Justification By Faith?
A Final Plea

By R.W. Caviness

There is a great division among those who profess to know and follow Jesus Christ today on the issue of justification by faith. Based on scripture, there should never be any division among those who profess to know and follow Jesus.

1 Cor 1:10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.

1 Cor 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

All that name the name of Christ should be speaking the same thing in unity because they are all part of the same body and they are all partakers of the one Spirit. Please notice that the author is referring to the capital "S" Holy Spirit in the second verse.

1 Cor 14:33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

This one Spirit is the Spirit of God, who is not the author of confusion. (Confusion and strife comes from another spirit, namely Satan/Lucifer the devil.) The one Spirit of peace is the AUTHOR of the Bible, it was physically written by men, but men under the inspiration of THE Holy Spirit. He is not the author of confusion! He did not inspire men to write things that are confusing. Whenever there is confusion on an issue such as this to the point that there is division, we KNOW based on scripture that one faction has to be right and one faction has to be wrong. We know that God does not change. The question then becomes which side is right if both cannot possibly be? That is very simple, the side that agrees with God's word. We must become dead to selves, and stop striving to be RIGHT in our own eyes and stop seeking self justification, and STRIVE to be right according to God's word and submit to HIS will and HIS word, that we may be partakers of Christ's justification and Christ's righteousness. No other justification or righteousness has any value.

God is crying out for unity in this day in his body. The confusion on the issue of justification by faith has its roots not in the Spirit of peace, but the spirit of strife and division, which is of Lucifer/Satan the devil. It has crept into the body much like the serpent creeping in the Garden of Eden to lead people astray and into hell. Largely, the culprit is the teaching of the traditions of men rather than the WORD of the living God. My Grandmother taught me a great truth. She used to use an expression when someone tried to take one scripture and twist it out of context to argue against her beliefs. She would say, "Even the devil can quote scripture to suit his own end." Consider how Satan tempted Jesus with SCRIPTURE and carefully consider that just because someone uses a verse or a few verses from the Bible, this does not make them right. You have ONE teacher you can trust that is NOT the author of confusion and in this perilous time of strong delusion every single Christian had better seek the counsel of this one teacher with all their heart.

2 Tim 2:7 Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.

Brethren, we NEED the FULL counsel of God to be able to stand, GET it! Get a King James Version Bible and read it cover to cover, and then when you finish, start over at the beginning and READ IT AGAIN, prayerfully seeking the Lord and his will. HE DELIGHTS in granting knowledge and wisdom to his children and if you will put aside your puffed up pride and knowledge and seek HIS knowledge and HIS wisdom, you will find the truth, and it's ONLY the truth that you KNOW that sets you free.

John 8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Please consider the first part of this verse. So many love to quote the last half and overlook the first half. The truth that you don't know will cause you to perish, not just you but your children as well.

Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

I beg of you PLEASE notice he said "MY PEOPLE." Not pagans, not Satanists but "MY PEOPLE" are destroyed for a lack of knowledge! MY PEOPLE. A people that have chosen to identify with God and attempt to have a relationship with him are destroyed for a lack of knowledge.

A final warning:

1 Cor 8:2 And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know.

That is a great admonition to all, first and foremost to me while I'm writing this. It is something we all should prayerfully consider every single day.

Justification by faith is the very heart of Christianity. Our own works can never atone for our sins and justify us in the sight of God. There is nothing we can do to attain to his righteousness, for all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God. There is NONE righteous, no not one, except Jesus Christ, and only Jesus Christ who is the very God in the flesh is good. He is the ONLY WAY, and there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. We are not saved by works, but we are saved by hope.

Rom 8:24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?

Bear with me on this while I define the division.

Put very briefly, there are some that teach that because we are justified by faith, there is no need to keep any of God's commandments. They believe that if you even ATTEMPT to keep any of God's commandments you are trying to justify yourself by your works and that you are entering into a form of bondage to the law. Their circular reasoning on this issue is so hypocritical they actually make it out to be a sin to keep God's commandments. Please tell me HOW in God's NAME keeping GOD'S commandments, and striving to live according to GOD'S instruction can EVER be the WRONG thing to do? JUST because you keep or attempt to keep God's commandments should NEVER be a reason that you are in danger of losing your right standing with God. How reprobate would that be for God to give instructions and then condemn us for following them? God does not change; let's keep that in mind. Those instructions written BEFORE Jesus came into the world are still as valid as those written AFTER Jesus came into the world.

