The one who says, “I have come to know to Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
–1 John 2:4
Jesus told the parable of the two sons in Matthew 21:28-30: “A man had two sons, and he came to first and said, ‘Son, go work today in the vineyard.’ And he answered, ‘I will not’; but afterward he regretted it and went. The man came to the second and said the same thing; and he answered, ‘I will, sir’; but he did not go.” The second son in the parable represented the religious leaders to whom Jesus was speaking. They said all the right things, but they had rejected God’s most basic commandment, and that is to trust in Christ as Messiah.
Professions of faith without expressions of faith mean there is no possession of faith. It does not matter what you say you believe; the true evidence of your faith is your obedience to God. In 1 John 2:4, the apostle said, “The one who says, ‘I have come to know to Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” If you say, “I am a follower of Christ,” but you do not obey His commandments in your moral life and in how you treat other people, then God’s Word says you are a liar. The second son outwardly said all the right things, but he did not follow through on the commitment he made.
Have you ever made a commitment to God that you did not follow through on? In Ecclesiastes 5, Solomon talked about the importance of fulfilling your commitments to God. He said, “When you make a vow to God, do not be late in paying it; for He takes no delight in fools. Pay what you vow! It is better that you should not vow than that you should vow and not pay” (vv. 4-5). He was not just talking about financial commitments; he was talking about any promise you make to God. I cannot tell you the number of couples who stand before me and make a vow to God to remain together in marriage and then later break that vow. We may not think anything about the promises we make to God, but God takes those vows very seriously. To break a vow you have made before God is to invite the wrath of God on your life.
You might say, “I know how to solve that problem–I will not make any promises to God.” No, commitments are very important to God. In Romans 10:10, Paul said, “With the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.” In other words, what we say to God is very important. But professions of faith without expressions of faith mean there is no possession of faith.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “The Other Story About The Two Sons” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2008.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org