“God opposes the proud and gives grace to the humble”. In chapter 4:1-12, James like an expert surgeon cuts through our selfish desires to reveal that our true problem is a heart that desires other things more than God. Then graciously he points us to the cure: the grace of God. James will not let us know the sweetness of grace until we have tasted the bitterness of our own sin. In all of this James shows us that true faith is marked by humility.
When the entire world seems to say that self-interest, getting ahead, and carnivorous ambition is what wisdom is all about, James comes with a radically different picture of wisdom. Echoing the call of wisdom from the book of Proverbs, James boldy claims that true wisdom is radically other focused. True wisdom cannot be found by looking inward, but only by looking upward to Jesus, the embodiment of true wisdom.
In James 3:1-12, James makes the point, faith that works is a faith that tames the tongue. Our speech and words are powerful and often destructive, so how are we supposed to do that? Jump in and listen as we discuss that together this week.
In this sermon we see James introduce topics that that are hard and perplexing for many of us: faith, trials, and temptation. In James 1:2-18 we will see that our faith will be tested, that trials actually come from God, and yet temptation never does.