Do you have a reputation for doing good works? Are they a regular part of your work week, and if they are, why?
As Christians, we don’t do good works to get saved—we do good works because we are saved. A good work is a free and voluntary act of service for another person. Doing good works is the fruit of your salvation in Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 2:10 addresses the issue of Christians doing good works when it says: For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Ephesians 2:10 begins by telling us who we are–“we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus.” The “we” refers to Christians, and our new lives are the result of God’s workmanship. God has changed us into something different than what we were before.
God is the Master Worker; we are the product of his workmanship, and now he is using us for his purposes. Every person is created, but only Christians are created in Christ Jesus. We are new, transformed, and born again.
Created to do good works.
Why did God save us? Keeping within the context of Ephesians 2:10, God saved us to do good works. Doing good works for others is a part of your new lifestyle.
Titus 2:14 (KJV) describes us as “a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” We Christians are peculiar in that we are distinctive. We stand out from the crowds. We are zealous of good works which go beyond society’s norms.
Good works prepared in advance.
Your calling to do good works for others is clear, but the correct application of this calling will require some wisdom.
For example, you can freely share your professional knowledge with a co-worker, cover for someone at lunch so they can run an errand, or help another person operate a piece of equipment. All this is easy enough, but how about the low-performing worker with a bad attitude? Do you rescue them with your good works? Maybe, maybe not.
We are not called to do every possible good work, everywhere, and at all times. Ephesians 2:10 is telling us to only do the good works “which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
Exercise discernment in the application of Ephesians 2:10. Your good works are customized to the circumstances and many will be Spirit-led divine appointments.
Finally, glorify Jesus Christ with your good works and not yourself. Jesus declares in Matthew 5:16, “In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.”