Matt Swaim and Ken Hensley continue their discussion of the Reformation doctrine of “sola fide,” or justification by “faith alone.”
Repeatedly, especially in his letters to the Romans and Galatians, St. Paul indicates that salvation is not through works. But what does St. Paul mean by “works?” Is Paul elevating faith over and against obedience, or is he rather elevating an obedience of faith over and against an obedience of works?
As Ken and Matt discuss, St. Paul is not preaching a rejection of obedience in favor of faith, but rather trying to get his readers to connect faith and obedience in the proper way. And when Paul preaches against that approach to works, he’s in continuity with all of the Old Testament prophets who also rejected forms of rote obedience without the necessary faith to accompany it.