Summary: Thesis of the book of James: His focus is on “How a Christian should act every day?” and “The importance of living like a Christian every day”. He challenges us and the church that it is possible to believe the right way and live the wrong way.
Series: Book of James: Let’s do this! Just do it!
James- A Servant of the Lord – Some thoughts we need to ponder?
Thesis of the book of James: His focus is on “How a Christian should act every day?” and “The importance of living like a Christian every day”. He challenges us and the church that it is possible to believe the right way and live the wrong way.
Opening Verse: James 1:1 “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes scattered among the nations: Greetings.”
Key verse of sermon James 1:22: "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
Key Verse of James: James 1:27 “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”
The author of James: Who wrote the book of James?
The author of James was the brother of Jesus. It’s important for you to remember that James did not become a disciple of Jesus until after Jesus’ resurrection and before the day of Pentecost in Acts 1:13. We know that prior to the resurrection Jesus’ family at one point tried to get him to stop doing His ministry. I am sure James was part of this and desired to bring his brother back to His senses.
James the ½ brother of Jesus was one of Joseph’s kids. Many in the Roman Catholic and Armenian Orthodox churches claim that James “the ½ brother of Jesus” was “James the less” the reason they promote this teaching is because of their claim that Mary the mother of Jesus was always a virgin. When she was promoted to Holy Mary the early influence of Docetism claimed her to be a virgin because they believed intercourse to be sinful. So they claimed Mary was without sin. But the Apostle Paul in Galatians 1:19, makes it clear that James was the ½ brother of Jesus.
Paul had many different meetings with James. James was the one who specifically commissioned Barnabas and Paul to go preach to the Gentiles. They also reported the news of the revival among the Gentiles to James. James was considered the chairman or elder of the church in Jerusalem and one of the pillars of the early church.
T.S.- James life and death reveal to us that He practiced what he wrote in this letter to the church.
I. Just do it – let’s do it – let's do this - we need to pray and spiritually lead through the trials and tribulations of life (James 1:1-18)!
a. James the ½ brother of Jesus calls himself a servant, a slave of the Lord and his character trait of being a prayer warrior follows his life and legacy. He in this letter challenges us to grow spiritually through the difficulties of life.
i. James was nick named “Old Camel Knees” according to Peterson. He states, “James carried the nickname ‘Old Camel Knees’ because of the thick calluses built up on his knees from many years of determined prayer’ (563).
ii. Quote on prayer: “Prayer is an unnatural activity. “From birth we have been learning the rules of self-reliance as we strain and struggle to achieve self-sufficiency. Prayer flies in the face of those deep-seated values. It is an assault on human autonomy, an indictment of independent living. To people in the fast lane, determined to make it on their own, prayer is an embarrassing interruption. Prayer is alien to our proud human nature. And yet somewhere, someplace, probably all of us reach the point of falling to our knees, bowing our heads, fixing our attention on God and praying. We may look both ways to be sure that no one is watching; we may blush; but in spite of the foreignness of the activity, we pray” “Too busy NOT to pray; slowing down to be with God” Bill Hybels
iii. McBirnie Notes, “Prayer was his constant business and delight. He seemed to live upon it and to trade in nothing but the frequent returns of conversation with Heaven” (187,188).
iv. To be a slave of Jesus means that you communicate with the Master. You communicate with Him and ask what He wants you to do. You discover that the only way you know what to do is by being on your knees with Him.
1. One of the signs of a spiritually mature person is one who knows how to pray. Because this is what brings wisdom to a leaders life and a believers life. This is what sustains them with joy through the trials and tribulations of life.
2. James was a pillar in the early church because he knew the importance of prayer.