Many people believe in Jesus. Few believe Jesus.
Jesus was many things to many people. Among others, he was a carpenter, a miracle maker, a healer extraordinaire, a demon expeller, a prophet, a King, and a teacher. As a teacher, he taught many topics, but many of his teachings were considered difficult. “Many of his disciples said, ‘This is very hard to understand. How can anyone accept it?’…Many of his disciples turned away and deserted him.” 1
Millions of people believe in the existence of Jesus, in who he claimed he is, in his miracles, in his sacrificial acts, and in what he will do. But believing in Jesus is not quite the same as believing him. Jesus gave us ten promises of blessings,2 when we do what he said. We believe Jesus spoke the truth and of course we want to be blessed. Our demonstration of belief ought to be in doing those things that Jesus told us to do. Believing Jesus means doing or obeying his very words. “Faith, if it has no works, is dead in itself.”3
When we truly believe4 Jesus, I mean—truly passionately believe him—we will have tangible outward expressions of words and actions that are consistent with his words. “One who says, ‘I know him,’ and doesn’t keep his commandments, is a liar, and the truth isn’t in him. But whoever keeps his word, God’s love has most certainly been perfected in him. This is how we know that we are in him: he who says he remains in him ought himself also to walk just like he walked.”5 And when we walk just like he walked, we will see and experience the blessings he promised us.
We will achieve joyful devotion when we devote ourselves to obeying Jesus’ words and thus be blessed by him.
- John 6: 60, 66 NLT
- There are more than 10 short posts in Blessed, because the passage on salt and light has always gone together with the rest of the passages, so it makes sense to keep those together in the posts. The last passage is a double-negative promise, so it counts as a promise.
- James 2: 17 WEB
- I cannot do it any better than Caroline Casey’s TED talk – “Looking past limits” to illustrate what I meant by truly believing and living out the full potential of what we believe.
- 1 John 2:4-6 WEB