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Written by M. Larry Perrino  2/5/2008

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     The Walk of Faith

           Usable – Working Formulae – for Living Faith


We have all at one time or another experienced the natural

excitement of receiving some new supernatural revelation?

During those exciting times we are obviously enthusiastic and

usually just want to get alone so we can put the new revelation

into action.

However, in other instances we believe that we have a new

understanding but by the time we get alone and attempt to put the

new revelation into operation we discover that it just didn’t work as

we had earlier expected! Why? Is this normal among Christians?

Are there reasons that these beliefs did not prove fruitful?

In these frustrating situations, we often feel that we are acting as mere

men, “. . . are ye not carnal, and walk as men?” (1 Cor 3:3). We should

not simply accept this fruitless outcome as the natural experience of all

Christians . What is the solution to these spiritual predicaments?

Jesus Christ is always the answer to all of life’s problems! Peter says we get

answers to our problems “ through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our

Lord. ” Notice this concept in Peter’s letter, Grace and peace be multiplied

unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord , According

as his divine power hath given (past tense) unto us all things that pertain unto

life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory

and virtue : (we get these things through knowledge! ) Whereby are given unto

us exceeding great and precious promises : that by these ye might (this word

expresses merely – a potential) be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped

the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2 Peter 1:2-4). The last part of

the passage uses the word “might;” therefore, it is conditional and certainly

possible that a Christian might not!

Jesus died to redeem us from every aspect of the curse that was introduced by satan the

devil! The complete will of God for us is neither suffering nor pain nor problems nor

anything evil! Instead, we have “ exceeding great and precious promises ” through

Christ who has made us overcomers.

Jesus taught, in Luke 8:11 – “ The seed is the word of God .  Please notice that we must

capture the idea that the “seed” identified in that specific parable “is the word of

therefore the parable of the sower ” (Matt 13:18)! The seed that was sown in us is not

just common seed it is good seed, “Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, “The

kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed (Sperma, what does

that sound like?) in his field” (Matt 13:24). This is the first time that the word sperma

appears in the bible! The apostle John used the word when he wrote, “Whosoever is born

of God doth not commit sin; for his seed (sperma) remaineth in him: and he cannot sin,

because he is born of God” (1 John 3:9). Paul told us, “if ye be Christ's, then are ye

Abraham's seed (sperma) ” (Gal 3:29).

The concept of seed for the purpose of production of a harvest is extremely important to

God who said, “Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed , and the fruit tree

yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth” (Gen 1:11).

A parable is something thrown alongside: (1) para – alongside; (2) ballo – to throw. Jesus

identified this parable as the most important because it holds the key to all parables, Mark

4:13-15 “ Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables? The

sower soweth the word (Here again, we see the word as being equivalent to seed) .” In

other words, within the parable of the sower, there exists a potential to unlock the other

parables! Through understanding that specific parable, we literally can unlock much of

the Bible! The parable of the “sower” is clearly a fundamental parable! How would you

like to unlock the Bible?

We discover that the word of God (the seed) is “sown in the heart” and immediately Satan

the devil comes along and takes away what was sown in the heart! We would be wise to

realize that Satan actually spends significant effort and time studying the word of God that

has been sown into our hearts! “And these are they by the way side, where the word is

sown; but when they have heard , Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the

word that was sown in their hearts .” (Mark 4:15). So let’s break down this important

passage into its component parts that we may review this five-fold seed-stealing process,

(1) – “The seed is the word of God,

(2) – “which is sown in mans heart;”

(3) – “When any one heareth the word of the kingdom,”

(4) – “and understandeth it not;” . . . the natural conclusion is

(5) – “ Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in

their hearts .”

This is the biblical five-fold process that graphically illustrates the course of action

regarding the destiny of the seed that was sown as expressed in the parable of the sower.

Let us examine this process more carefully.

