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Stop The Deception-Part 4

Stop The Deception-Part 4
Keeping His Word

 "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. John 14:23 (NKJV)

We are looking at a devotional series titled, "Stop The Deception," which is based on James 1:22-24 where we are exhorted to be doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving ourselves. In Part 3 we looked at how we can be assured of victory in the fight between our flesh and spirit.  We looked at Biblical truths through the Scriptures - the promises of God.  And we looked at our responsibilities as well, including our receiving, reading and trusting in God's Word, and being filled with the Holy Spirit daily.

To make a profession of faith in Jesus Christ is probably the greatest feeling one can experience.  The excitement of starting a new relationship with God, coupled with the relief of the guilt of our sin and the condemnation from the enemy, and the overall feeling of peace is truly amazing.  And as much as this can feel like a finishing line, it is just the start.  To grow in our faith, we must reprogram our minds - flushing out the sewage of lies learned throughout our life, and replacing these lies with the truths of God's Word.

We must possess a strong commitment to change the way we live, and to apply what we know to be true and righteous.  This uncompromising way of living will be the blueprint of our being doers of the Word, and not just hearers only.   It seems so easy, and yet many people fail.  

Q:    How is it we can make a commitment to read and apply God's Word, and then turn around and be like the man James refers to - the man who looks intently into the mirror and then immediately forgets what he looks like? (James 1:24-27)

A:    I believe there are a couple a reasons this happens-

  • Intellectual assent - we hear the Word, and we simply come in agreement with it - but we stop there.

We read the Scriptures, but we don't meditate on them.  We don't see how they should affect, and change our life.   We simply come in agreement with them - we hear God's Word, and we respond with, "Yeah, I agree with that." And it's forgotten and not applied.  It's as if we have somehow achieved our obeying God's Word by simply agreeing with it.  We know it is true, and we say, "Amen!"  But then we go right back to following our feelings, rather than obeying what we have heard, and abiding in what we know to be true.  

This is not true belief - it is intellectual assent - a coming in agreement with something through reasoning, rather than action.  This is a very dangerous place for a professing Christian to be, as they are being deceived by the enemy to thinking they have some how made it to Heaven by saying one prayer and then sitting in the back of church saying, "Amen preacher."   Hey, if you believed a car was going to hit you as you crossed the street, you'd move!  That's belief!

I believe there are many people, even professing Christians, who believe in God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit as 3-distinct yet still one God.  The problem is they really don't have a relationship with their Lord and Savior, Christ (See Matt. 7:21).  And they certainly don't abide in His teachings, and there is no fruit (works) to go along with their faith.  We see this spoken of in the Book of James.

You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe - and tremble! But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?  James 2:19-20 (NKJV)

Any person who makes a profession of faith in Christ should have a marked change within their life, including their reading and abiding in the Word - otherwise it is just a profession and they are deceiving themselves.  (Matt. 7:26-27; John 8:31; 10:27; 15:14; James 1:22-26)

Again, we need to balance the truth of God's Scriptures.   I am not speaking of obeying the Law (Gods commands) as a form of works to be saved - this can never happen.  We have been saved totally by God's grace through faith (Eph 2:8-9) - but we must now obey God's Word since we have been forgiven of our past sins.   And this will result in good works.  

Hey Christian, I want you to feel secure about your salvation.  I have already given some indicators of true regeneration by hating the sin, just as Paul did (See Rom. 7:15).  We can be confident in the Holy Spirit's place within our life, but we must continue to strive to implement what we know to be true within God's Word.

In our last Part, we will look at the 2nd reason I believe we can study the Scriptures intently - only to walk away and not implement them into our lives.

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn about professing to believe in God, and yet not abiding in His Word according to James 2:19-20?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Is there fruit from your walk with God?  Can others see God's transformation within your life?

APPLICATION: Let God's Word wash you, and transform you to be like Christ.

Father, Thank You for Your accountability within Your Word.  Thank You for giving us Scripture to clarify how we should live.  Father, Thank You for giving us the confidence to know we are saved by Grace through faith, and not of our works, lest anyone boast.  And thank You for letting us know there will be fruit in a true believers life - one who walks in obedience to Your Word. Help me to continue being fruitful.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

 Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000