Topic: Right Living is A Result Of Right Believing
Scripture: For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. Proverbs 23:7
In preaching grace over the years, some people have asked me this: “Don’t you think that our performance is important?” I tell them that our performance is important, absolutely. But I also tell them that our performance as husbands, wives, parents, students, employees, and children of God is a result of believing that we are righteous by faith.
I say this over and over again, and I will never grow tired of saying it: Right living is a result of right believing. There are a lot of people preaching and focusing on right living. For them, right living is always about becoming more holy, fearing God more, doing more, praying more, reading the Bible more, serving in church more or giving more money to help the needy. But my friend, when you focus on external behavior alone, you are only dealing with superficial elements.
While strong preaching on holiness may have a temporal effect on people’s behavior, it will not bring about lasting and permanent change. Christianity is not about behavior modification. It is about inward heart transformation. Get hold of good teachings that are full of Jesus and righteousness by faith in Him. When you are anchored on these unshakable foundations, your outward behavior will come in line with His Word and you will begin to produce the fruits of righteousness!
Just in case there is any misunderstanding, let me state this clearly in black and white: I, Joseph Prince, hate sin and wrong living. As a pastor of a local church for more than two decades now, I have witnessed firsthand the devastating effects of sin. It destroys marriages, breaks up families, brings diseases and basically tears a person apart from the inside out. I am on the same side as those who preach against sin and teach on the need to live right. However, where I differ is that I believe that the solution to stopping sin is not found in focusing on right living. It is found in right believing.
Did you know that the Bible tells us why believers lack qualities of right living like self-control, perseverance, and brotherly kindness? It says in 2 Peter 1:5–9, “For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.” Wow! This verse is essentially telling us that the reason someone does not manifest these qualities of right living is that he has forgotten that all his sins have been forgiven and that he is righteous by faith in Jesus. It isn’t something he believes and is conscious of, and it affects his behavior.
So start believing right, and you will live right! If you don’t see right living in a particular area of your life—perhaps you are struggling with a secret addiction—check what you believe in that area. Somewhere along the way, you have believed a lie. But here’s the good news: When you start seeing and believing that you are righteous in Christ, when you start confessing your righteousness through Jesus in that area, your breakthrough is just around the corner.
Joseph Prince Devotional 22 June 2021 Today’s Message – Joseph Prince (born 15 May 1963, Singapore) is the senior pastor of New Creation Church in Singapore, one of Asia’s biggest churches. He was one of the church’s founders in 1983.