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The 2ndbasic element of pure faith (religion) is Prove yourselves to be doers of the word. James says: But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; 24 for oncehe has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the lawof liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearerbut an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.(James 1:22-25)
NOTE that when a person is not careful to be a doer or one who applies the word, he deludes himself. Since we live in a world of information bombardment, it is too easy to be merely hearers who delude themselves. The delusion works like this. Just by hearing something, you believe that is enough-even feel like you have embraced this truth, might even share it with others. Just from hearing and agreeing with what you have heard, you may begin to think you have already done it, but you are a hearer only who has deluded himself. It’s too easy to take a quick look into the mirror of truth and forget what it said. BUT if you look intently into the truth of God, apply it, not forgetting what you read and actually do the word you have just read or received, THEN you will be blessed in whatever you do!
This follows Jesus’ teaching in the Sermon on the Mount when he says, “Therefore everyone who hears these wordsof Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise manwho built his house on the rock…. Everyone who hears these wordsof Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish manwho built his house on the sand.”(Matt 7:24-27) Justhearing the word of truth without acting upon it sets you up for destruction!
NOTE the tension between hearing and doing faith; it’s the same as the tension between faith and works. We’ll deal with this in more detail later, but the best statement on this subject that will suffice for right now is: Faith alone saves, but the faith that saves is not alone. Genuine faith will be accompanied by works that prove out your faith.