” But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless?”- James 2:20
In the context James is trying to make the 12 tribes realize that faith without works is dead. In verse 18 it says “But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.””. As Christians we should not focus on the fact that we do “good deeds”, Because that really doesn’t matter. We are still sinners, but Christ saved us, therefore we should have faith. And we should do good deeds because we want to be like Christ, not because we think it will secure a spot in Heaven. but since we are striving to be like Jesus our works are essential. We have to have faith, but we have to demonstrate our love for Christ by doing good works. Ancient Romans believed by doing good works they would enter into Heaven, and in a way “Christians” now a days believe that they can have faith and not do anything. We don’t like having to do good works AND having faith. We want to have an option, but we cant have good works and no faith one day and then the next decide that we want to have faith but not do anything about it. To be an effective Christian we MUST have faith and good works, and if we really want to be like Christ this will be joyful. We should see good works as a punishment, but as a way to glorify God. James is trying to rationalize with the tribes, he asks if they are “willing” to recognize. We as humans are very stubborn. We don’t like to be told what to do. We need to realize that faith without works is useless. You can’t be all talk. We have to talk the talk and walk the walk.