In a world where people assume that they’re a Christian, or assume that they’re going to heaven because they “believe” in God, I have to ask – What does it mean to believe?
Is belief merely saying with your mouth “I believe”? Is belief a certain knowledge you have or a feeling deep inside you?
No, I say faith is much more than that. Faith is a verb – it is an action word and faith is only genuine when lived out through action. True faith leaves evidence behind. True faith bears fruit like a tree in bloom.
If you truly believe what you say you believe, you will act according to your beliefs.
“What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him?”
The word of God lays out an argument for the evidence of faith in the book of James. What good does it do someone to simply say “I believe” but then not act like it? Are they truly saved? Certainly a question everyone should reflect on.
So if true faith is an action – what action are we to live out as the evidence of our faith?
We have certain duties as a Christian. Jesus Christ gave us commands to follow – Love God, Love your neighbor, Love your enemy. If we live our lives according to love, then all the commandments of the law will be taken care of. In fact Jesus even went as far to say that our obedience to his commands is the evidence of our love for Him.
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”
“As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.”
To abide is to act in accordance with. To act in accordance with Gods love, we must be obedient to His commands. There is no separation of belief from action. Belief is either lived out in love or it is unbelief.
“If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit?
Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”
There are so many needs in the world – Physical, emotional and spiritual needs. Physically there are people who don’t have clothes, people who are starving, people without homes or shelter. Emotionally people are hurting, suffering from depression, struggling with loneliness and in need of someone to talk to. Spiritually people are walking around with gaping holes in their heart, damaged and wounded – these people all need Jesus. These people all need love.
Now if we call ourselves Christians and we believe that these people really do need Jesus then we will obey Jesus’ command to love them. We will not send them away empty handed but instead will make our faith complete by acting in love.
Love is the work that makes faith alive! without this work of love, faith is dead.
The evidence of a true believer is that they live as if they believe. So if you say “I believe” then be obedient to the commandments of Jesus and love. Love openly, love freely, love all. Let love be a waterfall that pours out of you.
You see even the demons “believe” in God.
“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?”
What then sets us apart from the demons, who also believe in God and tremble? It is our obedience to the law of love.
You see, without the work of love – faith is dead – and if you are dead in your faith, you are no better off than the demons.
So be set apart and let the whole world see the evidence of your faith in Christ!