Because of the emphasis today on grace in the body of Christ, when some believers hear any mention of “work”, it’s like someone saying a 4-letter word! Much teaching has come about “rest” and to “not strive”, so that when folks hear the mention of “work”, they tune it out. But when any truth is stressed to the exclusion of other truth, that is crossing over into bringing a false balance and that is called an abomination! This what our media does. It screams out the narrative it’s pushing, to the exclusion of truth. It rushes to make a case on the basis of a sliver of information, then later, when all facts come out, the damage is done and the true story smothered.
The Word of God is a TWO-edged sword. We can only walk on one leg at a time & we do it in a balance with the other. When we’re walking on our right leg, our left is in the air and we cannot stand on it but need each other. Each leg is necessary but we’re crippled if one is “cut off”. The law came through Moses, but Grace AND truth is realized in Jesus Christ. John 1:17.
Recently, one popular grace preacher read this passage but as he read, he left out the words “and truth” saying grace only. Yet every version reads “grace and truth”. To exclude this to make a point about grace, he became guilty of censoring a passage that spoiled his “grace narrative”. Grace IS wonderful but it’s affixed to other principles like truth and faith. Yes we are saved by grace not works, but faith without works is dead. Grace doesn’t stand on its own.
The same with Jesus’ mentions of “work” or “works”. He is referring to the “work” of healing, casting out demons, raising the dead and preaching to the poor. These works of God are not things we do for God to accept us to be saved but instead an awesome privilege we have as His children to participate in His work on the earth! Jesus actually had to “work” miracles. He even tells us the miraculous things He did, we can do also:
- If we are disciples of Jesus we must walk as He walked! 1 John 2:6
- Jesus said that his food was to do the work His Father had for him to do and to accomplish HIS work. Jn 4:34
- There is a work believers have been prepared for before birth which they can be involved in on the earth. Ephesians 2:10
- Our good works are to be seen by men. Mt 5:16
- Jesus makes an astounding statement in John 6:27-29: “Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.” Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.”
- He tells them, “don’t work for natural food” but they SHOULD work for “the food which endures to eternal life”.
- Jesus said that the main work as disciples is TO BELIEVE in Him!
So we can’t do the things He did without exercising faith and that faith comes by hearing and acting on His Word and voice! Let’s believe!