ヨハネ 5:44 「互いに栄誉を受けても、唯一の神からの栄誉を求めないあなたがたは、どうして信じることができますか。」

This is a very interesting statement on the part of Jesus. We would tend to think things were the other way around, that someone would seek praise from God because they believed in Him, but Jesus is saying that you can't really believe unless you seek His praise. He is obviously talking about more than simple acceptance of facts. A lot of people never get beyond the king of faith that James said demons have. (James 2:19) That is, they believe facts about God, but they don't let those facts impact how they think and live. It is only when we make Jesus Lord that our faith takes on the life of a mustard seed and is capable of moving mountains. A Biblical world view is more important than anyone who doesn't have one realizes! For all the disdain Luther showed for his letter, I think James had special insight from having grown up with Jesus in the house. He watched him day in and day out, and though he didn't believe He was the Messiah until after the cross and resurrection, he saw that Jesus' life was totally focused on obeying God. When we make that choice, we will have faith indeed!


This is a new revelation for me. I have liked the Letter of James, and I have own that Jesus taught practical faith, but this verse hasn't jumped out at me before. I have desired more and stronger faith, but I haven't really grasped that receiving it comes from correcting my priorities. I need to focus even more on seeking first God's kingdom and His righteousness, trusting that everything I need, even faith itself, will be supplied if I will do that. Distractions abound, and I've got to make the conscious choice to keep Christ first as Lord, in my thinking, planning, and follow through.


Father, thank You for opening my eyes this morning. It's exciting to realize that You've handed me the key to receiving the sort of faith that will indeed move mountains! Guide me first of all in using this key consistently in my own life, and then in communicating it to the believers. I know I can't wait until I'm practicing it perfectly myself before I communicate it, because it I do, I'll never get around to it! This will be a practical and powerful follow up to the message You've given me for this morning. Help me be faithful to speak Your Word without hesitation, with full clarity and conviction, so that Your Spirit may take the words from my mouth and plant them in the hearts, minds, and lives of my hearers, setting them free from the deceptions of the devil to walk in all that You intend, for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!


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