Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Bible Study ~ James 4:11-5:6

James 4:11-5:6

*Who is it about? Who should we learn more about? Us or God?

*Who is James talking to? (Professing believers, but by their actions they did not look like believers.)

*In verses 4:4-6 James impresses upon his readers the importance and urgency of the decision to follow Christ. He writes with “a stronger conviction of the seriousness of sin than most of us are willing to hold.” Did they want friendship with God or friendship with the world?

*Verses 4-6 emphasizes God's requirements of Christians/ explains what a Christian would look like. He challenges them to search their hearts and know where they are with God. This begins with repentance, and is only achieved through grace from God.

* “James has a problem: his readers are being corrupted by bitter envy and selfish ambition leading to fights and quarrels. He has a goal: to help them learn to live in love and at peace with each other. Therefore he has a prescription for them: repentance.” Rather than judging others, we should remember God's rightful judgment and mercy towards forgiven sinners, and extend the same to others.

* “To what extent is your life directed by the knowledge that Christ is coming back?” Much of our thinking and behavior is shaped by what we can see of present circumstances or past events. Yet Scripture speaks forcefully of Christ's return as a fact that should be directing how we live now. Christians are to be motivated by the certainty of this future event.

*How would your life look differently if you really believed that Jesus was coming back tonight in righteous judgment?

Bible Study credits: Terri Stellrecht