James # 4 James 1-12 thru 1-21
We’re going to continue teaching on the book of James, so let’s pick up right were we left off last time.
I) James 1:12. (Temptation - trial).
A) In this verse James goes back to what he is talking about in Vs. 2 through 4.
1) God blesses and rewards those who persevere through tests and trials.
a) Those who steadfastly endure trials and have stood their ground will receive the CROWN OF LIFE.
2) One commentary said that “the crown of life” that is spoken of in verse 12 refers to the life here and now.
a) That we will receive life in its fullness and completeness that (James 1:4) is referring to right now. (Wanting nothing or lacking nothing).
(i) In (JOHN 10:10) it says that Jesus came that we might have life and that we might have it more abundantly.
(ii) If I was to read this verse emphasizing the proper tense it would say this: “Jesus came so that we would have eternal life now and that we would have, right now, life more abundantly.”
(iii) But again, there is a prerequisite, not only do you have to endure trials, but as (verse 12) puts it, we also have to love God.
b) Others have said that this “CROWN OF LIFE” refers to eternal life. Either way we’re blessed.
II) James 1:13.
A) Apparently James was teaching to correct a problem that was taking place.
1) James expressed a sharp rebuke for those who find an easy excuse for their sinning.
a) There were those who would be tempted to sin and they would give into those temptations. And when they were confronted with their sin, they would say that it was God tempting them, implying that it was okay.
2) The last half of verse 13 seems to be a contradiction to another scripture. Lets read James 1:13 again.
a) And now turn with me to Hebrews 4:15.
b) If we look at this quickly without really thinking about it, it sounds like James was saying that God cannot be tempted with evil but (Hebrews 4:15) says that Jesus was tempted in every way like we are.
(i) What we need to realize is that God, in His deity, cannot be tempted with evil.
(ii) But Jesus, during the time He became a man, set aside all of His deity and was tempted in every way like we are. Of course, without sin.
c) James makes it very clear here that God does not tempt any man.
3) James also makes it equally clear where at least one source of temptation comes.
B) Look at James 1:14
1) James says it comes from within through our own lusts.
a) Paul said in (Romans 7:18) “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing.”
b) In our flesh we are tempted to sin. That’s why it’s so important that we get our minds renewed to the Word of God. The battleground is in the mind.
(i) The flesh wants to follow the ways of the world and the ways of sin, but the born-again spirit wants to follow after the things of God.
c) Now you have to choose in your mind which one you’re going to follow after, the flesh or the Spirit. If your mind is renewed to the Word of God you will follow after the Spirit.
2) But the flesh isn’t the only place where temptations come.
a) (1 Thessalonians 3:5) refers to Satan as the tempter, tempting us to sin.
b) But neither the Devil, our flesh, or any other person or thing is in excuse for us to sin.
(i) Paul said in (2 Corinthians 10:5) “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”
C) James 1:15-16
1) James said in (verse 15) “When lust hath conceived.”
a) Lust is conceived in the heart by meditating on the thoughts that come for evil desires.
b) When it is conceived in your heart you fulfill those lusts and therefore sin. And unconfessed sin brings death.
III) James 1:17-18. (Verse 17 Does not change like shifting shadows).
A) James quickly changes from the morbid scene of sin and death to life and salvation, which comes through THE WORD OF TRUTH.
B) In (James 1:17) it says that every good and every perfect gift is from above.
1) God only gives good and perfect gifts.
2) If it’s not good or perfect you can rest assure that it’s not from God.
C) It’s interesting in verse 17 that God is referred to the “Father of lights.”
1) Paul said in 2 places, (Ephesians 5:8 and 1 Thessalonians 5:5) that we are “The Children Of Light.”
2) We should walk in the light as he is in the light.
a) (1 JOHN 1:7) says, “If we walk in the light the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin.”
IV) James 1:19-20.
A) In verse 19 James says “Wherefore, my beloved brethren.”
1) The word “WHEREFORE” reveals to us that what James is about to say is of great importance.
a) He says, “Be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to wrath.”
(i) The Word “WRATH” in this verse means, “ANGER AND TEMPER.”
b) Anger and temper does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
B) James 1:21.
1) The words “Filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness” basically mean, “Filth and Evil.”
C) The last part of this verse says, “Receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.”
1) The word “SOULS” usually refers to the mind.
a) Our spirit is already saved, our mind is in a process of being saved or renewed and that only comes through our reading and meditation on the Word of God.
2) But the Word “SOUL” in this verse can also mean “LIFE.”
a) And the word “SAVED” is the Greek word “SOZO” which refers to the promises of God.
b) As we received the engrafted Word of God, that word is able to bring about the promises of God.
3) Never underestimate the power in the Word of God.
a) (Hebrews 4:12) says that the Word of God is quick and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword.
W. O. L. C. C. Thursday, Feb. 26, 1998