I would like to reiterate my proposal of before: let’s get our exegetical hands dirty in Paul. Where does Paul speak of obeying the Gospel? I have found one instance of this form of expression: 2 Thessalonians 1:5-8, which reads as follows:
English: This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering— since indeed God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.
Greek: ἔνδειγμα τῆς δικαίας κρίσεως τοῦ θεοῦ, εἰς τὸ καταξιωθῆναι ὑμᾶς τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ θεοῦ, ὑπὲρ ἧς καὶ πάσχετε, εἴπερ δίκαιον παρὰ θεῷ ἀνταποδοῦναι τοῖς θλίβουσιν ὑμᾶς θλῖψιν καὶ ὑμῖν τοῖς θλιβομένοις ἄνεσιν μεθ’ ἡμῶν ἐν τῇ ἀποκαλύψει τοῦ κυρίου Ἰησοῦ ἀπ’ οὐρανοῦ μετ’ ἀγγέλων δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ ἐν πυρὶ φλογός, διδόντος ἐκδίκησιν τοῖς μὴ εἰδόσιν θεὸν καὶ τοῖς μὴ ὑπακούουσιν τῷ εὐαγγελίῳ τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ,
The key phrase is ὑπακούουσιν τῷ εὐαγγελίῳ. Nowhere in the context is there least mention of justification, or how to become right with God. The passage is talking about those who persecute Christians, and how they do not obey the Gospel. So, there is no bifurcation of obedience and works possible in the theology of justification in Paul, since all works are excluded from justification, including Spirit-wrought works of obedience. Besides this, Paul’s reference is to the entire Christian life and walk, not to that specific point of justification that occurs at the outset of the Christian life. This is evident by the contrast between those who continue to persecute those who live the Christian life. It is the ongoing nature of each opposite pathway, which is in Paul’s mind here. Let me ask this question, are all works excluded from justification, or are only some works excluded?