Get Your Faith In Gear! – April 21, 2016

James 2:14, What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? 15Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. 16If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? 17In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. 18But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”
Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. 20You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless? 21Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. 24You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone. 25In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction? 26As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.

Titus 2:7, In all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility.

Titus 2:14, Who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good.

Titus 3:14, Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order to provide for urgent needs and not live unproductive lives.

This week’s blogs are covering what James, the brother of Jesus, had to say about the important relationship between faith and works. If you missed any of these thoughts this week you can find them on my daily blog, Socrates once said, “An unexamined life is not worth living.” The same can be said of our faith. A faith that is untested, unproven, and unexamined is also not worth living. When we don’t pause from time to time and truly examine our faith or listen to our spiritual heartbeat, we can fall prey to misguided notions about what it really means to be a Christian. James said in James 2:17, “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” That word dead means just that, faith without action is dead!

Here’s another verse found in Titus 3:14, Christians “…must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good…and not live unproductive lives.” Who wants their faith to be unproductive? My guess is no one does! The best way to make sure we don’t live unproductive lives as followers of Christ is to make sure that good works accompany our faith. So James is saying, you can’t really serve God in neutral, just like you can’t drive a car until you put it in gear.

So get it in gear…and have a blessed day!
John Mark Caton, Ph.D