Works of The Law vs. Obedience to Jesus

Does anyone else feel that many protestants don’t know the difference?

I get the impression that because we are no longer under the Jewish law that some protestants believe our actions are irrelevant.


I get what you’re saying… that a lot of Protestants generalize submission to God with blindly following rules just for the sake of following rules, right? As in replacing tough love with niceynice love?

Do you have a specific example in mind?


Not really. More generally, I hear from many protestants that concern about doing good works is following the law and therefore it diminishes the sacrifice of Jesus.

Protestants often accuse Catholics of teaching salvation by works.

I think that this is too broad and unclear a statement to intelligantly comment on.
In the first place, just saying “Protestants” covers a lot of ground and a lot of differing belief sets.
Secondly, I don’t think that most NCC’s confuse the issue of OT Laws and obeying Jesus. They simply look at it differently.

There are, of course, those beliefs that seem to allow some to “sin boldly” because they are already forgiven and saved.


In this you are correct and here I think it is less of a misunderstanding of the old and new law, and more of a misunderstanding of what the Church actually teaches.
As soon as one scratches teh surface in such discussion the idea of “we’re savde by faith not works”, comes up. Which, of course, is correct and exactly what the Church teaches. So it comes down to correcting a misunderstanding on their part about what the Church teaches and how “Works of Charity” fit into the whole picture. Few Protestants will deny that Acts of charity are necessary and natural for one who is TRULY a disciple of Christ. (Saved)


I said many protestants, not all.

I am referring to those who have no problem with the concept of sinning boldly as long as they have faith.

I have been accused of believing in works based salvation frequently.

I wish people would quit categorizing us as “Catholic” and “Protestant.”

I think even the most devout Catholic can differentiate between a conservative Lutheran and a ‘Oneness Pentecostal’ or ‘Non denominational’ husband-and-wife pastor team.

Fix your doctrines of justification and the papacy and the Lutherans are on board! :slight_smile:

Well said!

That’s not the issue. The real issue is the doctrine of justification according to the Apostle Paul. Obedience to Jesus is done with the pure motive of love and gratitude for what He has done on our behalf. We do not obey the commands of Jesus to earn God’s favor, or to merit salvation in some way. Salvation is a gift of God which has been completely merited by Jesus Christ for us. There is a big difference on why we obey Christ. What is your reason for obeying Jesus’ commands?

John 14:15

If you love me, you will keep my commandments.


You can not follow Jesus and abandon works of the law.

To love your neighbor as yourself is a work of the law of Moses. The shema which Jesus said is the most important work of the law cannot be ignored. Honor your father and mother, is a work of the law.

Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.

Very well put and precisely what the Catholic Church teaches… :thumbsup:

This is why I said in my earlier post that the problem that we run into not one of bad doctrine, but rather one of mis-information. The Church does not teach a “Works doctrine” though there may have been times in the past where “works” were emphasized more.
We cannot “Earn our salvation” like one might “Earn a paycheck” from a company they really don’t like to work for.
Rather what is “earned” is “treasure in heaven” for he who Loves the Lord and obeys His commands. Primary among which is Love of neighbor.
Our Salvation is a gift from God. Our Gift to God out of Gratitude is our work in Love of Him.


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