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Summary: This sermon analyzes some of the problems and some of the solutions regarding having peace in our relationships.

This passage points us toward some of the

causes and some solutions concerning the

lack of peace we often deal with in our

relationships (see v. 1).

I. What’s Your Problem?

James identifies some of the causes

of the problems we face. He deals

with several, but let’s limit

ourselves to three and the common

statements that often accompany them.

A. “If it feels good, I want it.”

- vv. 1b, 3b.

Although pleasure is a part of God’s

creation, when we make it our primary goal,

we inevitably will have conflicts. I will be

primarily concerned with what brings me

pleasure, while you will be concerned with

what brings you pleasure.

B. “If someone else has one, I want it.”

- v. 2 (“. . .covet and cannot obtain”).

Our striving after possessions and our

placing materialism on the throne of our

lives will create conflicts as we love things

and use people instead of using things and

loving people.

C. “God will help me get what I want.”

- vv. 2b-3.

We come to believe that God is the “eternal

Santa Claus” who is there to fulfill our every

whim. This creates conflict in our

relationship with God.

II. The Root of the Problem

The root of the problem is spiritual adultery.

- vv. 4-5.

We have run after other gods and made other

things number one in our lives. Just as a

spouse committing adultery has been

unfaithful to his vows, so too we have been

unfaithful to our covenant with God.

III. What Can We Do?

A. Quit being so full of yourself.

- vv. 6-7a, 10.

Humbling ourselves and refusing to see

ourselves as the center of everything is an

excellent start. How much better our

relationships will be when we have a spirit

of humility.

B. Quit riding the fence.

- vv. 7b-8.

It’s time to pick a side and fight. For too

long we have believed we could serve God

on Sunday and then hang out with the Devil

the rest of the week.

C. Quit being flippant about your part in all

this.

- v. 9.

This verse does not speak of the spirit in

which all of our Christian life should be

lived. Rather, it speaks of the spirit of heart

we should have when we realize that so

much of the lack of peace in our lives comes

from our lack of putting God in the proper

place in our lives.


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