LD 32: Why Must We Still Do Good Works (1)?
by Rev Dennis Lee
Romans 6:1-2 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
When Q/A 86 is worded, “… why must we still do good works?”, understand that our Reformed fathers are answering an objection, a classic, wicked objection raised by the Roman Catholic Church against those who teach salvation by grace. That objection is this: if salvation is entirely by the grace of God, to the exclusion of good works on the part of the believer, then why is there any need for, why must we still do good works?
But that objection is not originally with the Roman Catholics. The apostle Paul encountered that objection from the enemies in his day of the same gospel of grace which he preached and which we share with him. How does the inspired apostle answer that objection? The answer is found in Rom 6:1-2.
Q/A 87 only affirms the answer of Rom 6:1-2, for it declares plainly that one who does not do good works, but on the other hand, abides in evil works, cannot possibly have been saved by God (cf. 1 Cor 6:9, 10).
Why then, positively, must we still do good works?
The main reason is that good works are the purpose of God’s salvation (Eph 2:10). Christ “redeemed and delivered us by His blood”. That means that Jesus Christ has rescued us out of the bondage and prison of sin. But He does not stop there. The Catechism says that He also “renews us by His Holy Spirit after His own image; so that we may testify by the whole of our conduct our gratitude to God for His blessings”. This means that Christ continues to cause us to live in Him after He rescues us out of prison.
The bottom line is, He freed us from sin not for us to live in sin again, but to abound in good works! By abounding in good works, we show gratitude to God. This is the purpose of God’s salvation of us in and through Jesus Christ.
For Meditation: Good works are the purpose of God in our salvation. Are good works personally purposed by you this day in your life?
Originally posted here.