Now pay close attention! satan the devil immediately comes along and steals away what

was sown in the heart! “Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. When any one

heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not , then cometh the wicked one,

and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart ” (Matt 13:18-19).

Notice, this takes place only, “When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and

understandeth it not. We must clutch the concept that our lack of understanding is

what permits the seed to be stolen! This teaches us that Satan can only steal the word

“sown in our hearts” when it is not understood!

We have been taught that “faith cometh by hearing.” We all have been taught openly or

privately that when we hear something over and over; eventually we will acquire the

complete understanding! After all the word says, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and

hearing by the word of God” (Rom 10:17). So then if we hear over and over and over;

finally we will get the concept. But what happens if we don’t understand? Let’s realize

that Jesus taught something quite different! He said, “but when they have heard, Satan

cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts” (Mark

4:15). Satan always comes immediately after the word has been sown through our

hearing. Haven’t we all experienced that immediately after we hear some wonderful new

biblical concept that Satan immediately shows up to water-down the idea in our hearts!

The Biblical concept is clear; when we hear something and don’t understand it then

immediately the devil comes and takes it away! Well what if we hear something ten

times and don’t understand it? Satan comes and takes it away all tem times. 10 X 0 is still

0! What about 1,000 times? 1,000 X 0 is still 0! The notion is not how many times we

hear something sown into our hearts; rather, the important thing is the

understanding! g

Understanding is the important component! Luke tells us, “Then opened he their

understanding, that they might understand the scriptures” (Luke 24:45). The Holy Spirit is

the means given to us by God through which we gain understanding, “And the spirit of the

LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding ” (Isa 11:2). Jesus

said, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my

name, he shall teach you all things (in other words He will give to us the important

component of understanding) , and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I

have said unto you” (John 14:26). Notice that Jesus said that it is the Spirit of God which

gives us the revelation of the (seed) or the word of God!

Let us realize that the Holy Spirit has the job of bringing the understanding to us.

Remember, it is not how many times we hear a thing that is important! What is important

is to get the understanding of the (seed) or the word of God into our lives. Often times

we are in the “faith” process of believing for something from God; yet we do not observe

the “hoped for” thing come to pass! We perform all that we know to do; yet nothing is

comes to pass. We sometimes say to ourselves, “Well he got his healing;” or “She got her

answer, why doesn’t God give me the what I have asked for?” “Doesn’t God love me?”

“Why do they get their prayers answered and I don’t get mine?” This precarious period

between the planting of the seed in our hearts and the manifestation of our hope is when

satan performs his ignoble deeds.

What we are all actually seeking after is to cause the word to bring forth its promised

harvest or fruit! The good news is that the word of God will definitely work in our lives;

read about the “exceeding great and precious promises!” Yet the scripture says, “My

people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hos 4:6). Let’s not let the lack of

knowledge work against us! Let’s observe the botanical truth which came from the very

lips of Jesus “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground

and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit ” (John

12:23-24). What we are seeking after is the much fruit! The word of God is a seed; yet,

we are seeking after the harvest (fruit) that the seed produces! In reality we are seeking

after the promised harvest! The Bible gives us hope, “Be not deceived; God is not

mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap ” (Gal 6:7).

Most of us have been taught to use the word of God as a sword, “For the word of God is

quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword” (Heb 4:12). Yet too many

people use the word of God as a sword before it has more properly been used as a seed!

Jesus said, “Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone (that one

seed remains simply that one seed) .” Now what does “die” mean for the seed in that

verse? We would use a much different word in today’s English to describe the biological

process that Jesus was referencing! Do you know what that biological word is? What

happens to a seed when it is placed into the earth?

Jesus said, “but if it die (germinates)it bringeth forth much fruit !

A seed will remain a seed until it germinates. It remains in the form of a seed until it

germinates or is consumed as food! Archeologists have found 2,000-year-old wheat seeds

stored in the Egyptian pyramids! They actually planted the seeds and produced an actual

wheat harvest from that ancient seed! Many of us Christians have bountiful stores of

seeds yet we do not yet see the promised harvest! We are literally turning into massive

grain bins of seed! We need to use the word as a sword; however, we must first learn to

use it as a seed !

