Getting somewhere requires effort,
faith to push on,
it's easy to screw up,
Friday, July 4, 2014
Steps of growth – goodness added to Faith
Steps of growth
– goodness added to Faith
Fri, July 4, 2014 | link
It is within my power either to serve God, or not to serve him. Serving him I add to my own good and the
good of the whole world. Not serving him, I forfeit my own good and deprive the world of that good, which
was in my power to create.~ Lev Tolstoy
The greatest evil person can change and have faith in God but is that enough?
Is simply accepting there is a God enough
to bring us into the family of God?
How much faith is enough?
We need to consider who we believe is God.
It is interesting that often in the bible Jesus is qualified
to be Jesus of Nazareth. See Mark 1:24, Mark 10:47, Luke 4:34 and many more.
Because there were a lot of people named Jesus at the time. We need to know the specific Jesus of Nazareth.
faith on God or even faith in Jesus is insufficient ,if it is not a faith in the God of the Old and New testament of the bible.
A faith in Jesus of Nazareth!
Now we can believe in Jesus of Nazareth and
that he is God. That is Faith, but Faith comes in two forms. The living faith and dead faith.
James 2 explains this. James asks “My brothers and sisters, what good is it if people claim they have faith but don’t act like it? Can that kind
of faith save them?” and to this question he adds... “Show me your faith that
doesn’t do good works. And I will show you my faith by what I do. You believe there is one God. Good! Even the demons
believe that. And they tremble! “
Faith is necessary, but it is also insufficient folk!
True faith does not only speak, it does!
Here I disagree with hundreds of evangelicals who simply say
“come to the front and give your life to Jesus and you will be saved” . I believe we need more. Much more!
The hypocrisy of saying and not doing is a disease today!
Walking to the front of a church, and follow heartfelt request to be saved is insufficient if by a Jesus
we construct in our mind a mystical entity far removed from the man who walked the dirt of this earth as Jesus of Nazareth.
Such an action and
statement does not make us a child of God, but rather a whimsical fool.
Even knowing Jesus is God and acknowledging it, does not make us children of God.
Satan knows that Jesus of Nazareth is God as well.
Truth is hidden in that aspect the evangelist asks us to do and so often never checks up on after that
day (I am probably over-generalizing here but in my experience which is not insignificant this is often the case).
The validity is in the handing
of our lives over to God, acknowledging Jesus of Nazareth as God verbally and changing our life actions to confirm this fact.
Our lives are not our
own when we hand them to God. He commands our every breath from that time on. Seriously!
This is why James says that good works must follow our faith.
If we make no
attempt to re-align our life with God’s values, then we have not received faith in God.
Re-aligned in what way?
Re-aligned to start to love, have joy and
peace, re-aligned to being patient, kind and good, to being gentle and having control of oneself (see Galatians 3).
What have you and I done yesterday
and the day before, that shows unequivocally that we are believers in Jesus of Nazareth being our God?
2 Peter says “God’s
power has given us everything we need to lead a godly life. All of that has come to us because we know the One who chose us.
He chose us because of his own glory and goodness.
He has also given us his very great and valuable promises. He did it so you could share
in his nature. He also did it so you could escape from the evil in the world. That evil is caused by sinful longings.
So you should
try very hard to add goodness to your faith.”
Who adds the goodness according to Peter, that amazing follower of Jesus? God or us?
It is our own responsibility to grow into
God’s paths for our lives.
miracle here, only effort on our part. Peter says we need to try add the goodness.
Will we fully succeed?
Probably only with the help of Holy Spirit!
None of us can be good in our own power. Yet, trying is something we need to do. Then,
helping us succeed is what God does!
Paul quotes in his letter to the Romans chapter 3 “No one is right with
God, no one at all.
11 No one understands.
one trusts in God.
12 All of them have turned away.
They have all become
No one does anything good,
no one at all.” (Psalms 14:1–3; 53:1–3; Ecclesiastes 7:20)”
shows that while we try to do good and it is necessary that we do, we never fully succeed without God’s help.
To step forward with God means
first having faith and adding to that trying to do good in our own ways as led by God.
Each of us has very specific things God wants us to do. Each of us grows as we walk in these ways.
To start growth, we need to start to try and do good in this world.
Today how about we go and attempt to live life the way God wants us to.
Let’s live as shown
to us by Jesus of Nazareth and prompted by Holy Spirit within us.
If you want to see a short blog describing a perspective on what I believe click here
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