Faithlife Sermons

James Study: Week 3

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v. 1
ILLUSTRATION: Choosing up teams in pick up basketball game
We should not show favoritism.
Fits in passage, since he just mentioned serving widows and orphans.
Many of us feel like we wouldn’t show favoritism…the Gospel is for everyone
The Lord hasn’t shown favoritism, why should we?
v. 2-4
We do show favoritism because of our sin
Matthew 25:44–45 CSB
“Then they too will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or without clothes, or sick, or in prison, and not help you?’ “Then he will answer them, ‘I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
APPLICATION QUESTION: In what ways do you recognize favoritism being shown in your life? Why does God take issue with favoritism in the life of a Christian?
v. 5-7
God chose the poor to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom
APPLICATION QUESTION: Many times we look down upon those who are in a “worse condition” than ourselves. What would you have, if it weren’t for the Lord? Take a moment to pray and confess any favoritism that may be present in your life.
v. 8-13
He shows that no one is better than anyone else
If we break 1 of God’s laws, we are guilty of breaking the whole thing
Don’t point fingers, treat other as God has us. (Law of Freedom)
Matthew 6:14–15 CSB
“For if you forgive others their offenses, your heavenly Father will forgive you as well. But if you don’t forgive others, your Father will not forgive your offenses.
v. 14
INTRO: Have you ever felt you must act a certain way in order to be saved?
ILLUSTRATION: Weed eater, own 1 vs. spraying round up. It doesn’t do much good if you own 1 but don’t use it.
ILLUSTRATION: Weed eater, own 1 vs. spraying round up
You must DO something
Can such faith save him? Does this mean that if you don’t do works you aren’t saved?
ILLUSTRATION: Weed eater, own 1 vs. spraying round up
ILLUSTRATION: Weed eater, own 1 vs. spraying round up. It doesn’t do much good if you own 1 but don’t use it.
ILLUSTRATION: Weed eater, own 1 vs. spraying round up. It doesn’t do much good if you own 1 but don’t use it.
Ephesians 2:8–9 CSB
For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift—not from works, so that no one can boast.
Martin Luther Principle- interpret difficult verses in light of easier verses
Is your faith genuine if works are a sign of salvation?
v. 15-17
Gives an example of works
APPLICATION QUESTION: What works have you seen in your life recently (something that you wouldn’t have ordinarily done), that make your salvation evident?
v. 18-19
Even demons believe and shudder
ILLUSTRATION: Chair, I can believe it is there. But I must do something to actually put my faith into action.
APPLICATION QUESTION: Do you know someone who believes in God, but has yet to put their faith into action and trust in God? What do you think holds someone back from doing so?
v. 20-26
Faith without works is useless.
ILLUSTRATION: Going to the gym and just standing there. You may say you have gone to the gym, but you actually haven’t done anything. It’s useless. You may say you believe in God, but until you put your faith into action, it’s useless
Story of Abraham, credited for righteousness, .
Abraham’s and Rahab’s perseverance in trials and testing completed their faith.
- believed God about birth of his son. His faith was made complete when he persevered in it.
Genesis 15:6 CSB
Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.
, one of the most difficult passages in Scriptures
James 2:24 CSB
You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.
Romans 3:28 CSB
For we conclude that a person is justified by faith apart from the works of the law.
The difference between Paul and James- Paul was showing that works aren’t a requirement for salvation (prior). James was showing that works are a result of salvation (after).
In other words: You can have works without salvation, but you can’t have salvation without works. Works confirm salvation.
ILLUSTRATION: How many people do you see who are “moral” but don’t have faith in Jesus? How many people do you see who have faith in Jesus who aren’t “moral?” The problem is, if we have broken the law once, we aren’t really moral at all. We need to be saved.
APPLICATION QUESTION: Why is context so important when interpreting Scripture? How does context come into play when reconciling and ?
APPLICATION QUESTION: What “good works” has James discussed up until this point in his letter? Which of these do you find to be the easiest/most difficult in your life?
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