Thriving in a Hostile World Message Series

THRIVING IN A HOSTILE WORLD
(Book of James)

Part 7 – Which News Are You Listening To?
James 1:21-25

March 29, 2020
Libin Abraham, Pastor of MultiSite

 

James 1:21-25 So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls.  22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.  23 For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror.  24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like.  25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it. (NLT)

 

1. Our Posture Toward God’s Word

A. Clean Heart

James 1:21 So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives,

Psalm 119:36  Incline my heart to your testimonies, and not to selfish gain! (ESV)

B. Open Mind

James 1:21 So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts,

1. There are three mindsets we can have about the Word of God:

a. We can live above the Word of God: My word is superior to God’s Word.

b. We can live beside the Word of God: My word is equal to God’s Word.

c. We can live under the Word of God.  My word is surrendered to God’s Word.

2. Mark 4:20 And the seed that fell on good soil represents those who hear and accept God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!

3. Psalm 119:18 Open my eyes to see the wonderful truths in your instructions.

4. Questions that open our minds to God’s Word:

a. What is this passage teaching me about God?

b. What is this passage teaching me about myself?

c. What sins are there for me to avoid or confess?

d. What promise or command is there for me to obey?

C. Ready Hands

James 1:22  But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says.  Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.

Conviction changes what we do, not just how we feel.

 

2. The Benefits of hearing and obeying God’s Word

A. God’s Word will Rescue us.

James 1:21  So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls.

1. Psalm 94:19  When my anxious thoughts multiply within me, Your consolations delight my soul. (NASB)

When I worried about many things, your assuring words soothed my soul. (GWT)

2. James 1:25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free

3. “I feel sorry for people who do not read the Bible every day;  I wonder why they deprive themselves of the strength and of the pleasure.  It is one of the most singular books in the world, for every time you open it, some old text that you have read a score of times suddenly beams with a new meaning.  There is no other book I know of, of which this is true; there is no other book that yields its meaning so personally, that seems to fit itself so intimately to the very spirit that is seeking its guidance.”  (President Woodrow Wilson)

B. God’s Word will increase our joy.

James 1:23-25  For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror.  24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like.  But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.

Psalm 112:6-9  Those who are righteous will be long remembered.  7 They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the Lord to care for them.  8 They are confident and fearless and can face their foes triumphantly.  9 They share freely and give generously to those in need.  Their good deeds will be remembered forever.  They will have influence and honor. (NLT)