What do you think the most important verse in the Bible? Maybe John 3:16? Perhaps Philippians 4:13? Maybe you have another opinion on that, and I don’t think there is a right or wrong answer either. People have favorite verses because it impacts their life in a certain way. For me, well i have two verses I really like found in the book of James. James is an incredible book and is my favorite book in the Bible, because I feel like it puts our walk as Christian in clear terms.
The two verses I like go along together in the message they are trying to get across. The verses are:
“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
“Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.”
You may be thinking, ‘Jared those are some strange verses to consider your favorite’, but it is what it is. These are my favorite because they challenge us. How many times have we done something that we should not have done? Too many to count for all of us. When I get into a situation I like to sit back and think of James 1:26. As many of you know I am very vocal in what I believe, especially in my faith. If I say one thing and do the other I am deceiving myself.
I am not speaking of anyone specifically, but I have witnessed this to many times to count. Somebody on Facebook post a scripture and maybe a week later they post something quite the opposite. Maybe pics from a night on the town, or something vulgar. Well Jame 1:22 spell that out clearly to us, we can know the Word but the important thing is to live by it. We all back slide a bit I think, our faith may have been weakened at some point for some reason. I know I have been there, but I know that now if I proclaim the gospel I am going to live by it as well.
I read a good quote today that I really liked it said, “If you believe what you like in the gospel, and reject what you dislike, it is not the gospel that you believe, but yourself.” That quote pretty much gets it right. A lot of us at times choose to listen to some parts of the Bible, and ignore other areas.
My point in this post is, if you are going to proclaim the Word of God then we need to live it. That goes for everyone pastors, youth ministers, and regular Christians like myself. We walk around with a target on our back, when we stumble the enemy loves that. When we say one thing, and do the other well the enemy not only loves that but gives it ammo. Gandhi once said “I like you Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” The sad part is many cases that is so true. When I have shared the gospel with lost people they have told me, why would I want to be a hypocrite like the rest of you? That breaks my heart to hear, that the perception of faith is hypocritical.
The good news is, when we mess up the Father forgives us. It is our job to turn away from what made us stumble and to prove to people like Gandhi we can be like Christ. It is what we are called to do, to be like Christ. I challenge myself and all believers to follow through with that. To have accountability partners and be the light for the world.
As always God bless and hope you enjoyed the post!