What does it mean to “believe” ???
Believing in God has been an attitude of Man, since the beginning of time,
It is reasonable to assume that Adam taught his children about his experiences with God,and that others continued through out following generations, causing them also to believe in God.
Furthermore, Man has an ‘inborn’ understanding and belief that God exists “ For the truth about God is known to them instinctively; God has put this knowledge in their hearts“ Rom 1:19
But does this belief result in the benefits described in John 3:16 ??“ For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” Jn 3:16 .
Not always… Satan himself has this belief, and the Bible tells us he is ultimately destroyed, and has no Salvation.
” But I believe in Jesus ” , you may say… But do you really believe ??
Jesus is recorded in John 3: 15 and 16 as telling Nicodemus he must believe, in order to have eternal life ,
but taken literally, out of the context of all of that Jesus taught, may be hazardous to your (spiritual) health,and your salvation.
Jesus is recorded later by John as saying to Martha ” anyone who lives and believes in me shall never die “ Jn 11:26 so we can see He expects us to live in His ways, as well as believe.
James , the Lord‘s brother was more direct..” Fool, when will you ever learn that ‘believing’ is useless without doing what God wants you to ? “ Jas 2:20
Salvation is a FREE GIFT from God…you can never do enough to deserve His Mercy, or His Forgiveness…but you are expected to be doing good deeds as you live..1Jn 5:3 1 Jn 3:10,11
Salvation and Eternal Life will not be obtained because you do good to others, if you refuse to learn to Love God, Mt 22:37,39….….Love your neighbor, and ….and if you are a Christian, Love your Christian Brother Jn15:12,17 For it is these 3 that were commanded by the Lord Jesus.
You may already be living as God would want you to be…doing good to show your love,and feel secure in your salvation…. But do you really believe ??
Perhaps a look at a Webster’s Dictionary will provide a renewed perspective…true ‘ belief ‘ is ” having trust or confidence in some person “it is NOT just ” mental acceptance that something is true”
The Old English root of the word ‘believe’ is “leof” ( love) which indicates that “belief” included a close, personal, connection…
‘Believing’ in the original meaning involves a loving endearment with God in trust and obedience .
Understanding that the original root of the word ‘ believe’ is “leof” and includes ‘love’, it becomes obvious that there is more to ” believing” than just saying it is so.
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