12 Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. 14 But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
We process suffering as a means to becoming more mature.
By God’s grace we take both problems and provocations in stride looking for faith to prosper.
• Engage: Have you ever felt like the world was either trying to conquer you or compromise you? This is our common status.
Have you ever felt wearied because the world is trying to
Welcome to the Way of Christ.
Practical, Biblical, Common sense.
• Expand: Oh I like me some clever word-play! Temptation and testing are two possible translations of the same term. James wants us to understand that we are all undergoing all kinds of pressure all the time. Some
Oh I like me some clever word-play!
is outside our control. It happens to us. Some pressure is ours. We own it because we are it's source.
Context, Context, Context!!!!
Excite: And we can overcome. Regardless of the source we are enabled by God to overcome.
• Explore: God blesses and honors those who overcome threats to their faith.
Explain: James clarifies these two very basic but broad threats to our faith.
• Explain: James clarifies these two, broad threats to our faith.
▾ Body of Sermon:
▾ 1 External Pressure.
12 Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.
• 1.1 Endurance.
• 1.2 Examination.
• 1.3 Exhaltation
Once again we find James basing his advice on the teaching of Jesus you may recall these words from Matthew’s account of the Sermon on the Mount
10 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
A side note: James is not only giving information to help us live victoriously he is also teaching us how to read and apply scripture as he builds lesson after lesson upon the words of Jesus and/or the words of the law or prophets. Moving on then James clarifies that second threat.
▾ 2 Internal Passion.
13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. 14 But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
Our default conception of “temptation” as some external, unseen force that we cannot overcome does not mirror scripture. So
• 2.1 When it comes to temptation we cannot lay the blame at God's feet nor complain that He has initiated it. v 13
Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Of course, James is here riffing on yet another comment of Jesus found
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
• 2.2 Temptation=our inner appetites going amok. 14
• 2.3 The result is a spiraling process from seduction, reproduction to death. 15
▾ Shut Down:
The Crown of Life...
Which will you Choose?