James 4

James 4:1-17

1 Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members?

2 You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask.

3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.

4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

5 Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”?

6 But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “GOD RESISTS THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE.”

7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

9 Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.

10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.

11 Do not speak evil of one another, brethren. He who speaks evil of a brother and judges his brother, speaks evil of the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge.

12 There is one Lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy. Who are you to judge another?

13 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”;

14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.

15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.”

16 But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.

17 Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.

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ps
ps
Admin
6 months ago

In the fulfillment of both needs and passions/desires, the heart is known by the chosen course of action. Where the gratification is sought after through personal striving ,contention, and even asking, there is only frustration and disappointment with the outcome. When the heart is driven by fellowship with the world and its evil enticements, it cannot have the rewards that only come from fellowship and nearness to God. In the discovery of God’s goodness, though, there is an opportunity to abandon pursuits of passions that only corrupt for submission to a way that is overflowing in abundance at the Master’s side. The pattern of following earthly passions is an impossible stronghold to overcome. Those cravings have deep roots from many encounters with the world’s deceptions. The solution, however, isn’t to attempt offloading them alone. The power to be free of them will come in the tasting of something much better, discovering a fixation that will completely displace those destructive ones. Drawing near to God results in the yielding of all those prideful means of gratification for trust in what only He can produce. It may initially appear that certain worldly treasures are lost, but what is found at His side is not only their provision without sorrow, but an endless production of emotional and spiritual abundance that overwhelms any loss with exhorbitance of true life. In the pursuit of life and its plans, how much better to defer to its Giver and a wisdom that is not full of risks and disappointment.

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