MAY 26, 2020
Take some time this week to go over the thoughts and questions below from Pastor Ronnie’s sermon titled, “FAITH THAT MOVES” (James 2:14-26). Consider them on your own, with a friend or schedule a family discussion time. LifeGroups will cover an aspect of it next Sunday.
1. At the beginning of his message Pastor Ronnie gave the example of a man who trusted a good doctor with the outcome of his health, but the faith he had in the doctor required him to do more than believe in what the doctor said. He followed the advice of his doctor, took the medicine, had surgery, and lived an active, healthy life. The proof of his faith was his response to the doctor. Would you say that your faith is made up of faith and actions? Read James 2:14-20. Examine your faith. Is it unprofitable, vain, empty, or worldly? An internal examination will show if you have a strong, living and active faith or if your faith is dead.
2. To drive home the point, Pastor Ronnie focused on James 2:18. This verse describes two men. The first man thinks he has faith because he believes. The Bible says this is dead faith because even the demons believe. The second man believes he has faith because he does good works. The Bible says they are dead works. Neither is good enough. They are both wrong (James 2:22). You need both—faith and works! They must function together as one unit. People need to be able to see what’s in your heart by the work you do! Reflect on how your faith is producing works. What are you doing to advance the Kingdom?
3. If you want things in your life to change, Pastor Ronnie challenged, “you must move.” Move your mouth. Move your feet. Move your mind. Millions profess Christ, but few move on their faith and advance His Kingdom. What are you called by God to do for His Kingdom?
Take a few moments to write down a list of times you didn’t move when God told you to. Ask God to forgive you for having dead faith in those moments. Now, make a new list of ways you feel the Holy Spirit instructing you to move in order to advance the Kingdom of God. If you’re still prompted by God, you can move some of the missed moments from the first list onto your new living faith list! Once the list is complete, take action on one of those things this week. Let faith move you into faithful service and obedience.
What does a life of faith and works look like? For further study this week, read through the story of Abram, who was renamed Abraham by God. Begin in Genesis 11:31 and read through Chapter 18. In this story, we see Abraham’s record of faith that moves. Abraham’s life was not perfect. His actions were not always correct, His obedience and then the desire to force the will of God caused him, his family, and all of the generations forward difficulty. But the record shows Abraham had faith that moves.
• What was the promise of God to Abram? (Genesis 12:1-3)
• What was Abram’s response? (Genesis 12:4-6)
• What was God’s second promise to Abram? (Genesis 12:7)
• What was Abram’s response? (Genesis 12:8)
Is it possible to have lapses in faith? Despite the promises of God, Abram made choices out of fear. Survey the next few chapters and find those moments.
Despite his moments of dead works and empty faith, God continued to keep the original promise and bless Abram (Ch. 13) and Abram kept moving.
Difficulty often stops us in our tracks. Abram faced difficulty, attacks from many enemies, and people he loved were held captive, but it never stopped Abram from following God, and God gave him victory after victory. (Ch. 14)
The most famous promise of God to Abram is found in Genesis 15. That chapter and following describes God’s promise of a son to Abram (14:4-5). Dead works will never be faith at work. Sarai decided to help God by sending her maid in to conceive and bear a child for her with Abram. Describe the consequences. Abraham’s life wasn’t perfect, but he kept moving by faith. God will forgive your mistakes, just keep moving!
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Need a refresher on the sermon? Watch it again!