THE FINAL WORDS OF JAMES PART TWO
The final words of James Part TwoThe Apostle James cautions us against swearing. Our honestly should be enough so we should not have to add on to, "I swear to God" or "I swear to you" because God calls this a very grievous sin. It does not make any sense to add on to honesty because then it becomes dishonest. Our yes or no in a conversation should be sufficient. By the way I am not saying that we should limit our responses to yes or no because the other person may think we are some kind of a robot. The Bible is saying the add on of swearing is very damaging to the heart, our relationship with God and other people.James spoke of this because profane swearing was very customary among the Jewish people. We need to honor God and not throw contempt on His name or authority. I hear people take the Lord's name in vain but they do not realize that by doing this God gets placed on the level with the common things in life when in fact Jesus Christ is Supreme and far above His Creation. If we do not let our yes be yes and our no be no then we are fearful of being suspected of falsehood which could lead into swearing. Saying curse words is something different than what I am talking about but the moral is honesty with good character will win in the end.Then the Apostle James writes about our various two states in life which would be prosperity or affliction. We should pray when we are suffering and we should praise God when we are merry. James is talking about the seasons of the good (praise) and bad (prayer).God does send us trials so we as Christians should seek Jesus Christ very early out at the inception of the suffering. If we wait to long we are confessing that we can handle the problem ourselves. This would be an example of misguided confession. The most prominent reason God sends us afflictions is because we are neglecting Him but there could be many other motives that we are not even aware of such as Jesus Christ Himself priming us for a task on behalf of the Kingdom of God. We will always have issues in our pain so all the more reason to engage in prayer. God desires us to have faith and hope in Him but we will never get there alone so intercession is the obvious answer. If we are merry and feeling good praising the Lord is a wise course of action because our joy should be holy and consecrated to God.The Apostle James does give instructions for the sick. The responsibility is on them to send for the ministers because they are the ones that desire assistance and prayers. We all as believers in Christ have assignments before God and to other people but if this is your call then praying over this sick person is your responsibility and accountability. This ill person is to be anointed with oil but please understand that it is the prayer that is the instrument of healing. For this to be successful the person doing the praying must have faith in Jesus Christ for the well being of this sick person.The promise is already given that this person's sins will be forgiven in verse fifteen but that does not mean the person praying should not be pleading before God that everyone's sins can be forgiven because this is a serious issue before God and should not be taken lightly. Remember sin is the root of the sickness so if it is pardoned the affliction will be removed only because of the mercy of God. If it is a gradual healing the same rule applies. If God chooses to take this person on home to glory obviously we do not choose when we come into this world or when we leave so praise God because he or she is dancing on the streets of gold.We as Christians are then told we should confess our faults to one another. I do not usually see this in the church because we are supposed to be spiritual. The faults are probably referring to how we may have caused someone else to stumble. If successful our spirit becomes calmer because no sincere Christian wants this on their conscience. If a brother reveals a sin in his life we should be willing to pray for that courageous person who left himself venerable as a plea for help. We should expect the same from our brothers. A sister in Christ if at all possible should confess to another sister. The crossing of male and female could be a conflict of interest if most people in the church are married. It could be misunderstood. The actual person saying the prayer should be living right before the Lord and the intercession needs to be fervent.The Apostle James then mentions Elijah who was a Godly man but had his infirmities. I can assure you when he prayed this warrior for God did not look at his own merit but the grace of God. He will be one of the two witnesses in the future seven year tribulation. He never died but was raptured up to heaven. When Elijah was in prayer he prayed. His intercession was so strong that God withheld rain from earth for three and a half years and then he prayed again and this time it rained. Most Christian's prayer life is not so much in the miracle realm but a witness of the grace of God in our spirit so do not feel less spiritual if something spectacular does not happen.Verses nineteen and twenty are the last verses in the book and may very well be the most merciful verses in the book. If a person errs from the faith just to be there is something I usually do not see in life. This special person is being used as an instrument of saving a soul from death. It does not matter if this misguided person is strong in personality or weak in their disposition because either way he or she needs to be confronted. Ask God for wisdom based on their personality how to come across with the spirit of love.Being in error in their relationship with Jesus Christ is either in opinion or the practice of their life. We are gently converting them back to their walk of faith but this is the work of God. We are just the vessels. If we fail in converting them then we must go to our prayer room and pray that God convert them through His Son Jesus Christ. If we are erring in the truth we are erring in our way but if we are abiding in Jesus Christ then His countenance will come out in our spirit and our "Way" is in the will of God.Christians will differ in opinions but I am talking about those slants that lead us away from God. What we want to see is their conversation of life changed or the way they live which should be for Jesus Christ. This person should come to true repentance before God so a multitude of sins be hid. The grace of God is so wonderful because I think of all the transgressions I committed in my life and I know that I know that they are all forgiven because I engaged in true repentance to God through His Son Jesus Christ.If you do not know the Lord do not try and hid or cover your sins because the only effective way according to God through His Son Jesus Christ is to repent and forsake them. Now may be a good time to accept Jesus Christ into your heart as your personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting the Son of God into your life. I hope and pray that you just made that all important eternal decision not only for your life but to be able to enter into heaven when you die or at the time of the rapture (whatever comes first).God Bless you,Bob D.