In the comments of my video on 2 Peter 1:3-11, I wrote this.
I just don’t get you guys. You wrote, “To clarify, faith grants us salvation.” That is not clarification. Did you watch the video? Do you know that James said that we are justified by works and not faith only? You would “clarify” things by saying “faith grants us salvation”? That is not clarifying, that is ignoring 2 Peter 1:3-11. It is ignoring James 2:24.
You also wrote, “If you’re saying that faith does not get us to heaven, then I must disagree.” Of course. Your tradition, like Floyd Barackman’s tradition, teaches you to ignore the plain meaning of 2 Peter 1:3-11. Of course you must disagree.
You have Romans 3:28 and Ephesians 2:8 and several other Pauline statements that salvation is through faith apart from works. I have a great explanation for those that does not twist anything. They are all PAST TENSE; every one of them. We were (past tense) saved from our slavery to sin because of faith and faith only. Our slavery to sin was the ONLY problem in the Old Testament. The judgment was not a problem. The judgment was always just and always by works. The righteous live, the wicked perish. God doesn’t want the wicked to perish, so if they stop their wickedness, he will forget it and reward them for the righteousness they did afterward. That is an Old Testament promise (Ezek. 18:20-30). That judgment is just. Jesus did not die to change the judgment, but to change us so that we would not be wicked. Now we can arrive righteous at that just judgment of God.
This is written all over the New Testament. Those who patiently do good will receive eternal life (Rom. 2:6-7). Those who sow to the Spirit so that they don’t grow weary in doing good will inherit eternal life (Gal. 6:8-9). Paul says not to be deceived about that last point (Gal. 6:7). Unclean, immoral, and greedy men, Christians or not, will have NO INHERITANCE (“not any”) in the kingdom of God and Christ (Eph. 5:5); instead, if they behave like the sons of disobedience, they will receive the judgment of the sons of disobedience (Eph. 5:6). Those who have done good will be resurrected to life, and those who have done evil will be resurrected to condemnation (Jn. 5:28-29). When we stand before the judgment seat of Christ, we will receive the deeds done in the body, WHETHER GOOD OR BAD (2 Cor. 5:10).
All those references to being judged by works are in the future tense. Yes, we “WERE RECONCILED” to God by Jesus’ death, and now we “SHALL BE” saved from wrath by his life (Rom. 5:9-10). Combined with all those other passages I pointed out, Paul is telling us that now that we are “created in Christ Jesus to do good works which God has prepared for us to walk in” (Eph. 2:10), we better do them. We can do them by letting his life live through us and by sowing to and walking by the Spirit (Gal. 2:20; 5:16; 5:24; 6:8-9).
This all fits the plain meaning of Paul’s words with no twisting whatsoever, and boom(!), what do you know? It exactly matches James’ words in James 2. No twisting needed. We can say with James that we are justified by works and not faith only because faith brought the grace (Eph. 2:8; Rom. 5:2) which freed us from slavery to sin (Rom. 6:14, also rest of chapter), taught us to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts (Tit. 2:11-12), and made us a people zealous for good works (Tit. 2:13-14). We can also understand why Peter said that now that we have escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (2 Pet. 1:4), we must diligently add to our faith (2 Pet. 1:5-7), because by diligently adding those 7 things to our faith, we will make our calling and election sure and get an abundant entrance into Jesus’ kingdom (2 Pet. 1:8-11).
You cited a modern authority, raised and trained in Reformation tradition. I know this because you can’t get faith alone from the Bible because the only occurrence of the words “faith alone” in the Bible is in James 2:24, which says “not by faith alone.”
I am going to cite you a better authority. Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna, was appointed to his position by the apostle John. Well, probably, but if not, then he was appointed by the bishop who was appointed by the apostle John. He wrote, in chapter 1 of the only epistle that we have from him, “into which joy many desire to enter, knowing that ‘by grace ye are saved, not of works,’ but by the will of God through Jesus Christ” (ref). In chapter 2 of the same epistle, he wrote, “He who raised Him up from the dead will raise up us also, if we do His will, and walk in His commandments, and love what He loved, etc.” (ref). Saved by faith, present tense, judged by works, future tense.
He knew what I now know because of him and others from the second century, salvation by faith alone refers to being delivered from slavery to sin. We are only delivered from punishment for sin because we stop sinning (every page of the New Testament). And because we are no longer slaves to sin, we do his will and walk in his commandments (Polycarp), and we have confidence at the judgment because we live like him in this world (John, 1 Jn. 4:17).
See also Jesus Died for Aphesis.