“He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation,” Heb 5:9.
“Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.” Mt 7:21.
The Scriptures teach we are saved by faith, but not by faith alone. A Christology that doesn’t call for obedience to the Gospel is not of Christ. When Jesus returns, He will be, “dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.” 2 Thess 1:8. The Gospel and the grace of God not only offers free salvation but it demands action of repentance, confession, and baptism to be washed clean by His blood. You must not only believe the Gospel, many do and still are not saved, but the Gospel must be obeyed. Answer the question for yourself. “What will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?” 1 Pt 4:17. The answer is eternal separation from the presence of God. Yes, salvation is full and free. To call obedience to the Gospel (Rom. 10:16) “works salvation” is not a harmless difference of opinion; it is as evil as the words, “you shall surely not die.”
A defender of denominational doctrines will quote John 5:24, saying, “Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.” Such a person sees “faith” only passages in opposition to “obedient faith” passages, cf 1 Thessalonians 1:3.
Is there is a contradiction between John 5:24 and Matthew 7:21-24? Certainly not. Faith and obedience are perfectly harmonized in Scripture. But the “faith only” doctrine that is dead (James 2:14-26) and must continually ignore the passages I quoted above. Finding himself against the wall, Luther himself decided it best to call James an epistle of straw. Well that’s one way to deal with the pesky passages that call for obedient faith, and it shows he didn’t understand the belief which Jesus spoke of in . There is the belief of demons and I don’t think they had eternal life. There was the believing of the priests in John 12:42, but I don’t think you mean to say they had eternal life. And in the Matthew 7 passage, there is the belief which you are proponent of that believes but does not act. Surely you don’t mean to suggest that is the faith to which Jesus spoke of. The believing in Jn 5:24 is the obedient faith and nothing less. Instead of defending the very dead “faith only” doctrine, try harmonizing Scripture
God bless you. Dan Mayfield