Tag Archives: assent

Saving faith is a belief that goes beyond a mental assent

Discerning True Faith
Faith in Action – Part 3

Scripture Reading: James 2:14-17

Key Verse: James 2:14

What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him?

As we read this part of the book of James, we must keep reminding ourselves that James is not suggesting that we are saved by doing good deeds.  The scripture is clear that we are saved by faith.  James is simply explaining what true saving faith looks like.

Saving faith is a belief that goes beyond a mental assent.  In James2:19, James reminds us that the demons believe there is one God.  Demons, who live in the unseen world, fully grasp that God exists, but that belief never changes the way they act.  Saving faith results in action, on the part of the believer.  The believer does not need to say to himself, “I must do good deeds to prove I’m a believer.”  The believer wants to do good deeds because his faith has risen to the level that saved him.

James is really not trying to convince believers to do good deeds.  He is making a case, hoping the unbelieving world will understand what true saving faith looks like.  God does a transforming work in a true believer’s heart which causes them to respond to the needs of people around them.  True believers find themselves following Jesus’ example of serving others.

Father, thank you for transforming my heart, making me want to serve you well today.  Open my eyes to the needs you want me to focus on today.  In Jesus’ name, amen.