The False Believer
A Sermon on Acts 8:13
Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And seeing signs and great miracles performed, he was amazed. (ESV)
Can a person perform the actions of a believer, yet not be saved? There are many people in the church who mistakenly believe they are saved because they were born into a certain family, uttered some phrases, or were even baptized. But, despite all these things, they have never truly been redeemed. These people are deceived into thinking that they are true Christians by merely their external actions. This is one of the greatest threats to Christianity in all ages and periods of history. This is no less true in the early church as seen in the book of Acts. It is there that we meet Simon who is a magician. He hears the Gospel, confesses faith, and is baptized. However, later it is revealed that he is a false convert, exposed by his desire to buy power from the Holy Spirit. This is why Christians must test themselves, examine their fruit, in order to see if their faith is true and not a sham like that of Simon. Faith can be tested by examining not only one’s confession of faith, but the fruit of one’s life. For all true believers will walk in the light, submit to Scripture, and love their brothers.