The world has learned well from the saying inspired by satan, “Seeing is believing!”

There was a certain nobleman who came to Jesus one day and asked that Jesus heal his son,

“Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe .” Jesus

actually taught that he must believe even what he did not see , “Jesus saith unto him, Go thy

way; thy son liveth. And the man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him ,

and he went his way” (John 4:50). The next day the man met his servant on the road and

discovered that the boy was healed when he first believed! But what if the man would

have allowed satan to steal away his seed of belief “the word that Jesus had spoken?”

In the same fashion as the nobleman, we must learn to be like a pregnant mother!

We must learn to nurture the seed while it is in us! The just shall live by faith! If we

nurture and speak/proclaim the seed which was planted in our hearts, the Holy Spirit will

come and germinate the seed! Part of our nurturing process is to “see” the thing that we

are believing on the inside! This is called insight. Our very imagination must get

involved in this process toward germination. God Himself had to stop an evil imagination

that began in Babylon, “And now nothing will be restrained from them, which they

have imagined to do ” (Gen 11:6). Imagination (insight) is a very powerful tool! Before

we can see something on the outside we must see it on the inside. God actually stopped

the evil imagination that was being promulgated by confusing the people’s tongues!

Consider this example with respect to using the word as a seed –vs– using the word as a

sword –– How many of you are going to heaven? Raise your hands if you believe that.

Have you stayed up for long nights confessing that you indeed are going to heaven? Have

you confessed this over and over against Satan in an attempt to beat him into submission

to this concept? No! You simply add the revelation knowledge from God’s word to your

faith and that is good enough for you! The seed has taken root in your soul and you don’t

need to use your belief as a sword!

In the gospels we never observe Jesus building up his faith and then working hard or

“white knuckling it!” Do you think that Jesus had any doubts when He called out

“Lazarus, come forth?” Jesus wasn’t grunting or shaking! He simply had the revelation

knowledge from God, “I speak that which I have seen with my Father,” (John 8:38); then

He simply spoke the word and the resurrection took place!

Jesus was mocked on the cross, they said, “Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the

cross, that we may see and believe .” Here we observe the saying, “Seeing is believing!”

However, just like almost everything else we have learned through the word, the Bible

teaches the exact opposite, “Believing is seeing!”

Without revelation knowledge, we can become more timid in our approach to God’s promises!

Whenever we hear in church or in these bible studies that one person got healed and that

another had some revelation and then we begin go wonder, “Wow, it really is possible to

receive things through faith?” At this point, a seed of faith has been sown! However,

when we try to use the word before it is germinated we naturally experience frustration!

Remember the five-fold process,

(1) – “The seed is the word of God,

(2) – “Which is sown in mans heart;”

(3) – “When any one heareth the word of the kingdom,”

(4) – “and understandeth it not;” . . . the natural conclusion is

(5) – “Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.”

You should at this point have the following question in mind, “ So how do I keep the seed

in my hearts so it may get germinated?” Notice how Isaiah describes the process of

making one to understand, “Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make

to understand doctrine ? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the

breasts. (this sounds as if it is meant for those who are mature) For precept must be upon

precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:

For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people . To whom

he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest ; and this is the

refreshing: yet they would not hear” (Isa 28:9-12). We discover that we must enter into

this rest of God! “Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest , lest any man fall after the

same example of unbelief” (Heb 4:11). We labor to enter; after that we simply rest ! This

process has the appearance much the same as when the children of Israel were taking over

the Promised Land!

