James 2:26 – A Parable of Faith and Works

James 2:26 – A Parable of Faith and Works

Daily Devotional Bible Verse

For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead. (James 2:26 ESV)

“An old Scotsman operated a little rowboat for transporting passengers. One day a passenger noticed that the good old man had carved on one oar the word “Faith,” and on the other oar the word “Works.” Curiosity led him to ask the meaning of this. The old man, being a well-balanced Christian and glad of the opportunity for testimony, said, “I will show you.”

So saying, he dropped one oar and plied the other called Works, and they just went around in circles. Then he dropped that oar and began to ply the oar called Faith, and the little boat just went around in circles again—this time the other way around, but still in a circle.

After this demonstration the old man picked up Faith and Works and plying both oars together, sped swiftly over the water, explaining to his inquiring passenger, “You see, that is the way it is in the Christian life. Dead works without faith are useless, and “faith without works is dead” also, getting you nowhere. But faith and works pulling together make for safety, progress, and blessing.”1

Faith is the soul of works, and works the embodiment of faith.

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1 Tan, P. L. (1996). Encyclopedia of 7700 Illustrations: Signs of the Times. Garland, TX: Bible Communications, Inc.