God sent His Son to redeem us. How then are we to please Him? He tells us that we cannot please Him without placing faith and trust in Him.
Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who approaches Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.
The Creator of the universe is pleased when I trust Him!
Do we insult and reject Christ when we place our confidence in good works or in what we can do to please God? I think we insult Him, dishonor Him, and ‘yes,’ we reject Him when we fail to live by faith in Christ and the cleansing blood. Also, the Bible tells us that the greatest sacrifice ever made was in vain for those who do not come to Christ by faith.
I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come[s] by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. –Galatians:2:21
It follows then that we are to walk by faith.
2 Corinthians 5:7 For we walk by faith, not by sight.
FAITH IN THE OLD TESTAMENT
Because God loves us, He values our faith. It is what is best for us. A study of the Holy Bible shows us that God values our faith because faith has tremendous value for each person. He wants us to trust Him. Justification by faith isn’t just taught in the New Testament. It began long before then. The first expressed example was Abel:
Hebrews 11:4 By faith, Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he had testimony given to him that he was righteous…
Hebrews 11 is called the faith chapter. It tells us that Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, and even Rahab the prostitute, all lived by faith. The writer goes on to say:
Hebrews 11:32 What more shall I say? For the time would fail me if I told of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets; 33 who, through faith subdued kingdoms, worked out righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, grew mighty in war, and caused foreign armies to flee. 35 Women received their dead by resurrection. Others were tortured, not accepting their deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. 36 Others were tried by mocking and scourging, yes, moreover by bonds and imprisonment. 37 They were stoned. They were sawn apart. They were tempted. They were slain with the sword. They went around in sheep skins and in goat skins; being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated 38 (of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts, mountains, caves, and the holes of the earth. 39 These all, having had testimony given to them through their faith, didn’t receive the promise, 40 God having provided some better thing concerning us, so that apart from us they should not be made perfect.
Romans 4:3 Abraham believed God and it was counted unto him as righteousness.
FAITH UNDER THE NEW COVENANT
As we see so many old testaments saints who pleased God by faith in Him it is no surprise that the good news or gospel teaches we are saved by grace through faith and there is no other way except to place our faith and trust in the blood of Jesus Christ the Righteous One. Jesus is the way and we must trust in Christ.
Romans 1:17 For the gospel reveals the righteousness of God that comes by faith from start to finish, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”
If this were all that we had been given, it really should be enough, but just as a parent tells a toddler repeatedly that he is to not talk to strangers, our loving heavenly Father tells us that we are SAVED by HIS grace through FAITH!
Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Many religious groups place their faith in working to please God. Indeed, they teach that we must work to be saved. Some are very ambiguous about this as they want to hold to both sides of the coin. Jesus said, however, that we cannot have two masters. We must place our hope in one or the other. To experience eternal life, we must place our faith in the One Person, who is able to save us.
An excellent explanation on why the teaching of salvation by works is prevalent in our world is given at Got Questions.
There are many groups, Watchtower is one, that teach this heresy. In fact, all religions are based on works. True Christianity is based on faith in Christ Jesus. We have all sinned and Christ paid the penalty for our sin. We will either pay for our own sins, or accept the gracious gift of God. We cannot work off the debt we owe.
Christian experience and the Bible tells us that true faith produces works that endure to the end, meaning Christians will produce spiritual fruit and works because Christ has worked a work of creation in their lives:
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old things have passed away. Behold, all things have become new.
These in no way we are able to contribute to our salvation. Christ paid for that on the cross of Calvary. He uses our works to improve or change our lives, but that does not mean our eternal life depends upon our works. It depends upon Christ creating us anew or giving us new birth.
John 3:3 Jesus replied, “Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.
1 Peter 1:23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.
Great peace and joy is found in knowing that Christ paid the price and saves to the uttermost those who come to Him through faith.
Scriptures taken from Bible Hub.