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Devotional 2-2-2005

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  • David Massey
    Devotional 2-2-2005 James 2:14-18 (NIV) What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 1, 2005
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      Devotional 2-2-2005

      James 2:14-18 (NIV) What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have
      faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? 15 Suppose a brother or
      sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you says to him, "Go,
      I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his
      physical needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it
      is not accompanied by action, is dead.

      18 But someone will say, "You have faith; I have deeds." Show me your
      faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I
      do.

      Our daughter recently returned from a month in London. She was there doing a
      study abroad course. It was a wonderful experience for her. They visited not
      only Christian cathedrals, but also Hindu and Buddhist temples. These
      experiences always make a parent a little nervous about the influence they
      could have on his child.

      I was very proud of my daughter when she said to me, "the other religions
      seem to have to work to gain favor from their God. Don't we just have to
      believe in Christ?"

      It is a great observation on her part and a discerning question.
      Christianity is
      the only religion that does not require us to rely on our own selves, in
      order to be
      saved. Instead, we rely on the power of Christ to save us; we rely on faith
      in Christ
      only. For it is by faith that we are saved, not our works.

      Now you might say, "great David, I have faith and faith alone, then God and
      I are on good terms, and I go to Heaven." Some will even take the faith
      piece
      and use it as a license to go on and live life as they please. It makes
      faith into a "fire" insurance policy against an eternity apart from God.

      But James said it all in verse 17 above. Faith without works is dead. So we
      have to understand that we are not doing works to earning favor, in order to
      gain acceptance
      from God. Rather, we do works out of our gratitude for what Christ did for
      us on the
      cross. See the difference? Other religions believe their works earn
      gratitude from their God. Christians do works out of our gratitude to God.

      So finally as I thought about this conversation and read the above passage,
      I asked myself: Can people around you see your faith through your works? Or
      do
      they only see a dead faith? I challenge you to ask yourselves the same
      question.

      Father, thank you so much for what you have done for us. Thank you for being
      a loving God. Help us to be more grateful for all you have done for us. Help
      us express our gratitude in a way that may impact those around us. In
      Christ's name. Amen.

      Questions or Comments? Write: David@...
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