Good Works, God prepared beforehand, come supernaturally natural to God’s saints (Ephesians 1:3ff)
Anytime we do anything motivated by God’s love, we are doing a good work.
The good works in which God planned for us to live are prompted by the Holy Spirit and motivated by love.
We feel the tug of divine love prompting us to share God’s kindness, righteousness, and justice (Jeremiah 9:24).
The life flow of the Vine motivates and empowers us to bear much fruit. Righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit wells up within us. God’s grace and His power helps us love and be loved in word and in deed.
In John 15; Jesus tells us He helps us be fruitful branches of the Vine — faithful, humble, kind, courteous, hospitable, forgiving, and helpful — life sharing fruit bearers. Thus, we supernaturally, naturally do the good works of the kingdom and walk in them.
Good works are inherent in the nurture, fellowship and kinship God our Father blesses us with in the kingdom of His Son (Colossians 1:9-14).
Serving God by loving one another fulfills our deepest longings to be loved and to be useful and productive in the noble things of eternal importance.
We get to live and walk in the mutually supportive environment of good works that is created as we stay in Jesus’ love and bear fruit.
The foundation of good works is God’s grace and good pleasure.
By His grace, God “has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Messiah.”
He chose us in Messiah to be saints (Holy Ones). He adopted us as His sons and daughters through Jesus our Messiah, “according to the good pleasure of His Will.”
In Messiah we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness or our sins. “According to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us.”
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons and daughters through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, with which He favored us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our wrongdoings, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us.”Ephesians 1:3-8 NASB (Ephesians 1:1-22)
We are God’s workmanship, created in Messiah Jesus to walk in good works.
We were spiritually dead to God, but, because of His great love and grace made us alive together with Messiah.
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our wrongdoings, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the boundless riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” Ephesians 2:4-10 NASB.
We are saved through faith that is a gift of God, not by works. But, “we are created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”
Two of my favorite Scriptures Paul wrote put that in perspective of eternity.
“… when He may come to be glorified in his saints, and to be wondered at in all those believing — because our testimony was believed among you — in that day; for which also we do pray always for you, that our God may count you worthy of the calling, and may fulfill all the good pleasure of goodness, and the work of the faith in power, that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Thessalonians 1:10-12 YLT.
“All Scripture is inspired by God and beneficial for teaching, for rebuking, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man or woman of God may be fully capable, equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17 NASB.
Good works God prepared beforehand come supernaturally natural when we put on the new self.
Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles/ Pagans do, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. But that is not the way you learned Christ! — assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil. Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need. Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:17-32 ESV.
~ Bill Bremer