Monday, March 23, 2015

Believing vs. believing in...

Week 11:

Matthew 7:24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.

Romans 2:13 For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.

James 1:22-25; 2:18-24 22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”  Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds.19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.  20 You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless? 21 Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23 And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. 24 You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.
Proverbs 20:24 A person’s steps are directed by the Lord.  How then can anyone understand their own way?

What is the difference?  Is there a difference between believing and believing in?  When it comes to faith in God and in His Son Jesus, the difference shows up in several ways.  I know in my own life, I get caught in belief rather than believing in.  It is a matter of faith in action.  So toady, join me in reflecting on the following differences between believing and believing in:

·         Believing is acknowledging there is a God.  Believing in is following that God.
·         Believing is listening to God’s Word.  Believing in is applying that Word to everyday life.
·         Believing is recognizing God’s presence.  Believing in is taking action on His presence and what His presence is calling one to do.
·         Believing is the knowledge that God has a plan.  Believing in is the knowledge that I/you are a part of that plan.
·         Believing is hearing God’s call.  Believing in is acting on that call.
·         Believing is the knowledge that His Word is true.  Believing in is acting in obedience that His Word.
·         Believing blesses me.  Believing in blesses God.
·         Believing allows me to know what is righteous.  Believing in makes me righteous.
·         Believing unlocks a guide to life.  Believing in becomes a guide to life.
·         Believing unlocks wisdom.  Believing in is wisdom gained and put into action.
·         Believing is listening.  Believing in is doing.
·         Believing is general, vague and anonymous.  Believing in requires commitment and produces fruit.
·         Believing means I believe in God.  Believing in means I walk with God.

As I walk through this faith of mine.  I jump back and forth between believing and believing in.  The challenge to me is believe in daily.  Why wouldn’t I?  It produces every time.  Yet, as flawed human, this is still my challenge.  How have you been challenged today?

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