‘Just as surely as faith without works is dead, so also works without faith is dead. Men try to use works to bring the assurance which doubt holds captive. There is a type of works which flows from a loving heart of faith, and then there is works created to fill the void of non existing faith. Many do not have the assurance of salvation by grace through faith. They feel they must perform certain duties and works in an attempt to secure their salvation and to feel saved.
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’” (Matt 7:21-23). What a frightful day it will be for those at The Judgment who start boastfully spouting off all their works when they ought to be thanking Christ for the cross! They will expect their deeds to be the keys which open up the gates of Heaven. How shocking it will be when those expecting life receive death. The staff of good works for salvation is a weak one. It will one day break and those leaning on it will be pierced by the very thing they thought would save them. These men haven’t faith, meaning they haven’t trust in the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. They trust in themselves and in their works to save their guilty souls, not knowing they are adding to their guilt. These men are not known by the Lord, but “He knows those who trust in Him.” (Nahum 1:7).’
source: Jesse Morrell, “Newsletter Archive: Adding Works To Faith” (openairoutreach).