Summary: How God proves us with tests.
James 1:2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3. knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
Have you ever really stopped and considered that God’s Word is telling us to count it all joy when we are in a test? We have been told to count it all joy, or we would most likely certainly not count it all joy would we? Many or most Christians would not. There is a reason we should be so joyful in extreme circumstances. When our faith is tried, patience is perfected. James explains this in vs. 4. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
W.E. Vines says perfect signifies "having reached its end" (telos), "finished, complete, perfect." Also referring to the complete revelation of God’s will and ways, whether in the completed Scriptures or in the hereafter); Jas. 1:4 (of the work of patience)
This is the same word used in 1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.
So who would like to be perfected? James is telling us right here how we become that way.
Basically, we have to grow up in the things of God. In order to do this we have to be tested. If you are not tested you will never develop patience, and if you never develop patience you will never be lacking nothing. I know that is a mouthful, but that is the short and long of it. If you want to grow up in the things of God you have to go through some tests. This is the way our faith is developed. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God, but that faith has to be used or it is of no use to anybody, not to you, not to your family, not to your brothers and sister in Christ, and not to God. Know this, without faith it is impossible to please Him.
Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
Patience is another way of saying endurance, meaning the ability to stand and keep on standing when all are falling around you.
Without this kind of patience we will not continue to stand in faith, and if that happens we will definitely be found wanting. That is a very serious thing to consider, especially in these times.
That is not what God wants for His children. He wants us to be perfect and entire or complete, lacking nothing or He would not be telling us these things. That is what we should want as well. However getting there is not always fun. We need patience to get there, and getting there should be of primary focus in our lives. Our patience should be perfected so that our faith will not fail in the day of adversity.
The Apostle Peter said this…
1 Peter 1:5 who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6. In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7. that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8. whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9. receiving the end of your faith the salvation of your souls.
Peter said our faith is much more precious than gold that perishes or basically, it decomposes with time. Think about why the Word is calling your faith precious. It is precious for a reason, and he says here that though it is tested by fire, that it may be found to praise and honor and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ. That is something precious to God. He went to tremendous lengths to get us redeemed. Jesus Christ paid the ultimate price for our redemption, there could be no greater price paid than was paid by Jesus. However having said that, it will do us no good if we won’t receive it and take advantage of the exceeding great and precious promises that God has given to us through Christ. That’s why our faith is so important. God wants us to receive these promises and the only way you can do that is through faith.