HERO CENTRAL August 7-11 Vacation Bible School

November 3/James 2

Verse 1 > Pastor James knew that a person’s faith is visible. Faith shows itself by the actions of a person. I show my faith in a chair by sitting on it. I show my faith in my van starting by inserting the key and turning it. I show my faith in Jesus by my behavior. Non-Christians watch Christians to get an idea of what Christ is like. If they see us favoring some people over others they get the idea that Jesus is like that. But that is the wrong idea. Jesus made himself available to all people; the rich, the poor, the sick, the diseased, the beggars, the religious and the heathens. He shed his blood on the cross completely without prejudice. Is your faith in Jesus? Do you favor some people over others? Does your faith need an adjustment?

Verses 2-4 > If someone said to you, “In ten minutes you can have 30 uninterrupted minutes with Bill Gates”. Would you look in the mirror quick to check your appearance. Would you quick change clothes? Would you brush your teeth? What if someone said, “In ten minutes you are going to have 30 uninterrupted minutes with a homeless guy.” Would you even care about your appearance? If a non-Christian was watching you in those two scenarios what picture of Jesus would he walk away with?

Verses 5-7 > The homeless guy is probably the one who could be won to Jesus. Jesus said that it was very hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. They don’t see their need for him. They mistakenly believe that they have everything. Who gets more of your attention at Hilltop > the old poor guy who comes in with a walker who probably can’t tithe much or the well dressed young parents with three well-behaved children who could give a pretty considerable tithe? Should it make a difference in our behavior towards them when we say that God will supply all of our needs?

Matthew 19:24 (NLT) — 24 I’ll say it again—it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!”

1 Corinthians 1:26 (NLT) — 26 Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you.

Verses 8-9 > It is a sin to be prejudiced. Yes I confess I need to repent. You?

Verses 10-11 > the law is a single unit so if you break one you break them all.

Verses 12-13 > Our words, our deeds, and our attitudes will be judged by the Lord. The law that sets us free means that as we obey the word of God it sets us free from sin. > John 8:31-36. As God has shown us mercy we also should show mercy. Our beliefs really should control our behavior.  One of the tests of the reality of our faith is how we treat other people.

Verses 14-17 > James is describing ‘dead faith’ people. These are people who substitute words for deeds. These type o people do not have the faith that saves their souls. They have only given mental assent to Jesus. Saving faith always brings life and it always produces good works.

1 John 5:12 (NLT) — 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have God’s Son does not have life.

Verses 18-19 > These people have ‘demonic faith’. Like the demons these people believe in the existence of God and they believe that Jesus is the Son of God. They believe in heaven and Christ as the final judge. They are not atheists or agnostics. They may even show emotion by trembling at some good preaching but again there is no life in that faith because it doesn’t produce good works.

Ephesians 2:10 (NLT) — 10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

Verses 20-26 > These people have ‘dynamic faith’. This faith is based on the Word of God. This is a faith that has Jesus as its object and because of that this faith is real, it is powerful, and it results in a changed life. Both Abraham and Rahab proved they had dynamic faith by their actions. Works are always the fruit of salvation.

Titus 2:12–15 (NLT) — 12 And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God, 13 while we look forward with hope to that wonderful day when the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will be revealed. 14 He gave his life to free us from every kind of sin, to cleanse us, and to make us his very own people, totally committed to doing good deeds. 15 You must teach these things and encourage the believers to do them. You have the authority to correct them when necessary, so don’t let anyone disregard what you say.

How would you describe your faith?

Be Inspired Hilltop!

 

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. Mark Gundersen says:

    Prejudice can be seen in many forms. Who you talk to or ignore can be showing your prejudices. Also what positions you offer prople to do in the church can be showing a prejudice. One of the best ways to help break this is getting everyone to take a turn at greeting or helping with greeting since you get to interact with everyone that comes in and can make them feel welcome.

  2. Mary Anne Frank says:

    The thing I love about James is his “gut honesty “! He gets right down to the point and doesn’t mince words. Most people don’t want to hear his words. I admit some days I don’t want to hear his words. But the Holy Spirit convicts me of my sin and enables me to do the “works” that show Jesus to a broken world. Most days I fail miserably but I want to be Jesus to others. Lord, I need more of You!!