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Summary: Part 6 of our James series

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Bona Fide

A study of James

Part 6

“ Just do it”

How many of you have ever put anything together without reading the instructions?

How many times has this worked out with less than perfect results?

Most things in life require instructions

Things that seem so simple to us now as adults

Were once difficult tasks

Tying your own shoes

Going to the bathroom by yourself

All second nature for most of us now

But even these simple things required instruction at one time in our lives

Think about trying to bake a cake or a pan of cornbread without a recipe

Or build a building with a blueprint

Even easy things like putting together a bicycle for Christmas

Or tying a knot

Require some form of instruction

Without instructions

We could very well have ended up sitting here in diapers

With our shoes untied this morning

Without instruction we could build building that look like the leaning tower of Pizza

Or bake cakes that looked and tasted more like mud pies than dessert

And I shudder to think of the two seated

Three wheeled bicycles sitting under the tree on Christmas morning

You see

We need instructions

But

In order for those instructions to be effective

We need to listen to them

Or read them

But even more so we must apply them

Simply reading them

Or hearing them

And then

Going on our way

Is a recipe for a mess

Or even a disaster in some cases

--- Pause--

If we can agree here this morning that

Instructions have value

If we can agree on the importance of reading, listening to and using the instructions in the areas of everything to personal hygiene to building construction

Why do we have so much trouble following God’s instructions for our lives?

Today we will continue on our quest to connect the dots that James

Lays out for us

To help us become Bona Fide Believers in Christ

Those believers that the world sees as Genuine

The Real deal

We have looked at trials, storms and wrecks. Their causes and our reactions to them

We have studied about testing and temptations

Endurance and perseverance

Standing firm and wavering

Allowing ourselves to be blown by the wind

---Pause---

In the last couple of weeks

We have looked at our own hearts

Prayerfully with a discerning eye

And discovered that our temptation to sin comes from our own hearts and our own desires

God uses the wrecks that surrender causes

And Old slick uses our temptation against us to attempt to lure us away

But the temptations themselves come from inside of us

Then we connected yet another dot

Actually 3 more dots

As we learned that in order to be Bona Fide

And in order to show the love of Jesus

We must be quick to listen

Active listening we called that

And slow to speak

Meaning we need to engage our hearts and minds before engaging our mouths

Then we discussed the two types of anger

Righteous anger

Things that go against God and his word

And Human Anger

We saw how we must not sin in either type

But focused on the fact that the anger that comes from our hearts

Never pleases God

And actually hurts the cause for Christ

Today

James

Continues this line of teaching

He continues

Drawing dots

That he knows

When connected

Will produce actions, words and thoughts that are pleasing to God

Please open your bibles to James 1

James 1:22-25

Let me read this passage in context

In its entirety

Then we can break it down and apply it to our lives

22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. 23 For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. 24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. 25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.”

Verse 22 a

“But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says.”

In simple terms James says follow the instructions

If you want the results that God has for you

If you want all he has for you

Follow the instructions

A little quick history lesson

In the time of this writing few had the ability to read and even fewer had their own copies of scripture

So the word was read aloud, listened to and memorized

Today it is unusual for someone not to be able to read

And it is also unusual for someone not to have a copy of God’s word of their own if they want one

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