Summary: To "Get Real!" and be genuine in our world, we must live in the state (condition) of showing our faith, not hiding it. We are challenged to see the unseen; live with certainty, and put our faith into practice.
1. [Joy Villa made a fashion statement at the 2017 Grammy Awards. She made an appearance, first with her outfit covered in a white outer garment; then revealed her red, white, and blue dress with the words, “Make America Great Again” and “Trump” embroidered on it.
a. Where do you think she is politically? For whom do you think she voted? Why?
b. Evidence – Hebrews 11.1
2. There is an old question preachers have been asking for years, “If you were put on trial as a Christian, is there enough evidence to convict you?”
a. Remember, HEARSAY evidence is not admissible
b. EVIDENCE is required
3. We see a challenging world to Christians – we are not always popular; people are not interested
a. [Invitation to Church Chart
b. Instead of standing out, we may want to wear the camouflage of the world
4. The Bible challenges us to be in a State of Showing Our Faith – James 2.14-26
I. Challenge #1 – Seeing the Unseen (Hebrews 11.1)
A. The Seen Creation Declares the Unseen Creator – Psalm 19.1
B. The Seen Christian Displays the Unseen Christ – Acts 4.13
Dr. Charles Weigle composed the song, “No One Ever Cared for Me Like Jesus.” One day he visited Pasadena, California. Early that morning he had an opportunity to walk through some of the famous rose gardens when the full fragrance of the flowers filled the air.
Later, he arrived at the hotel where a Bible conference was being held. As he took his seat, a man turned to him and said, “Dr. Weigle, I know where you’ve been. You toured one of our lovely gardens, for I can smell the pleasing aroma on your clothing.”
Weigle then said, “My prayer is that I may walk so closely with the Lord that the fragrance of His grace will pervade my being. I want them to know by my words, actions, and songs that I have been with Jesus.”
That’s the way it will be if we truly walk with Him. The sweet smell of His life will be seen by others.
1. Faithful Followers Demonstrate their Leader – they were bold because He was
2. How do you know if a person is a follower of Jesus today? That (S)He has the HS?
a. His name is on a church roll? Because she said so?
b. Evidence – Galatians 5.22-25
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.
II. Challenge #2 – Living with Certainty (Hebrews 11.1)
A. Faith is the Place of Assurance
2. Based on Evidence – God keeps his word! “Thus saith the LORD”
B. Faith is the Place of Continuation – Exodus 17
1. Moses and Joshua vs. Amalek
2. Moses’ hands were steady (“emunah”) – faith-full
III. Challenge #3 – Putting Faith into Practice (James 2.14-26)
Fruits of Faith
The phrase “catch-22” refers to a problem that has a solution that is prohibited by the problem itself. For example, if you need glasses to see, and you lose your glasses, you can’t find them because you need them to carry out the search. A typical “catch-22” is when a job seeker is denied a job because of a lack of experience which he will never get unless he can get a job.
Not exactly a “catch-22” puzzle, but a conundrum nonetheless, is this theological problem: We cannot be saved with good works, but neither can we be saved without good works. How is that possible?
The Bible clearly says we are saved by grace through faith, not by works (Ephesians 2:8-9).
But it also says that faith without works is dead (James 2:17).
Jesus said to show our good works but
As a rule, good works are evidence of our faith, a sign that our faith is alive and well. We were made to do good works (Ephesians 2:10).
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
Faith and works are like the light and heat of a candle; they cannot be separated. Author Unknown
1. Abraham – acted and was called “righteous”
2. Rahab – acted and was called “righteous”
3. You and I – 1 John 3.18
18 Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth
[Act of Kindness: Reporters and city officials gathered at a Chicago railroad station one afternoon in 1953. The person they were meeting was the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize winner. A few minutes after the train came to a stop, a giant of a man - six feet four inches with bushy hair and a large mustache stepped from the train. Cameras flashed. City officials approached him with hands outstretched. Various people began telling him how honored they were to meet him.