New City Catechism Question 34
Since we are redeemed by grace alone, through Christ alone, must we still do good works and obey God’s Word?
Yes, because Christ, having redeemed us by his blood, also renews us by his Spirit; so that our lives may show love and gratitude to God; so that we may be assured of our faith by the fruits; and so that by our godly behavior others may be won to Christ.
One of the worst things that can happen to a Christian is to suppose that their actions and lifestyle don’t matter as long as they “pray a prayer” or “trust Jesus to forgive their sins.”
The main reason this is such a treacherous lie is that the basis of this sort of faith is a faith in a God who is wringing his hands in desperation hoping that maybe, just maybe you can squeak into heaven by the skin of your teeth. This is not the sort of God who demands respect. If anything, he deserves pity.
Don’t get me wrong, we are saved by faith alone, but we are changed by grace alone too. When we understand who God is and what he is done, that will change us.
The sort of God the Bible presents is a heroic and yet terrifying creator and king who has been rebelled against and will do whatever it takes to reclaim his creation.
We must all come to understand that what is most important to God is the redemption of his fractured creation. He wants to fix you and me. He wants to restore what has been lost. And he will.
The cross of Jesus was the most astonishing shock and awe invasion history has ever seen. It was far more than simply a ticket to heaven.
The only question is this: will you be a part of what he is restoring or will you continue to rebel against the lawful authority?
Question and answer taken from the New City Catechism