I heard a pastor on the radio the other day talking about a saving faith. He made reference to James 2:19 which says “19You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that–and shudder.” In context James is talking about faith and deeds, which is anther great topic to think about. But it got me thinking, do I have a faith that truly saves? We also read in Luke 8 about a demon possessed man Jesus encounters. In the encounter the man falls at Jesus’ feet and asks to not be tortured. The evil spirit in this man truly recognized who Jesus was. The disciples spent three years with Jesus in a close and intimate relationship, all of them dropping everything they had and leaving their lives behind to follow Jesus during that time and eleven of them, along with many others along the way, were saved because of their faith. Sure it wasn’t rock solid the whole time. We see Peter tell Jesus he’ll follow Him and not fall away, but yet in the face of seeing His Master being persecuted under a mock trial, Peter disowns Jesus three times, just as Jesus had told him. This is the same Peter who stepped out of a boat and walked on water to get to Jesus.
As I sit in my comfortable home that God has provided, in a country with more freedoms than I know what to do with that others have sacrificed and died for me to live in, would I have the same faith which Christians are being killed for in other countries which are not so comfortable? Granted, Peter was later restored by Jesus and is one of the great authors of the Bible, but he did falter, and yet he gave what some may say as the greatest sermon to ever be preached.
I had the privilege of hearing a pastor speak a couple of years ago. His story has stuck with me for a couple of reasons. One, I don’t get to do it much, but I love military history. I think its incredible to think back at what the veterans, especially of WWII, have done and given up for the freedoms we have today. But secondly, this guy truly lived out a saving, or as he calls it, a bullet proof faith.
As I sit here and write this I wish I could say that I have a bullet proof faith. As I sit here, I would say yes I profess the name of Jesus, but in the face of extreme persecution my hope is that I would still have that same profession. Yes, I believe Jesus lived a life that was sinless and paid the horrible price of dying on a cross, by giving up His place in heaven next to our Creator to pay a penalty that I should pay. That its only by God’s grace that I have the opportunity at life here, incredibly blessed, with my family. But I also know God is much more faithful than I am. My prayer is that when its my time, God will count me as faithful and obedient. Its my prayer that I would have been a good and faithful servant and that I can too share in my Master’s happiness.
21“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
We just finished celebrating the Christmas holiday, lots of people around the world just exchanged gifts had meals with family, had time off from work hopefully to relax which are all good things. But did we really celebrate Christmas and what it truly means for us.
Lord Jesus, let these words be Your words, let them go out and not return void.