Why Demonic Faith Does Not Save
The denominational world has produced much confusion over the Bible subject of faith. So weakened by various false doctrines is the subject of faith that many might burst a carotid vessel as they passionately advocate for belief in Christ, yet they know nothing more about faith than what they are misled into by charismatic evangelists. Open the Bible to follow along with this study on faith to discover if you have the same faith as demons.
First impressions can be deceiving. This is a common and sage piece of advice most people are familiar with. With this advice in mind, consider the fan favorite method of studying the Bible. That method goes as follows: a person opens their Bible at random, he reads a single verse, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Heb. 10:31),” he closes his Bible, and he determines he does not like the God of the Bible. Another person opens their Bible at random and reads, “For God so loved that world that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16),” he closes his Bible and determines he likes this gracious God of the Bible who requires nothing more than a stated belief in Jesus. This method of Bible study is at the root of misunderstanding the Bible truth on the subject of faith. Faith is more than a feeling. Faith is more than a confession. Faith is more than a demonic acknowledgment that Jesus is the Christ. The faith of demons is the same faith enlisted by so many religious leaders the world wide.
James 2:19 says, “You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe and tremble.” Demons are rational beings, and being rational they could logically deduce that Jesus was the Christ (see Mark 5:6). Demons indeed have faith, but that is not the same as saying that demons have saving faith. With this being said, no proclaimed Christian wants to share the faith of demons. There are at least four key components to a saving faith, and demons only have two of those components.
The four components of a saving faith are here listed. First, saving faith requires knowledge. Knowledge is “what” a person believes in. The Ethiopian eunuch asked Philip to baptize him. Philip said, “If you believe with all your heart, you may,” (Acts 8:37). The Ethiopian eunuch went on to confess the knowledge he was just taught by Philip, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God,” (Acts 8:37). Even demons have knowledge of the Christ. Thus, making this confession did not save the eunuch. Second, saving faith requires mental assent or mental agreement with the knowledge under consideration. The eunuch obviously agreed with the knowledge of the Christ and so do demons (Mark 5:6 and James 2:19). Third, saving faith includes trust or conviction in the stated knowledge. Hebrews 3:18-19 illustrates the idea of trust that is expressed in saving faith. The writer is in the middle of retelling Israel’s disobedience in the wilderness as they journeyed to the rest awaiting them in Canaan when he says the following: “And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.” Notice two key words: obey and unbelief. When the game is on the line, so to speak, people act on what they truly trust or believe. This brings up the last component of faith. Fourth, saving faith is contingent on obedience. Demons do not obey Christ, and this is why they cannot be saved. Hebrews 3:18-19 should be more than enough to illustrate the point. For volume sake, read also James 2:17-18, “Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, ‘You have faith, and I have works.’ Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” This does not contradict other passages of the Bible such as Ephesians 2:8-9 and Romans 4:1-8; rather, it provides clarification on a subject made murky by centuries of false doctrine.
Much, much more could and needs to be said on this subject, but permit these proofs on the subject of faith to be enough for now. Consider one last instructive thought: what is the proper name for someone who says they believe something but act as if they do not? The answer is a liar and a hypocrite. 1 John 2:4 says, “He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” Interestingly enough, Satan (a demon) is the father of lies (John 8:44). Consider why you believe what you believe and do not share the same faith as demons.