Jesus lived his entire life with the benefit of revelation knowledge, “And the spirit of the

LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding , the spirit of counsel

and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD” (Isa 11:2). John the

Baptist was witness of Jesus being filled with the Holy Spirit, “I saw the Spirit descending

from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him” (John 1:32). Germination of the word is

revelation knowledge or understanding which comes through the Holy Spirit! The Holy

Spirit brings things to our remembrance and gives us understanding! Just like the

revelation knowledge that we have concerning going to heaven, we need to have the

“word” germinated in us before we begin to see it produce its harvest!

We experience victory in this life through the things that we believe! Not by our actions,

but simply by resting in Jesus! We often say, “This is the key that I needed!” We always

seem to be lacking something and searching out some new seven point technique! When

all the while all we really needed was to enter into that restful condition! Jesus himself

gave the promise of rest, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will

give you rest ” (Matt 11:28). When we fully realize that we of ourselves cannot do it; only

then are we almost there! It is not a matter of getting the proper seven keys or anything

else that we can accomplish through our own intellect. Jesus died that we might enter into

His rest and cease from our works, “For he that is entered into his rest , he also hath

ceased from his own works , as God did from his” (Heb 4:10).

Everything we need has already been accomplished for us in Jesus Christ, “Grace and

peace be multiplied (this concept is first used with regard to seed in Gen 16:10 “And the

angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly , that it shall not be

numbered for multitude) unto you through the knowledge of God (Biblical

multiplication comes through knowledge) , and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine

power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the

knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us

exceeding great and precious promises ” (2 Peter 1:2-4). Through our own strength we

cannot make any of the promises come to pass; all we can do is receive!

Living the victorious life is having the healing when we need it; or having the prosperity,

which we have confessed; or having a stable and happy family. These are part of the

promises, “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises : that by

these ye might be partakers of the divine nature.” Did you get the concept that it is

actually God’s very nature that is being imparted to us?

We need to realize that all of God’s Word essentially comes in the form of seed! From

Genesis through Revelation we have uncounted seeds of the Messiah. We need to view

every scripture as a divine seed about Christ! Every scripture is a different revelation of

the Christ; and in Christ (the Messiah) is everything that we will ever need! We must

learn merely to receive everything that Jesus has already done for us! The process,

through which we learn what Jesus has already done for us, begins with His word! It

doesn’t matter how many times we hear it; what matters is how much we understand the

word! We can be sure that whenever we don’t understand the word we must battle for

what has been sown in our hearts! Overcoming faith requires revelation understanding of

the word that has been sown!

Simply knowing the scripture is not enough. There are people who can quote more

scripture than you know. The Pharisees memorized the first five books of the Bible; yet,

they did not recognize their Messiah (Christ) ! So what good is just knowing the word,

“but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard

it” (Heb 4:2). Obviously, knowing and quoting scripture is one thing; but, understanding

the Word of God is something quite different!

The job of the Holy Spirit is to germinate the word in our hearts! Without the Holy Spirit

we become like the people that Isaiah prophesied over, “But the word of the LORD was

unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here

a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and

snared, and taken ” (Isa 28:13). This is a picture of religious people like the Pharisees

who merely knew what the word said; yet, without the spirit giving them any revelation!

Notice that Isaiah teaches that it is with stammering words throuogh which the Holy Spirit

speaks to the people, “ For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to

this people ” (Isa 28:11). True, speaking in tongues is a pretty strange activity. It is

actually quite bizarre anytime someone speaks words that they don’t know what they

mean! The point is that speaking unknown words takes faith! Remember what Isaiah said

regarding the milk and meat of the word. The writer of Hebrews expands on this same

concept, “But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason

of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (Heb 5:14).

Remember Peter’s words tell us that we have “exceeding great and precious promises”

which come “though the knowledge of Christ!” Jesus said, “I have yet many things to say

unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” Jesus meant that without the Holy Spirit the

disciples were unable to hear Him! He continued, “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth,

is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever

he shall hear, that shall he speak : and he will shew you things to come ” (John 16:12-

13). Notice that he said, “whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak” Once more, let’s

break down an important passage into it’s component parts:

(1) the Holy Spirit of Truth will come to us;

(2) the Holy Spirit of Truth will guide us in to truth;

(3) the Holy Spirit of Truth will not speak of himself;

(4) the Holy Spirit of Truth will hear from God;

(5) the Holy Spirit of Truth will speak what He hears;

(6) and, the Holy Spirit of Truth will show us things to come.

