Part 4 Faith is Actions
But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak. 1 Corinthians 8:9
To believe in Christ, His ways, His words, and His teachings, you had to repent, turn around, clean up your life, make straight the way of the LORD. An individual had to seek the kingdom of God in his every day life and his needs would be met without taxing the blood, sweat, and patience of his neighbor.1
You were told to call no man on earth “Father” in word or deed. You were told to apply only to Our Father in heaven. You had to do the will of the Father for His kingdom to come to you.2 But the kingdom was first within you. It was within your reach in spirit, but also in truth, as you did the will of the Father.
John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
Jesus died that you might be saved. Just because someone says that they believe in Jesus does not mean that they are saved. He made it clear over and over that we are to do the will of the Father, not that we could ever earn salvation, for nothing we can do will make God owe us. Salvation was a gift that resulted from our faith in action.
Faith is not just mentally agreeing or believing. Faith is from the Greek word pistis as a noun,3 which means “fidelity, faithfulness or loyalty”. As fidelity, this word, of which we think as just belief, includes “Faithfulness to obligations, duties, or observances.”4
The obligation, of course, is doing the will of the Father, keeping the commandments and observing the things that Jesus says. It is clear that faith without works is dead and dead faith is not faith at all, but only words.
The Pharisees professed they “believed in God”, but they did not know God. They had created an image of God in their own minds, but their Father was not God the Father, but the Father of Rome because they had no king but Caesar. Many did not believe in Jesus as King because they did not believe in God’s ways, though they professed a belief in Him.
They believed in compelled tithes and temple taxes and social security systems, like Corban, that make the Law of God of no effect. They believed in the kingdom of Rome with its benefits, financed through income and property tax and coveted their neighbor’s goods.
And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel. Mark 1:15
When Christ called us to believe, He said that we must repent first. Repenting is not just being sorry, but turning around and changing what we think and do. Those who said that they believed, but would not turn away from the way they were going, would not receive the grace of God’s forgiveness. Faith without repentance is a lie.
I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Luke 13:3 & 5
It is clear that we need to believe, but we also must repent. Our belief will also show a change in our actions and deeds if our faith is not dead. We will began to do the will of the Father because the Father will be in us. We will edify the kingdom as it grows in us. If we believe as a child and are born again in Him, then we will began to change. We will seek to do the will of the Father. Our lives will began to reflect His ways.
And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? Luke 6:46
People flocked to Jesus as thousands also followed John. Most wanted the kingdom offered by Herod, but many desired the liberty the faith5 offered by John and Jesus.
Like the days of Rehoboam, some wanted to keep that power and comfort offered by contrary civil systems and denounced Christ the King. Some gave their allegiance, obedience, and service to Caesar and his world order, but some gave their fidelity and obedience to Christ and his appointed Kingdom of liberty. Men and women may still make that choice today.
James 1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, [and] to keep himself unspotted from the world.
In Jesus' Kingdom, the widows, orphans and needs of society were accomplished through freewill offerings. It was His righteous religion to feed His sheep, according to the perfect law of liberty, by faith, hope, and charity. It is the religion of the pagan nations to force the contributions of the people through benefactors, who exercise authority one over the other. This is the way of the worlds of Cain, Nimrod, Pharaoh, Caesar, and the government. Their followers oppose the religion of Christ and take His Name in vain and are defiled.
1Romans 13:9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if [there be] any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
2Matthew 7:21… doeth the will of my Father.., Matthew 12:50… whosoever shall do the will of my Father, Matthew 21:31… did the will of his father?, Mark 3:35 whosoever shall do the will of God, John 6:38… not to do mine own will
3pistos as an adjective. In the Gospel of John, the author does not use the noun form pistis at all. He use only the verb form pisteuo nearly 100 times which indicates that faith is about action not simply verbalization or mental agreement.
4The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
5Synonyms: fidelity, allegiance, fealty, loyalty.