Who Is......."Him That Worketh Not?"
But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness (Romans 4:5)
It is often taught among reformers that this one who Paul refers to as "him that who worketh not" is one who does not rely on his works for salvation. This verse is often collaborated with other verses such as Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 3:20, Galatians 2:16, 5:4, and taken out of context in effort to prove works as unnecessary for salvation. But the scripture is clear, "Faith if it has NOT works is dead, being alone" (James 2:17, 20, 26). Furthermore James says we are NOT justified by faith alone, (when he says) "Ye see then how that by works a man is justified and NOT BY FAITH ALONE" (James 2:24). So if works are a necessary part of salvation (as the scripture clearly teaches), what is meant by this phrase "to him that worketh not"?
Well we propose that this "one" who is referred to as "him that worketh not", is one who has yet to receive the law and the covenant. The Jews by law were circumcised on the eighth day, and were taught to raise their children teaching them the ways of the Lord (his law etc.) Likewise, Christian families are to raise their children also teaching them the ways of the Lord. But the one who "worketh not" refers to one who has yet to receive the law and the covenant, one who was not raised in a Christian household or taught the correct path. To him (the one who worketh not) his faith (apart from the deeds of the law) is counted for righteousness. And so by simple faith in the good news of the Gospel he enters into the covenant, BUT THIS IS JUST THE SPROUTING OF THE SEED! He must then continue to learn and abide in the word of truth (now that he has become one that is to work), that he might be found a good ground (a good tree) that produces much fruit. For what good is it to learn who your Lord is and accept his teachings, if you do not follow after them? Will not such a person be like a seed that sprouted but later withered away?