Shifting the Paradigm

When I teach and/or preach, I always learn something new as I read, study, and prepare.

Recently, I preached/taught from James’ letter (located toward the end of the New Testament.)

The overriding message of James’ letter to Christians is that “actions speak louder than words.”

He makes it clear that good works aren’t required for salvation (which would nullify the Cross), rather they are evidence of our salvation.  Then, he made clear, in essence,

“If we say we love Jesus, we’re gonna do what he modeled and said.” (cf. John 14:15)

So, to put it down clearly, James is saying,

“How we behave/live reveals what we believe, regardless of what we say.”

As I studied in preparation, I came across a passage in Bob Goff’s book, “Love Does” (“Love Does” would also make a good title for James’ letter.)

In the Foreword, Don Miller (author of “Blue Like Jazz,” another outstanding book) writes,

“Where you and I want love, and feel love, and say love, Bob reminds us that love does things.”

If you’re still with me, all I’ve written so far leads me to the paradigm-shift that shook me when I read what Goff wrote.  It will shake you, too. Goff shares:

“I used to think I could learn about Jesus by studying Him, but now I know Jesus doesn’t want stalkers. I get paid as a lawyer to collect information and memorize facts, and I’ve gotten really good at it. What I realized about my faith is that I was doing just that, collecting information and memorizing things about God…. I talked about knowing Jesus like we were best friends, when actually, we really hardly knew each other at all….

[Goff shares he’d been going to a Bible Study with a group of guys that he finally dropped out of.  He continues…] A Bible study sounds like a wholesome thing to go to, and honestly, it is… I left the Bible study [because] I found I couldn’t remember a single thing we’d talked about… [and] I rarely applied what I actually learned… So I started getting together with [that same group of guys] each week and instead of calling it a Bible study, we called it a “Bible doing.”

A Bible Doing.

Wanna “go deeper” into God’s Word?  Wanna grow in your faith? Let’s take what we’ve already learned from the Bible, and start “doing the Bible.”

For the Kingdom and for the King, nw