3. THE QUESTION WAS: How does James 2:24 describe justification?

    1. "a person is justified by faith alone"  
    2. "a person is justified by works and not by faith alone"


THE ANSWER WAS: B "...a person is justified by works and not by faith alone."



Martin Luther didn’t like this Bible verse very much. Actually, he didn’t like the whole Book of James. He tried to eliminate that book from the Bible (along with Revelations and other New Testament Books) but fortunately, did not succeed.


Protestants may also be interested to read “The Salvation Controversy” by Jimmy Akin. Akin, a former evangelical Protestant, writes with the background and language of evangelicals, and continues to have great affection for his Protestant brothers and sisters.


There is actually less of a difference between the Protestant and Catholic view of justification than many have thought….both sides use different terminology and emphasize different things…..but in the end, the important thing is that both groups hold that an unjustified person becomes justified by grace alone….no work plays a role in bringing an unjustified person to justification. This is explained in the recent Lutheran-Catholic “Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification” at


The real difference is that Catholics believe justification is a life-long process. Works of love can increase our grace ONLY if we were previously justified. (Works cannot cause or trigger our justification, which is a free gift). After we are justified, sinful works can decrease our grace. Extremely sinful works (deadly or mortal sins) can cut us off completely from God's grace and from the whole Body. 


For the Bible says that some sins are mortal, or deadly, to our souls.

"If anyone sees his brother sinning, if the sin is not deadly, he should pray to God and he will give him life. This is only for those whose sin is not deadly. There is such a thing as deadly sin, about which I do not say that you should pray. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that is not deadly." (1 John 5:16-17)


As long as we continue in God's grace, cooperating with it instead of running away from it, we will go to heaven. 


Evangelical Protestants believe justification is a one-time event, with no good or bad work afterwards affecting justification in any way.


This article on justification is splendid:



These web sites on faith and works are marvelous:






http://www.catholic.com/library/Mortal_Sin.asp (Mortal Sin)



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