It’s been a little while since we’ve done a connecting the dots post (see generosity and our thoughts). I have a lot of fun typing these up so I hope you guys enjoy them. As usual, I’m basing this one off of a message I heard at my church, this one by Jason VanDorsten.
Jesus’ brother James wrote a lot about not just hearing the word, but applying it to our lives.
But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it. – James 1:22-25
Jesus himself addressed applying the Word during the Sermon on the Mount.
Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” – Matthew 7:24-27
James again, getting straight to the point.
In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. – James 2:17
The apostle John also wrote about how faith must be lived out and James gives us some tangible examples.
Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person.But if anyone obeys his word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him:Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did. – 1John 2:4-6
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. – James 1:27
And let’s end with the words of Jesus, the only person to ever walk this Earth and perfectly live a life of faith.
…whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” – Matthew 20:26-28
What verses come to your mind when you think about real, living faith?