Saved by Grace but Spirituality by Works?
Paul, the beloved apostle of Grace to us used the book of Galatians to settle a believe system that was plaguing the Galatian Church then but since we today have not taken heed to the Lord through Paul we are still suffering from the same ignorance.
We all believe without reservations that salvation is by grace but turn around to teach that to keep and maintain salvation and to mature and be truly spiritual we must go back under the law. The early Church had this same problem: Acts 15:1-2,5
1 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.
2 When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question.
5 But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.
The contention was that the Gentiles though were saved without the law, now that they are saved must go back to the law. The law that could not save them how will it keep them saved? Beloved, we are saved by Grace and kept by same Grace.
See how the issue was settled: vs 10-11
10 Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
11 But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.
The conclusion was that we should leave the law alone and stay with grace all through our Christian life. See verse 10 and 11 again in other Bible versions.
Acts 15:10-11 The Message (MSG)
10-11 “So why are you now trying to out-god God, loading these new believers down with rules that crushed our ancestors and crushed us, too? Don’t we believe that we are saved because the Master Jesus amazingly and out of sheer generosity moved to save us just as he did those from beyond our nation? So what are we arguing about?”
Acts 15:10-11 Living Bible (TLB)
10 And now are you going to correct God by burdening the Gentiles with a yoke that neither we nor our fathers were able to bear? 11 Don’t you believe that all are saved the same way, by the free gift of the Lord Jesus?”
The law could not save them so how will it now keep them saved? If we didn’t need the law at salvation we also don’t need it after salvation. What saved us is the only thing that can keep us saved. We began by Grace we continue in Grace, by Grace and through Grace.
The Galatian Church began their Christian walk by Grace and later were bewitched by some religious men to go back to the law. They actually fell from Grace (Gal.5:4). They substituted the law of the spirit of life in Christ with the law of sin and death (Rom.8:2).
Apostle Paul said: Galatians 3:1-5 (KJV)
1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
4 Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
5 He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
According to the Holy Spirit, it is foolishness to be saved and Grace and want to be spiritual by going back to the law. Oh! How many foolish friends we have today. We fall from Grace when we want to use the law to justify or mature ourselves no matter how sincere we may be (Gal.5:4).
It is bewitchment to teach people who are saved by Grace to go back to the works of the law. Let’s desist from witchcraft. We weren’t saved by works, we didn’t receive the Holy Spirit or work or receive miracles by the works of the law. It’s Grace from start to finish.
If its true that we are saved by Grace but perfected, matured and spiritual by the works of the law then the following is also true:
- Then Jesus lied that it is finished (Jn.19:30). He never meant what he said.
- Then salvation is not perfect, so we have to complete it by our efforts.
- That means God failed to completely save us. He actually lied that he did.
- God has to apologize to the Old Testament prophets. The prophets of old saw by revelation the Grace that will be revealed today and they wished they would join us to enjoy it (Jer.31:27-34; 1Pet.1:10-12; Lk.10:24). They knew what wr were going to have was far different so for God to now take us back to the law today, he has to go and apologize for lying to them.
- Grace is not sufficient. If we say we must bring in the law for any reason we are actually saying Grace is not enough (2Cor.12:9).
- The Bible is false. The Holy Bible declares over and over that we are fully and perfectly saved (Col.2:10; Gal.3:1-5). If we believe any other thing we are against the integrity of scriptures.
- We are not really saved. We must go and work for it by strictly keeping the law. It is either we are fully saved or not saved at all, no middle ground.
- We should have more faith in our works than God.
- Salvation is not really free, there is a hidden cost
- Then Salvation by Grace is a bite used to lure people into a life if bondage in works and law
- The New Testament is not really new just refurbished.
If we insist that even though salvation is freely given by Grace we must work hard to grow in it, then all the above absurdities are completely true.
The work of saving us was well planned and absolutely executed to the last. It was not a half-baked cake, it was fully and completely baked. Man’s effort is not needed at any point. All we are called to do is believe. That’s why we are called believers.
We remain spiritual the same way we got spiritual (saved). God is only pleased by our faith in his son not in our bankrupt efforts (Jn.6:28-29). It is not difficult to please God by works, it is impossible. It’s by faith only that God is pleased – Heb.11:6. Spirituality like salvation is a product of faith not works lest any man should boast (Eph.2:9).
Kevin Ashwe is a Pastor, teacher of the gospel of Jesus Christ. He is also a man power developer. He has been involved in training the work force of churches and ministries in Nigeria.
He is the husband of Deborah and senior pastor of WORDLife Assembly, Nigeria.
You can reach him through the channels below.