Summary: This is a sermon on James 5:7-11. It explains how we can become more patient in difficult times.
James was speaking to people in trial.
It can be difficult for us to be patient esp. when suffering.
I) AN ENCOURAGEMENT TO BE PATIENT Vss 7, 8
A) What is patience ?
"Patience is a calm endurance based on the certain knowledge that God is in control."
Vs 7,8 - Makroqumhwmakrothumeo - overhead.
Gr. word trans.- to bear long, suffer long, patiently endure
"Longsuffering is that quality of self-restraint in the face of provocation which does not hastily retaliate; it is the opposite of anger, and is associated with mercy. It is the quality that does not surrender to circumstances or succumb under trial; it is the opposite of despondency and is associated with hope.
B) What tests your patience ? (Interaction)
Bible teachers who talk too long
1) Long lines at the grocery store.
2) Working with computers.
3) Telemarketers at 5:00 P.M.
4) Driving in Los Angeles.
5) Baileys on the way to Church.
C) What does the Bible teach about patience ?
1 Cor 13:4 (NIV) Love is patient....
Proverbs 14:29 (NIV) A patient man has great understanding, but a quick-tempered man displays folly.
Ps 37:7-8 (NIV) 7 Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when men succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. 8 Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret-- it leads only to evil.
For years William Wilberforce pushed Britain’s Parliament to abolish slavery. Discouraged, he was about to give up. His elderly friend, John Wesley, heard of it and from his deathbed called for pen and paper.
With trembling hand, Wesley wrote: “Unless God has raised you up for this very thing, you would have been worn out by the opposition of men and devils. But if God be for you, who can be against you? Are all of them stronger than God?
“Oh be not weary of well-doing! Go on, in the name of God and in the power of his might, till even American slavery shall vanish away before it.”
Wesley died six days later. But Wilberforce fought for forty-five more years and in 1833 he saw slavery abolished in Britain. Three days later he died.
What if he would have given up ?
D) An example of patience - The farmer
Some give excuses for lack of patience :
1) I am (nationality).
2) God made me this way - impatient.
James encourages us to be patient - the farmer does it all the time.
Consider the farmer :
1) He has no control over the weather.
2) He waits a long time for results.
3) He works hard while waiting.
C. H. SPURGEON, At the Metropolitan Tabernacle, 1871
“Yes, the husbandman waits. He cannot push on the months; he cannot hasten the time of the harvest home; but he does not wait in silence; in sluggishness and negligence; he keeps to his work and waits too. So do you, O Christian men! wait for the coming of your Lord, but let it be with your lamps trimmed and your lights burning, as good servants attending to the duties of the house, until the master of the house returns to give you the reward. ...If I am a worker, I must look to God for the result, but then I must also use all the means. In fact, the Christian should work as if all depended upon him, and pray as if it all depended upon God.”
II) INSTRUCTIONS ON BEING PATIENT IN THE FACE OF SUFFERING Vs. 9
A) Don’t grumble
Grudge not, murmur not.
Greek - groan - a half-suppressed murmur of impatience not uttered aloud.
The opposite of patience is complaining.
What emotions do you feel when you are complaining ?
Frustration ? Discouragement ? Resentment ?
They usually result in anger.
What can I do when I am angry and want to complain ?
1) Ask - is this really worth getting angry about ?
Will it cause more problems than it solves ?
2) Control your anger - you have a choice
- You can recognize it, admit it, and express it properly.
3) Direct your anger at a thing not a person.
Don’t say “You make me angry”.
How can I be more patient ? Remember :
1) ...how patient God was and is with me.
2) ...to make allowances for each other.
3) ...patience is an act of worship.
4) ..nothing has come into my life God hasn’t allowed.
5) ...to see the eternal perspective.
6) ...don’t be discouraged, perseverance pays off.
When he was seven years old, his family was forced out of their home on a legal technicality, and he had to work to help support them.
* At age nine, his mother died.
* At 22, he lost his job as a store clerk.