Notice number (5) above; how does the Holy Spirit speak? Revelation comes through

speaking in stammering lips or in an unknown tongue! The Holy Spirit does the speaking

and gives the revelation! The job of the Holy Sprit is to reveal things to us! The process

does not work as some say, “getting things deep down into our hearts.” Just the opposite

is true, we are to bring things up out of our spirits and out into the world! That is why

Paul wrote, “For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but

unto God : for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries

(1 Cor 14:2). The Holy Spirit actually speaks mysteries through our tongues. The Holy

Spirit produces the germination with the seed that we already have in our hearts!

Now get this, there are different kinds of manifestations of tongues, “For he that speaketh

in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man

understandeth him ” (1 Cor 14:2). Notice that when you speak in an unknown tongue

you speak not unto men but unto God! Here is a key point, on the day of Pentecost they

were speaking unto men , “because that every man heard them speak in his own

language (Acts 2:6)! Therefore, since they had understanding, they were speaking a

different kind of tongue (language) than we see in the verse, “For he that speaketh in an

unknown tongue speaketh not unto men (1 Cor 14:2).

There are two different forms of speaking in tongues. One form of speaking in tongues

was used to communicate to men of other languages; this form came about on the day of

Pentecost. However, another kind of speaking in tongues is used as a prayer language, “if

I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth , but my understanding is unfruitful” (1

Cor 14:14). Our understanding is unfruitful because our brain does not comprehend.

However the spirit will reveal the things generated out of that prayer at some later time.

The Bible describes this second form of speaking in tongues as, “For he that speaketh in

an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God ” (1 Cor 14:2).

On the day of Pentecost they began to speak in other tongues as the spirit gave them

utterance! Now let’s come to a realization, either they were making up a false babbling

language or they were hearing the inner voice of the Holy Spirit and repeating the

utterance that He was giving to them! The bible says they “began to speak with other

tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance ” (Acts 2:4). Whenever a Christian speaks in

other tongues then, he/she obviously hears the voice of the Holy Spirit! The Holy Spirit

gives the utterance! The Holy Spirit will reveal things line upon line and precept upon precept!

All word and no spirit, you dry-up;

All spirit and no word, and you blow-up;

But, when you mix the spirit with the word you grow-up!

Many don’t understand the Holy Spirit; yet, it is He who Jesus promised would give us the


We don’t experience success by simply spitting out the word of God toward Satan like a

sword! For example we might be saying, “by his stripes I am healed;” “by his stripes I am

healed;” “by his stripes I am healed;” etc. Rather, we must use the word of God as a seed

before it becomes a sword! We must believe it in our hearts (the word is sown in our

hearts) and have no doubt! Through building a close worshipful relationship with Jesus,

we begin to discover that God’s love for us through Jesus Christ is what actually performs

the healing in our bodies. This revelation knowledge from God causes the seed of the

word to germinate within us and it takes root! Then, whatever mountain that we face,

when we speak it naturally obeys our voice, “For verily I say unto you, That whosoever

shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not

doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he

shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire,

when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them” (Mark 11:23-24)!

When Jesus spoke these words, what specific OT scripture was He quoting from?

(Answer) – “None!” There is no OT scripture, which gave Him that concept! There is

nothing wrong with quoting scripture! Yes we need to understand and quote from the

Bible. But more importantly, what we really need is to speak unto the mountain while

experiencing a close personal relationship with God and it shall be done!

