Sunday, November 11, 2007

A true friend believes in you

And so it happened just as the Scriptures say: “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.” He was even called the friend of God. James 2:23


-to have confidence or faith in the truth of; give credence to.
-to have confidence in the assertions of

When I read the bible, it always amazes me that some of the great characters of biblical history were complete scoundrels at times. These were the same men who God found favor with and called His friends. Just to name a few – Adam, Moses, Samson, Abraham, David, all did something to tick God off. Samson was a womanizer who frequented prostitutes; Abraham tried to hurry God up with His promise of a son by conceiving Ishmael with his wife’s maidservant. David stole another man’s wife and then had him killed to cover up his sin when she became pregnant.

But they had one thing in common………….they believed God. They did more than believe in him, they believed in His character and His word.

Religion can trap us into a life of doing what is right on the outside without paying attention to what is in the inside. The more I get to know God the more I understand that He is looking at the attributes of the heart. He esteems a humble heart and He calls those who believe Him a friend.

When we have a humble heart that believes God’s word, the fruit should be reflected in our behavior. We act on what we believe. For instance, if I said I believed that my chair was strong enough to hold me but never sat in it, my actions would speak louder than my words. If I partially sat on the chair but never put my full weight on it, my actions would show that I do not fully trust the chair.

However, we must make the important distinction that the attitude in the heart must come before the actions or the actions are merely empty rituals. From the outside, it is often hard to tell if the behavior of others is motivated by a commitment of the heart or just a façade to look good. I guess that’s why Jesus tells us to leave the judging up to Him, because He knows the hearts of men.


Max said...

Hey Ruth,

This was marvellous: I agree with you - God values most what goes in our heart, in our soul; and that is why He loved Adam, Samson, Abraham and David so much, despite their less-orthodox deeds!

The example with the chair describes well the difference between trusting fully in God, and saying that one trust in Him but in one's heart one doubts (specially when mishaps occur) *nodding*. I trust in Him 100%...and that is why I say that I am His friend.

This text is superb, Ruth: congratulations *bowing*.


Livingsword said...

Hi R;

Excellent article!

The continuity of Scripture is amazing! Nobody ever made things right with God thru being religious its always thru relationship….built on trust, and it is still the same today and always will be.

I once had a person tell me that Abraham must have been the perfect father and husband since he had such a close relationship with God and we should model ourselves after him. Abraham was an awful father and husband! Yet thru His faith alone his relationship with God flourished.

The interesting thing is so often people are so proud they want to earn their way to Heaven as if such a thing were possible, they insist they just have to work hard enough; when all they need to do is rest in the “chair”.

Chocolate Girl said...

What a great article. This is a reminder many of us need.
The chair example is something even a thick person like me can understand.LOL

Ruth said...

Thanks to my cheering section MAX, LS and CG...I appreciate your encouragement.

I find sitting on that chair with my full weight is challenging. Often, I don't realize it when I am leaning on something else until the Lord somehow points it out to me.......testing me. God has always done that with His people to reveal their true heart. Not so much for Himself because He already knows our heart.......but to reveal it to us.