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“Faith Alone” Won’t Save You

Full Transcript

Have you ever heard a pastor or a preacher say, “All you need to be saved is FAITH — faith alone! Good works are totally unnecessary.”

I’m here to tell you that those statements are NOT true. In this episode, I will show you from the Bible why FAITH ALONE won’t save you. Let’s discuss.

Faith is such a powerful word.

We talk about faith as if it’s the most important word in the Christian vocabulary — probably only second to love. So many Christians believe it’s the only thing they need in order to be saved.

But is it true and biblical?

No doubt, faith is VERY important. We are indeed saved by grace through faith. Where Christians get it wrong is assuming that faith is all they need. As important as faith is, it is not enough.

You see, anyone can “believe.” Anyone can have “faith” — the Bible says even the demons believe.

But will they be saved? Of course not. A dead faith won’t save you. More on this later...

As we begin, let’s first define our terms. What is FAITH?

The biblical definition of faith is found in Hebrews 11:1:

Hebrews 11:1 — ...Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Faith is substance. Faith is evidence. So while the object of that faith may be invisible and not yet present, the faith itself is tangible, visible, and real! The Bible further teaches that...

Hebrews 11:6 — ...without faith it is impossible to please [God], for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

Many Christians who teach that all you need is FAITH love to quote this passage in the book of Ephesians:

Ephesians 2:8-9 — For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

That is indeed true. But they stop reading at verse 9. But let’s continue reading verse 10:

Ephesians 2:10 — For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus (or Messiah Yahshua) FOR good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Let’s notice three points here:

  1. We have been saved by grace through faith.

  2. We did not save ourselves by our own works — salvation is the gift of God.

  3. We were created FOR good works and God prepared us to walk IN good works!


If there's anyone who could be called the “Father of the Faithful,” it would be Abraham. He was given a very difficult test. Anyone can claim that they believe and love God. But can they prove it?

Abraham and his wife Sarah had been childless for many long years. God eventually gave them a son, Isaac, whom they loved very much. But many years later, God (or YHWH) decided to test Abraham. He asked Abraham to offer Isaac as a burnt offering in one of the mountains in the land of Moriah.

It was a shocking command, no doubt. What if God asked YOU to offer your only son? Can you imagine how hard it would be to carry it out? How did Abraham respond? Did he pretend to be sick? Did he make excuses on why he cannot do it? Far from it! The Bible says:

Genesis 22:3 — ...Abraham rose early in the morning and saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son; and he split the wood for the burnt offering, and arose and went to the place of which God had told him.

Simple obedience. Amazing! What faith!

Now, did he later change his mind at the last minute? Notice what the Bible says:

Genesis 22:9-10 — Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.

Abraham was willing to carry out God’s command to the very end! But you know the rest of the story:

Genesis 22:11-12 — ...The Angel of the LORD (YHWH) called to him from heaven and said, "Abraham, Abraham!" So he said, "Here I am." And He said, "Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me."

God then pronounced a TREMENDOUS blessing upon Abraham and his descendants — more than any single group of people on earth — because of his faith as demonstrated by his obedience.

So, contrary to the teachings of many Christian pastors and preachers, it is not enough to “just believe.”

James 2:19 — You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe — and tremble!

Satan and his demons KNOW the power of God. But they won’t obey Him in a million years!

So intellectual assent is not enough. It is not enough to believe in God — we must obey Him. Your faith must lead to ACTION.

James 2:14-16 — What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, "Depart in peace, be warmed and filled," but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit?

So, can such “faith” save him? Not at all. So what does that “faith” profit? Nothing! The conclusion?

James 2:17 — ...Faith by itself [or “faith alone”], if it does not have works, is dead.

I hope it’s all clear now. We are not saved BY works, but we are expected to HAVE works as the PROOF of our faith — the EVIDENCE that our faith is genuine and real! The Apostle Paul wrote:

Titus 3:14 — ...Let our people also learn to maintain good works, to meet urgent needs, that they may not be unfruitful.

According to Jesus (or His real name, Yahshua), one of the strongest proofs that you are a true disciple is being fruitful. 

John 15:8 — By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.

No wonder the Apostle Paul hammered this point constantly in his letter to Titus:

Titus 3:8 — This is a faithful saying, and these things I want you to affirm constantly, that those who have believed in God should be careful to maintain good works.

Just what are good works, you may ask? Well, here is just one example among many:

1 Timothy 5:9-10 — Do not let a widow under sixty years old be taken into the number, and not unless she has been the wife of one man, well reported for good works: if she has brought up children, if she has lodged strangers, if she has washed the saints' feet, if she has relieved the afflicted, if she has diligently followed every good work.

If faith is the ROOT, good works are the FRUIT — the godly, righteous actions of obedience that spring from true, living faith.

Conclusion

In conclusion, let’s read the inspired words of James (or Ya’akov), the half-brother of our Master Yahshua (Jesus):

James 2:20-26 — But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, "Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness." And he was called the friend of God. You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only. Likewise, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way? For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

The “FAITH ALONE” doctrine is sadly unbiblical. Those who teach that all a person needs to do to be saved is to “just believe” are not telling you the whole story. We invite you to continue watching our future episodes to discover what the Bible REALLY says.

Until next time, this is Daniel Macaraeg, of BiblicalTruths.TV, reminding you to always be growing, to always be giving, and to always be grateful.

 

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