The chief article of the Christian Church is that faith alone justifies, for Christ’s sake. This is the central teaching in the Lutheran confession of faith. Faith alone justifies.
But faith is never alone. When faith is received as a pure gift through the instruments and means of the Word of God and the Holy Sacraments, it does not remain passive in the lives of believers. Rather, faith becomes active in transforming the believer into a new creation, who lives out faith in good works.
“Our churches teach that this faith is bound to bring forth good fruit [Galatians 5:22-23],” we confess in the Lutheran Church. These good works are not our own creation, but are commanded by God and prepared by Him. These works that follow faith are never the cause of our righteousness before God, but are a consequence of our righteousness before God.