Outworking

<<demonstrating, bring to completion>>

Christianity is shown to be valid as it is expressed in a loving way, by ministering to the needs of people through wholesome interaction and good works (Mt 5:16; Tit 2:15). “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this, to look after the [vulnerable and disadvantaged]…”, practically meeting their needs, otherwise it is a sham (Jas 1:27, 2:15-17). Theory is of little value unless there is a useful avenue for its application, something that can make a beneficial difference. “Do not merely listen to the word…Do what it says” (Jas 1:22).

The Christian life is essentially the outworking of Christ’s life within us, expressing the Spirit of Christ poured into our hearts (Rom 5:5). Jesus said, from the inner source within us (that is continually being replenished and refreshed by receiving from His divine life) we are able to give out symbolically streams of living water representing the Holy Spirit's influence to enrich and nourish (Jn 7:38). We are but channels through which Jesus wants to lovingly flow to minister and reveal Himself to hurting humanity. Will I make myself available to be used by Him?
We are able to draw from the reservoir within, with it is our responsibily and of utmost importance to continually replenish its supply. For unless the input is greater than the outflow we will come to ruin, just as a bank account must have more deposited than withdrawn to remain viable. 

Although we can't earn salvation by our good works, they are to be a natural outworking or result of the new life in us, reflecting the nature of Christ who went about doing good (Act 10:38; Eph 2:8,9). His good works were the expression of who He is

"Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for the believers. If anyone has material possessions and sees a fellow believer in need but has no pity on Him, how can the live of God be in him? Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth" (1 Jn 3:16-18). Our lifestyle should reflect heavens values – we are His ambassadors representing Him on earth "to do as He has done" (Mt 28:19,20; Jn 13:15; 2 Cor 5:20; Eph 6:20).

It should be a normal function or outflow of our lives to give out or minister Christ. Peter said to the crippled beggar, "I don't have money, but what I do have I give to you, in the name of Jesus Christ walk...[the man] jumped to his feet and began to walk" (Act 3:6-8). This was a visible demonstration of the power of God, moving in a life. Whatever we receive from God is determined by Him, yet it is also dependant on us "for according to your faith be it done unto you" (Mt 9:29).

This outward manifestation should stem from what transpires within for while God is the beginner and perfecter of every good work it does require our co-operation (Phil 1:6). Paul said, "continue to workout your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and act according to His good pleasure" (Phil 2:12,13). So we do come up short, we must be diligent and persevere, continuing to depend on the grace of God as we walk in obedience with Him.

No other human has as much interest in our salvation or duty to ensure it becomes reality as we do. Just as we will endeavour to do all we can to survive when in danger of drowning so we should do our utmost to save our soul because of the danger of hell, hence "be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure" (Mt 16:26; 2 Pet 1:10). Our eternal salvation will not take care of itself without honest effort on our part to believe in the Saviour, put our trust in Him and break off from our sins by true repentance and live a life acceptable to Him (Prov 21:3; Rom 12:1,2; Eph 5:10; 1 Tim 2:3). 

“If you love me, you will obey my commands” (Jn 14:15). Our belief is lived out in our lifestyle – the way we act. If we have been truly impacted by the salvation of Christ, our

If your faith is real, it will show

behaviour will be different – “we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard [experienced]” (Act 4:20). Outworking our beliefs provides genuine service to others and proof of real ‘conversion’.

See also: application, being and doing, channel, evidence, experience, fruit, good works, input, obedience, outward focusedreality, theory.

 


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