Sorry Reformers, but the distinction between faith and works is a false one. Faith is an active participation in the Reign of God, a tree firmly planted in the vitalizing ground of grace, that then grows out into the world through grace-imbued words and actions.
Words and actions do not merely reflect the heart; they shape it. We participate in the ongoing creation of our reality and our world. The pull of our social, political, economic, and family narratives can feel inexorable… But we can still listen and speak and act in truth.
James reminds us that we’re not simply slaves to forces greater than us. We are agents of a new age, the age of hope-filled love. That ain’t no straw gospel, friends.
- In your own words, what is the relationship between faith and works?
- What does it mean to be “agents of a new age?”