“What good is it, my brothers, if man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is with out clothes and daily food. 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? In the same way , faith by itself if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” -James 2:14-17
“I am a Christian.”
You have heard it said before, and you will hear it said again. But does that even mean anything anymore? When you hear these words what do you think of the person who speaks them? Do you think…’okay ya..your a “christian” ‘, or do you think ‘oh so your one of the hypocrites I see on TV shaming anyone who is different then you.”
Sad isn’t it? That the word Christian comes with such negative connotations these days. Why is that? What have we done…or rather what have we NOT done to get here.
I am a strong believer that you don’t even have to utter Gods name to share his love. Although, I am not ashamed to speak of Jesus the Lord, I do feel like sometimes those words can be intimidating to some who do not believe or are skeptics. BUT that is OK because if Jesus is working through you, it will be known. Your light will shine, your love will be felt.
Maybe it will be through a selfless gesture, a thoughtful gift, a kind word, maybe even an intimate hug or embrace. Bottom line…if Jesus is living in you…he will work through you..every day and in every way.
So back to our original thought, why is it that in this day and age so many of the broken and hurting are turned off by Christianity?
Do you think perhaps its because we talk the talk but don’t walk the walk?
FAITH WITHOUT WORKS IS DEAD!!!
The answer is right there in James….your faith or proclamation of faith means absolutely nothing if you do not do anything with it!
It is not enough to speak kind words and blessings if we are not willing to act in love. In the scripture above it speaks of someone being without clothes and food….lets relate that to our real life today. Lets say you are walking out of a store and see a man who is homeless and begging for a meal, you go up to him and say, “hey brother, I know God will provide for you. Have a blessed day!”
WHAT??…..but seriously….crazy right? “I would never do that you say,”…..but don’t we? Maybe not in our words but perhaps in our actions. Don’t we daily avoid situations like this? Don’t we daily make excuses or reasons why we can’t walk the walk? “oh well, my cable is due….I can’t really spare any money, but I will pray for him” or “well, he is just faking it for a handout” or even “maybe if I just avoid eye contact…”
That is why Christianity is so FAKE these days. Because to many of us are claiming faith with NO WORKS!
“The man who says, ‘I know him,’ but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.” 1 John 2: 4-6
“And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love. ” 2 John vs. 6
There you have it….the man who claims to know him but does not obey his word is a liar….but if you truly love him you will walk in his commands…and is greatest command is that YOU WALK IN LOVE!
WHOEVER CLAIMS TO LOVE HIM MUST WALK AS JESUS DID!
Jesus didn’t turn away from the hurting, the homeless, the broken…so why do we? Jesus didn’t judge or turn away anyone who was different then him…..so why do we? Jesus didn’t covet riches , he didn’t live for his career , he didn’t act selfishly with his wealth…so again I ask you, why do we?
Can you imagine Jesus working and building his carpentry business and growing his wealth so he can grow his 401K and buy a nice house and pay for his smart phone plan , and of course have not only cable but HULU and Netflix too, because he must simply have options. Can you picture Jesus going to church to preach on Sundays, and occasionally giving to the needy or occasionally offering his time to help others in need….but all the while really wishing he was at home watching the Big game?
NO!!! Jesus gave EVERYTHING to save us….Jesus walked selflessly and in love….so why dont we?
It is time to wake up and realize that faith is a whole lot more then claiming His Great Name. It is about having a relationship with God, it is about acting in obedience, following his word. It is about LOVING…..DOING…instead of preaching start being the difference that you wish to see in the world. Our world is in desperate need of some Love, it doesn’t need any more “Christians” it needs faithful followers and doers of His word.