Is there enough evidence to convict you?

Do You Believe premiered at the end of March, 2015. While I’m not here to review the movie, I do want to talk about something from the movie. Actually, from the movie trailer. Because when I first watched the trailer, there was a quote about halfway through that has actually impacted me greatly ever since. The question is, “If you were ever accused of being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?”.

I’m not talking about some kind of works-based faith here. Let me just say this, there is no way to get into heaven or please God by doing good deeds. There is nothing we can do. Our salvation is a gift - A free gift.

Let me share some scripture with you.

“8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”  Ephesians 2:8-10

Really, I could break this into two different things. The beginning of the passage might be geared more towards new believers, or even those who have not yet placed their faith in Jesus. And the latter part would be more for those who are already Christians. It’s like this, verse 8 talks about how you are saved (through your faith in Jesus, not by any works or deeds you do), and 10 talks about what we are supposed to do after we are saved (we then show good works, because this is what we have been created to do).

But, all three verses are very important, so I’d like to talk about them all.
In my bible it has study notes at the bottom of the page (I have the ESV Student Study Bible in case you were wondering), which have helped a lot in breaking down these verses.


What this talks about for verse 8 is mostly what faith is, what grace is, and what salvation is. It says “God’s grace offers and secures salvation” When we accept this gift, we put our faith in Jesus. Our faith is our confidence and our trust in Jesus. And the term “saved” means that our salvation is secured. No one can take it away! God gave it to us, it was His gift to us, and it is secure in Him.
Now in verse 9 we see that, if salvation was through works, then we (the humans) would receive the glory for it! Because, all of a sudden, it wouldn’t be something that God gave us. It wouldn’t have anything to do with God at all! So, can you imagine how much “boasting” there would be? The world would be filled with prideful sinners who claim to have done enough good things to outweigh the bad, therefore they have redeemed themselves. It’s a rather crazy idea, so shall we just take a moment to thank God for the incredible gift of grace that He has offered us?
Verse 10 tell us that, while we are not saved by good works, we are indeed saved for good works. As a Christian, our actions reflect upon our inward change. That sounds super cliche, my apologies, but it’s true.
I’m going to chase some rabbits real quick because I want to point out that the next part might be confusing at first, where it says: “..Which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Let me show you a few verses that help explain this. 
What does it mean when it says that God has prepared us to do good works beforehand? Ephesians 1:4-5 says that “Even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of His will”.
And for the second part, “That we should walk in them”, We can refer to Colossians 1:10: “so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.”.
So, yeah, this means that God chose us. He chose us to be saved, and as a result of our salvation we are to bear fruit in His name. To sum all that up..God chose you to do good works in His name. I think that’s pretty cool, and I look forward to exploring this topic more in the future.

Okay, rabbits have been chased and we are moving on.

Basically, that question “If you were ever accused of being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?” Could be reworded into “Does your life, after receiving salvation, show evidence that you are a new creation and you have glorified God through your actions?”. See, your “deeds” aren’t just tasks that you perform. It’s your personality; your heart. It’s the way you speak, the way you treat people. It’s the way you love people. These are all things that show evidence that you are a new being.

So, does this mean that volunteer work and serving in my church is more important than actually having a relationship with God? Which one should I focus on? They both go together. When you are saved, when you become a Christian, you immediately focus on your relationship with God. And we should never stop. And at the same time, we are bearing fruit in our lives. Re-read Colossians 1:10 above. We walk with the Lord, learn more about Him, and bear fruit. Neither one outweighs the other, but they are instead both part of a relationship with Christ.

So, what does your life show? I don't know what mine shows. For as long as I've been searching for an "answer" to that question..I never realized that there was not a yes or no answer. Is there enough evidence to convict me of being a Christian? I go to church every Sunday, but that doesn't mean I'm a Christian. If you talked to my family and friends, what would they say of me? If you looked at the things I do, the words I say, and the way I lived..what kind of fruit is there in my life? See, it's not a yes or no question. And it's not up for us to decide the answer. It is up to us to focus on obeying God. Jesus came to this Earth and lived to set an example for the believers. So, when you aren't sure how you're supposed to live, or what this so called "fruit" looks like, look to the one who never sinned. If we live like Jesus did, there will always be evidence in our lives that points to God.

Thanks for reading along,