According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith. 1 Peter 1:3-5
Peter addresses those “who by God’s power are being guarded through faith.” He uses this description because when certain people hear the gospel—how faith alone without works makes us godly—they jump in and say, “Yes, I believe too.” They confuse their own thoughts, which they make up, with faith. We have previously taught from scripture that none of us can do even the smallest works without God’s Spirit. How then out of our own strength could we do the greatest work—to believe? Such thoughts are nothing but a dream. If we are to believe, then God’s power must be working in us. Paul says, “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom…that you many know…his incomparably great power for us who believe” (Ephesians 1:17-19). Not only is it God’s will, but he also has the power to spend a great deal on us. For when God creates faith in us, it is a great work. It’s as if he were creating heaven and earth again.
People are being foolish when they say, “How can faith alone save us?” There are some people who believe, yet they don’t do any good works. For they think that their own thoughts are faith and that faith can exist without good works. In contrast, we agree with Peter, who says faith is a power that comes from God. When God gives faith, the individual is born again and becomes a new creature. As a result, good works naturally flow from faith.
Barnas Sears, D.D.
An historic and comprehensive biography of early Christianity’s most influential leader of the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther.
Controversial and visionary, Luther’s life is revealed in this rare presentation of his work as an educator and church leader. From his birth and childhood, to his religious education, and the events leading up to the Protestant Reformation, you will discover the views and experiences that led to his excommunication by the Pope in 1520. Correspondence and accounts shed further light on Luther’s defiant translation of the Bible from Latin to the language of the common man.
This unique biography is reproduced from an 1850 American Sunday School Union original, and in it you will be introduced to the pivotal life of this enigmatic man before, during, and after one of Christianity’s defining events.