Friday, October 28, 2011

Digging Deeper (James 1:19-21)

Digging Deeper 7          James 1:19-21 (Another shovel full)

God once again struck my heart this week with the thought of truth. It is very difficult for us define truth because it can only be defined by itself. Truth claims itself to be true but how can we know that it is true if the only evidence is the truth defining itself. I know, I am confused to, so Let me put it this way faith reveals truth. So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. Romans 10:17 For just a moment do not let truth be defined by a lie think of truth as something that is straight, pure, unmolested it really doesn’t have any motive it is simply true, it is what it is and nothing else.
Without a pure sample we have no way to measure if something is contaminated. Jesus said I am the way the truth and the life. The Word of God is true not because we have proven it true but because it is the truth.
This week we dig a little deeper into the truth in the Book of James let’s pickup with 1:19 This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger. A couple points on this verse, first note who James is talking to, beloved brethren, so the following points are to fellow Christians. “Be quick to hear” the word hear in this phrase is more than just acknowledging a sound it has the connotation of understanding so the instruction here is to be ready to understand and when there is understanding the next two precepts come more readily, slow to speak, slow to anger.  We often describe someone with a quick temper as someone with the short fuse always ready to blow up at the least little thing.  This verse is not an instruction to never be angry there are certainly times that believers can and even should get angry when something comes against the holiness of God it should strike a chord in our heart. But most often our anger is kindled from pride something doesn’t sit right with us but being quick to hear and understanding the situation and not speaking quickly, saying things that we often regret, slows down the anger process. Why is this process so important? Why should I slow down and try to understand and not get angry “I have a right to be angry, I have been wronged!” really? Verse 20 for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God. Three important words to understand in verse 20 anger, man, and righteousness. Anger is the Greek word “orge” it means wrath as a state of mind with a purpose of revenge. Man the Greek word “aner” meaning male, the more prideful of the sexes. Righteousness “dikaiosune” that which is just. Man with a heart of wrath seeking revenge to satisfy his ego does not satisfy the justice of God.  
In verse 21 James brings some things together for us. Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls.
 Since these things do not satisfy the righteousness of God let’s put aside our filthiness and wickedness in humility. Often when someone is asked after they have struck out in anger if they thought it did any good they will say no but it made me feel better and that may be true but that means that the whole thing was about them and the instruction is to put all of it aside in humility. But pride must be destroyed to understand there is but one place that yields such understanding, “receive the word implanted” the Word of God is able to save the soul of man. It is the Word of God that gives us understanding so that we are ready to understand instead of being quick to speak and overcome with anger.
Now having dug a little deeper what do we believe?
What do we believe about God?
1.    God is the supplier of the salvation of our souls.
2.    God gives understanding.
3.    God alone is righteous.
What do we believe about ourselves?
1.    Seeking quickly to understand slows down the process of anger.
2.    Pride is most often our source of anger.
3.    Our anger does not bring the justice of God.
4.    Humility lays aside our filthiness and wickedness
5.    The implanted word is able to save our souls.

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