I find it hard to let go of reading this book. There's good strong teaching here, and a love for the religious elite who had come to faith. Religious leaders need this book as much today as ever.
You and I always have the option of asking God for wisdom. Will fulfilling the desire in these circumstances be for good, and God’s glory?
Have you ever bought a knock-off? It looks just like the real thing until it starts to unravel, or crack, or the zipper breaks. You may be kind of suspected that it was not the real deal, but . . . what a great price, right?
James letter was written possibly in the mid-to-late 50’s AD, more as a circular of wisdom and exhortation, to be passed from community to community, much like the letter written by the Jerusalem Council around 50 AD, recorded in Acts 15.
Rites of passage mark a transition, an in-between, where we have moved from what was and entered into what will be, but as prepared as we might think we are, we are not yet good at living the new iteration.
I picture these six men now looking at Jesus with wonder and perhaps a little fear. If what he said were true, then who was he really? How could they, ordinary men all, be standing here with one who connects heaven and earth?
Paul was determined to illustrate with his life the truth about freedom in Christ, that he was as unified with them in Spirit and in God’s word as he had always been.
Anytime you or I try to relate to God through performance, we have forgotten the Gospel. But you and I are to do everything out of love, out of compassion, out of a humble desire to sacrifice our own comforts in order to build each other up. If you and I believe in Jesus Christ and love the brethren, we will try not do things that offend.
Plenty of times you and I can feel imprisoned by our circumstances … there are all kinds of ways to find ourselves bound in chains, as Peter was, having to fall asleep between hostile guards.