We are sifting through the truth of two opposing ideas in this message. The truth that works and faith are two parts in the same body. And the truth that we cannot work our own way to salvation. Satan is pretty good at using this sort of thing to create a faction in God’s people. The average Christian will lief jump into an argument defending what God has taught. God teaches us to be yielding and not to stand in the way of sin but to allow a person to go his way.

Jesus is using a carnal world to explain to us spiritual things. It is the precision of spiritual matters that can cause the carnal mind we are all stuck in from birth to born again to see contradiction rather than life and peace in The Word.

A person can work in a sensible way to make his life here on earth better. This is self serving in the stead of a Christ serving way of life. A person’s efforts are slipshod until he yields himself to Christ for Him to be used of The Father. Truthfully, The Father has thought up, prepared and sent the good works to you in the form of an idea or plan. Those are the works you will need under your belt in order to stand before Him shameless.

The definition of good works carnally is as far as the east is from the west in comparison to good works spiritually. When Jesus was called good teacher in Mark 10: 18 He replied “Why do you call me good? Only One is good and that is The Father.” When The Father pricks a person’s heart to do His work that idea is good. When a person does manifest that idea, to God it is good. When a person continually does good works in God’s sight that person is a good servant.

I think the answer to the rhetorical question in James 2 is “it is no good”

{“What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?”}

Have you ever asked yourself why it doesn’t say good works there? It only says works. We are looking at this from the future with Jesus, and into the past. The past being where we are now. From the future’s reference point a person who never acted on God’s will literally has no works. We have learned that all things that are not of God are completely destroyed in the fire leaving us with only good works. Hence vanity. It is certainly vain to do any other works than God’s.

Loved ones, it is vain to use the power of God for any good except His.

Be encouraged in working in The Spirit, When you feel as if what God is telling you to do will come against opposition from enemies and even friends and loved ones, know that your justification is in Christ. Part of showing God that we love Him is sacrificing. Sometimes that means putting good and well built relationships at risk.

Trust Him, He deserves the love. Further, you are justified. Paul tells us that the law guided us until Christ entered. Once Christ is in, our works are justified: {So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came in order that we might be justified by faith.} Satan will always be working against you through enemies, through loved ones, and friends when you are working for God. Sometimes God will place a dam between Satan’s schemes and you. It is a wonderful opportunity for you to show God that you love Him when the damn is taken away and you continue to do what faith has taught you each and every day.

In short, we are saved by faith through grace. Grace allows us to connect with Christ’s mind. Faith allows us to work. Faith is work. By the grace of Christ Jesus, Our Brother you can serve Him. Do good works.