Summary: God has some expectations for His children and His creation.
The Desire of the Father
* Parents want the best for their children. In the 21st century American culture, parents go beyond the call to make sure that their kids have ‘all the things that I didn’t have.’ Candidly, this is done with the best of intentions but ‘too much too soon’ may have been the culprits of many of today’s problems. The issue is: ‘we want the best, but do we know what’s best?”
* Our Heavenly Father not only desires for us to have the best, but as our creator and Lord, He KNOWS what is best for us. His intent is for us to have life to the fullest (abundant life) on earth and eternal life when our earthly time has passed.
* We are working our way through the book of James in a series of messages entitled “How To Do Life” and find ourselves hearing from James about the ‘desire of the Father.’ Let’s read & consider these words. (Read text)
* James’ message is written to those who believe. Sometimes he writes about social issues, other times his message is about pray, and other times he writes about sin. We have already studied about test and temptation, about who they are from, and about the outcome of our response. It is on the heels of this subject that I would like us to consider what, exactly, the desire of our Heavenly father truly is.
* Life is all about choices, decisions, and actions. He says 3 things to us;
1. Be Clear –(Verse 16) It is obvious from the words of scripture that our Lord God wants us to be or our guard for deception. James has just finished writing about trials and temptation and follows with the affectionate address of “My dearly loved brothers” ‘don’t be deceived about these things. Candidly, the Bible gives us a laundry list of people who were deceived.’ From Eve’s story in Genesis to the reminder of Balaam & Korah in Jude, deception runs rampant throughout history. This is why we are repeatedly admonished to ‘be not deceived;’ to the point of speaking about becoming ‘self deceived.’ God desire that we understand some things.
a. His Principles – God’s principles are, in large measure, neither, a secret or a mystery. His principles are found in black and white on the pages of the Bible. It is amazing how many people ‘say’ they don’t or can’t understand God’s word. I submit that most of the people who say they don’t understand God’s word will one day be forced to admit to God that they never really read God’s word. They may have skimmed over it, speed read, or even ‘did the daily Bible reading.” However understanding God’s word is as simple as taking one book at a time, reading with focus & study. Paul told the young preacher, Timothy, that all the scripture was inspired by God and will teach, rebuke, correct, and train. (could this be the reason that so few read?) God wants us to know His word and put His principles so deeply into our mind that we are able to live by His principles of life.
The Desire of the Father – Pg 2
b. His Plan – Because of our traditional way of thinking, some will say, “No one can know the plans of God.” While we cannot know the specific plans we can discern the general plans God has for us. God tells us, “I know the plans I have for you.’’ If the word stopped there then we would not know God’s plans, but the verse doesn’t stop there. He continues (Jer. 29:11) I am making plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a hope and a future. Candidly, God’s one plan for us and that is for us to know Him, love Him, worship Him, and live for Him. The amazing thing is this; God still gives us a choice in the matter. Do I understand how this works into His divine sovereignty? Nope (and neither does anyone else) because we have finite minds attempting to understand an infinite God. One day we will see as we are seen and will known as we are known. Think about this; God wants the best for us and He’s planned out the best. If I want the best for me, what will I do? Perhaps I will get in on God’s program because I know He knows what’s best. He has more than just a plan.
c. His Power – Be clear about the fact that God possesses the power to do whatever He plans. Where He guides, He provides. Don’t be deceived about it. When the 3 Hebrews boys were thrown into the fire, when Daniel was put in the lion’s den, and when Jesus was laid in a borrowed tomb, God showed up and showed out! Don’t ever get fuzzy on this truth; God always has the power. Generally, we do not have a problem saying this or saying that we ‘believe’ this, but do we live like we believe this? As long as things are good, God’s got the power. However, when the economy takes a nose dive is our faith and trust shaken? God has the power no matter what your circumstance. God wants us to be clear & not deceived.