Jesus and the Apostles showed us what it means to have the true faith.
The true faith receives the unconditional love of Christ in our hearts.
This faith manifests in love for others, especially those who are less fortunate.
James 2 “My brothers, don’t hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ of glory with partiality. 2 For if a man with a gold ring, in fine clothing, comes into your synagogue, and a poor man in filthy clothing also comes in, 3 and you pay special attention to him who wears the fine clothing and say, “Sit here in a good place;” and you tell the poor man, “Stand there,” or “Sit by my footstool” 4 haven’t you shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts? 5 Listen, my beloved brothers. Didn’t God choose those who are poor in this world to be rich in faith, and heirs of the Kingdom which he promised to those who love him? 6 But you have dishonored the poor man. Don’t the rich oppress you, and personally drag you before the courts? 7 Don’t they blaspheme the honorable name by which you are called? 8 However, if you fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you do well.“
As believers, we are not under law and its condemnation. We are under grace. But those under grace are not lawless. We fulfill the law of Christ (love) by loving others.
Romans 13:8-10 “Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other commandments there are, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love doesn’t harm a neighbor. Love therefore is the fulfillment of the law.”
1 John 3 “16 By this we know love, because he laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. 17 But whoever has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, then closes his heart of compassion against him, how does God’s love remain in him? 18 My little children, let’s not love in word only, or with the tongue only, but in deed and truth.”
In the final judgment, we see that the Lord saves us by faith. This faith is not about doctrines, ideologies, theologies, etc.. It’s about loving the least of these.
Matthew 25 “31 “But when the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32 Before him all the nations will be gathered, and he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will tell those on his right hand, ‘Come, blessed of my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35 for I was hungry and you gave me food to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you took me in. 36 I was naked and you clothed me. I was sick and you visited me. I was in prison and you came to me.’ 37 “Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you a drink? 38 When did we see you as a stranger and take you in, or naked and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and come to you?’ 40 “The King will answer them, ‘Most certainly I tell you, because you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
We are not saved by works but we are saved by grace through faith. This faith manifests in love. When we love one another, we are actually loving Jesus Christ. It’s because He lives in each believer. Even more so, when we love the less fortunate believers. When Jesus came to the world, He came as a simple man without riches, who died on the cross brutally. Today He appears in the form of the less fortunate believer who needs our love the most.
1st John 4 “19 We love him, because he first loved us. 20 If a man says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who doesn’t love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? 21 This commandment we have from him, that he who loves God should also love his brother.”
Paul also gave importance for helping the poor out of love.
Paul was zealous for two things – preaching the Gospel and loving people!
Galatians 2 “10 They only asked us to remember the poor—which very thing I was also zealous to do.”
Acts 20 “33 I coveted no one’s silver, gold, or clothing. 34 You yourselves know that these hands served my necessities, and those who were with me. 35 In all things I gave you an example, that so laboring you ought to help the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”
Titus 2 “1 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, 12 instructing us to the intent that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we would live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present age; 13 looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify for himself a people for his own possession, zealous for good works.“
Romans 15 “25 But now, I say, I am going to Jerusalem, serving the saints. 26 For it has been the good pleasure of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor among the saints who are at Jerusalem.”
It’s all about being saved by faith in Christ, with the hope of heaven and loving others. The greatest of them is love. It’s because love is the bond of unity and faith!
1st Corinthians 13 “3 If I give away all my goods to feed the poor, and if I give my body to be burned, but don’t have love, it profits me nothing.
1st Corinthians 13 “13 But now faith, hope, and love remain—these three. The greatest of these is love.”
Colossians 3 “14 Above all these things, walk in love, which is the bond of perfection.”
The true faith is not about doctrines, ideologies, and mere words – but it’s about love for others, especially those who are less fortunate and weaker than us.
James said that faith without love, is pointless. The true faith will manifest in love for others.
James 2 “14 What good is it, my brothers, if a man says he has faith, but has no works? Can faith save him? 15 And if a brother or sister is naked and in lack of daily food, 16 and one of you tells them, “Go in peace. Be warmed and filled;” yet you didn’t give them the things the body needs, what good is it? 17 Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead in itself.”
James 1 “26 If anyone among you thinks himself to be religious while he doesn’t bridle his tongue, but deceives his heart, this man’s religion is worthless. 27 Pure religion and undefiled before our God and Father is this: to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.”
Galatians 5 “6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision amounts to anything, nor uncircumcision, but faith working through love.”
The believer will not be perfect in behavior but we will have love for one another.
1st Peter 4 “8 And above all things be earnest in your love among yourselves, for love covers a multitude of sins.”
The love of Christ has taken away our sins and made us righteous/perfect by faith, so then, let us walk in love, especially helping the less fortunate – who need it the most.