November 7/James 4

Mainly I use the New Living Translation when I read scripture. For the most part I like the way it reads and it helps me to understand the word. I believe that the last part of verse 8 is the key to understanding what James is saying to us. The last part of verse 8 reads > “for your loyalty is divided between God and the world”.

Verses 1-4 > We argue, fight, quarrel, scheme, kill, and are jealous and craving pleasure and ask for the wrong things because haven’t totally committed our hearts to the Lord. Our loyalty is divided. We want to please God but we also want to please our sinful nature. If you try to do both the sinful nature always wins. God will not share the number 1 spot in your heart.

Matthew 6:21 (NLT) — 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.

Verses 4-5 > You can’t be a friend of the world and a friend of God. It shows no loyalty it is being unfaithful or as James says here > committing adultery. The Spirit that God placed within us is always loyal to the Lord.

Proverbs 1:10–15 (NLT) — 10 My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them! 11 They may say, “Come and join us. Let’s hide and kill someone! Just for fun, let’s ambush the innocent! 12 Let’s swallow them alive, like the grave; let’s swallow them whole, like those who go down to the pit of death. 13 Think of the great things we’ll get! We’ll fill our houses with all the stuff we take. 14 Come, throw in your lot with us; we’ll all share the loot.” 15 My child, don’t go along with them! Stay far away from their paths.

Verse 6 > Grace is God’s power given to you so that you can remain loyal to Him!

Verse 7 > Resist = to stand in the place of.  In other words we stand in the place of Jesus and we oppose the enemy with the authority of Jesus and he Flees = to run away in terror.
This happens because we have yielded our lives to Jesus. We have humbled ourselves to his authority. When we resist the enemy we look like the Incredible Hulk to him because of what 1John 4:4 says:

1 John 4:4 (NLT) — 4 But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over these people…because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.

Verse 8 > What a wonderful promise > if we come close to God he will come close to us. We come close by obeying his Word and by prayer.

Verse 10 > In Christianity down is up!

Verse 11 > We are not to speak evil of one another. If we do we are putting ourselves above the law saying that is doesn’t apply to us. In that way we are criticizing it. We should be sorrowful that we would think we are above the law.

Verse 12 > I guess this sentence puts a judging person in his or her place!

Verses 13-15 > Too many plans are made without giving a second thought to the Lord. So to bring God back into his rightful place as Lord of our lives we need to get used to saying, “Lord willing I will do this or that.” And then getting in the habit of consulting the Lord in all things. Then we are acknowledging the sovereingty of God and the right for him to rule in our lives.

Verse 17 > we know we should be loyal to the Lord. James says that if we are not it is a sin. James doesn’t mince words does?

Be Loyal and:

Be Inspired Hilltop!

 

Comments

  1. Mark Gundersen says:

    This chapter is about pride. Pride leads to a judgemental, selfish and self sufficient attitude on life. It is a snare since God, being gracious to us, will step aside and let us be caught but will help those our pride harms. If we a truthful with ourselves the attitude of prude should bring us sorrow that is healed by turning to the Lord.