Mat 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

Don't be misled in letting anyone twist this verse out of context and try to argue that this has all been fulfilled because Jesus fulfilled and kept all the law. He most certainly DID, however notice the till heaven and earth pass, one jot of one tittle shall in NO WISE pass from the law. Look out the window to see if heaven and earth have passed and then prayerfully consider how this might apply to each of us. Heaven and earth didn't pass away when Jesus was nailed to the cross did they?

I contend that the division is not what it seems. The division is truly not over the issue of JUSTIFICATION. Both sides of this division profess that justification is ONLY by faith. The problem comes in with the imperfect and unscriptural teachings about FAITH. Justification BY FAITH does not mean you are EVER JUSTIFIED by works, but I am here to tell you it ABSOLUTELY DOES mean that if you don't have ANY works YOU ARE NOT JUSTIFIED!

Is that a contradiction? No it is not. If you read the above paragraph and think that I am arguing with myself, or negating my own words, you had better pray about it and continue reading.

Let us begin by defining faith, I can't begin to do so but God's word did it for me.

Heb 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Only three things abide forever, faith, hope, and love. All three work together. Faith works by love.

Gal 5:6 For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.

If you're already offended by this, I suspect that you want to jump on the neither circumcision availeth any thing nor uncircumcision. I agree circumcision avails NOTHING. Consider that they only used the word circumcision there and did not say that works avail nothing. It's only saying circumcision avails nothing. It is very easy when we have been in bondage to the traditions of men to mentally add things the scriptures do not say to support our own beliefs. Be wary of this, it is one of the most subtle tricks the devil uses to keep people from learning the truth. Let us just come to the word and see what it says and not what we think it says.

Now, consider Hebrews 11:1. Faith is the SUBSTANCE of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen.

Rom 8:24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?

We can't see our salvation. We can't see a glorified body or Jesus. Our faith however, is the substance of that hoped for salvation, and the evidence of our salvation and resurrection, which is not now seen. Obviously, if we could see it, we would not need faith OR hope the evidence and substance would be tangible or discernable with our five senses.

John 4:23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
John 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

God, who is a Spirit, is not discernable with our physical senses. We have to have faith to interact with God, and for us to have the substance and evidence of things not seen and hoped for. In other words if you don't have faith, you can only hope you are saved and not KNOW you are saved. Without faith your hoped for salvation has NO substance. Please don't gamble your eternity on something that has no substance.

Now, do you have faith? It seems important enough to make sure.

James 2:14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?

Do you have works? What works would those be?

Exo 20:6 And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

I think keeping commandments clearly falls under works. Love me AND keep my commandments. Godly love is NOT merely an emotion. Emotions are things we can feel. The just shall live by faith. If you are only relying on emotions you are walking by sight and that is dangerous at best. Godly love involves ACTION. If you want to believe that Jesus did away with all these Old Testament commandments consider this.

John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.

John 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

John 15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.

Jesus said all these things. The Jesus that many proclaim to be "loving" but at the same time say they do not have to keep any of his commandments. Some would even argue that Jesus was not talking to the church here, but he was talking to Jews. Jesus was certainly talking to Jews here, but they were not only Jews they were also his disciples. God is NO respecter of persons; if he gave instructions to one person the same instructions apply to other persons as well. There is only one way to God, for Jews, Gentiles, or any other race.

Can faith alone save you?

James 2:14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?

If faith can save you, can dead faith save you?

James 2:17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.

James 2:20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?

Faith without works is dead. It can't be said much more clearly than that.

James 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?
James 2:22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?
James 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
James 2:24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

IF you have faith, then your faith should compel you to take some kind of ACTION, and then your faith is no longer dead, and works makes your faith perfect, or complete. The two go hand in hand, you cannot have living faith and no works, but if you don't have faith you have no reason to do any works.

James 2:18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: show me thy faith without thy works,and I will show thee my faith by my works.

We are to show our faith by our works. This lets us know we have faith.

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

IF you believe that God IS and that he REWARDS them that seek him, you have faith. Do you have works to perfect your faith and know that your faith is not dead?

