James: Characteristics of Maturity
34 or 35 AD ….Jewish Christians primarily, no mention of gentile ministry of Paul.
Diaspora 12 tribes…
James – Half brother of Jesus.
3 Kinds of people…
Unsaved – Christian – Christ Follower
Faith – fully developed 1:4 Theme – Mature faith!
Trouble exposes a lack of wisdom
James 1:5 If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.
Ask in faith
James 1:6-8 But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind…Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.
Confidence…resting! Psalm 37
Don’t get Angry
James 1:19-21 Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires. So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your (souls) lives.
Listen/slow to speak/slow to get angry
“To save the life” (sosai tas psychas hymon) No where in the OT or NT does this phrase signify deliverance from hell. Physical life and death…
Faith without Works is Dead
James 2:14 What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? (5:19-20)
2:1 how can you claim to have faith in our ….favoritism
2:14 Can that kind of faith save anyone? Not you the hungry guy….
James 2:17 So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.
Relationship ….. fellowship 1 John
Accepted ….. Approved
Justified by Faith & Justified by Works
James 2:19-21 You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror. How foolish! Can’t you see that faith without good deeds is useless? Don’t you remember that our ancestor Abraham was shown to be right with God by his actions when he offered his son Isaac on the altar?
Justified by faith before God …..justified by works before man …Abraham & Rahab
Jesus grew in wisdom and stature before God and man!
Unsaved – sad
Saved ☺ Brag on the grace of God!
Christ Follower ☺!!!!!! Brag on the grace of God & the person.
Control your Tongue
James 1:26 If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless. Indeed, we all make many mistakes.
Fruit of the Spirit is self control.
James 3:2, 13 For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way…If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom.
The Root of the Problem
James 4:1, 4 What is causing the quarrels and fights among you? Don’t they come from the evil desires at war within you? …You adulterers! Don’t you realize that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again: If you want to be a friend of the world, you make yourself an enemy of God.
God stands against the proud, but gives grace to the humble!
James 4:7-8 So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.