James puts the issue of faith at the Christian life and its works, there are no Christians at birth because we must be born again in faith.  There are 2 examples of real faith, Abraham and Rahab (One is the father of faith and the other is a prostitute) which show that faith has nothing to do with your background, your heritage or how you were born.

Four aspects of faith

  1. Faith originates in a call, or promise from God (Romans 10:17)
  2. Faith responds to the word of God with hope against all hope (Romans 4:18-21)
  3. Faith continues in obedience (Hebrews 10:39)
  4. Faith looks forward to a reward or inheritance (Hebrews 11:6 & 10)

Faith endures any hardship now as worth the surpassing greatness of Christ and his glory.  There is no pain on earth so great that it won’t melt away like marshmallows in hot chocolate when we get to heaven and this should be remembered daily because we have such an easy lif as believers in free countries.  There will come a time when a real trial will befall us; either personally or collectively as a church through persecution or war.  We must look forward to another city, a city whose architect and foundation is God himself.  We cannot be people of faith if we love this world more than the next.  We must not despise this life, but we must not cherish it more than God either.  We are new creations meant for citizenship in that city of God.