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Monthly Archives: December 2013

The Book of James – Perfection James 2:10-13

lawbreaker

Introduction

Our next set of verses would seem at first to depart from what we talked about last time, treating everyone the same.  However, as we will find, James is actually continuing the same thought found in the first 9 verses.

This is going to sound fragmented as we go along.  Please allow me time to examine each part and then we will assemble them. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of James – Respect of Persons James 2:1-9

rich_poor

Introduction

James, as I’m sure you have noticed, finishes his thought on one thing and then goes right to another.  Next on James’ list is the evil of judging people based upon bias or prejudice.

There are reasons why we treat people different: a person in jail, disciplining children, knowing someone is in their final days, and so on. So, there are good reasons why people are treated differently.  There are also bad reasons and that is the focus of our post. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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Merry Christmas Grandpa

hospital_night

Introduction

On Christmas Eve 2001, and continuing into Christmas day, I spent Christmas alone with my Grandpa.  That’s right, just the two of us.  My wife and children had gone to my in-laws home; my side of the family was gathering at my Uncle’s house.  This Christmas it was just going to be me and grandpa.

Less than two months before my Grandma had passed away.  She died in early November, one month short of their 74th wedding anniversary.  It wasn’t a misprint, almost 74 years of marriage.  As you might have guessed they started their marriage at a young age.  After a long drawn out courtship, two months, they were married and began their life together.

The Setting

In the 1980s my Grandpa had major health issues that changed him.  The damage sustained during these days quickly took away his ability to function independently and do the thing he loved the most, preaching the gospel message of Jesus Christ. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 23, 2013 in Lessons from A Servant

 

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The Book of James – Hypocrites James 1:26-27

fakecert

Introduction

Next week I’ll be posting an article about a very personal Christmas experience in my past.   Our series on James will be on temporary hold until after Christmas.

Last time we talked about being a hearer and doer of the word.  We cannot stop at knowing what God’s word says; we must also follow through with those lessons allowing God’s word to change us.  If you remember we also focused on listening more, talking less and controlling our anger.

Within any group or organization there are always those who are committed and then there are the pretenders.  When we talk about Christian pretenders there is a very ugly word used to describe them, we call them hypocrites.  Tonight that is our topic.  This isn’t a pleasant topic but God inspired James to cover it so we are going to cover it. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of James – Hear and Do James 1:21-25

muddyboy

Introduction

Fresh off the heels of being a good listener James will challenge us now to apply listening to the Bible.  We are to listen to what God’s word says, and one more thing, do it!

Taking a Spiritual Bath – v.21-25 Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of James – Exercising Control James 1:19-20

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Introduction

Our next verse starts with the word “wherefore”.  As you know that means the writer is concluding a thought so we need to look back at what has been said thus far so the concluding remarks make sense.

So what has been said?  This is our 6th lesson and the repeating theme has been patience.  We were first told to have patience during times of testing when God allows our path to get harder so we will learn to trust and depend on Him.  James then reminds us that if we will ask for wisdom, to know how to live godly, God will answer that prayer.  Next James tells us to be careful what we allow our minds to think about or dwell on.  All evil starts in the mind; we must guard our thoughts.  Finally, in our last post, we talked about times when Satan will tempt us to do evil.  In all these things James says to have patience.  Now James gives us practical ways to have patience.  It is one thing to say “Be patient”, we all agree we need to do that, but it is more helpful to say “Be patient and here is how to do it.” Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of James – Temptation James 1:12-18

Temptation

Overcoming Temptation – v.12-15

James now introduces us to the concept of temptation and unmasks the one who is responsible.  Let’s start by understanding where temptation comes from: in the text it says that God does not tempt anyone; that narrows our list of suspects down to one, Satan.  The design of a temptation is to get us to fail, to take our eyes off of Jesus and to destroy our credibility with those who know us.  Temptation, according to verse 13, is an invitation to do evil.  Satan enters our minds in the hopes of making evil look good.  Satan even stands before God accusing us of evil.  Rev 12:9-10  And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of James – Godly State of Mind James 1:9-11

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Introduction

So far James has told us that there will be times of testing.  This is when God allows the road ahead to be challenging so we will trust in Him and grow stronger.  We have also seen where God is just waiting for us to ask for wisdom so that we can conduct ourselves in a manner pleasing to Him.  Now James, as he continues to talk about patience, is going to cover our state of mind. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of James – Pursuit of Wisdom James 1:5-8

Boy Playing in Rain

Introduction

Who can resist an invitation to gain wisdom?  Not just any wisdom, we are talking about wisdom from on high.  The words of James, if we heed them, will change our life.  Before we begin let me remind you, God always keeps His promises. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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The Book of James – Trials (James 1:2-4)

garage-clean-out

Introduction

I mentioned last time that James was a plain spoken man. James is also direct and to the point.  As proof of this he says hello in verse one and by verse two he talks about the trials that come into our life; the times of testing that can leave us spiritually battered and bruised.

Trial vs. Tempted

“How do I know what I’m going through is a trial as opposed to Satan just pounding me over the head?”  When God’s hand is at work the trial is designed to build you up, to strengthen your Christian character.  When Satan is on the scene his only goal is to ruin you and make you fail.  God wants to embrace you and Satan wants to embarrass you. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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