Summary: Sermon from James 3:13-18 on True Wisdom and Spiritual Maturity
PRACTICAL CHRISTIAN LIVING #7
Godly Wisdom and Spiritual Maturity
James 3:13 Who is wise and has understanding among you? He should show his works by good conduct with wisdom’s gentleness. 14 But if you have bitter envy and selfish ambition in your heart, don’t brag and deny the truth. 15 Such wisdom does not come from above but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where envy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every kind of evil. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peace-loving, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without favoritism and hypocrisy. 18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who cultivate peace.
INTRO: This morning we will continue in this series through the Book of James on Practical Christian Living. The Book of James was written to help us understand our relationship with God, and our relationship with each other better; to help us attain spiritual maturity; and to teach us how to live out our Christian faith.
Let's review what we've learned so far in this series:
In week 1 we learned who James was, whom his letter was written to, the purpose it was written, and the importance of this teaching.
In week 2 we learned that our faith will be tested, how to overcome trials, and how to transform the trials of life into triumphs.
In week 3 we learned that God calls us to be doers of His Word and not merely hearers - the blessing comes from the doing, not the hearing.
In week 4 we were warned about the destructive sin of favoritism, prejudice, racism - we learned how God is not partial, and we learned how a Christian should properly relate to others who are different from us. We learned to recognize that although we may look differently, or come from different places, or belong to different socio-economic groups, we are all ONE in the Body of Christ
In week 5, we learned that faith and works go hand in hand. A faith that does not produce the work of Christ within us, is no faith at all. Real faith will always produce the work of Christ. Our faith must be demonstrated through our works.
Last week, we learned that God expects His people to control the use of our tongues. We looked at some of the most common ways in which we abuse the gift of speech. We also learned the proper way that God expects us to use our words in a positive manner. This is an extremely important issue that we must get right. If you weren't here last week, I encourage you to go to our Facebook page or website and watch this message. Not only to watch it, but allow the Holy Spirit speak to you through the message as you are watching.
As we continue to move forward through this series, this morning we will ask and answer 3 important questions: 1) What is true wisdom and where does it comes from? 2) What are the problems created by a lack of wisdom? and, 3) What will true wisdom produce in our lives?
One powerful truth that I want you to get from today's message, is that True Wisdom and Spiritual Maturity go hand in hand. You can't have one without the other. In fact, as we will see through the course of today's message, Spiritual Maturity is the one true sign that a person has received and is walking in the true wisdom of God. You can't reach Spiritually maturity without True Godly wisdom. And, only true wisdom produces maturity, which in turn effects every aspect of our life, from our thought process to our outward actions, including our speech.
I. WHAT IS TRUE WISDOM AND WHERE DOES IT COME FROM?
James 3:13 Who is wise and has understanding among you? He should show his works by good conduct with wisdom’s gentleness.
A. True Wisdom is the ability to apply the knowledge of God's Word.
There's a lot of misconception when it comes to what wisdom and knowledge are, and the role each play in our life. They are both interconnected and inseparable. Yet, play distinctly different roles. Let's compare the difference between wisdom and knowledge:
Knowledge is the accumulation of facts. It is something we obtain throughout our life (or should). I believe that each of us should be committed to being a life-long learner. We obtain knowledge through several various means such as reading, watching, or personal experience. Studying our Bibles each day, participating in weekly small group Bible studies, and listening closely and taking notes during the weekly sermon, are some of the most common ways that we can obtain knowledge of God, His will and His ways.
Wisdom is knowing how to properly apply the knowledge we have obtained from God's Word into every situation in life. It is the God-given ability to make correct judgements and decisions based on the truth of His Word.