“Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” (Philippians 2:12)
This verse is sometimes used by those who would insist that our salvation requires “works” either to obtain or to maintain the “new birth.” Even a casual reading of the New Testament does not support that view (John 5:24; 6:37; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians 4:24; etc.).
This passage, both in context and by specific word choices of the Holy Spirit, is focused on what we are to do with our salvation—obey and produce! The writer of the Hebrews letter spoke of “things that accompany salvation” (Hebrews 6:9). And even the Old Testament prophet Isaiah insisted that we should “draw water out of the wells of salvation” (Isaiah 12:3).
Two parables speak specifically to this work: the gift of…
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