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Summary: This portion of the book of James focuses in on our attitude towards the person of God Himself. James is asking the question of God’s participation in our thoughts and actions. Do we put ourselves above our creator, and do we disregard God in our planni

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ARE WE USURPING GOD?

James 4:11-17 Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. 12 There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you--who are you to judge your neighbor? 13 Now listen, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money." 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, "If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that." 16 As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil. 17 Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins.

INTRODUCTION: This portion of the book of James focuses in on our attitude towards the person of God Himself. James is asking the question of God’s participation in our thoughts and actions. Do we put ourselves above our creator, and do we disregard God in our planning.

1. ARE YOU DISREGARDING THE WORD OF GOD?

James 4:11-12 Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. 12 There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you--who are you to judge your neighbor?

a. First and foremost the grammar of the text tells us to “stop slandering one another.”

i. James has concluded that those he is writing to are actively involved in this kind of activity.

ii. So, when James asked the question, “do you?” We are forced to answer, “yes we do.”

1. We speak prejudicially when we do it.

2. We speak prejudicially when we allow others around us to speak in this fashion (we become the hearers)

iii. We need to understand that we are guilty whether we are the speaker or the receiver. Let me give you another example.

1. Ephesians 5:18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.

2. Habakkuk 2:15 "Woe to him who gives drink to his neighbors, pouring it from the wineskin till they are drunk, so that he can gaze on their naked bodies.

b. The nature of speaking against another.

i. Speaking the truth in an unkind manner

ii. Spreading gossip

iii. Murmuring – hushed complaints against God or others because of circumstances. a complaint with a critical spirit that harbors a negative attitude towards the situation or the people involved.

iv. Backbiting – speaking against something with the goal of reducing its effectiveness

c. The effect of slander is that it puts The creature in the position of the creator!

i. God says HE ALONE is the lawgiver

ii. God says we have no right to judge our neighbor in this fashion.

d. We need to understand that a judgmental attitude is not spiritual growth


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