James’ argument for the necessary outworking of this salvation in good works ( 2:14-24 ) is countered by Paul’s insistence on the working of the grace of God in the act of faith for salvation ( Rom 3:24-31 ).
Source: Faith Definition and Meaning – Bible Dictionary
So is Paul correcting James? Is that what he’s saying? Paul “counters” James? I guess if you believe in salvation by faith only, James has to be countered in some way.
Faith is the attitude of the interim, Heb 11.39-40. It walks toward the promise of God. It plows through doubt. It breaks through barriers that would throw it down as a useless tool. It battles the challenges to receive from the Lord an eternal reward. Faith will one day be dissolved when sight comes into play, when the promise is given. For now, however, faith is the bridge to carry us across.
From Cory C.’s blog. Quite a worthy read.
Each of us will become what we were meant to be, what we were originally created to be, when our faith taps into the power of God. Do we not therefore want to know how to do this? Is our searching and every effort not thrown into discovering and implementing this? Or has our attention been diverted to superficial changes and short-term solutions?
The waves toss wildly. The winds tear at our clothes and bring tears to our eyes. The fury of the storm causes us despair. The low, dark clouds oppress with their heavy burden. The screeching and banging deafens our ears. O Soul, prove your faith by trusting in the Lord in the midst of the tempest. Trials will end and suffering will cease, but God’s love is everlasting. His calm is in the eye of the storm.
O Soul, plan for eventualities. In an instant, emergencies can happen. Be prepared for changes in your day and your life. Bring the grace and love of God to new circumstances. Accept what comes as a necessary step to using the moment for good. See where the flux of a situation can provide opportunity for service. Step forward in the breach of change. Show the way of faith to those who are caught in the doubt of tragedy. Assure yourself and others of God’s goodness, regardless of the suffering. Be the presence of God when others question it.
Dive to the greater depths, where flow the mercies of God unimpeded. O Soul, the surface is tossed and unstable. You were meant to live profoundly. Grapple with the great truths of Christ. Wrestle the angel of blessing to the ground. Stretch your spiritual muscles until they ache and throb. Dip your finger into the cold life-stream of the Holy Spirit. In the forge of faith are born the souls victorious. Be one of them. Press through in trust and hope. Refuse the lie of sight. To circumstance be blind, so that you may see the glorious light of heaven which bids you rise and gain the prize.
This devotional today is a must-read for everyone. Go download the devotional PDF and read for Jan. 17.
Means. Christians frequently rely on material things. In doing so, God is pushed to the sidelines. We lean on human innovations. We trust in academic degrees to equip for ministry. We assume buildings are necessary for worship. They may be important but hardly imperative. A few with God overcomes the many that depend on themselves. The hope of the world lies in the Lord, Psalms 31:1-5. Faith in Him is far more powerful than dependence on ourselves, Ephesians 6:10.
This reliance on material things is all too evident, especially in missions.
Focus question: What material things do I consider essential to success? What must I do to be among the few who depend upon God?
Today’s devotional from Ed looks at the three men facing death in the book of Daniel:
We are encouraged to be strong, I Corinthians 16:13; Ephesians 6:10. Even Nebuchadnezzar saw the wisdom in trusting the Lord, Daniel 3:28. A lack of faith is disastrous. Until we know for certain that we are in the hands of God, we will have little effect of the hearts of men.
This last sentence above leads us to seek greater faith.
Focus question: How do I draw courage from my faith? How do I develop a faith strong enough to help me face any challenge?