Often times we make things much too hard! We just need to chill! When we get into a

relationship with Jesus, we do things out of a “want-to” mentality not out of a “have-to

point of view!” When we are living out of a “want-to” mentality, we no longer need to

function! At this point we aren’t having to perform; or working to bind the right devil; or

having to quote the correct scripture! Rather, we are simply enjoying victory through a

close relationship with our daddy, the creator of the universe!

The Holy Spirit continually germinates the word in our hearts, “Which things also we

speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth;

comparing spiritual things with spiritual” (1 Cor 2:13).

Praying in tongues is simply a spiritual gateway into the spiritual things of God! We

should pray often in the Holy Spirit! When we pray in tongues spiritual things begin to be

revealed to us! As we continue to receive from the Holy Spirit our relationship grows and

we naturally enter into the rest of God!

The bible teaches us, “the just shall live by faith!” But what is that specific “faith” that the

just actually live by? Our problem is that many Christians don’t know what the true Bible

meaning of “faith” really is! Most people understand faith as a form of deep believing or

having a strong conviction about something. Isn’t that what most of you feel? Yet, that

concept is incomplete! The concept of true Bible “faith” is too often elusive. James

chapter two has long been the source of major theological disagreements regarding the

relationship between “faith” and “works.”

However, in order to understand just what “faith” is, we must have the proper and

complete Bible definition of “faith.” Next, we must put that “faith’ into operation!

Misunderstanding “faith” can result in frustration and certainly produce unfruitful results;

if anything at all!

Jesus left clear instruction regarding our walk of faith, “Behold, I give unto you power to

tread (walk) on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy : and

nothing shall by any means hurt you” (Luke 10:19). Obviously He gave us the spiritual

power to tread or (walk) on the unsavory elements of the spiritual realm. The bible

teaches, “For we walk by faith , not by sight” (2 Cor 5:7). Jesus’ words clearly mean that

we have God on our side as we walk by faith and tread on serpents (demons) ! This

clearly implies that we are assured of defeating the devil and his emissaries in every aspect

of our lives! That specific power to tread down our enemies is expressed as our walk

by faith!

But, let’s make sure of our understanding! When I was a teenager, if anyone said that

something was “cool” they certainly didn’t mean that it was characteristic of a low

temperature; rather it meant that the thing was wonderful or outstanding in nature!

Another expression from that era is the phrase “out of sight!” The phrase in no way meant

that one experienced obscured vision! Rather, “out of sight” was another euphemism

meaning that the thing or concept was wonderful or outstanding in nature!

There is always an important need to have a clear and proper understanding regarding the

specific meaning of words in the vernacular. It is significant that we understand the

Biblical meaning of important concepts such as “faith.” This is especially true when the

words have a direct bearing on our daily lives! The words “faith” and “works” as used in

the second Chapter of James are two such concepts that need clarification!

Let us search out more carefully the words “faith” and “works” as we seek a more

complete understanding of the concepts that James, penned. The Greek word pistis

meaning “conviction or persuasion” as found in James chapter 2, is translated into the

English word “faith.” Likewise, the Greek word ergon which means “corresponding

action” is also found in James 2. We get the English word “energy” from the Greek word

ergon and it is most often translated into the English word “works.” Therefore, in order

for us to fully get the complete understanding of the passage in James chapter two, we will

substitute the corresponding definition noted above in order to bring out a clearer meaning

of the passage.

In every instance from the second Chapter of James where we see the word “faith” we are

going to replace that corresponding Greek word pistis with its literal meaning,

“conviction or persuasion.” And everywhere we see the word “works” we will replace the

Greek word ergon with its meaning “corresponding action.” Going through this effort

will bring out some important clarification form this passage.

Let’s begin the process with James 2:14, “what doth it profit, my brethren, though a man

say he hath “conviction or persuasion” faith , and have not “corresponding action”

works ? can “conviction or persuasion” faith save him (meaning to deliver rescue or set

free) ?” Next we go to verse 17, “Even so “conviction or persuasion” faith , if it hath not

“corresponding action” works , is dead , being alone . (We must stop here in verse 17 as

we capture the important Biblical concept that there is such a thing as Biblical dead faith!

