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You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
18 Yea [alla], a man [tis] may say [ereo], Thou [su] hast [echo] faith [pistis], and I [kago] have [echo] works [ergon]: shew [deiknuo] me [moi] thy [sou] faith [pistis] without [ek] thy [sou] works [ergon], and I [kago] will shew [deiknuo] thee [soi] my [mou] faith [pistis] by [ek] my [mou] works [ergon]. KJV-Interlinear
18 But someone may well say, 'You
have faith, and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will
show you my faith by my works.' NASB
What james is saying here is that faith, and works or
the production of the spiritual life, are inseparable.
Likewise, your function of faith and my function of
faith may not necessarily be the same functions.
Our study here is of a functional spiritual life.This applies to believers only, and as to
whether they are living functional spiritual lives or dysfunctional spiritual
We have been using the activities of charitable giving
or spiritual study support as a couple of our examples of 'works.'We use these because they apply to every
believer and they are the easiest to use in examples of your doing or not doing
But the spiritual life is far more than giving.That only applies to the aches you feel when
you have to reach into your own pocketbook and part with you cash.But life is not an endless writing of checks.
Suppose you lose your physical abilities in an
accident.Suppose you lose your home in
a storm. Suppose you lose your job of endless years.Suppose you find yourself in a situation
where you have no obvious solutions and your problems become overwhelming.Now your faith is tested to the maximum, and
your doing becomes not so much an action, but a test of patience or acclimation
to your new circumstances.
The drama of your life now, may well manifest itself
in your poise or lack of it, in your fear or lack of it, in your anger and
blame or lack of it.
It is often said that faith cannot be adequately
tested until the fires of extreme pressure are put to your life.And that is a blessing, believe it or not,
that God reserves especially for those who are advancing in their spiritual
Faith is your functioning spiritual life.Works are the productive aspects of your
spiritual life.Both are accompanied by
your sense of responsibility and your understanding that it is really God who
provides the solutions for all of your situations, not you.
Your test is of greed, of selfishness, or
self-centeredness, even of self-righteousness and excuse making in order to
avoid your responsibilities.
The summary of your effective spiritual life, is found
in the combining of your beliefs, which you obtain from your daily study, along
with your application of Gods mandates to your daily life.
You cannot subscribe to grace and conduct yourself in
gossip.You cannot feel legitimate
empathy for someone and withhold charity.You cannot sit back and expect someone else to fulfill your
responsibilities.You cannot fulfill a
functional spiritual life by giving in to feelings of guilt once or twice a
God evaluates you for your spiritual life and
spiritual production, not for what someone else does or does not do.
Your spiritual obligations are daily, weekly, monthly
and so forth.The needs of folks out in
the world are daily, weekly, monthly and so forth.
Your spiritual tests will occur moment by moment
throughout your life.The most obvious
test is your willingness to monitor your fellowship status from moment to
moment, and whether or not you will confess as needed in order to remain in
fellowship.Review 1, 2, 3 Jn.
Your daily test is with your compliance with a daily
study, with your compliance to consider what you have learned and to ponder
those things, with your willingness to submit yourself to Gods mandates and to
begin trusting in His care, and worrying less about your situation in this
Pretending for the benefit of the observation by
people, does you no good.Your
obligation is to God and His observation, not to people.
Your life is between you and the Lord, for He is the
only one who can promote you, support you, bless you, keep you, protect you,
and bring you through any imaginable situation.
When you begin to realize this truth, then and only
then, will your spiritual life begin to grow and thrive.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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