“And many that believed came, and confessed, and shewed their deeds.”
The verse above shows what it takes to build a great testimony for Christ. The first thing that is needed to have a testimony for Christ is salvation. What does it take for a person to get saved? One word describes what it takes and that word is “believed.” There are no works in salvation. If you try to add works to salvation, you will fail because salvation is only received by faith in the finished works of Christ. You cannot be saved without believing that Christ’s sacrificial payment on the cross, His death and resurrection are the only works needed for your salvation. Christ has already done all the work necessary for salvation; all you have to do is believe on Christ.
However, if a person just believes and does nothing else, his salvation is moot to others around him. God does not expect you to get saved and do nothing with your salvation. Philippians 2:12 commands the believer to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” God expects the believer to take what Christ has done for him and tell others about it. This is why it says in the verse above that they believed and “confessed.” Once a person gets saved, they need to confess to others that they are saved. Romans 10:11 says, “…Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.” When a person gets saved, they will want to tell others about what Christ has done for them.
One thing is lacking for the person who believes and confesses that they are saved, and that is they must show their “deeds” so that others will believe they are saved. You are saved whether or not others believe you are saved, but you can do much more for Christ if your works match what the Saviour has done for you. James 2:26 says that “…faith without works is dead…” Does this mean that there are works in salvation? NO! He is saying I will “shew thee my faith by my works.” Those around you cannot see what happened on the inside; the only way the outside can validate what happened in your heart is for you to live for Christ.
Your works matter to the outside world. The world will only see that you are saved by your lifestyle. You can’t live in the world, look like the world, conform to the styles of the world, and talk like the world and expect the world to know that you are saved. Your works matter! God says in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” When you get saved, you are to live the new life instead of continuing in the old life. If a person continues in the old life, are they saved? Yes, they are saved if they have put their trust in Christ; however, their testimony for Christ will be of no avail to those whom God wants them to reach.
My friend, what do your works reveal to those in your neighborhood, at your workplace, the places you frequent, or in your home? Do your works proclaim that you are saved. Oh, you are saved if you have put your trust in Christ, but you will never enjoy your salvation to its fullest until you live the new life in Christ that you received when you got saved. Let me encourage you not to be passive about sin in your life or the worldly lifestyles you embrace. Let your works and lifestyle match the work that Christ has done in your heart through salvation by living like Christ would want you to live. The more you live like Christ wants you to live, the more your works validate your salvation to the world.