Today's I will be writing on the final part of James 2:18, as well as the six verses following it:
Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe--and tremble! But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, "Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness." And he was called the friend of God. You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only. Likewise, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way?
Right off the bat we see a challenge made in the latter part of verse 18: "Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works." James is challenging us to try to show others our faith without works. How do we show others our faith? What makes Christians different? Even the demons believe that God exists!
The key is this: Works are the only way we can show that we are different. Work's don't save, but they show that we are saved.
But what about the clauses that state clearly that we are "justified by works"? The Greek word translated 'justified' is dikaio. The definition of dikaio is
To show one's self to be just or innocent, or to make one's self regarded as being in that state
Works justify our claim that we are different. Without works, we cannot show ourselves to the world to be different.
Too many Christians do not do good works because they think that because works can't save, and that they are saved by grace through faith, that they have no need to do good works. This is so not the case. Although works are not able to save, we are called by Christ to do them. We are "created in Christ Jesus to do good works" Ephesians 2:10).
A good many people do not want to become Christians because of the hypocrisy they see in them. They see Christians professing all sorts of things, yet those same Christians unhesitatingly drive by the homeless father holding his sign by the intersection who needs food for his family. What kind of Christianity is that? How is that showing the love of Christ to the world?
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
He who does not love does not know God. Wow. Those words found in 1 John 4:7-8 should drive home.
As I wrap up this post, I want you to read over Matthew 25:40 once more.
Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.
Blog Post IndexWhat Is Christmas? He Said Be Still Don't Fake It As Iron Trusting God With Goals True Friends You Have Been Called To Liberty We Overcome Memories With God All Things Are Possible Is Our Light Shining? Paul's Last Words #10: Conclusion Paul's Last Words #9: Our Faithful Lord Paul's Last Words #8: Who Are We Like? Paul's Last Words #7: Loving His Appearing Paul's Last Words #6: Keeping The Faith Paul's Last Words #5: Running The Race Paul's Last Words #4: Fighting The Fight Paul's Last Words #3: As A Drink Offering Paul's Last Words #2: Your Ministry Paul's Last Words #1: I Charge You Unicorns in the Bible Riches: Good or Bad? Do We Know Him? If There Was No Tomorrow As I Have Loved You Following Christ Forgiveness Faith and Works #4 (Final Part): Dead Faith Faith and Works #3: Works Are Your Witness Faith and Works #2: Works Aren't It Faith and Works #1: What Does It Profit? A God Who Approves Cannibalism? Happy The One Who Dashes Not Everyone Who Says To Me, "Lord" Rightly Dividing The Word?