James 2:14-18

Our faith is the most important aspect of our Christian walk. Without it, we can’t receive Jesus as Savior, trust God to supply our needs, or develop the spiritual fruit that is so important to our growth.
But, there’s an important “companion” of faith that Christians often overlook. By that, I simply mean something that should be a natural outgrowth of what we believe. It’s something that comes alongside an active and mature commitment to God. That companion is works.
Today’s passage makes this point crystal clear. While maintaining the central importance of faith, James challenges us to notice how our beliefs play out in action. It isn’t enough just to pray for a hungry or hurting person if we have the means to take care of his immediate physical needs. The actions we take reveal the substance of our faith. Isn’t this the example Jesus Himself set for us? In the book of Acts, Peter describes how the Lord “went about doing good.” And the apostle Paul makes this idea even more personal in his letter to the believers in Ephesus: “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Eph. 2:10). The point here is simply this: We were made to be like Christ, and He was constantly doing good works. What do your actions reveal about your faith? You certainly can’t work your way into heaven. But, if you believe in Jesus, you have a responsibility to be His hands in a hurting world.

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