Daily Archives: July 10, 2012

2 Kings 10,11,12; James 4

James 4

You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” 16 As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil.

17 If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.

Submit and Repent!  It has been said that James is the book written to show the practical implications of true faith – what Christianity looks like in action?  Action?  Do my actions really matter?  I thought it was just about believing.

James says that we have to pray.  Prayer is action.  However, not just any old prayer will do, praying without the proper motives will achieve nothing.  He definitely nailed most of my prayers, they aren’t all about my pleasures but most of them are definitely about me and mine!

James says that we must submit ourselves to God.  Submitting sounds like an action.  It also sounds like a topic I hear tossed around in almost every discussion about Jesus – “Die to Self.”  I’m working on this one.  The concept seems simple and yet …!

James says we must resist the devil.  Resisting is an action I’m good at, just ask my wife.  I resist doing every project she throws my way.  Paul talked about needing the “Full Armor of God” to fight the devil’s schemes.  James makes it sound easy – simply resist and the devil will flee.  Resisting by being Humble before the Lord.  Humility – I haven’t quite gotten the hang of that one yet, either.

James says we shouldn’t boast and brag.  I’m pretty good at boasting!  And bragging too – after all, haven’t you seen my beautiful girls?  It’s the should not part that trips me up.

James says that we must do what we know is good.  I’m pretty good at making excuse for this one too.

My self assessment for the actions required for true faith, identified by James, show some glaring deficiencies.  However, My Faith is Not Dead.  My actions can be changed.

Father, help us to always be aware of your presence in our lives.  Help us to be aware of our actions.  Pour out your spirit on us so that we may have actions that demonstrate the life you have given us.  Write your name on our hearts and help us to share the Gospel with others.  May all things be as Jesus said they would be, Amen.

Ed Sorrell

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