This dead faith is equivalent to “conviction or persuasion” without any “corresponding

action!” Therefore, the opposite or living faith should be characterized by “conviction or

persuasion” along with “corresponding action!” The following two formulae identify

these concepts more clearly!

Living Faith = “conviction or persuasion” + “corresponding action!”

Dead Faith = “conviction or persuasion” – or without “corresponding action!”

Every time we come across Biblical miracle-producing “faith” it is always characterized

by the type of faith as identified in the Living Faith formula noted above. The Living

Faith always includes the component of a “corresponding action” notice the action verbs:

• widow gave the prophet Elijah her first cake from her final provision;

• woman with the issue of blood reached out for the hem of Jesus’ garment;

Naaman dipped himself in the Jordan seven times;

• man born blind washed in Siloam and came seeing;

• centurion said, speak the word only , and my servant shall be healed

• the Hebrews, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego said , “ we will not serve thy

gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up”

Returning to James chapter 2 we read in verse 17, “Yea, a man may say, Thou hast

“conviction or persuasion” faith , and I have “corresponding action” works : shew me thy

“conviction or persuasion” faith without thy “corresponding action” works , and I will

shew thee my “conviction or persuasion” faith by my “corresponding action” works .

Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

But wilt thou know, O vain man, that “conviction or persuasion” faith without

“corresponding action” works is dead ” (James 2:17-20)? ( Notice the definition of Dead

Faith as listed in the bullet above.) “Was not Abraham our father (in the faith) justified

(made right with God) by “corresponding action” works , (Abraham took what he believed

or his “conviction or persuasion” and combined it with his “corresponding action”)

when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar” (James 2:21).

Abraham fulfilled the whole formula as follows: Living faith = “conviction or

persuasion” + “corresponding action!” What we discover in this passage is that we must

get our “conviction or persuasion” faith operational along with our “corresponding

action” or works ! When we completely perform this we fulfill the scripture concerning

faith! Notice that verse 23 confirms this idea: “And the scripture was fulfilled which

saith, Abraham believed God this means that in order for Abraham to believe he had to

take his “conviction or persuasion” + his “corresponding action” and this became his

living faith ) , and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend

of God” (James 2:23). Abraham’s faith was not just composed of the “conviction or

persuasion” which he possessed inside his mind! Rather, he took his “conviction or

persuasion” faith and combined it with “corresponding action!” We continue with verse

24, “Ye see then how that by “corresponding action” works a man is justified, and not by

“conviction or persuasion” faith only. 25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified

by “corresponding action” works , when she had received “conviction or persuasion”

the messengers, and had sent “corresponding action” them out another way? 26 For as

the body without the spirit is dead, so “conviction or persuasion” faith without

“corresponding action” works is dead also” (James 2:24-26).

This last week I conducted a funeral for a dear friend. It took her body plus her spirit to

make the individual . In the same manner it takes “corresponding

action” added to “conviction or persuasion” to compose a living faith!

Let’s follow Jesus’ words, “Behold, I give unto you power to tread (walk) on serpents

and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy : and nothing shall by any means

hurt you” (Luke 10:19). Notice that Jesus told us that nothing shall by any means hurt us!

Yet, God said, “it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel” (Gen 3:15). Is this

a contradiction? Absolutely not! Jesus was killed on the stake in fulfillment of the

scripture “bruise his heel!” However, Jesus bruised his head, “For this purpose the Son of

God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8).

Just as the spirit gives life to the body so “corresponding action” works gives life to

“conviction or persuasion” faith and thus produces God’s Living Faith ! Now we have

the complete two-step treading advance toward spiritual success:

When we walk by faith we will, “ tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power

of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you” (Luke 10:19).


Written by M. Larry Perrino                                                                                2/5/2008

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