Today’s reading is: Jas. 1-5
James Chapter One
- James did not introduce himself as the brother of the Lord Jesus Christ (Mt. 13:55; Mk. 6:3; 1st Cor. 9:5; Gal. 1:19), but as a bond-servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ (Jas. 1:1).
- The Book of James consists of a general sermon, developing wisdom principles for believers in the Dispensation of the Church.
- He addressed a general Jewish audience (v.1).
- He addressed every believer who encounters various trials (v.2).
- He writes this book from a wisdom literature tradition for a Dispensation of the Church venue.
- “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials” (Jas. 1:2-4). This is the theme for the Book, and establishes the context for the material which follows.
- Tested faith produces steadfast endurance (v.3).
- Steadfast endurance works to produce a complete believer (v.4).
- The tested and steadfast believer understands the privilege and power of prayer (Jas. 1:5-8).
- He is perfect and complete because he is intimate with the Father.
- He lacks nothing because he is intimate with the Father.
- This believer considers financial trials to be a joy (Jas. 1:9-11).
- Temptations are rewardable, and the procreation/conception of sin is readily identifiable (Jas. 1:12-15).
- The Church’s heavenly nature is spotlighted (Jas. 1:16-18).
- Hearing (Jas. 1:19-21) and doing (Jas. 1:22-25) the Word of God provides experiential soul-salvation and happiness.
- The tested and steadfast believer bears fruit through Godly thoughts, words and deeds (Jas. 1:26-27).
James Chapter Two
- The tested and steadfast believer demonstrates the Royal Law of Liberty (Jas. 2:1-13).
- The Law of Liberty does not show favoritism (vv.1-7,9).
- The Law of Liberty exercises love to one another with mercy (vv.8,10-13).
- The tested and steadfast believer demonstrates his faith through the works that he does—resulting in his experiential justification (Jas. 2:14-26).
- Without external deeds of faith, a believer has no observable witness.
- External deeds of faith are the only means by which faith becomes perfected.
James Chapter Three
- The tongue is a difficult thing to master (Jas. 3:2-12 cf. Jas. 1:26), and therefore not many should become teachers (Jas. 3:1).
- The mental-attitude must also be mastered, manifesting the wisdom from above while rejecting the wisdom from below (Jas. 3:13-18).
James Chapter Four
- God’s wisdom warns against the quarrels and conflicts generated by friendship with the κόσμος, and uses OT Scripture to promote humility and intimacy with God (Jas. 4:1-10).
- God’s wisdom promotes grace over condemnation in our thinking towards one another (Jas. 4:11-12).
- God’s wisdom establishes a proper perspective on time (Jas. 4:13-16).
- God’s wisdom convicts us on sins of omission (Jas. 4:17).
James Chapter Five
- God’s wisdom demonstrates the valuation of spiritual and temporal riches (Jas. 5:1-6).
- It teaches the value of patience (Jas. 5:7-12).
- It urges believers to engage in an effective intercessory prayer ministry (Jas. 5:13-20).
- It motivates believers to turn one another back from the perils of sin (Jas. 5:19-20).