Christians do good works most of the time without even thinking about it. That’s because faith is an active, living, real thing. God’s Word for this day is all about how God-given faith shows itself in a Christian’s life—in one’s attitude, relationships, words, and deeds. Those without faith, like many of the Pharisees in today’s Gospel, consider “good works” only as a way to influence or manipulate other people and even God. Such good works are never really good at all but are tainted with sin, selfishness, and pride. True faith, on the other hand, is not even our work alone at all, but the work of God the Holy Spirit who, through the Word of God and His Holy Sacraments, instills and inspires in the Christian the mind of Christ, the faithfulness and righteousness of Jesus. Such faith also endures the cross and all sufferings related to living in the world still disfigured by deadly sin. In faith God equips you with “everything good that you may do His will” (Hebrews 13:21). Offer up the sacrifice of praise to God in thanksgiving for His gift of redemption through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.