My Personal Christian Blog

Thanks for sliding into my blog site. This blog bog is a spin-off from my website at Call me a Night Owl, as my full-time mission and hobby are jabbering from midnight until 8 a.m.ish with chatter bugs across the world. Hoot, hoot! Being a retired newspaper guy and a Curious George, I've written and assembled a whack of stuff that I hope you'll find interesting and thought-provoking. Check out the Stories bar on the right side, below, for all my articles - from my web site and this blog.

November 29, 2017


By NiteOwlDave                    

No doubt most people believe that doing good works is the way we gain Heaven when we die.

And most assuredly, all such believers would be stunned to learn that the good-works route to Heaven has no support in the Bible.  

And as odd as this might sound, likely many wouldn’t care what the Bible says anyway, because being a works-driven church member and a reliable community volunteer feels so right.

The scriptures say otherwise. They tell us that we qualify to enter Heaven when we die by placing - in this life - our total trust in Christ for what He completed when He became our sacrifice, and died and rose again from the dead.

This salvation truth is noted throughout the Bible such as in Ephesians 2:8-9 which states, “ 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.”

Grace means unmerited favor. Salvation is a free gift, paid 100 per cent by the Lord Jesus Christ who paid the sin debt of everyone. Adding anything to this offer, like our puny good-deed efforts, erodes and cancels this gift. Good works play no part in our salvation.

Now, take note: There is one obligation required of us. 

In a private sincere prayer, we must humbly repent to the Lord that we have sinned and tell Him we accept what He did for us when He became our sin payment. A gift must be accepted to qualify as a received gift.

The Lord forgives all sin, from stealing a nickel to blowing up a church. The blood of Jesus will even wash away the sins of a serial killer.

But let’s be clear; We are not suggesting that good works have no value with God. After we are saved, good works are of great value. They are evidence that we are saved by the Lord Jesus Christ and that we are walking the talk.

Check this out: Ephesians 10 says, “We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”


1. The adage is true that generally good things come to those who work, especially those who work hard. Doing good stuff to gain Heaven seems so right.

2. It also feels right that we hold control of our own eternal destiny. Control is a manly quality and is something many of us want to hang onto.

3. Salvation by our strength, or good deeds, really is a pride thing which produces a self-righteous feeling of, “Hey, I’m doing my part!”  Because of pride, being saved by our good works has appeal.

4. If we are saved by what we do, our good works must outweigh our bad works. It is natural, then, that when man creates a religion it involves some type of salvation by works.

Some say that man has an inherent sense of justice and good works. That fits as the most ardent atheist believes in some type of justice and has a sense of right and wrong, even if he has no moral basis for making such judgments.                                                                                      


Because salvation by works appeals to man’s sinful nature, it forms the basis of almost every religion except for biblical Christianity. The Bible tells us that “there is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.”

Salvation by works seems right to men which is why it is the predominantly held viewpoint. That is exactly why biblical Christianity is so different from all other religions—it is the only religion that teaches salvation is a gift of God and not of works. 

Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast”
Sadly, some Christian denominations have succumbed to a works-based salvation because they misunderstand passages like James 2:24 which says,  “You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.”

Taken in the context of the entire passage of James 2:14-26, it is evident that James is not saying our works make us righteous before God. Instead, he is making it clear that real saving faith is demonstrated by good works.

The person who claims to be a Christian but lives in willful disobedience to Christ has a false or “dead” faith and is not saved. James is making a contrast between two different types of faith—true faith that saves and false faith that is dead.

There are simply too many verses that teach that one is not saved by works for any Christian to believe otherwise. Titus 3:4-5 is another such passages.

“But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.”

Good works do not contribute to salvation, but they will always be characteristic of one who has been born again. Good works are not the cause of salvation; they are the evidence of it.