Faith without Action Is Not Faith at All

Faith without action is not faith at all. Faith and actions are inseparable. And that thought can change our world.

Consider what the biblical book of James says about this:

“My brothers, do not hold your faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ with partiality. For if someone enters into your assembly in fine clothing with a gold ring on his finger, and a poor person in filthy clothing also enters, and you look favorably on the one wearing the fine clothing and you say, ‘Be seated here in a good place,’ and to the poor person you say, ‘You stand or be seated there by my footstool,’ have you not made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?” (James 2:1–4 LEB).

It is usually easier to build a friendship with someone who is like you than someone who is not. And most people want to befriend the most well dressed person in the room. I know this is obvious, but think on it for a moment. What are the ramifications of this inclination? What does it say about the type of people we are?

The inclination to favor one person over another reveals something about our view of God, others, and faith. When we show partiality to the wealthy person over the impoverished person, we betray a part of our very faith—love for others (Matthew 22:37–40).

God has called us to love others without partiality. He has called us to look at other people and do for them as we would want them to do for us—aside from how they appear or what they have to offer in return.

I am sure you already know this to be true, but are you practicing it today? Really, take a moment and think about it: are you loving other people without partiality? And if not, how can you change your behavior? How can you change the judgmental thoughts you have? For your thoughts are the place from which your actions emerge.

Imagine how incredibly different, and better, the world would be if we loved others without partiality. Imagine a world where Christians everywhere practiced their faith. Let's be people of faith and action.*

Want to go deeper into this subject? Check out my new book, Jesus' Economy: A Biblical View of Poverty, the Currency of Love, and a Pattern for Lasting Change. With simple, everyday choices you can make the world a better place. Learn how to live Jesus' economy, the currency of love.

*This article is adapted from my earlier article, "The Inseparability of Faith and Actions."

John Barry
John Barry


CEO and Founder of Jesus' Economy. John is the General Editor of the highly acclaimed Faithlife Study Bible and Lexham Bible Dictionary. His new book is Jesus' Economy: A Biblical View of Poverty, the Currency of Love, and a Pattern for Lasting Change. It is widely endorsed by Christian leaders from around the world.