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Thursday, January 16, 2020


"But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing." 
James 1:22-25

When one studies the Word of God, he can develop true faith based on what he learns from God’s Truth (Rom. 10:17). That same Word will help us to live faithfully. Jesus has promised us the crown of life if we remain faithful to Him until death. Faithfulness is to live faithfully by the teachings of the faith. Faithfulness is the outward expression and active demonstration of the faith that we profess to have. Faith without faithfulness is dead! (James 2:14-26). Faith is not just a belief or a mental acknowledgment.  True faith is that belief that we put into action through our obedience and steadfast devotion and service to God. You see, even the demons in hell believe (James 2:19). Often people have the wrong concept of faith, for they think that believing is the same as having faith without obedience, doing nothing to serve God faithfully. Faith that does not obey and is active is dead faith! (James 2:18). You see, active works are a vital component of true faith (James 2:18, 21, 22, 25). When we claim to love God, we must actively obey and live by His teachings or doctrines (John 14:15). Just believing is not true faith, for true faith must be active and show visible faithfulness to God. Truth without faithfulness simply will not make it to heaven!

Today many churches teach that once one is saved, he can never lose salvation or be lost eternally. But is that true? No! Why did God insist and exhort us so much throughout the Scriptures to remain faithful and endure to the end? Why did Jesus in His letter to the brethren in Smyrna instruct them to be faithful unto death to give them the crown of life, eternal life (even dying for their faith)? Why must one be faithful unto death if he has already been saved and cannot fall from Grace and be lost? In Matthew 10:22 and 24:13, Jesus said twice,
“And you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.
“13 But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” 

Likewise, Mark made that same statement in Mark 13:13. Jesus has placed our salvation together with our faithfulness (endurance, steadfastness, long-suffering). Luke recorded the same idea,
“By your endurance, you will gain your lives” (Lk. 21:19). 

James also said in James 1:12,
“ Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.” 

So Christians must endure without surrendering to temptations that lead us to sin (James 1:1; 2:1; 3:1). Christians, those who have been saved, must continue living faithfully by the Gospel of Christ and not be forgetful hearers, but doers who act, because the Lord will bless us if we do this (James 1:25). The apostle Peter gives us the same instruction in 2 Peter 1:1,
“Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities, you will never fall. 11 For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 

Our diligent faithfulness will give us an entrance and a home in heaven. What if we remain in sin and do not repent? Paul gives us the answer in Romans 6:23,
“For the wages of sin is death.” 
Again we have another warning about remaining faithful, being sober and vigilant to the end (1 Peter 5:8).
"Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour."

We are commanded to hold fast to our hope and endure, doing the will of God, to receive what He has promised us (our crown of life, heaven). So, we must not throw away our confidence, which has great reward!

There are consequences that will affect our entrance into heaven when we persist in sin after receiving the knowledge of the Truth, for there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries (Hebrews 10:26-39). If we persist in sin and are not faithful to God, that sacrifice for our sins no longer remains. Those who persist in sin, being unfaithful to God, are trampling the Son of God (Heb. 10:29). We must keep doing the will of God, being faithful to Him and to His Word, to receive the promised reward. Grace is conditioned upon our faithfulness and obedience (2 Peter 1:10; 1 John 1:17). These conditions have been set if we want to keep the Grace given to us. So we must continue to be faithful and obedient to the will of God to receive His Grace and His promised reward. There is no profit in hearing God’s Word even if we believe it, if we don’t do anything about it, because without the doing, without bearing fruit and doing the works that God wants us to do, we may deceive men, or even ourselves, but not God.

Hearing without doing does not give us an entrance to heaven. So don’t deceive yourself! Those who hear the Word of God without obeying are like those who behold their faces in a mirror, for they see their blemishes and those things that need to be straightened or corrected, but forget and walk away without fixing what is wrong in their lives, that which the Bible calls sin. We are deceived when we hear the precious Word of God without obeying it diligently. Therefore, let us not overthrow our faith, depart from it, and remain steadfast and faithful to God and His Word to receive our crown of life and not lose our salvation.


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