Posted by: pastortomvabeach | June 18, 2013

Thought for the Week June 23, 2013

We are nearing the end of our journey in expository teaching through the book of James. If you’ve heard anything during this series, I’m sure that you’ve heard me say many times that James is written to talk about practical nuts and bolts aspects of being a Christian. He is a down to earth writer who wants his readers to understand that Christianity is more than having right doctrine. It really doesn’t matter how sound and Biblical one’s beliefs are if those beliefs do not impact that person’s life. God’s goal is not that we simply “believe” what is right but that because we believe what is right our lives are transformed so that we are continually becoming more and more like His Son, Jesus.

That goal is taught by Paul in Romans 8:29, whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. It is repeated in II Corinthians 3:18, we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. Should you think, well, that’s Paul’s assessment, Jesus had the same thing in mind. At the Last Supper, after washing the disciples’ feet, He told them why He did that; Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. (John 13:12-15). James confirms this thought by saying our works should show our faith.

With that in mind, I would like to pose a question. Has any of the teaching in James helped you to become more like Jesus? What I mean is, James is about practical issues of life, conduct that reflects the fact that Jesus lives in us. So, as we’ve covered things like how we respond to trials, dealing with temptation, living or dead faith, the difference between discrimination and love, the power of words, hearing or doing the Word, Godly wisdom compared to worldly wisdom, covetousness, and pride, has anything stuck?

I don’t mean do you remember any of it or was it fascinating or interesting to learn but has it affected your bottom line in any way that you can see? Has it changed the way you do things at work, at home, in the marketplaces of life, at church, etc.? Are you becoming a doer of the Word?

I ask these questions because of an old adage that says the teacher has not taught until the student has learned and learning, in my understanding of the Bible, means being transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God, (Romans 12:2). I would like to know if this series has borne any fruit.

So the thought this week is to ask for feedback. If you can’t remember all the topics we covered in James, you can find all of them on our website, http://www.ccagvb.com. You don’t have to listen to the recording since the note sheets are there which will give you a quick reminder. Would you give this some thought and prayer and send me a note of feedback to let me know what affect these teachings have had on your life. Even if you have not discerned any changes, I welcome that feedback. So please take this thought and just give it a thought.

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