By Pastor Ted R. House
The Bible says that the devils believe and tremble. We know that verse is in the context of faith and works, the type of faith that produces good works. It is one thing to say that you believe in God, but that is not the same as having faith in God! The devils believe in God. A parrot can say, “I'm saved, I believe in God”, but it is just repeating what it has heard someone else say. It has to be more than that. James 2:14 says: "What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?" In other words, a man can say he has faith but that does not necessarily mean that he does have faith.
Simply saying something does not make it true. Good works go hand in hand with faith. You can say that you are saved just to get someone to leave you alone, but it does not mean that you are saved. If you are truly saved, you will have works to prove it. James 2:15-16 tells us: "If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit?" It does no good at all to say to a person, “depart in peace”, without doing anything to help their situation! It would do no good at all! James 2:17: "Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone." It does no good to say: “I believe, I believe, I believe” if there is no substance to it. James 2:18: "Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works."
When we observe a person's life, there should be some proof of their faith. There is an old saying that says: “The proof is in the pudding!” James 2:19-20 goes on to say: "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?" It is good to believe that there is only one God, even the devils believe that! In fact, they know Him! Think about this: if belief causes the devils to tremble, should not we fear God enough to motivate us to do good works? The Bible instructs us to fear God. The devils fear God; do we? Is it possible for the devils to have more faith in Jesus Christ than we have? Their faith causes them to tremble! Mark chapter 5 gives the account of the maniac of Gadara. The man was possessed with many devils. He dwelt among the tombs, and even chains could not confine him.
The devils gave him supernatural strength! Satan and his devils have a lot of power! They caused this man to cut himself with stones and cry day and night. They caused him to be wild and out of his mind. They controlled his actions. Mark 5:6-9 says: "But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshipped him, And cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God? I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not. For he..." (Jesus) "...said unto him, Come out of the man, thou unclean spirit. And he..." (Jesus) "...asked him, What is thy name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many." It was a devil speaking. These devils knew Jesus by name. They fell down and worshiped Him, and begged for mercy! They knew that He was the Son of the most high God! They feared Him! Not only that, they had to ask His permission to enter a herd of swine which was nearby. They could not do so without Jesus’ permission to do it! The devils believe and tremble; do we? Do they fear God more than we do? The fear of God should motivate us to do good works!