Daily Devotional Thursday 26th November

by William Moody

James 2:14–19

Faith Without Works Is Dead

14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good1 is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!

Footnotes

[1] 2:16 Or benefit

(ESV)

James is now considering what the true nature of faith is. Faith cannot be about just believing certain facts in our heads. Faith has to change the ways we live and be worked out in our daily actions (v14).

James in seeking to get across how useless faith is without accompanying action by using the example of give good wishes to someone who is hungry and naked but doing nothing to help them (v16-17).

James wants us to see the foolish of thinking that faith without deeds is of any value. His words are very strong, such a faith is dead (v17).

We need to be careful that if our lives are filled with good intentions which are never carried out. Have you had many good intentions about loving God and loving others but have not carried them out? Pray about this!

Faith should be evident to others in the lives we live day by day (v18). Our faith has to impact and change every part of our lives. Is your faith doing this?

Faith which is just head knowledge is what even the demons have (v19). They know the truth about who Jesus is and what He has done at the cross. Knowing the truth doesn’t save, it is embracing the truth to the depth of our being so that we’re transformed by it that brings salvation.

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.