Submit Yourselves to God Part 2
Brothers and Sisters… (James uses that phrase about 8 times before and after significant teachings in his book.)
James has been building up his teaching to invite us to a complete, wholehearted submission to God. In following Jesus, one of the hardest commands to follow is the simplest one: Love Your Neighbor. Yet why is this so difficult for us to do? We are prone to quarreling and fighting, harmful words and actions, one to another. What gives?
Last week James revealed that the source of our troubles are ‘the desires that battle within us.’ What are we to do? This week James says clearly, ‘Submit yourselves then to God.’ And then goes on to give 9 pithy commands for us to follow: resist the devil, draw near to God, wash our hands, purify our hearts, grieve, mourn, wail, change, and humble ourselves.
This brings up another question. How can we resist the devil or draw near to God? The answer brings us to the core of James’ main message, and therefore, God’s message to us: Our relationship with others is a reflection of our relationship with God and our relationship with God is to be reflected in our relationship with others. Therefore, “Submit yourselves then to God.”
James gives us amazing wisdom. More than that, it’s heavenly wisdom that leads to life. I’m ready for Sunday. Lord Jesus, your kingdom come and your will be done. Message for Sunday: Submit yourselves to God – Part II, James 4:7-12
Morgan’s notes from last Sunday’s message…