Summary: All of us have experienced trials and temptations in Life. What should we do in the midst of difficulty and what can we expect from the Tests of Life? James provides wisdom on handling the challenges of life.
THE TRUTH ABOUT TRIALS
Intro: How Many People Love to Take Tests?
With Persperation on your Forehead, and Sweat on your Palms, the Teachers Hand out the Test, with a Smile on their Face and say, “This is not intended to discourage you or make you nervous—It is simply to see what you know. IT’s a learning Experience.”
You know what is Funny about those Tests: The only questions that I missed were the ones that I Missed.
James Gives us Some incredible insight on the Tests and Trials of Life.
Trials are Essential for our Growth as Christians.
Maybe You are in a Trial Right now, Maybe you just got through One, or Maybe there is one in the distance.
WE all need to hear the Advice of James.
Notice the Links in the Text. It is like a Chain Linked Together.
Trials—Testing; Perseverance—Perseverance; Lacking—Lacks
Throughout James, There are 12 Obvious Connections to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount and 8 Close Connections.
Matthew 5:10-11, “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven”
Matthew 5:48→ BE Perfect as Your Father is Perfect.
The Greek Word means: TO TEMPT; TO TRY; TO TEST OR TO PROVE.
You have to understand that God uses Trials, Difficulties and Challenges in life to MAKE US STRONGER AND PURER.
When James Says, “TO FALL INTO TRIALS of Various Kinds”→ This is Not Yielding to Sin, but rather to Fall into an Unexpected Situation.
It is an Attack that You Don’t See Coming.
It means to Encounter a circumstance which Surrounds a Person Unexpectedly.
⇒IT IS A PICTURE OF BEING SURROUNDED ON ALL SIDES By TRIALS.
Luke 10:30→ The Story of the Man who Fell among the Theives.
This is An Unavoidable Situation.
APP. Maybe you are in Here this Morning and You are in a Situation that is Surrounding you. Personal, Marriage, Finances, Job, Sales, Family, or Future. Maybe a LOVED ONE.
How Should WE ACT when Were in a TRIAL?
I. THE PROPER ATTITUDE TOWARDS TESTING
A. JOY—Supreme Joy; Full Joy; Pure Joy; Joy to the Highest.
“Count it All Joy” → Consider It All Joy
What is Our NORMAL Response when we Face Trials in Life?
Negative, Upset, Disturbed.
We Have to Change the way we think about Trials.
How can We Remain Joyful when Facing such Trials as: Disease, Accidents, Pain, Sorrows, Disappointments, suffering, Pain, and Death?
How can We Be Joyful when we are Facing Seductions and Temptations in Life?
You Must Know that the Trials of Life are not Intended to Destroy, Defeat or Discourage us, but rather they are intended to Make you Stronger, To prove Us.
We Cant Remain on the Mountaintop Forever.
A Billy Graham said, “Mountaintops are for views and inspiration, but fruit is grown in the valleys.”
APP: We must understand what James is calling for here. He is not suggesting some kind of Superficial happiness in the hurts and losses of life.
He is not saying that we are to enjoy being sick, losing a loved one, getting laid off from our job, being persecuted, etc.
Some of us here today are hurting. We are suffering. James does not suggest that we manufacture some kind of other-worldly, phony sense of happiness about our troubles. So, what is he suggesting?
There is a reason to be joyful in the midst of trials. It is not being happy about the trouble. It is finding joy in what the trouble produces. It is enjoying the sweet fruit produced only by bitter times.
What is The Reason for our REJOICING?
II. THE POWERFUL OUTCOME OF TESTING
A. TESTING PURIFIES FAITH
Verse 3→ THE TESTING OF YOUR FAITH
James Explains the Purification Process:
APP: In the LXX, this word is used to describe the process of refining silver and Gold. Metal would be Heated in those Days and the Impurities would rise to the Surface. Our Faith, According to James, undergoes the same kind of Testing. The Trials of Life may be hard, but We profit from them because our Faith is Strengthened.
LISTEN TO PETER: 1 Peter 1:6-7
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE⇒ JOB
Job 1→ Satan was Looking for Someone to Test. God Said, “Have you Considered Job.”
God Pointed Out Job.
God is in the Business of Testing Us, Of Making Us More Like Him.
God Delights in us When We have Proved Ourselves Faithful to Him.
Job 23:8-10, “Behold, I go forward, but he is not there, and backward, but I do not perceive him; on the left hand when he is working, I do not behold him; he turns to the right hand, but I do not see him. But he knows the way that I take; when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.”