1. Don’t let faith stand alone.

  • Scripture reference: James 2:14-26
  • Leader Notes
    • 1. If I let my faith function in my head only, people will never be served in the name of Jesus. We have to move from faith to work. 
    • 2. We need our faith to reflect who we are as a church and who God really is as a Savior. 
    • 3. Faith is important but it has to produce fruit. 
  • Question for reflection: How does my faith lack the necessary works? What are three examples of practical faith steps you can take this week? 

2. Show your faith by your works.

  • Scripture reference: 1 John 3:17-18
  • Leader Notes
    • 1. James was writing to Jewish people who believed in Jesus, but their tradition heavily relied on reflection and deep thinking and legalism. 
    • 2. James was combating superficialism. This was and continues to be a mindset practiced across faith traditions and cultures. These people teach that You can believe in God and not have a changed and transformed life. 
    • 3. Works are the evidence that you believe in God enough to do what he says. 
  • Question for reflection: How can I show my faith by my works? What is the essential “work” God is calling you to do? Take time to pray and seek wise counsel if you don’t have an answer.

3. Learn from the past.

  • Scripture reference: James 2:21-26, Ephesians 2:8-10, Genesis 15:6, Hebrews 11:31
  • Leader Notes
    • 1. Part of walking with Jesus is filtering your motivations, past, present and future through the lens of faith. 
    • 2. James is pushing us to consider how and why we live the way we do. 
  • Question for reflection: What biblical lessons is Jesus trying to teach you? Who do you need to invite into that process? Friends, family, church family? 

 

Optional Follow-up Questions:

  • What makes you say that?
  • How do you feel about that?
  • How would you explain your answer to a non-Christian friend or neighbor?
  • Why did God design it to work that way? Why not just do (whatever else) instead?
  • What would you say to someone who disagrees with that?
  • Why do we really have to do it like that? Why can’t we just go (some other route) instead?