You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only. (James 2:24, NKJV)
A newly published survey finds that one-in-five Americans know Protestantism (not Catholicism) traditionally teaches “that salvation comes through faith alone” (“What Americans Know About Religion,” Pew Research Center, July 23, 2019). We take that as an encouraging piece of news, since the doctrine “that salvation comes through faith alone” is indeed Protestant doctrine. It is not Bible doctrine. As today’s verse clearly says, justification is “not by faith only.” In fact, the Bible says we are saved by a number of things when, “by grace you have been saved through faith” (Eph. 2:8). Scripture teaches we are saved by the gospel (Rom. 1:16-17). It says we are justified by grace, by faith, and by the blood of Christ (Rom. 3:24; 5:1; Rom. 5:9). The Bibles says baptism saves us (1 Pet. 3:21). It is an action of faith that appeals to God for a clearing of the conscience and a cleansing from sin (Acts 22:16). Yes, we are saved by faith that diligently seeks God (Heb. 11:6). The Bible teaches saving faith is an obedient faith (Heb. 5:8-9). The Bible does not teach we are saved by “faith alone.” We can avoid such errors by accepting everything the Scriptures say about what saves us.
27 And it happened, as He spoke these things, that a certain woman from the crowd raised her voice and said to Him, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts which nursed You!” 28 But He said, “More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” (Luke 11:27–28, NKJV)
Mary was indeed blessed among women, by giving birth to Jesus, and by having such a son as He (Luke 1:42, 46-48). Yet, “those who hear the word of God and keep it” are blessed more greatly than Mary. The Roman Catholic Church has heaped blessings upon Mary that cannot be heard by listening to the word of God. They venerate Mary, claiming for her all sorts of powers and position nowhere to be found in the Scriptures. Catholicism’s Mariology views Mary as the Mother of God and advocates her Assumption (that sinless Mary was assumed into heaven, body and soul), her Immaculate Conception (that Mary was born without original sin), and her Perpetual Virginity (which contradicts Matthew 1:25; 13:55-56; Mark 6:3). Other Marian doctrines describe her as Mediatrix and Co-Redemptrix with Jesus Christ. Prayers are offered to Mary, with expectations of blessings. Yet, you must hear the Roman Church to learn these dogmas and doctrines. Jesus said we should hear the word of God and keep it. When we do, we will not have the Vatican’s blessing, but, we will have heaven’s blessing.