The passage that would best sum up Paul’s feelings on the doctrine of salvation comes from Ephesians 2:8-9. In this very straight forward passage there is no other way to understand that salvation is only achieved through faith.
It has been argued however that the book of James appears to contradict this teaching by Paul. It is important to understand that Paul was a tremendous early church leader and there is little doubt to that authenticity of his writing, and the knowledge that backs those writings. However we can’t say the same for the Book of James.
The Book of James does not go into detail about who the author is and he doesn’t provide adequate details to distinguish himself from among the several James’ that appear in the New Testament. Church leaders can discern somewhat that there are indicators throughout the book to make one lean towards the idea that James, the brother of Jesus, wrote the book. This James was not a disciple of Christ, in fact during the life of Jesus he wasn’t even a believer (John7:5). However, in 1 Corinthians 15:7 Paul (the writer of this epistle) shares with the reader that Jesus appeared to James, at which time he became an apostle (Galatians 1:9). (Mac...
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... That is the question that James attempts to answer.
Bible Gateway." James. Ed. R.C. Sproul. Liqonier Ministries, 2012. Web. 11 Apr. 2014.
Goodrick, Edward W., and John R. Kohlenberger. "2240." The Strongest NIV Exhaustive Concordance. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2004. N. pag. Print.
Hull, Bill. The Complete Book of Discipleship: On Being and Making Followers of Christ. Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2006. 43-44. Print.
MacArthur, John F. "Grace To You." Born to Holiness. Grace To You, 14 Sept. 1986. Web. 11 Apr. 2014.
MacArthur, John F. "Grace To You." Dead Faith. Grace To You, 23 Nov. 1986. Web. 11 Apr. 2014. < http://www.gty.org/resources/sermons/59-15/dead-faith?term=dead%20faith>.
Mackervoy, Ian. "What *faith Should Do." James. Wycliffe Associates, Feb. 2003. Web. 11 Apr. 2014.
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