Faith in Jesus, salvation in Christ, is not a one-time tick in the box affair. It’s a transformed life. It’s a life that bears fruit, a life that demonstrates that our faith is real.
I grew up in a church steeped in tradition – chants, incense, robes, the whole nine yards. Week after week we’d go along, surrounded by people who thought that these religious rituals were the way to God. I mean they earnestly believed that.
But nothing in their lives ever seemed to change. There was no joy in their hearts. There was no peace. You know that godly glow when you meet a true saint? There was none of that! And it was this lack of genuine transformation in their lives that proved to me that their religion was worthless. It’s why I walked away from God for a good twenty years of my life. Of course there’s nothing new in any of that.
Matthew 3:7,8 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruit in keeping with repentance.
That’s pretty harsh, but what John the Baptist is saying here to these religious leaders, is that the religious rituals that they obsessed over were not going to get them into God’s Kingdom.
Only true “repentance” – a genuine change of heart as evidenced by the way in which they lived. Simply going through the religious motions doesn’t do it for God. Never has, never will. What He’s looking for is genuine faith in Jesus. And this is how He knows it’s real. When we … bear fruit in keeping with repentance.
Anything less is a sham and He can spot it a mile off.
That’s God’s Word. Fresh … for you … today.