What Christ Bids Us Do


#1

I find that in attempting to support “sola fide”, some read Scripture with a curious myopia, excluding those passages where Jesus himself tells us to “do” something, probably out of a revulsion for “works”.

I thought it might be useful to create a compendium of such “do” statements of Jesus, so as to remind us that it is insufficient to simply “believe in” Christ; Christians must obey him and follow his example.

I don’t think, btw, that such a list is necessary for devout Christians—obviously we’re already doing this. “Laissez-faire” Christians, however, might benefit from the reminder.

Here’s my beginning to this list.

“Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” - Luke 6:46

Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery.” Matthew 19:8-9

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14

Jesus replied, " 'Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother," and 'love your neighbor as yourself." Matthew 19:18-19

Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” Matthew 19:21

Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.” Matthew 19:28-29

Just the tip of the iceberg. Where else does Jesus exhort us to do something?


#2

The Sermon on the Mount - Matthew chapters 5-7.


#3

Nothing is so “excluded.”

I thought it might be useful to create a compendium of such “do” statements of Jesus, so as to remind us that it is insufficient to simply “believe in” Christ; Christians must obey him and follow his example.

The problem is that we recognize the unbreakable connection between faith and obedience.

There is no obedience where there is no faith and there is no faith where there is no obedience.

We do not make the error of divorcing such basic concepts.

I don’t think, btw, that such a list is necessary for devout Christians—obviously we’re already doing this.

Your self perceived “holiness” will not justify you before God.

Tts 3:5 “He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy”

1 Clement 32:4 “And we who through his will have been called in Christ Jesus are justified, not by ourselves, or through our wisdom or understanding or godliness, or the works that we have done in holiness of heart, but by faith, by which all men from the beginning have been justified by Almighty God, to whom be glory world without end. Amen.”

Your perceived success at “obedience” cannot justify you before a Holy God that demands perfection.

Self-righteousness does not count. Beware.


#4

Matt 6:14

“If you do not forgive the trespasses of others, neither will your Father in Heaven forgive your trespasses”


#5

You do when you claim to believe the above and then simultaneously adhere to OSAS .
You pressed someone in a related thread to state exactly how much good works merit eternal life. The same could be presented to you: how much disobedience negates the possibility of faith? Furthermore, the above only accounts for the present and ignores the future. For example, does a future disobedience render the present as faithless?
[LIST]
*]If not, then how do you reconcile that there is no faith where there is no obedience?
*]If so, how could one ever have eternal security? [/LIST]OSAS does not allow for faith to “disappear” or even be negated if obedience does - and that contradicts “there is no faith where there is no obedience”.


#6

Matthew 19


**The rich young man **

16And now a man came to him and asked, ‘Master, what good deed must I do to possess eternal life?’ 17…But if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.’ 18He said, ‘Which ones?’ Jesus replied, ‘These: You shall not kill. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not give false witness. 19Honour your father and your mother. You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ *[Ex 20:12-16] 20The young man said to him, ‘I have kept all these. What more do I need to do?’ 21Jesus said, ‘If you wish to be perfect, go and sell your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.’ 22But when the young man heard these words he went away sad, for he was a man of great wealth.


#7

One of my favorites:

He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’ And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’ Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, a stranger and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing, ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’ Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’ He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’ And these will go off to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."
Matthew 25:33-46


#8

“So you too, when you do all the things which are commanded you, say, ‘We are unworthy slaves; we have done only that which we ought to have done.’”
(Luke 17:10 NASB)


#9

You have one SLIGHT problem. Protestants dont consider the words of Jesus in the Gospels to be of any authority in terms of salvation. They will either say Jesus was teaching according to the Law and that was done away with, or that Jesus was giving them the “option” of obeying all those teachings perfectly (which He knew they couldnt, just toss out the Rich Young Man parable and watch the fireworks) OR they could simply put their faith in Him.

:thumbsup: Bingo! The fact is most Protestants you talk to disregard the Perfect Sermon and must turn the words of Jesus into empty rhetoric.

Yes you do. In fact you teach good works are the result of justification (by faith alone) and even more unBiblical you teach that good works are guaranteed (contrary to many clear examples, eg 2 Pt 1:9; 1 Cor 10:1-12; etc)

Your self perceived “holiness” will not justify you before God.Tts 3:5 "He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy"1 Clement 32:4 “And we who through his will have been called in Christ Jesus are justified, not by ourselves, or through our wisdom or understanding or godliness, or the works that we have done in holiness of heart, but by faith, by which all men from the beginning have been justified by Almighty God, to whom be glory world without end. Amen.”

LOL. Strawman at 12 o’clock. Care to cite Titus 3:5-7: 4But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.
Catholics NEVER NEVER taught this righteousness comes from us, the Bible clearly teaches it comes from Jesus who MAKES us righteous by infusing grace in our souls. The righteousness Paul talks about in v 4 is those purely natural good works that pagans do, NOT about the good works which we are called to do with God’s Spirit Indwelling in us (Rom 8:9-13; Gal 6:7-9).

