not saved on our own.

We cannot earn heaven of our own accord.

We are saved by God's Grace-his gift on the cross

We are saved by having faith in him

Faith is not the same as belief.

Faith is following Christ as a disciple

Just like the disciples dropped everything...even their livelihood to follow Christ, so too must we.

This is where works come in.

Jesus commands obedience and so we must follow him and the Church he created.

As James 2 says;

18 But someone [q]may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” 19 You believe that [r]God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder. 20 But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? 22 You see that faith was working with his works, and [s]as a result of the works, faith was [t]perfected; 23 and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,” and he was called the friend of God. 24 You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25 In the same way, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26 For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.


#3

The Catholic Church teaches that it is NOT an Either/OR but rather both.

If we have faith we also need to accomplish the works that our Father commands us to do.
And all these words do not contradict each other.
We are saved by the grace that is unmerited, we need faith to believe in all that He taught us thorugh His Church and we need to work our salvation every day and persevere to the end of our days.
Leading Holy lives is hard, the world has many attractions that tend to distract our eyes from Jesus.
In the end when we face Him if we have accumulated wealth (Gold, Silver and precious stones) we might not need to be purified to enter Heaven.
Carefull I am not speaking of earthly riches, the wealth I am referring to, is that which St. Paul spoke in his 1st letter to the Corinthians (Chapter 3).
The wealth he refers to, are our works of charity carried out by us in this life, while the foundation he speaks about is our Faith in Jesus.


#4

The Council of Trent said faith is the beginning of salvation. So faith comes first. Faith is a gift of God given as grace. But God also wants us to obey Him in our acts. The Epistle of James said faith without works is dead. I'm sure you don't think that when serial killers, child abusers, the people who used chemical weapons in Syria, or those who enslave women for prostitution, come, as the image has it, to the pearly gates, that God will say then that it didn't matter what you did, come into heaven with me, as long as you had faith.
What sort of works? This is the sort of matter that calls for checking on what Scripture and the Church say.


#5

Hi GM,

I'd like to try to help out here.

[quote="GM1258, post:1, topic:338628"]
In these verses it is written that "by grace yer are saved, not by works - lest any man should boast". Yet I have read elsewhere (can't remember exact verse now) that "we will be judged
according to our works".
This seems contradictory and confusing.
Are we saved by grace thru accepting Christ's Blood at the Cross or thru our works??
If so, what kind of works??
Or thru the grace of God??
Could someone shed some light on this please?
Thank you.

[/quote]

Let's look at it more closely.

Ephesians 2:8-10
New International Version (NIV)

8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—

"And this", being a neuter adjective, can be shown by Greek Grammar to refer to "have been saved". And it is indeed a gift to be placed in such a state.

9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

And we are not placed into the state of salvation by our works. This is Catholic 101.

Now, can works maintain us in this state of salvation once we are in it? The answer is yes! It maintains us by keeping a living faith, which is necessary to be open to reception of "sanctifying grace" from God which is the means of our being saved.

James 2 says as much that works are necessary to perfect faith and keep it a living one.

(The "And this" argument above I got from a protestant on a forum a long time ago who was arguing against the notion that the passage somehow eliminated the usefulness of works that some other Protestants were arguing for.)

peace
steve


#6

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