Tuesday, January 31, 2012

James 2:14 - 4:17

Study 4 – James 2:14-26

  1. Believing isn’t enough. Sacrificial giving is proof of believing faith. This doesn’t mean that we buy our salvation at all; it merely means that the proof that we have obtained the real thing is that the true Spirit of God will lead us into a life of sacrifice and not a life of demanding blessings on our behalf. To refuse to sacrificially give of oneself on a consistent basis is a sign that the Spirit of God is not resident in within us. We may indeed be a ‘believer’ in the death, burial and resurrection as are the demons, but the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit no more resides in the person that refuses to sacrifice for their savior than it does in the demons that do Satan’s biding.

  2. As examples of what evidence of saving faith looks like, James uses Abraham and Rahab. Abraham was willing to sacrifice the life of his own son in which all of the future promises of God rested and Rahab was willing to sacrifice her own life if necessary in order to help others. James is clearly saying that true faith lays everything on the line and clings to nothing of this earth.

Study 5 – James 3

  1. Teachers will be judged more strictly than others and they have a power and influence over others with their words like no others. They will either provide direction or destruction with their teaching.

  2. False wisdom is filled with envy and selfish ambition and results in every type of evil imaginable. Wisdom that is from God is: pure, peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy  and good fruit, impartial and sincere. True wisdom was embodied in Jesus Christ and should be a part of the DNA of every believer.

Study 6 – James 4

  1. The early change had the same problem that the church has in the 21st century – they quarreled among themselves. The reason they quarreled in the time of James is exactly the same reason that they quarrel today – power struggles. The solution: Submit to God; Resist the temptations of the enemy; Draw near to God through the study of His Word; Come clean; Grieve over your sin; Humble yourself.

  2. We need to realize that we need each other to build the kingdom. We need to set aside our own agenda and start putting God in the driver’s seat.

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