Summary: What matters the most in our walk with God? Faith is not just metnal acknowledgement of the living God but actions to affirm him in our lives.
Did you ever wonder where that expression The Real McCoy comes from? According to the folks at phrases.org, nobody really knows for sure. Several possibilities are often cited.
• Some think it came from the advertisements for a brand of Scottish whiskey from the 1870’s. To combat cheap imitators, the distiller promoted its drink as the “Real McCoy.”
• Others point to Kid McCoy, a welterweight boxing champion from the late 1800’s. So many lesser fighters traded on his name, the promoters resorted to calling the champ “the Real McCoy.”
• Another possibility is Elijah McCoy, a Canadian inventor of engine lubricants that became popular with steam engines. When lower quality substitutes became common, he patented his product. It became known as the “Real McCoy.”
Whatever the origin of the term, we know what it means—the genuine article, the real deal! (Roger Thomas; “Real McCoy; SermonCentral.com)
Our Tendency to Summarize:
• Moses received 613 Commands (365 negative; 248 positive)
• David Reduced to 11 – Psalm 15
• Isaiah reduced to 6 – Isaiah 33.15
• Micah reduced to 3 – Micah 6.8
• Amos reduced to one – Amos 5.4
• Habakkuk also had tone – Habakkuk 2.4
22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
26 If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless. 27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
Some Observations from our text:
I. Don’t Sit, DO – (22-25)
Several years back, the annual convention of The American Heart Association met in Atlanta. That year 300,000 doctors, nurses, and researchers gathered to discuss, among other things, the importance a low fat diet plays in keeping our hearts healthy. Some smart-aleck researcher did some checking around and found that during meal times, those people consumed fat-filled fast food—such as bacon cheeseburgers and fries—at about the same rate as people from other conventions.
When one cardiologist was asked whether or not his partaking in high fat meals set a bad example, he replied, "Not me, because I took my name tag off." (source: Boston Globe [11-10-93] as quoted in PreachingToday.com)
A. New Birth Leads to New Life
1. New birth by implanted word – James 1.18
2. Receive and DO (1.22-27)
B. Dangerous Uses of the Word
1. Intellectualizing – only head knowledge
a. Great debate – Study or Do?
b. Which is worse:
Which is worse?
*No elders in a congregation – OR –
*Not knowing to have elders in a congregation?
*You get the same results
**We should know AND men should be developing their lives to serve as shepherds
[Men of leisure (Batlanim) in synagogues – not to be esteemed as idle or lazy but were not encumbered by worldly affairs so they were at leisure to take care of the affairs of the synagogue and could give themselves to the study of Torah. The number in a synagogue was to be 10.
2. Ritualizing It – empty externals
a. External rituals are not adequate
b. The Mirror of the Perfect/Complete Torah (Law)
1) Reflects our sins – Romans 3.20
Correct/Groom/Perfect our Behavior
2) Perfected by Yeshua (Jesus) – Matthew 5.17
3) Torah Brings Liberty (James 2.12)
We are not serving God and keeping his commands/laws out of fear as slaves but out of love as sons
3. Forgetting It
“It is one thing to mark our bible; it is quite another to let it have its mark on us.”
a. We are judged by Faith IN Yeshua (Jesus) – Acts 8.36-38; 16.30-34
b. We are Judged by our Actions of Faith – Matthew 25.31-45
The story is told of Franklin Roosevelt, who often endured long receiving lines at the White House. He complained that no one really paid any attention to what was said.
One day, during a reception, he decided to try an experiment. To each person who passed down the line and shook his hand, he murmured, "I murdered my grandmother this morning." The guests responded with phrases like, "Marvelous! Keep up the good work. We are proud of you. God bless you, sir."