Summary: Patient endurance means to stay where you are, continue doing good, and being unmovable even when you really feel like running, hiding and giving up! A patient believer knows that God has not left him nor forsaken him. God’s help is on the way, and He wil
Intro: James is speaking to suffering believers in 1:3-4 when he told them, "Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect & complete, lacking nothing.” Thrice in our text in Chap. 5, James told his readers of the Lord’s coming (vv. 7, 8, 9). And he exhorted them to be patient until His return. In our text today, James gives us three people as illustrative examples of patient endurance.
I. THE FARMER (vv. 7-9)
A. An impatient person cannot be a farmer. I have met many farmers but I have never met impatient ones. Notice –
1. They must be patient with the soil. The farmer must pain and toil preparing the soil to sow the seed. With no irrigation, Jewish farmers would till after the early rains.
2. They must be patient with the seed. Some seeds are weak and sickly; some are eaten by birds and pests.
3. They must be patient with the season. Too much sun or too much rain is a sure way to destroy the crops.
B. Why does the farmer willingly wait so long?
1. Verse 7 tells us because the fruit is “precious.”
2. Harvest time brings rewards from the farmland and guarantee next crop (I Cor. 9:10; II Tim. 2:6).
C. The believer, like farmers, waits for a spiritual harvest of precious souls and good deeds (Gal 6:7; II Cor. 9:6).
1. Your months and years spent in patient endurance only means that God is preparing a good harvest in our lives.
2. God desires fruit as we plant the seed of the Gospel.
3. God desires the fruit of the Spirit in our lives.
D. We must remember that after planting the farmer does not just stand around doing nothing. He is always working.
E. Notice in verse 9 James exhorts believers to “Grudge not one against another…” Grumbling is visible impatience.
1. Impatient with God. So many times in our Christian walk we become impatient and disappointed with God. Give God a chance to complete in you what He wills in His time.
2. Impatient with fellowmen. The truth is, when you become impatient with God, it will overflows against others. Show me someone impatient with men, and I’ll show you someone having patience problems with God!
II. THE PROPHETS (v.10)
A. These early believers would have been familiar with this example of OT prophets. When we read how these faithful servants suffered, it teaches us that God is still in control.
B. Those prophets teach us an important truth. Even though they were in the will of God, yet they suffered.
1. They were proclaiming their message in “the name of the Lord.” See their example of faith in Heb. 11:32-38.
2. Suffering is sometimes due to your faithfulness and service to God. But how many of us can truly accept that?
C. The prophets encourage us by reminding us that God cares for those who suffer for His sake.
1. Someone once said “the will of God will never lead you to a point where the grace of God cannot keep you.”
2. As the apostle Paul said; “God’s grace is sufficient.”
III. JOB (v.11)
A. Job is the classic example of a man that patiently endured suffering and was blessed by God for his faith.
B. James reminds the believer there are blessings for those who persevere. But the road to prosperity is adversity!
C. Job lost all he had except a nagging wife and three self-righteous friends (Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar).
D. Job did not understand what the causes of his suffering were. He did not know what was going on behind the scenes with God & Satan, yet Job endured patiently.
E. See Job’s reaction in Job 1:20-22.
Conclusion: Patient endurance means to stay where you are, continue doing good, and being unmovable even when you really feel like running, hiding and giving up! A patient believer knows that God has not left him nor forsaken him. God’s help is on the way, and He will not let down the righteous who trust and hope in Him. May we all have the “patience of Job.”