“What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone?” If you do not volunteer to help God’s kingdom will not reach your family and community.
Exodus 18:6-27 (NLT2)
6 Jethro had sent a message to Moses, saying, “I, Jethro, your father-in-law, am coming to see you with your wife and your two sons.”
7 So Moses went out to meet his father-in-law. He bowed low and kissed him. They asked about each other’s welfare and then went into Moses’ tent.
8 Moses told his father-in-law everything the LORD had done to Pharaoh and Egypt on behalf of Israel. He also told about all the hardships they had experienced along the way and how the LORD had rescued his people from all their troubles.
9 Jethro was delighted when he heard about all the good things the LORD had done for Israel as he rescued them from the hand of the Egyptians.
10 “Praise the LORD,” Jethro said, “for he has rescued you from the Egyptians and from Pharaoh. Yes, he has rescued Israel from the powerful hand of Egypt!
11 I know now that the LORD is greater than all other gods, because he rescued his people from the oppression of the proud Egyptians.”
12 Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, brought a burnt offering and sacrifices to God. Aaron and all the elders of Israel came out and joined him in a sacrificial meal in God’s presence.
13 The next day, Moses took his seat to hear the people’s disputes against each other. They waited before him from morning till evening.
14 When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he asked, “What are you really accomplishing here? Why are you trying to do all this alone while everyone stands around you from morning till evening?”
15 Moses replied, “Because the people come to me to get a ruling from God.
16 When a dispute arises, they come to me, and I am the one who settles the case between the quarreling parties. I inform the people of God’s decrees and give them his instructions.”
17 “This is not good!” Moses’ father-in-law exclaimed.
18 “You’re going to wear yourself out—and the people, too. This job is too heavy a burden for you to handle all by yourself.
19 Now listen to me, and let me give you a word of advice, and may God be with you. You should continue to be the people’s representative before God, bringing their disputes to him.
20 Teach them God’s decrees, and give them his instructions. Show them how to conduct their lives.
21 But select from all the people some capable, honest men who fear God and hate bribes. Appoint them as leaders over groups of one thousand, one hundred, fifty, and ten.
22 They should always be available to solve the people’s common disputes, but have them bring the major cases to you. Let the leaders decide the smaller matters themselves. They will help you carry the load, making the task easier for you.
23 If you follow this advice, and if God commands you to do so, then you will be able to endure the pressures, and all these people will go home in peace.”
24 Moses listened to his father-in-law’s advice and followed his suggestions.
25 He chose capable men from all over Israel and appointed them as leaders over the people. He put them in charge of groups of one thousand, one hundred, fifty, and ten.
26 These men were always available to solve the people’s common disputes. They brought the major cases to Moses, but they took care of the smaller matters themselves.
27 Soon after this, Moses said good-bye to his father-in-law, who returned to his own land.
James 2:14-26 (NLT2)
14 What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone?
15 Suppose you see a brother or sister who has no food or clothing,
16 and you say, “Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well”—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do?
17 So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.
18 Now someone may argue, “Some people have faith; others have good deeds.” But I say, “How can you show me your faith if you don’t have good deeds? I will show you my faith by my good deeds.”
19 You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.
20 How foolish! Can’t you see that faith without good deeds is useless?
21 Don’t you remember that our ancestor Abraham was shown to be right with God by his actions when he offered his son Isaac on the altar?
22 You see, his faith and his actions worked together. His actions made his faith complete.
23 And so it happened just as the Scriptures say: “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.” He was even called the friend of God.
24 So you see, we are shown to be right with God by what we do, not by faith alone.
25 Rahab the prostitute is another example. She was shown to be right with God by her actions when she hid those messengers and sent them safely away by a different road.
26 Just as the body is dead without breath, so also faith is dead without good works.
The church you’ve always longed for:
1. Works at being a caring family
2. Captures the heart of the community
3. Welcomes all people
4. Empowers each individual
5. Models integrity
6. Serves a broken world
7. Encounters the Living God
8. Anticipates a great future