What Does "Believe in Jesus" Really Mean?
It means believe in everything Jesus said.
It means learn His commands and keep them!
1 John 2:4
“The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and yet doesn’t keep His commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”
[Jesus:] “If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever
Notes: What does believe in Jesus mean? Keep His commands. What are His commands? They're all spiritual and attitudinal; no "works of the flesh" commands. They're scattered throughout the New Testament. A number of them are in the Sermon on the Mount, examples seek God always, the Lord's Prayer, and the good-hearted shall see God... Then there were other commands embedded in His parables, which mostly reiterated the need to mature spiritually by continually increasing our knowledge of God, and make sure our sins are forgiven through receiving the daily Bread of life.
Only when we keep His commands, He will then ask the Father to give us " another advocate", the Holy Spirit!
Not everybody gets the Holy Spirit - we must keep His commands first!
Who is keeping Jesus' commands today? And who therefore has the Holy Spirit? People are going by "faith alone" and not doing anything!! Just singing hymns in church!! So many good people are spiritually lost due to their church's stubbornness. I'm extremely sad to the point of crying. And the rest of so called "christians" are even worse. Praying to Mary and saints, or "God already decided we have no say"!
Jesus said: "And these signs will accompany those who believe: In My name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not harm them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will be made well.”
Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.
Before declaring belief in Jesus you have to learn what Jesus said. Do you know all what He said? Do you know all His commands, teachings, parables, and their meanings?
Otherwise, if you only believe in Jesus as in "the existence of Jesus as the son of God", then even the devil himself believes that much:
Whenever the impure spirits saw him, they fell down before him and cried out, “You are the Son of God.”
When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!” For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you impure spirit!”
But the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I recognize, but who are you?”
You believe that God is one. Good for you! Even the demons believe that— and shudder.
Notes: James here takes it a step further and mocks those who are giving lip-service declaration of belief.
If you're a lip-service believer, God has a verse just for you:
Matthew 15:8 ‘These people honor Me with their lips, but their hearts are far from Me.
Some of Jesus' Commands:
Jesus' commands are all spiritual, no works of the flesh. Here are some of them:
Seek God and His righteousness. Matthew 6:33. God and His ways and personality are in the Bible. He shines through both the New and Old Testaments. We can learn so much about Him by reading the scripture, including the parts contradicting to your Church's theology!!
The Lord's Prayer. Matthew 6:9-13. Prayed daily to receive the daily Bread of life for forgiveness, receive the Holy Spirit, and remain "Righteous" in the eyes of God.
Forgive others so God forgives you. Matthew 6:12. This one was stressed several times by Jesus. It is in the Lord's Prayer, and Jesus kept stressing it further in several other parts of the New Testament. The key message is, don't expect to receive God's blessings and salvation if you're holding hate and grudge against any other human. God sees our innermost self - Forgive them all!
Become born again in the spirit. Baptists, Evangelicals, and the rest of the protestants only follow this command and ignore the rest of this list!
Continue to mature spiritually or face spiritual death. Many parables from Jesus explain this clearly, examples, John 15:6 "branches that wither and die", Luke 13:6 "cut the fig tree down", and Matthew 25:30 "cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness".
Enter through the narrow gate... Matthew 7:13-14.
Love God and all people on earth including your enemies. Matthew 22:34-40 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
Don't be hypocrites - Example shooting arrows at abortion doctors and homosexuals, ignoring how big of sinner you yourself are!! God knows the hearts. Matthew 7:4-5 You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
The good-hearted shall see God.
And Here is What "Believe in Jesus" Does Not Mean:
It does not mean pray to Mary and saints. The whole Bible stresses to pray to God only!!
It does not mean God already mysteriously picked from the humans for His pleasure!! He gave us freedom to choose; He doesn't want robots!
It does not mean ignore Jesus' commands and directly skip to singing hymns, loud music, and waving of hands. “By faith alone” still means you have to obey Jesus' commands!!
No, I'm not overreacting, and everything is not ok! Devil-worshippers and Atheists drive latest model SUVs and live in nice homes too!! The question to ask in this post-Jesus time is, "will I be in the I-never-knew-you line at judgement?" I beg you to re-examine the scriptures, and not just rely on your church.
First, we learn and wholeheartedly keep Jesus' commands. Then this automatically equals to "we believe in Jesus". And so, the first obligation in translating this to our daily lives is, we should pray the daily prayer Jesus taught us, because He used this term "should" in Matthew 6:9 "this is how you should pray..." If he said "should" and I believe in Him, then I'm doing what He said. Then afterwards you can follow with your own prayer and wording. And remember, the "Bread" in the Lord's Prayer is the "spiritual Bread of life", not earthly needs.
To get to know Jesus and His teachings in the Bible before declaring belief, would be consistent with everything else we do in life. Example, we don't even commit to a spouse without spending months and years learning about them first! Of course we'd do this for our earthly needs. But spend time reading the Bible to know more about God, then truly believe? Is of no interest to many Christians. This is analogical to my other example, we'd read a thousand-page book if paid money for it, to meet our earthly needs, but not the Bible to gain eternal life. If you're just a herd follower, then you don't truly believe in Jesus. Because you haven't spent the time to learn about all His teachings. In this case you're only in it for the social aspect of it - doing what other people do; repeating what they all say - and because other people will respect you for it.
Going to church every Sunday and singing hymns is only the icing on the cake; you've ignored the cake and focused on the icing!
