So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless. Now someone may argue, “Some people have faith; others have good deeds.” But I say “How can you show me your faith if you don’t have good deeds? I will show you my faith by my good deeds.” James 2:17-18
Fruitful lives filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control is our overall focus in this series. Today we look at the second of two preliminary considerations that will be a big help in lining us up properly with the list of "fruits" God has in mind for our lives. Yesterday, we said that when we put our faith in Christ we are given the gift of being acceptable and right with God (salvation) and then through a personal and intimate connection with him, he produces good things (fruit) in and through our lives.
Trying to be fruitful without faith in Christ (salvation) truly in place is a total waste. We might say that fruit without faith is fake fruit. From our James passage, we might say that faith without fruit is fake faith. Genuine fruit (good deeds) is the evidence of genuine faith. When genuine fruit is missing from our lives then our profession of genuine faith is in question. Having genuine faith and having genuine fruit is totally a God thing.
So, how in regard to our two preliminary considerations, how do we put it all together? A life of genuine faith resulting in genuine fruit is all about responding to God. It is not about our efforts to get squared away in the matter of having faith and fruit in our lives. Here is the all important insight we need to come to: a full faith connection with God is powerful and transformational. One cannot be in relationship with God (faith) and not be radically changed (fruit).
Lord, I believe you are ever before me seeking my response to you. So, here I am responding to your presence. I lift up my soul to you and ask you to show me how to be genuinely before you. I ask you to square my life away in the matter of having genuine faith and fruit. Amen!
Posted on Wed, October 7, 2015
by Alan Porter