The Instigator
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The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

bible is not clear: faith = justification + works... OR faith + works = justification

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/20/2014 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 412 times Debate No: 60707
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to lay the best examples of the ambiguity, we have two apparently conflicting versions of the story of abraham and his justification.

james 2
20You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is uselessd ? 21Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23And the scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,"e and he was called God"s friend. 24You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.

then we have romans 4 on the other hand
'What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, discovered in this matter? 2If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about"but not before God. 3What does Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness."a 4Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation. 5However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness.
'We have been saying that Abraham"s faith was credited to him as righteousness. 10Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before! 11And he received circumcision as a sign, a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised.

you can find quotes to argue both ways. these are just great examples using the same story and seemingly different outcomes. it's not contradictory, though, just a matter of how you reconcile everything.
for example. most say you can pit the teachings of Paul with Jesus. all the verses that Jesus says you need to have works to be saved. v. 'for its by faith that you are saved, not of works, lest any man should boast' and 'though your sins be like scarlet, they shall be white as snow'.

to be sure, the only place where 'faith alone' is used in the bible is when James says we are not justified by faith alone. but it's too much to take everything from just that one quote.

to be sure, works are required in both versions. salvation = faith + works. faith = salvation + works. it's just a technical matter in how those works save or not. really, it's more academic than anything for practical purposes.


Learn to capitalize.
Debate Round No. 1


con has essentially conceded the debate. vote pro
Debate Round No. 2




I ate some cheese today.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Braveheart 3 years ago
Whose works? Yours or Christ's? Faith without works is Dead- Just enter your rest and cease from your works as God did from His- He who worketh not but believeth on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness- those who are in the flesh do mind the things of the flesh,and those in the spirit the things of the spirit-beware of dogs.beware of the concision , for we are the circumcision which worship God in the spirit and have no confidence in the flesh- just sayin'
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: con did nothing