We were back in Androsul today at the regular church meeting. We wanted to spend some time with the church family their and also walk around to hand out invitations to the VBS that starts tomorrow. I preached my second James sermon this morning, James 1:19-27.
James 1:19–27 (ESV)
Hearing and Doing the Word
19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. 21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
26 If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. 27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
Hook: Anger management from National Health in UK
Recognize your anger signs
Your heart beats faster and you breathe more quickly, preparing you for action. You might also notice other signs, such as tension in your shoulders or clenching your fists. “If you notice these signs, get out of the situation if you’ve got a history of losing control,” says Isabel.
Count to 10
Counting to 10 gives you time to cool down so you can think more clearly and overcome the impulse to lash out.
Breathe out for longer than you breathe in, and relax as you breathe out. “You automatically breathe in more than out when you’re feeling angry, and the trick is to breathe out more than in,” says Isabel. “This will calm you down effectively and help you think more clearly.”
TRANSITION: Let’s put the anger management techniques of the world behind us and open God’s Word and see what it says about anger.
Point 1: Quick and Double Slow (19-21)
Quick to listen to the Word of God
Slow to speak and slow to anger — both of these things get in the way of listening
Illustrate: When a child breaks something priceless…
My standard response = quick to speak and anger, slow to listen
Bible is clear for a purpose and full of wisdom from God; listen, then be slow to speak and and slow to anger
Picture of patience, fruit of the Spirit
BECAUSE the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God; produces a sinful response!
BECAUSE of the result of the anger of man, we are to put away all filthiness and wickedness, and INSTEAD receive the implanted word
If you are a believer, the word is already implanted on your heart
Is something holding it back from within you, or does it guide you as it should?
What produces the righteousness of God?
Faith in Jesus Christ, bestowed upon us by God —> Romans 4:22-24
Romans 4:22–24 (ESV) 22 That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.” 23 But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, 24 but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord,
“implanted word” —> put there by the Holy Spirit
The Word of God lives inside of us through the Holy Spirit
Spirit guides us
John 14:26 (ESV) 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.
The Word of God is able to save our souls!!!! —> the preaching of Jesus Christ; the good news of Jesus Christ
Word of God is how we grow closer to Christ
The implanted Word, giving ourselves to Jesus and receiving the Holy Spirit, results in the relationship that we have with God
Celebration of the life, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ
If you do not know Jesus, why not?
Point 2: Doers, not just hearers (22-25)
The Word = the good news about Christ
A Hearer of the Word
First, deceives themselves —> believes something that is not true
The Bible is not just a book to read and put back on the shelf
Hebrews 4:12 (ESV) 12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Illustration of a someone who is only a hearer:
A man wishes to build a house
he knows that to build a house he will need to buy a piece of property for the house
Buy all the materials required
Hire people that can help him complete the construction
If the man goes to the market each morning and stands around listening to the men who build houses, but never buys property or materials or signs up friends to help him build, he is a hearer of construction, but not a doer!
This man deceives himself when he says he builds a house.
A Doer of the Word
Puts God’s Word into action by doing something
Examples of being a doer of the Word
1. Believe in what the Bible says (faith)
2. Follow what the Bible commands
Command as a way of life
Romans 6:11 Romans 6:11 (ESV) 11 So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
Romans 12:2 (ESV)2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Command as a call to action —> Matthew 28 says to go to all the world and preach the gospel; if we never leave our house and never share the gospel with a non-believer, we are but a hearer of this instruction
Illustration of a someone who is a doer:
A man wishes to build a house
If the man goes to the market each morning and learns where property is available, and buys the property, he is a doer
If the man buys the materials and brings them to the property, he is a doer
If the man hires men to help him build the house, and begins the construction, he is a doer
This man deceives no one; he is building a house.
Bible gives the example of the hearer looking at his own face attentively (great detail), and then forgetting what he looks like
Hearer and not a doer, you quickly forget what the Word tells you to do; to truly understand God’s Word, you must put it to action
Blessings for those who do, who look into the perfect law of God’s Word and put it to action
Point 3: Live the Christian Life (26-27)
Religion without action and follow-through is worthless; it’s a sham
As people, we can spot a hypocrite a kilometer away
If a man claims to be a Christian, but lives with a woman he is not married to, commits crimes for money, and never comes near the church, he is not likely a Christian
Evidence of fruit defines the life of the true believer
Care for the orphans and widows and avoid sinful desires
Live the Christian Life —> The person whose religious experience is genuine will put spiritual truth into practice, and his life will be marked by love for others and holiness before God.
5 Suggestions to be a doer of the Word
1. Must be IN the Word!!! Bible study and meditation
2. Act upon what the Word says, to act upon our faith.
3. Under the preaching and teaching of faithful men of God, who struggle over the Scriptures each week and preach God’s Word faithfully
5. Community with other Christians; accountability
Conclusion: Let us strive through the power of God, together, to be doer’s and not just hearers of God’s Word in our Christian lives.