James # 11 James 4-10 thru 4-17
We’re going to pick up right were left off last time. So if you have your bibles with you turn with me to James 4:10.
I) Turn back to James 4:10.
A) Notice that James says when you do humble yourselves the Lord will lift you up. He will exalt you and bless you.
II) James 4:11-12.
A) Right off the bat, James says that we should not be speaking evil of one another.
1) That would include gossip, backbiting, and criticism.
2) Speaking evil and criticizing another is actually placing you as their judge. And by doing that you’re in danger of being judged.
B) (Luke 6:37) Says, “Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: (V 38) give in shall be given.”
1) (Galatians 6:7) Says, “For whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap.”
a) If you sow judgement than that is what you’re going to reap.
C) But in (Galatians 6:8 and 9) it says, “He that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. 9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.”
1) So let us sow to the Spirit so that we can reap that everlasting life, and as Jesus said in (JOHN 10:10) not only will we have everlasting life but we’ll have the abundant life here and now.
III) James 4:13.
A) When James uses the phrase, “Go to now” that phrase is a literal word for Word translation, but it is a colloquial phrase.
1) A colloquial phrase or a colloquialism is a phrase that may only be understood by the people of that time or place.
2) But the meaning to that phrase, “Go to now” is either “Come on now” or “Now listen.”
a) What James is referring to in the rest of this verse is a businessman who makes his plans apart from God.
(i) He makes his own plans and goes from one city to the next. He makes his own time schedule, which is evident by him saying, “I’ll continue there a year.”
(ii) And then his goal is for self-alone. “He buys and sells to get gain or make money.”
b) There’s nothing wrong with making money, but his sole purpose is to do it his way, which may not necessarily be God’s way.
(i) He plans to get rich apart from God.
c) (Proverbs 10:22) says, “The blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.”
(i) That verse tells me that financial gain apart from God comes with sorrow. But when you to it the Lord’s way no sorrow or trouble will accompany it.
B) James 4:14.
1) In the 1st part of verse 14 James says, “You don’t even know what will happen tomorrow.”
2) Things always change and as James said you don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow.
a) The plans we make today may change tomorrow.
3) James goes on to add in verse 14, “For what is your life?”
a) The answer is, “It is a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.”
C) In the next verse James begins to give us the correction. In other words, what we should be doing.
1) So let’s read it James 4:15.
2) The way to avoid boasting about your plans and what you’re going to do is to say “If the Lord leads or if it’s his will then will do certain things.”
a) The point that James is trying to make is to seek the Lord 1st and find out what His plans are.
D) Let’s go on to James 4:16.
1) James reiterates that to boast and brag about what you’ve done and your plans is EVIL.
2) The cure for such self-boasting is to trust God and follow His leadings.
E) All right James 4:17.
1) In this last verse of James chapter 4, James basically sums up everything that he has written so far.
a) He’s not just talking about boasting, but all the advice he’s given so far.
2) The word “THEREFORE” in this verse was put therefore reason.
a) It means, everything that was said before hinges on what is to come next.
3) In the next part of that verse he says, “Now that you’ve been told, you know to do good, and if you don’t do it, to him it is sin.”
a) For the believer to attain spiritual maturity he has to do the good he knows to do.
IV) Now what are some of the good things that James has brought out in this letter that we should be doing?
1) 1st we need to STAND CONFIDENTLY ON GOD’S WORD even when going through test, trials and temptations.
2) 2nd, he must compassionately serve his brother in the Lord without favoritism.
a) Let me add something here. Fairly often you’ll come across Christians who try to take advantage over other Christians.
b) They’ll say you have to help me because, that’s what another Christian does. They try to make you feel that if you don’t help them you’re not to good Christian.
(i) That person that takes advantage over another Christian’s compassion and good works is the prime example of what James is talking about here.
(ii) In other words, you know to do good, so trust God and not man. And don’t maliciously use someone for your own gain, and usually it’s money.
(iii) Is someone has a genuine need it’s great to help them out. But if they’re always coming to you with a financial need they’re trusting in you to meet that need and not God.
3) The 3rd thing that James says that we need to do to attain spiritual maturity is to CONTROL THE TONGUE.
4) No. 4, we need to be in submission to God with a humble spirit.
5) No. 5, trust God and have faith in him.
6) No. 6, be what God wants you to be, do what he wants you to do, speak what he wants you to speak.
a) Put God 1st.
7) And No. 7, follow the leadings of the Lord.
B) If we were to put the title on the entire book of James we would have to call it THE MATURING OF THE SAINTS. That’s exactly what we’ve been talking about.
1) If we follow the points that James brings out in this book, which we just listed, you’re on a good start to becoming mature in the Lord.
W. O. L. C. C. Thursday, May 28, 1998