“… faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.“ (James 2:17)
The American church has systematized and codified Christian faith. We’ve boiled it down to a list of statements we accept as true (how many are on your list depends on your brand of Christianity). Is Jesus God’s Son? Check. Was Jesus sinless? Check. Did he die for our sins? Check.
Congratulations! When the 2020 census taker comes to your house, feel free to list yourself as “Christian.”
It’s actually even easier today. With today’s “self-identify” fad, you don’t even have to check boxes. Just say you’re a Christian.
It doesn’t matter that you don’t go to church, don’t read a Bible, don’t treat people kindly, don’t try to help the needy. If you identify as a Christian you must be a Christian, right?
James, in his letter, would suggest there’s more to it than that. He’s suggesting that if you call yourself a Christian, there should be some evidence to back up the claim.
You may indeed have an intellectual faith – a belief – in God. But if that belief hasn’t changed your life, then your faith is dead. If we tell folks we’re Christian and are met with surprised looks…well, James tells us we’ve got a problem.
Join us Sunday – we’ll talk about making sure we have a living faith! If your faith is flat lining, we’ll ask God for a spiritual cardioversion!