James has been teaching about faith and works, explaining that genuine faith is recognizable by the works that it produces. You will notice a hint of sarcasm in today’s verse…
You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe – and shudder! (James 2:19)
Many people claim to believe in God, but they have not confessed their sins to Jesus and turned their lives over to Him. When they say they believe in God, what they mean is that they believe He exists. They likely believe that a man named Jesus once lived on this earth. They may even believe that He is the Son of God. However, that is merely intellectual assent; it is not a saving faith. Even the demons believe in the existence of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, but they are not God's friends, and they are not going to Heaven! They shudder in His presence.
As I write this devotional on my laptop computer, I am sitting in my “easy chair” in our family room. (I don’t know why I call it an easy chair, because I do a lot of difficult work in this chair.) Now pretend for a moment that I’m not sitting here, but that I just walked into a furniture store and laid eyes on this chair for the first time. Do I believe the chair exists? Absolutely! Do I believe the chair could hold me up if I sat on it? Yes, because it appears to be a sturdy piece of furniture. However, is the chair doing me any good at this moment? Not while I am just standing here looking at it. In order for me to receive benefit from the chair, I need to sit on it, rest all my weight on it, and trust it to hold me up.
Simply saying, “I believe in God,” or “I believe in Jesus” does not make you a Christian. It is not enough to give intellectual assent to the truths about Jesus. You need to give your life to Him (by confessing your sin and accepting Him as your Saviour) and trust Him for your salvation.
Today’s Good News is that you can rest your life on Jesus, and He will hold you up.
Now, go share the Good News…
FAITH in ACTION!
If you are joining us part way through this Journey in James, you can access the devotionals you missed in the archives. (The series started on June 1.)
If this is your first visit to this website, please read the “Featured Post” from March 1, 2018.