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Notes 18 - Letters of James and Paul - A12

Notes 18 - Letters of James and Paul - A12 - Letters of...

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Letters of James and 1 Peter- Assignment 12 notes Given the remaining time in the term, we are going to move ahead a little more quickly. Therefore, the next stop is the epistle known as James According to tradition, the author of this epistle was James, Jesus’ brother. Though scholars are unsure as to the specific author, the tradition was not enough to keep the reformer, Martin Luther, from attacking it and leaving James out of his German Bible. Luther thought that James taught one could attain salvation through works. Since Luther believed that Paul’s statements about salvation through faith and not works were essential, he didn’t believe that James was worthy of biblical canonicity. In fact, Luther referred to the epistles as “right strawy.” I would contend that Luther did not fully understand James, and how closely what James teaches resembles what Paul and Jesus taught. James does speak of faith and works. Yet, he does not state that one can work his/her way into Heaven. He teaches that if one has true belief, then it will be seen in his/her works; and one cannot truly perform the works without belief. Therefore, faith= belief +proper action (based on belief), and belief and action are not to be separated. How does this relate to Paul and Jesus? In Galatians 5, Paul says that there is a new law, “faith working through love.” In Ephesians 2:8-10, the author concludes by saying that “we are is workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works that we should live in them” (faith and works). Jesus shows this by his life and teachings, and he states in the Sermon on the Mount, “Not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of God; but only those who do the will of my Father”. It seems that belief and action (faith) are common themes in the NT. Let us move on to key things about
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