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Belief



So, if one proclaims to believe something, yet his actions contradict this belief, is he a hypocrite or is he really displaying a true "disbelief"?

In Luke 18 a rich young man of influence asks what he must "do" in order to be saved.  Jesus lists the commandments which guard the flesh.  The man responded favorably, he in fact, had kept all these since childhood.  Jesus saw into his heart & challenged a lack - give away what was precious and follow Him.  At this the man became disheartened...

This passage would not let go of me this morning.  It required my full attention and birthed the exploration of belief.

One could read the passage in Luke and quickly decide that our eternal lives are hinged on works.  Likewise, one could, balanced in the whole of scripture see how the heart attitude was exposed and there lie the key.

All i know is that as i read this passage over, another kept settling over my mind. "believe and be saved" "all who call upon the (N)ame of The Lord will be saved"...   How then can Jesus in His own Words require "action"???

It lies within the belly of the word "believe".  Was the rich young man a hypocrite?  Likely not, his sad response instead of indignation reveals he was truly seeking and his intentions were righteous.  It's just that when it came down to it - - he did not believe.  Yes, he'd "done" what was "required" yet when he was challenged to fully trust, he was exposed, even unto himself.  He'd bought in but his fear kept him from fully committing.  

You're weary. 
So, you go to the local home furniture store looking for a chair  tell the sales person your need of a study chair (you're weary of standing!). They make a good recommendation.  You look at the chair, feel its fabric, take notice of its sturdiness and it's beautiful too boot!  Yes, you proclaim, this chair is exactly what I need so that i may have rest! You bring the chair home & put it in on display in the middle of the room.  Its a great conversation piece! Others laud you on your decision and you are pleased to have their approval.  You admire your chair as you shift from one leg to another in fatigue so you lean against the wall in the corner of the room and gaze upon its beauty.  You think about how it was made, the care with which it was crafted. You tell yourself it's all you need and you're so glad to have it. After a time, and more fatigue, a friend notices that you are standing next to your chair kinda steadying yourself against it and suggest that you sit and rest.  "Uh, no thanks, I'm ok", you reply, "I'm just so glad to have this great chair to lean on!"  Your friend scratches their head but shrugs, you own the chair and that's all that matters. 
Time goes on and soon the chair is moved to a corner, it's not enough to relieve your fatigue.  In fact, you've stubbed your toe on it several times so off to the corner it went.  You now lean against whatever you can find, but you still gaze at the chair you love and cherish.  If only it had done as you had hoped...  

Finally, a loving friend comes along and pulls the chair back into the middle of the room (ridding it of the clutter that had been mindlessly tossed upon it over the years) pats the seat and insists that you sit and rest your weary bones.  You decline.  He insists. You praise the attributes of the chair. He waits.  You rest your hand on it and jiggle to test its sturdiness.  He gives you the "look". You question "Why, isn't having it enough? Why do I have to sit in it?"  He takes yo by the shoulders and gently maneuvers you toward the chair all of the sudden you scare the both of you and scream"But what if it breaks, What if I fall?!?!!?"  There it is, the truth.   It wasn't until it was "tested" that you even knew the truth - you  really didn't "believe" the chair would hold.  No matter what you'd told yourself over the years, what you "thought" you believed, now you were exposed.  Unbelief.

Buying the chair didn't give you the Rest you were looking for.  Lauding its greatness didn't either.  Leaning on it only lulled you into a false hope that was never manifest.  No, if you'd have truly believed the chair was trustworthy you'd have plopped down fully on it right there in the showroom. In its comfort you'd have endured all of life.  You'd have tested and seen it's strength & reliability. Buy this time it'd be creaking and well worn from proof of your trust.  You see, the act of sitting wouldn't save you, but it would be proof of your belief, and it would have given you Rest along the way....

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