What is faith? What do you put your faith in? (the chair? the light switch?)
If you told everyone that you were a soccer player but then you never played soccer, never touched a soccer ball, never ran on to a soccer field, never went to a practice or a game, is it true that you are a soccer player?
If you told everyone that you are a guitar player, but you don’t own a guitar, you’ve never touched a guitar, you don’t take guitar lessons or ever actually play the guitar, is it true that you are a guitar player?
These are kind of silly examples, but the same thing is true about being a Christian. If you say that you are a Christian, that you have trusted in Jesus to save you from your sins, but you never talk like Jesus, or act like Jesus, or care about others like Jesus did, is it true that you have Jesus living inside of you? Maybe not.
Here’s how James sys it in his letter:
James 2:17. So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
What is faith?
Faith is believing that something is true. It is trusting in something. Like when you sit in a chair, you trust that it will hold you up. Or when you go to the doctor you believe that they are telling you the truth about what ever might be wrong with you.
How do we know when we really have faith? The answer is when we DO something. I know you trust the chair when you sit down on it. I know you believe your doctor when you take the medicine they tell you to take.
How do we know when someone has faith in Jesus? Do we know that someone believes in Jesus when they say that they believe in Jesus and his cross? Yes, saying you believe is the first step. But there also has to be a second step – doing.
And here’s where it gets a bit tricky, because God doesn’t want us to do things, or obey, just to prove ourselves to him. He wants us to do things, loving things, obedient things, because we know that we are loved by him. He wants us to do things from faith.
Do you love your mom and dad so that they will love you back?
Or, do you love your mom and dad and obey them because they loved you first? Are you earning their love or are you responding to their love?
And what about with Jesus? Are you trying to earn his love? Or are you responding to the love he already gives you no matter what?
Because of Jesus we can have faith that God loves us no matter what.
With Jesus we can let our faith produce good works of love.
DO SOMETHING TOGETHER
Watch these two scenes from “Into the Spiderverse” together. Talk about how Miles had to believe that he has spidey powers and he had to DO something too. He had to jump off the building and shoot his webs etc. How is being a Christian similar to this? What do we have to believe? How do we have to live?
I trust in you. Help my faith to produce your own good works that show people your love.
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