First Steps – July 13, 2020

Lately I’ve been reading the Book of James. An apostle, a witness to the Resurrection, a son of Zebedee, and the first apostle to be martyred, James was considered the first Bishop of Jerusalem.

In his letter, he was greatly concerned about the inward influences that divide people when there should be unity. He warned his community to treat others the same regardless of economic differences. To favor another because of outward appearances was a violation of the gospel.

He would later remind his congregation that true faith is revealed in righteous living especially works of mercy toward the poor and justice toward the oppressed:

“What does it profit, my brethren, if a man says he has faith but has not works? Can his faith save him? If a brother or sister is ill-clad and in lack of daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace, be warmed and filled,’ without giving them the things needed for the body, what does it profit? So faith by itself, if it has not works is dead” (James 2).

For James, and it is a lesson for us today, followers of Christ must be doers and not simply hearers of the word. I would even go so far as to say that when we are doers of the word, we affect change in the world. It is hard to deny a faithful life that is filled with multiple examples of Christian service. Our actions speak for themselves. Therefore, change the world by doing works, works that edify your Lord!

This Week’s Readings:

  • Monday – Revelation 7
  • Tuesday – Revelation 8
  • Wednesday – Revelation 9
  • Thursday – Revelation 10
  • Friday – Revelation 11

Please Pray for:

  • Our ministers and their families.
  • Those who are unwillingly absent.
  • The United Methodist Church family.
  • Our nation and our leaders.
  • The World.
  • The Lost.
  • The lives of those touched by the Coronavirus.