Thursday, September 29, 2016

Faith is More Than Intellectual Belief

Chuckle: A mother sat with her young son, gazing at a beautiful sunset. Just imagine, she said, God created all this beauty. The son replied, yea, and with just one hand. The mother asked why he said that. Well, they told us in Sunday School that His Son was sitting on his right hand.
Today's Quote: Care not for the reward of your speaking but simply and with undivided mind for the truth of your speaking. -- Thomas Carlyle

"You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that -- and shudder" (James 2:19 NIV).
It is possible to believe the facts about who Jesus Christ is without accepting Him by faith -- no personal relationship with him. Learning the facts about Jesus is only a starting point. In Matthew 8:29, the demons said to Jesus, "What do you want with us, Son of God?" On another occasion, as he was healing: "When the evil spirits saw him, they fell down before him and cried out: You are the Son of God." Here we see confirmation that Satan and his spirits of evil have a knowledge of Jesus on the intellectual level, but not on the faith level.
The word translated "believe" in verse 19 means to profess a truth without a change in heart. And to most people today, the word "believe" means to accept some fact or proposition to be true. For example, "I believe the earth is round." However, the Greek word (Pisteuo - to believe) translated "believe" in John 3:16, and other places, means much more. It means to have faith in, to trust in, to commit yourself to, to rely upon.
So when we share Christ with someone, we must be certain they understand what the words, "believe in Jesus Christ" really mean. Otherwise, they may think that all they have to do to be saved is to believe the facts about who Jesus is and never reach the level of believing in Jesus. You may quote scripture, tell when you were baptized, reveal when you signed the card of church membership, but have you really committed your life to him in faith and given the totality of your will over to him? If you have, you are a new creation by the power of the Holy Spirit of God. You are a child of the King and heaven awaits you. . . .!!
James says that when our faith in Christ is real, it will show. Faith is like calories - you can't see them but you can see their consequences. The consequences of faith include living a life of holiness and service to others --"good deeds." If you picked up a live downed electrical wire in your yard, you would know it and you would show it! If the Almighty God has come to live within you, you will know it and you will show it. It makes no sense not to show it by bearing fruit for His glory.
Love, Jerry & Dotse


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