A Rigor Mortis Faith

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Or possibly the work of a Cereal killer?

James 2:14 -24What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without 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. But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. You foolish man, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless? Was not our ancestor Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone. (NIV 1984)

My Musings – Early in his post-reformation ministry, Martin Luther referred to the Epistle of James as Continue reading “A Rigor Mortis Faith”

Treasures of the Heart

Matthew 6:19 – “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy and where thieves do not break in a steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart is also.” (NIV 1978)

My Musing – Life is about priorities. If our priorities are fame and fortune, our hearts will be motivated by greed and pride. If our priorities are the things of God, them we will be motivated by satisfaction and humility.

My Advice – Hold on loosely to the things of this world. Its treasures, fame and accomplishments do not last and can be lost in a heartbeat. Seek to acquire real wealth and recognition. The things you do for God and the things you do to build a Godly character will last forever and cannot be lost.

Strong Because

Zechariah 12:5“The people of Jerusalem are strong, because the Lord God Almighty is their God.” (NIV 1978)

My Musings – We should never forget our source of strength. Serve Him and be strong and successful. Turn our back on Him and see just how weak and vulnerable we become.

My Advice – As you gain success in life, give God the glory, praise and thanks. Do not think “look at all I have done.” What you are able to do, you do because God has enabled you and granted you success.

What Does the Lord Require?

Micah 6:8 – He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. (NIV 1978)

My Musings – God’s requirements for His people are not a burden. They are in fact what we really want for ourselves. To be treated justly, to be shown mercy and to not be subjected to arrogance. What we want for ourselves, we should be willing to show others.

My Advice – Walk with God. It should produce justice, mercy and humility in your character. Character is the only thing you can take out of this life into the next, so make it count while you are here.

Destroyed by Lack of Knowledge

Hosea 4:5 – “My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge.” (NIV 1978)

My Musings – It is a pity that we as Christians have so little knowledge about God’s Word, how it applies to us and our situations and how we can use it.

My Advice – Become knowledgeable in God’s Word by reading it, attending church and Sunday school and being part of a small group. This may sound like a lot to do, but the benefits of knowing His Word should not be underestimated.

Inconsistent Profession

Ezekiel 33:32 – “My people come to me, as they usually do, and sit before you to listen to your words, but they do not put them into practice. With their mouths they express devotion, but their hearts are greedy for unjust gain.” (NIV 1978)

My Musings – Our profession of faith in Jesus Christ needs to result in changed lives and changed behavior. We must not profess devotion with our lips and then act (or fail to act) in a manner that is inconsistent with our profession.

My Advice – Make sure that your actions are consistent with your profession.

Standard Bearers

Ezekiel 16:26 – “I gave you over to the greed of your enemies, the daughters of the Philistines, who were shocked by your lewd conduct.” (NIV 1978)

My Musings – As Christians, we are to be the God’s standard bearers on how to live and conduct ourselves. When people cannot distinguish us from the world around us, or worse are shocked by our conduct, then something is seriously wrong.

My Advice – In the various circles that you frequent, make sure that your conduct cannot be questioned on moral grounds. You do not want to do anything that might tarnish the Gospel.