The subject of faith and works is thoroughly biblical, vitally important, and one about which much error is taught. Let's look at faith and works briefly in the light of scripture. Jot down the Bible passages and read them prayerfully from your own Bible.
To get a good view of faith and its influence upon those who truly possess it, please read the eleventh chapter of the book of Hebrews. Verse 1 says, "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen". The Apostle Paul says in Romans Chapter 10, verse 17: faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God".
So then The word of God tells us of God's purpose for our lives and of His desires about our eternal destiny. He tells us about man's perfect beginning, of his fall into sin by following the advice of Satan, and of man's bondage in sin until he is redeemed by a Saviour. God's word tells us how Jesus Christ died: "the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God", and how we may have salvation in Him, I Peter 3: 18. God's word also tells us of heaven as the great home for which we may hope because of our trust and reliance, or faith, in Christ, and because of our obedience to Him, Hebrews 5: 9.
Now if "faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen", and if this "faith comes by hearing the word of God", then we are going to accept what God says as truth, respond to what He commands as necessary for our salvation, hope for the fulfillment of His promises, and accept His word as evidence about the unseen realms of heaven and hell.
Hebrews, Chapter 11, is God's inspired record of how men and women felt, acted, and obeyed, and lived in view of their faith in God. Some people teach that there is no place for works in salvation; that it is all a matter of faith, and faith alone. The Bible clearly teaches that man is not saved by the works of the law of Moses (Romans 3: 28; Galatians 2: 16). Nor is he saved by his own works as if they could make him righteous. (Ephesians 2: 9) Paul said in Philippians, Chapter 3, verse 9, that he wanted to be in Christ, "not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith". Now, to see how to have that righteousness which is by faith, read Hebrews, Chapter 11, verse 7: "By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith".
The Bible is very consistent; if a person has faith, he will manifest it by his attitudes and actions even as God prescribes. In James, Chapter 2, verse 22, the response of Abraham's faith is described this way: "Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?".
If a person has faith, or hope, or love, he or she will act accordingly. Faith and works go hand-in-hand as one responds in trust and obedience to God. This belief and response are seen clearly in Jesus' great commission to his apostles (Mark 16: 15,16). "And He said unto them, Go you into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned". The Apostle Paul also said to the Christians of Galatia, Galatians 3: 26,27, "For you are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ". As you now read Hebrews Chapter 11, note how unfailingly these great people of God were moved by their faith to God's will. The realization of this principle motivated James to say, "Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only" (James 2: 24). It is obedient faith that saves.