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About faith and deeds
According to the Apostle Paul -faith without works is dead and man is justified by works, and not by faith only *. At the same time, faith contributes to works, and by works faith attains perfection *. Thus, dead faith and effective faith can be distinguished. Dead faith is a weak faith that cannot bear good fruit. With such faith, although people may know the law, they are unlikely to fulfill it.
Effective faith - on the contrary, strong faith, causing the execution of the law, which is the basis of salvation. “After all, Paul warns that“ not the experts of the law will be saved, but its doers ”” ** (St. Gregory Palamas. Triads in defense of the sacredly silent. Ch. 1. Question one. 1st part of Triad 1, paragraph 9) .
In other words, the level (power) of faith determines its effectiveness or the deeds of faith are proportional to its level ***. Indeed, a small faith will not advance a person towards God, just as a small force does not move the vehicle from its place. Along with this, before you take any action, you need to make a decision about it.Such decisions are made in the field of the mind, for the beginning of all things is meditation (Sir. 37: 20).
Based on the above, we can draw the following conclusion:faith generates, in accordance with its level and orientation (i.e., vector), the adoption (motivation) of the relevant decisions. Further, the decision made by reason (on the basis of faith) is realized by will into action.
In other words, faith, decision making, and doing are linked by cause and effect and are like links in a single chain. And it would be incorrect to consider one of these links without regard to communication with other links. In this case, faith itself is the basis, and decision-making and the subsequent actions are derived from faith.
* A) “So faith, if it does not deal, is dead in itself. But somebody will say: “you have faith, and I have works”: show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith from my works. You believe that God is one: you do well; and the demons believe and tremble. But do you want to know, an unfounded person, that faith without works is dead? Wasn’t Abraham our father justified by works by laying Isaac his son on the altar? You see, faith contributed to his work,and by works has faith reached perfection? And the word of Scripture was fulfilled: “Abraham believed God, and it was imputed to him in righteousness, and he was called the friend of God.” Do you see that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only? Is it not the same that Rahab the harlot was not justified by works, having received the spies and having released them in another way? For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead ”(James 2: 17-26).
B) “The Apostle James speaks of one of the fundamental truths of our faith. Several times in different formulations, the apostle writes that faith without works is dead. At the beginning, the apostle asks a question whether faith, not expressed in deeds, can save a person. Then he says that faith without works is dead, just below emphasizes that faith without works is ineffective and again, right at the very end, repeats the words that faith without works is dead. The prophet Habakkuk heard from the Lord a revelation that the righteous will live by faith. Faith in the biblical sense of the word is primarily a source of life for a person, because only by faith do we enter into communion with the Creator.
The Apostle James says that this faith must be expressed in life, in our actions and deeds. Otherwise, it is inactive, it gives us nothing for salvation from death.A person’s faith must become a force acting in the world and transforming it.What good is it if this force does not work? The three examples that the apostle James gives give us the opportunity to see what kind of expression true faith should find: charity towards people, trust in God, and respect for truth. As the prophet Micah said: “Oh, man! I told you what is good and what the Lord requires of you: act justly, love mercy and walk humbly before your God ”(http://www.bible-center.ru/ru/note/20150122/main. Published 22.01. 2015).
** “... not the hearers of the law are righteous before God, but the doers of the law will be justified” (Rom. 2: 13).
*** Once, when I saw an Orthodox icon in the house of one person, I asked him if he believed in God? No, he answered. - So why the icon in the house? - And so, just in case. Suddenly something is still there! Such a person can hardly be called a believer. However, it is also impossible to call him absolutely unbeliever. By his faith and his works. With a stronger faith, by the grace of God and deeds will be different - there will be knowledge of the law, there will be the fear of God, there will be fulfillment of the law, there will be love of God, there will be communication with God, there will be union with God.