Summary: Part 2 of our James series

“Bona Fide”

A study of James

Genuine Christian Living

Part 2

“The Heat is on”

James 1:1-4, 1:12-15

Years ago I decided that I needed to change my profession

This was years before I was a firefighter or a pastor

I was still making living working cattle ranches

I can tell you the life was a good one

But the wages were not


I decided to go to welding school in hope of increasing the size of my bank account

It turned out I was not very good at welding mostly due to my lack of patience

You see I wanted to build things


The teacher

Knew that in order to build things correctly

I had to learn to weld first

So the nights went like this

Run beads

Run beads

Run beads


Test them

You see he knew that in order to make a living as a welder

His students would have to be Bona Fide

And He knew in order for them to be Bona Fide

Their welds would have to withstand the pressure test

Many of you know how this works

But for those who don’t

The student would weld the prescribed pattern and then

The plates would be put into a bending machine

And a great amount of pressure would be applied

The Bona Fide welds would bend and not break

The non Bona fide

No matter how pretty they were would break

You see in order to pass the test

The welds and the welder had to withstand pressure

Extreme pressure

And not break

I think a lot about pressure

When training a colt we apply and release pressure

And the results are a well trained horse if the colt responds correctly to the application of pressure

A bronc if not

People are a lot like those welds and those colts

All people

Christian and no Christian alike

You see

The world applies pressure

And we either bend or break

As believers

Bona Fide believers

Pressure should show our faith

Not our lack of it

How we handle pressure as believers

Shows the world what we truly believe and where we place our trust

Let’s open up to the book of James this morning

James Chapter 1

Let me read verses 1-4 for you

You have heard these verses many times before


I believe we need to hear them again and again

As reminders as to how we become Bona Fide

James 1:2-4

2 Dear brothers and sisters,[a] when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

This verse always draws a wide range of responses from people

The level of your own spiritual growth

Or lack of it

Will determine how you react or respond to this verse

Or more importantly to pressure

Trials and troubles

Let me quickly remind you that James is writing to believers in this book

He does not go into deep theological teachings

He does not lay out the plan of salvation

He is talking to believers about how to live the real Christian life

The Bona Fide Christian Life

Oswald Chambers is quoted as saying

“The book of James is very simply asking- if you are saved, why do you keep living as if you were not?”

And he opens his letter with talking about how we should be thinking about




And troubles in our lives

I like to get real

Actually it is real that the word Bona Fide means

And it is realness that he covers so well in his book

So let’s get real

The world does not see troubles as a reason to rejoice

When cancer


And death

Show up

And fires and hurricanes


When finical problems

And kid problems

And job problems

And divorce

Rear their ugly heads

When life is not all honey and roses

And the happy ending that the fairy tales promise

Don’t happen

The world sees these things as tragedy

Many who had a little faith lose it

Many reject God altogether

Many fall into despair

And depression

Many just quit

In the form of substance abuse to kill the pain

And some even take what they feel to be the easy way out and take their own lives

But James says

Believers should react differently

He says

Bona Fide believers

Should look at these things as a reason for joy

The world wants to say

“Do what?”

It wants to say

“Yeah right”

It wants to say

“You have got to be joking”


“you must be on dope”

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