“For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.” James 2:26 (HCSB)
The book of James was authored by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit through a half-brother of Jesus. Imagine growing up with Jesus! But strangely enough, His siblings did not believe in Him as Messiah until after the resurrection. James became a leader, a strong proponent in the early church. He wrote his book as a practical help. It almost didn’t make it into the Cannon of scripture because of the absence of Jesus. But God wanted it in the Bible. I am so glad it is included. It has become the Proverbs of the New Testament.
It is filled with gems of wisdom and truth. One of these is that a true follower of Christ can’t have a faith that is not walked out. Specifically, faith without works is dead! He is not saying that we are saved by works, but these works will be the demonstration that we are actually saved. To say we believe, our lives must reflect that belief, or it is a dead faith.
I believe an application to this is, inviting the Holy Spirit to come, telling Him He is welcome, asking Him to do whatever He wants to do, but then not creating space for Him to move. Earlier in the book of James he tells us if we ask God for something, the context was wisdom, we must ask in faith, believing we will receive (James 1:5-8). He says to ask without truly believing is being double minded. Those are some pretty strong words. By our not creating space for the Holy Spirit in our services, even after inviting Him to come, is simply a demonstration that we don’t truly believe that He is there, and as such we are double minded! Ouch!
Hebrews tells us that faith is the conviction of what we cannot see (Hebrews 11:1)! Inviting the Holy Spirit to move among us requires faith, and so does our acting upon Him coming into our midst.
Ask the Lord to reveal any double-mindedness in you. Ask Him to show you where you have asked Him for something, but then live as if He isn’t or hasn’t given it to you. Whatever it is, ask, believe and begin stepping into it in faith. If prophecy, ask and begin speaking words of strength, encouragement and comfort to everybody you talk to (1 Corinthians 14:3). You’ll find that the Holy Spirit will breathe on your words and begin hitting the mark with laser accuracy. Ask God to reveal to your pastor and church leadership every place of doublemindedness where they have been speaking and praying without the actual faith to create the space for the answers to come! Thank the Lord for what He is about to do in your midst!