Your perceived success at “obedience” cannot justify you before a Holy God that demands perfection.

Here we go again, you repeat the same claim over and over again but I shut you down with the same ultra simple question: If we cant keep the Commandments perfectly does that mean we dont have to keep them at all?

In case people are wondering I ask Atemi this all the time and he flees the scene. He cant say “yes we dont have to keep them at all” because that clearly is unBiblical, but if he says “no we must keep them the best we can even though we slip up at times” then he agrees with the Catholic position. It all comes down to the Perfect Sermon (Mat 5-7), Protestants must downplay it for their theology to work.

Self-righteousness does not count. Beware.

Strawman Alert


#10

SyCarl, that passage is merely condemning the idea that Christians can ever claim God owes them. At the end of the day HE decides what our reward/punishment is. Check out this favorite passage of mine:
23Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it. 25What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self? 26If anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.
-Luke 9


#11

Matt. 10:22 - You will be hated by all because of my name, but whoever endures to the end will be saved.

Matt. 16:24 - Jesus said, “if any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.”

Matt. 22:37-39 - You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

Matt. 26:26-28 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and giving it to his disciples said, "Take and eat; this is my body."Then he took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins.


#12

**The problem is that we recognize the unbreakable connection between faith and obedience.

There is no obedience where there is no faith and there is no faith where there is no obedience.

We do not make the error of divorcing such basic concepts.**

You do when you claim to believe the above and then simultaneously adhere to OSAS .

Since I am not a proponent of OSAS, your charge is moot.

In reality, your charge would still be moot even if I was.

You pressed someone in a related thread to state exactly how much good works merit eternal life.

And not one could tell me.

Unfortunate. No one knows what one must do to have eternal life.

The same could be presented to you: how much disobedience negates the possibility of faith?

It is faith that gives birth to obedience, not the other way around.

God knows the heart:

Rom 10:10 “For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified”

Your obedience is for your fellow man as a witness and for rewards from our Lord:

Mat 5:16 “let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven”

Furthermore, the above only accounts for the present and ignores the future. For example, does a future disobedience render the present as faithless?

No, but I will tell you that a future faithlessness will render a future disobedience.

If not, then how do you reconcile that there is no faith where there is no obedience?

Why reconcile what I already believe? Where there is no faith, there is no obedience.

If so, how could one ever have eternal security?

Believe and you shall be saved.

If you believe, who cares for such questions?

If you do not believe, who cares for such questions?


#13

And the Atemi Thread Derailment Express pulls into the station.

Reread the OP Atemi, and either post examples in Scripture where Christ tells us to do something or take it elsewhere.


#14

Geeze Tef! :eek:

I think the scriptures make a very consistent case for the importance of obeying the commands of Christ and I think that in reading the whole New Testament one gets a lot better view of the part that plays in the plan of salvation.


#15

Absolutely. It is important to understand the whole of Christ’s teaching. Unfortunately, there are many Christians who take the “sola fide” notion of Protestantism into “Buddy Christ” territory—“As long as I believe in Jesus, I’m saved. I don’t need to go to church. I don’t need to read the Bible. I don’t need to refrain from sin.”

And how are those who adhere to “sola fide” to tell these “laissez faire Christians” differently? Indeed, could they not argue that they are the MORE faithful Christian, since they have so much faith in their own salvation that they make no effort whatsoever to please God through their own good works? Luther’s exhortation to “Sin boldly, and believe more boldly still” finds its natural home not among the devout, but among the nonobservant Christians.

I would argue that one must begin by pointing out the many times Jesus insisted that one must DO something, not just believe something, to be saved. Scripture is rife with these references. They are essential because Christ clearly cares about how we live our lives. One cannot comprehend where the Pharisees went wrong otherwise.


#16

Im sorry I took the bait and responded to him. As tempting as it is to continue the dialogue with him I’ll refrain from any more comments not specifically addressing the OP.


#17

Much appreciated----this is a very simple thread and I’d like to keep it that way. :thumbsup:

No need to muddy it up with other things—I think we all know folks who consider themselves Christians in good standing but who don’t make any effort to lead Christian lives. Having some verses to reach out to them may help.

I have members of my own family who are “laissez faire Christians”—this is not a Catholic versus Protestant thing; it’s a devoted vs.questionably-devoted thing.

I’m sure there are plenty of examples of Catholics who are not devoted as well; obviously these passages apply to them as well.


#18

The “do” list is law, which exists to lead us to Christ. It does this by showing us that we are all sinners who need mercy.

Jesus told a man to Go sell all of your possessions and give the money to the poor. Then you will have treasures in heaven.

If we were capable of attaining salvation by perfectly observing the law, what need would we have for mercy and grace?

And if we are saved by faith plus our good deeds (our obedience to Him), how do you interpret this?

Rom. 5:19
For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.


#19

(Matt 7:21-23) "Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name? Did we not drive out demons in your name? Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’ Then I will declare to them solemnly, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’


#20

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