Now, I want you to insist on these things with assurance so that those who have believed in God may make it their business to engage in fine deeds.
The entire sentence is important. We are saved by grace through faith; not by works. Once saved, we are to demonstrate that faith by good works. That’s all true. But what I want to focus on is the expression “fine deeds.”
In most translations, the meaning of the original word is not brought out clearly. There are two terms for “good.” The one means good as over against bad. That word doesn’t appear here. The other term, one that is used here, means fine, as over against shoddy.
One may serve a meal by opening up a can of cold, baked beans, sticking a spoon in it, and passing it around for everyone at the table to take some. That’s shoddy!
On the other hand, one may serve a meal on a lovely tablecloth, with a beautiful vase of flowers placed on it, and a gourmet dish, served on a fine china plate with Steiff silver tableware. That’s fine!
Now, the thing is that much Christian work is simply done in a shoddy way. The time and effort necessary to do things well simply isn’t expended because of indifference, laziness and careless attitudes. If you are responsible for doing anything for Christ, think seriously about this matter. You should be careful, as Paul says, to do it well.