Brothers | Balancing Act | Faith Without Deeds
Can’t you see that faith without good deeds is useless? (James 2:20)
Did James say that faith is useless? It almost sounds as though we’re saved by grace but we stay saved by our good deeds. Is that how it works? Take a peek at Friends Church. They are proud of their gold and glass building. Elders bought the land in the bad part of town because property values were low, so the building belongs in this shabby neighborhood the way a spaceship belongs on a hospital parking lot. Homeless people sleep in its glittery shadow, drug deals go down on the sidewalk, and beggars sit against the shiny walls hoping for handouts. In response, the church voted unanimously to build a fence.
The ladies brigade is raising money to resurface the parking lot, but is angry that the orphanage down the street asked if the kids could play basketball on it. The pastor is being investigated for tax evasion while the board works to evict a family next door so the church can build a gym. It’s too bad the father has cancer and got behind on the house payments, but the deacons considered it a sign from the Lord that they were to expand their holdings. If this sounds extreme, bring it closer to home. It’s easy to talk about faith when it requires nothing of us. But when God’s way is opposite our way, faith is tested. What we want is in direct conflict with what Jesus would do and that’s where we find out whether the faith we claim to hold has a hold on us.
Final Thought: Do your deeds give evidence that your faith is real?
Prayer: Father, when I stand before you, it will be Jesus’ death in my place that allows me into heaven. But it will be my deeds that determine how pleased you are with me. Help me produce good deeds worthy of His sacrifice. In Jesus’ name, Amen.