7/06/2012

Do all Christians do good works?


Antinomianism, crassly stated, is the idea that a person can be a Christian without doing good works.  It is a separation of good works from true Christian profession.  Sometimes called “easy believism,” the idea of antinomianism is common in some Christian circles today.

I have treated the necessity of good works in the life of a Christian in a post called “Faith + Works” on this blog.  In that post, I discussed John H. Gerstner’ s approach to antinomianism.  Gerstner teaches that people must necessarily do good works if they are Christians.  Those works do not earn them salvation, but they must be present in Christian’s lives. 

Martin Luther, the great protestant reformer, first used the term “antinomian.”  Luther wrote, “Anyone who does not do good works in this manner is an unbeliever…Thus, it is just as impossible to separate faith and works as it is to separate heat and light from fire!” (“Holiness Wars: Antinomianism in Church History,” Mar.21, 2012 by Michael Horton)

Will Christians be perfect?  Of course they will not (Romans 7:7-25).  All Christians sin, and there is no sin that a Christian cannot commit.  But no true Christian makes a habit of sin without repentance. 

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

I find Zinzendorf's approach to this most helpful: http://zinzendorf.webs.com/forgetting-self
Andy Gr

Steve Martin said...

Of course Christians do good works.

It's like saying that living people need to breathe.

But I challenge anyone to name a "Christian good work", other than proclaiming Christ.

Because everything that a Christian can do (works wise) a pagan or unbeliever can do, also.

J. K. Jones said...

Thanks for the link anonymous, but I am not familiar with the person you mention.

Could you provide some details?

J. K. Jones said...

Steve,

Non-christians can do outwardly "good" works that their hearts are no really in, so to speak. One has to have a new heart of faith and do works that God requires to God's glory.

There are as many good works as there are commandsments of God.

Anonymous said...

WOW. That's completely repugnant idea.

It’s hard to convey the colossal arrogance and egoism represented by your beliefs with so few words. You should be proud.

You’ve simultaneously painted every single non follower of your religion who spends any time or effort helping others as someone dishonest, while elevating the even the most feeble show of your own charity above anything else



"Non-christians can do outwardly "good" works that their hearts are no really in, so to speak. One has to have a new heart of faith and do works that God requires to God's glory. "

J. K. Jones said...

The idea is that one must do good works from a heart of faith for God's glory to earn his way into heaven.

J. K. Jones said...

I should note also that none do that perfectly. That's why Christ had to die for the sins of His people.

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