Why Do Good?
We have all met people who say one thing, but do another.
We are big on talk, not on the walk.
We claim that their on a diet, but don’t change our food habits.
We say we are loving, but don’t act in loving ways.
We say we are open-minded until they hear an idea that we don’t like.
Often I say things and don’t do them. I would rather sit in grace and not do anything about it. I know that to be a true Jesus follower, not just be someone who says they follow the rabbi from Nazareth, but acts in the ways of his rabbi.
I want not just claim to be Christian; I want to live my Christian faith in real ways.
Christians are called to act on what we believe. Having faith in Jesus Christ should cause us to follow his example.
Philippians 2: Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
We will naturally want to do Good. Not gain any reward, but in genuine response to the grace of God. Doing good is the expected result of hearts powered by the love and grace of God. Doing good can be a number of things. They can range from holding a door open for someone, letting someone in front of you at the grocery store, helping a stranger change a tire, visiting the elderly and sick, feeding the hungry, supporting a needy child, saying hi and thank you, listening to a story, giving up your seat. There are many things both small and large that we can do and the letter of James tells us how important it is.
James 1: Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
Doing good will not save us, no matter how much good we do it will not give us salvation. Jesus did that for all on the cross. We are not saved by our good, but are saved to do good. Accepting the love and grace of God and committing to the way of Jesus should compel us to extend and point to the very same for others.
Ephesians 2: For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
How we live our life begins with what we believe, having faith in Jesus should show in our actions every day. We need to let our faith inform everything we do. Our faith should impact what we do when we wake up, the work we do, how we interact on our jobs, the people we associate with and how we associate, the TV shows and movies we watch, what we spend our money on, our diets, where we live, the possessions we buy, how we raise our children, the things we read, and may other things. Our life should be transformed to a more Christ-like life. When friends, family, and strangers look at us, they should wonder why we live as we do. I mean that last sentence in a good way. People should be drawn to us because our faith in Jesus Christ has transformed us into the men and women of the Kingdom of God.
John Calvin said that if our life doesn’t express Christ, we not only revolt our Creator with wicked deceit but we also renounce our Savior. The way to affirm Jesus is to live as Jesus lived. Affirming Jesus and the Kingdom of God with our life will glorify God, because we are living the life God created us to live.
James 2: What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
I need to work on living my faith, on expressing Christ to the world. My hope is that we will express Christ and His Kingdom to the world in a vibrant and life-changing ways.
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