Read: James 2:21-26 Memorize: James 2:26 Pastor Josh October 22-28, 2015
"Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?" James continues the topic from last weeks discussion of knowing if we are truly saved. Now he is giving us examples of how our faith can be seen by others in the work we do for the Lord. In the story of Isaac, he was Abraham's only son and God asked him to offer him as an offering to the Lord. Abraham obeyed and proved his faith by doing the work the Lord wanted him to do.
Verse 22-23, "Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the friend of God." Now James is not saying that works saves you. He is emphasising that it is by our works that others know we are saved. What is your testimony like? Do others know that there is something different about you?
Verse 24, "Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only." Our faith is what justifies us with God, but our works for God are what justifies us with man. They go hand in hand.
"Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?" Another example of faith and works. Rahab hid the two spies in Jerico when Joshua was spying out the land. Then she sent the men down the wall and risked her life and the lives of her family.
James finishes his thoughts with verse 26, "For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also." True faith will always be demonstrated by good works.