1 John 2:3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
1 John 2:4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

The keeping of his commandments is the way that we know that we know him. The keeping of the commandments is the works that works with our faith, which gives us evidence that we know him. If you do not keep his commandments you do not know him. If you do not keep his commandments and SAY you know him you are a liar. More importantly if you do not keep his commandments the truth is not in you.

John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

Therefore if you keep not his commandments God's Word, which is defined as truth is not in you.

Rev 19:13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

If his Word is not in you, Jesus (whose name is called the Word of God) is not in you.

1 John 3:22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
1 John 3:23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.

So, all we are called to do is believe on the name of his Son and love one another, that doesn't say we have to keep any commandments other than loving one another right? Better be careful to understand the full counsel of God and not have just a here a little there a little understanding of the Word. How are we to love one another?

1 John 5:1 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.
1 John 5:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
1 John 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God AND AND AND KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS. The truth is that we ARE called upon to keep his commandments. The truth is that those that argue against the keeping of commandments, and try to say that the keeping of commandments is seeking justification by works are exalting themselves against the word of God, and unless God grants them repentance unto the acknowledging of the truth they are in danger of spending eternity in hell. ESPECIALLY if they are teaching others this misguided doctrine of men.

Mat 18:6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
Mat 18:7 Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!

The truth is they are striving to justify their own sins by saying that they are saved and that since they are justified by faith they don't have any sin. This is a lie, and is not supported by scripture.

1 John 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

Attempting to justify your sins takes you from the realm of sin into the realm of iniquity and you do NOT want to be a worker of iniquity.

Luke 13:24 Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.
Luke 13:25 When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are:
Luke 13:26 Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets.
Luke 13:27 But he shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity.

Mat 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
Mat 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Do not fight against God. Do not exalt yourself against God's word. Do not attempt to be wise in your own eyes or compare yourself with yourself. Compare yourself with Jesus. Seek the wisdom of God even if it is foolishness to your natural mind. Submit yourself to God and when you see that you have sinned by transgressing his royal law of liberty, instead of trying to justify it with some hypocritical tradition of men, just CONFESS the sin to God, repent of it and move on.

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

You can't rationalize away your sin, you can only confess it and let God forgive you.

But people argue that it is impossible to keep the commandments. This too, exalts itself against God's Word.

Phil 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

It is sad that people take all the things in the Bible on faith and prayer and apply them to every single thing in their life EXCEPT their OWN sin problem. They try to seek God's blessings in their life through their faith, dead faith without works. Seek to keep God's commandments through faith and THEN God will bless you, the blessings always follow obedience!

Deu 28:2 And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God.

IF you harken to the word of God then you will NOT be able to AVOID the blessings, they will come on you and overtake you. The apostate church tries to turn God into Santa Claus and ask for this or ask for that but, at the same time teaches that we do not have to abide in his will. This is pure and unadulterated hypocrisy.

Mat 6:8 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
Mat 6:9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
Mat 6:10 Thy kingdom come.Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Mat 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.
Mat 6:12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
Mat 6:13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

God knows what you need. Keep his commandments and all the things you need fall into place. Cast all your cares upon him, and have faith that he cares for you.

Eccl 12:13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.

The WHOLE duty of man. Not part of it but the WHOLE duty.

If you say you are justified by faith, then you profess to have faith. If you want to use your faith to move a mountain, apply that same faith to your own sin problem! Get rid of it. Repent. We will never be perfect, but we can always be improving.

To those that say we cannot keep 10 commandments I would like to ask a few questions.

Did you kill anybody today?
Did you steal anything today?
Did you commit adultery with your neighbors spouse today?
Did you make a graven image and or bow down to one today?
Did you take the name of God in vain today?

If you said no to those 5, you have proven that you can keep commandments when you want to keep them. Seek the Holy Spirit's guidance in willing to do God's will and keep his commandments.

No, our works will never justify us and make atonement for our sin, for all our works are filthy rags, but if we love God we do keep his commandments. And, when we sin, we confess our sins so that he can be faithful and forgive us. The justification is not the source of the argument on this issue, the faith is. We are NOT justified by works, but if we do not have works our faith is dead, and dead faith can not justify us. If we don't have works our faith is dead, and if our faith is dead, how can we say we are justified by faith?

2 Tim 2:7 Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.

Please do not take my word for it. READ your Bible. Pray and seek the counsel of the one teacher you can trust. Your eternal salvation depends on it.