WOULD REAL FAITH PLEASE STAND UP
Is faith real if it is not seen in our lives?
I give to you the example I used a few years ago. They
called him the “great blonde.” He could walk the tight rope
from one side of Niagara Falls to the other side. People
would cheer as he finished his walk above the treacherous
waterfalls. He took a wheel barrel and pushed it across the
tight rope and again people cheered. He called out to the
crowd, “How many of you believe I can do it again?” The
people raised their hands saying yes. Then he asked, “Who
will get in the wheel barrel and let me push you across?” No
one. Real faith could not stand up that day. It wasn’t
Did their faith make any difference in their own lives that
day? No. When it came to the proof of their faith, it was
empty or dead faith.
Listen to James as he talks about this same issue of dead
I. The Empty Claim Of Empty Faith (14-20)
* Key words “if someone says… but does not have”
> This represents an empty claim.
James follows that sentence up with these words, “Can
faith save him?” What he is saying is, “Can that kind
of faith save him?”
** I can tell you all day long that I have a gold mine that is
worth millions, but if I have a gold mine that no gold
has ever been found in it then my claim is empty!
> It is only words and nothing more!
A. An Illustration of Empty Words (15-17)
1. A brother/sister in need (15) (clothing and daily food)
2. You give words of compassion w/o acts of
a. What profit is there? (16b)
3. Words by themselves are useless (17)
B. An Illustration Of Empty Faith (18-20)
1. Empty/useless faith has no evidence of works (18)
* Works are not the substance of faith. They are the
evidence of faith.
2. Knowing the truth only is useless (19a)
a. Even demons know the truth (19b) (And tremble
knowing their future)
Matthew 8:29 “And suddenly they [demons]
cried out, saying, ‘What have we to do with You,
Jesus, You Son of God? Have You come here to
torment us before the time?’”
* The implication here is that knowledge of the
truth does no good unless we respond to the
II. The Living Proof Of Living Faith (21-26)
A. Abraham (21-24)
1. His faith was backed up by his works (21b)
a. Offering Issac (21b)
B. Rahab (25)
1. Her actions showed her faith (25)
* These two examples show us that a respectable, hard
working man like Abraham and a disrespected, harlot
like Rahab both come to salvation through genuine
faith in God and both of their faiths were seen in their
III. The Dead Proof Of Dead Faith (26)
A. No human spirit in a human body is proof of a dead
B. No works in a claim of faith is proof of dead faith
CONCLUSION: (So What?)
ILL: World War II parachute packers had an unacceptable
record: nineteen out of twenty parachutes opened. The
manager discovered that by allowing the packers the
pleasure of testing their parachutes by jumping from a plane,
quality rose to 100 percent.
* One day you are going to make the final jump from life to
eternity. Are you 100% sure you have true faith? The kind
that the Bible talks about?
> Is there evidence of your salvation and IF NOT, how do
you know your faith is real?
* Is it the amount of works/deeds preacher? No.
> Your works small or great will not save you.
* It is the evidence of your faith that proves your faith.
> The God of this universe cannot come into your life and
not make a difference!
* James is giving you the way to see if your faith is real so
you will not be deceived.
I am afraid that many people trust in a prayer they said one
day to be saved when there is no evidence since then that
they are saved.
There are no magical prayers. There is only a prayer of
confession to God of that which you believe in your heart by
faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.