Or you may be in a Christian band, singing or writing songs titled something like "the blood of Jesus". Belonging to a big church with thousands of members, and making a lot of noise on Sundays... and thinking "what's this one guy here talking about?" Despite the grand picture you're in, the fact remains, unless you keep Jesus' commands, your sins are not forgiven. Again, what you're doing is icing on the cake; Jesus did not command any of this. He gave us simple commands like pray the Lord's Prayer daily and seek God always to keep learning about Him and mature spiritually. Are you doing these? If yes, you're on the right path. If no, you're not reconciled with God. Because you're doing things your way, not His way, not as He commanded. I'm not judging; I'm only pointing out God's view in relation to what I see going on in the Christian world today. Only He knows the hearts.
First obey Jesus' commands. Then do your other creative fluff. You're ignoring Jesus' commands, the most essential part of salvation!
To "believe in someone" is not a casual statement. You need to know about this person before you can truly say you believe in them. In today's world, many get that knowledge from watching movies about the Bible. That knowledge is invalid; movies veer significantly from the truth in order to make a sensational, profit-producing product. Another method in today's world, is relying completely on churches, which only preach from certain parts of the Bible to keep it pleasing to people. The majority of Bible verses are unknown to people. Personal Bible reading is the only way to truly seek God. Look at all the new truths from the references in this website. Most churches don't talk about these! At a minimum, if you're staying with your church, which is not recommended, make sure to supplement with your personal Bible reading, and researching online. Focus on the cake first, then on the icing! It's your eternity at stake; do you trust anyone with that? Check things for yourself! I provide help in this area in my link How to Be True Christians.
Declaring belief in Jesus is the beginning of a relationship with Him; a journey of getting to know Him. It goes in this order:
1. Birth of the flesh - first birth.
2. Birth of the spirit - born-again.
3. Spiritual growth - maturing with more knowledge about God/Jesus
It is the 3rd item that most churches and people ignore. If you declare you believe in Jesus and then move on with your life, and just keep telling everybody "I'm covered by the blood of Jesus", you're not!! Because all you know about Jesus is that sentence. The Bible says you're spiritually dead; did not mature in the knowledge of God, like one of these people in the verse below, "choked by life's worries, riches, and pleasures":
"The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature."
==>"they do not mature"<==
Spiritual maturity, is more of an attitude. Being a true born-again believer would result in interest springing from within for wanting to grow that relationship with God, by:
- Seeking God, through reading the scripture and gaining more wisdom and knowledge about Him; maturing spiritually.
- Worshiping Him daily (Jesus’ prayer daily)
- Respecting Him! Keep Jesus' commands
- Liking what He likes and hating what He hates.
- Love all people, just as He loves all people, His children, His creation.
- Then after doing all the above, you can sing hymns and Christian music etc.
If you’re not doing these things, you're not maturing spiritually, your declaration of belief in God did not flourish. These things should spring from within; if you feel they’re a burden, or label them as "works" because they don't fit your lifestyle, then you're not cut-out for the Kingdom of God.
By Faith Alone?
"By faith alone" meant no added works of the flesh. It is in the Bible:
Acts 15:5-7, 15:11
“Then some of the believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees stood up and said, “The Gentiles must be circumcised and required to keep the law of Moses.” … Peter got up and addressed them: ... No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are…
Spiritual maturity is not "works", seeking God in the Bible is not "works", and praying the Lord's Prayer daily as He commanded is not "works"!
Some may keep insisting that any action we do is "works". These are the "do nothing believers", likely brain-washed into it by their church. They site some high-level verses in the Bible, ignoring many elaborating detailed verses. And they point to stories from the Bible, example about the blind man in the village square and the woman who touched His robe, were healed by Jesus. The do-nothing believers point out that these 2 people likely never looked at scriptures etc., and yet Jesus healed them. Ok perfect example. But note in the culture of those days where there were no TVs, social media, or smart-devices, Jewish people spent their spare time gathered in a village location, telling stories about the day's important events, and reading in the scrolls. So most likely the blind man and the sick woman knew the old-testament bible really well, and heard the stories about Jesus' teachings and miracles, and "strongly" believed that He was the Messiah. So Jesus obviously saw their inside, and healed them. And in the case of the blind man, Jesus had more ramifications in mind to glorify God. He knew the blind man would talk about it in the temple square, and the rest of that story.
Now let's fast-forward to today. These so called do-nothing believers are likely not blind nor with a bad sickness. Instead they're likely healthy and with a lot of time and resources on their hands. But they insist on doing nothing.
Are you a "Do Nothing" Believer?
Please stop the "do nothing", because you've become spiritually dead; "did not mature". A big difference between "Works of the flesh" and "Spiritual Activities":
Works: Is the works of the flesh, as in still trying to apply the Jewish law. Circumcision, animal sacrifices, refrain from certain foods, dress a certain way, do a lot of good deeds to offset the bad, etc.
Not works: Spiritual activities like seek God, read the Bible, and pray the Lord's Prayer daily.
Others say "we don't struggle with sin anymore, because Jesus covered it with His blood". Sounds like they mistook Jesus' blood for a license to sin. The apostle Paul struggled with sin, and hated it (Romans 7:15). And Jesus, the only sinless human that walked the earth, hates sin, and wants you to repent and stop sinning. And yes He will keep forgiving you, as long as you repent, humble yourself, and keep coming back and asking for forgiveness by praying the Lord's Prayer daily, which then truly keeps you forgiven, reconciled with God, and filled with the Holy Spirit.
Please don’t get your facts from watching movies/shows about the Bible, or even from the church. Get your facts from reading the Bible. You want to tithe 10%? In today's world, tithing 10% of your time reading the Bible, will likely please God a lot more.
I don’t want your sacrifices - I want your love; I don’t want your offerings - I want you to know me.