(Cristoiglesia) Yes I am convinced that Jesus is God, the creator of all things and the Savior of the world.
(Truthsayer) Really? "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well; the demons also believe and tremble." (James 2:19)
"But wilt thou know O vain man, that faith without works is dead?" (James 2:20)
Notice the context of James 2:20.. The context demands that we understand that even demons believe, but they do not exhibit the works that accompany salvation.
"Works" are the FRUIT of salvation, not the ROOT.
"Things that accompany Salvation." (Hebrews 6:9)
"When the Apostle speaks of virtues and of graces, he calls them "things that accompany Salvation," not things which cause it. Our faith does not cause Salvation, nor our hope, nor our love, nor our good works; they are things which attend it as its guard of honor. The origin of Salvation lies alone in the sovereign will of God the Father; in the infinite efficacy of the blood of Jesus—God the Son, and in the divine influence of God the Holy Spirit. There are, however, "things that accompany Salvation." (Spurgeon)
(Cristoiglesia) Hummm, so now you are retracting your previous belief in “faith alone” I see. That is some great progress when you come to the Catholic understanding of faith and works and their relation to salvation. There may be hope for you in Christ after all.
Spurgeon errs in saying that “The origin of Salvation lies alone in the sovereign will of God” by not explaining that God desires that we all come to faith and obedience to Him but He also gives us free will to accept His gift of grace or reject it.
Deu 30:11) This commandment, that I command thee this day is not above thee, nor far off from thee:
(Deu 30:12) Nor is it in heaven, that thou shouldst say: Which of us can go up to heaven to bring it unto us, and we may hear and fulfil it in work?
(Deu 30:13) Nor is it beyond the sea: that thou mayst excuse thyself, and say: Which of us can cross the sea, and bring it unto us: that we may hear, and do that which is commanded?
(Deu 30:14) But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth and in thy heart, that thou mayst do it.
This is the teaching of Moses where Moses tells the people the importance of the law being upon their hearts and how it is essential for God’s plan for humanity. We rarely see reference to these verses because they speak most profoundly against Calvinist predestination that says only some are predestined to salvation and others are predestined to hell. If the law is written on everyone’s heart by God, then for what purpose, except to provide a pathway to eternity in Christ. I heard a preacher in a small Pentecostal Church in the mountains of Kentucky in a town called Pawpaw say that the law on our hearts was like the Rosetta stone allowing us to understand the things of God, that the law contains the very concept of faith and this grace and this Godliness coexists with our inherent sinfulness until we are washed by the blood of the Lamb with our surrender and become pure of heart within God’s law and consequently within His will. We can not be within God’s will without obedience to this imputed law that along with inherited sin intuitively shows us the need for a Savior, Christ Jesus. This is why we have no excuse for our lack of surrender to God because He is not only evident in His creation but He is a part of our very being upon our creation.
How could one understand God’s demands upon us without this law? How can we understand God’s will for us to live within righteousness and justice if not for this law that abides always in our conscience? We often think of God’s law as something without us but in fact it is eternal within our beings, which call to intuition the will of God. This is essential for without the law we can not know God.
Now the law on our hearts should not be confused with those external laws of men. The law written on our hearts is the law that makes us understand righteousness, justice, love and reconciliation. The law in our hearts is not the external law that can result in legalism where the letter of the law is followed at the expense of the spirit of the law. There is no other means by which we know His voice when He speaks to our spirit.
(Heb 8:10) For this is the testament which I will make to the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord: I will give my laws into their mind: and in their heart will I write them. And I will be their God: and they shall be my people.
(Rom 10:6) But the justice which is of faith, speaketh thus: Say not in thy heart: Who shall ascend into heaven? That is to bring Christ down;
(Rom 10:7) Or who shall descend into the deep? That is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.
(Rom 10:8) But what saith the scripture? The word is nigh thee; even in thy mouth and in thy heart. This is the word of faith, which we preach.
(Rom 10:9) For if thou confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in thy heart that God hath raised him up from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
(Col 1:27) To whom God would make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ, in you the hope of glory.
( Truthsayer) By denying that there is a "present salvation" you are putting yourself in the same condition as the demons. You believe the same way they do, and like them, there are no works, or evidence that suggest that you are saved, as a matter of fact you've stated of that you are not saved.”
(Cristoiglesia)So, you are judging me to be one who has no works as if you have the ability to know all things and to look into the hearts of others. You are being very judgmental to be a mere mortal sinner who refuses to be obedient to Christ’s Church. I have good works but I also have very bad works for which I am sorely ashamed. I was once like you, full of pride that the man-made church I served contained more truth and had more veracity than Christ’s Church. I evangelized Catholics to leave their Church for my counterfeit church. I have much to repent for and I pray that Jesus will have mercy on me who labored against His Church. But His grace He watched for my coming home like the father of the prodigal son looking longingly for his son. He never gave up even though I said and did many things against His Church and His faithful. May our Lord have mercy on me and people like you who hate His Church and work against its mission to the world that He committed to His Church. When the time comes to be saved my hope is to be full of His sanctifying grace.
(Truthsayer) Time to rethink, my friend!
I already have and Jesus brought me home. God bless!