Sunday, September 23, 2018

The Book of James – Part 10: Submit Yourselves to God


The Book of James – Part 10:
Submit Yourselves to God
Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | www.PS127.org | www.TruthDigest.org

This Document is a Sermon Outline, you may hear the full audio of the actual sermon by following the link Online Audio Files located above for this, and other Full Sermon Audios.  For a complete list of Sermon Outlines, visit TruthDigest.org, or Truth Digest on facebook; for our Official Church website, visit PS127.org, or find us on facebook at House of Faith Church


SERMON INTRODUCTION
In the beginning of Chapter 4 in the Book of James, we read about James’ warning us not to be worldly.

He continues today, in verses 7-10 about what to do if you are worldly.

In this handful of verses, James will show us what God expects from us, and what we are to do about it.

Today we can take this word, and ask ourselves, “Am I submitting to God?”, “Are the things I do for God, or me?”


LAST WEEKS SERMON
Part 1 - Faith and Wisdom
Part 2 - Poverty and Riches
Part 3 - Endurance
Part 4 - Christian Living
Part 5 - Brotherly Love
Part 6 - Faith and Works
Part 7 - Taming of the Shrewd
Part 8 - True Wisdom
Part 9 - Worldliness


TODAY’S SERMON
Part 10 - Submit Yourselves to God



SCRIPTURE READING

James 4:7-10
 7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9 Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.


       I.            SUBMIT YOURSELVES TO GOD

a.      Submit yourselves to God
                                                             i.      There are those who act out submission, but do not truly surrender to the Lord
1.      They know the words, the actions, the outward expressions
2.      But no change has taken place in their heart
3.      They do not confess their sin
4.      Therefore they do not have true repentance
5.      Without repentance, there is no forgiveness
6.      Without forgiveness, there is no salvation
7.      One MUST submit to God as the first step if they expect forgiveness and a relationship with Him

                                                          ii.      One must submit to the plan He has provided {The Cross}
1.      First for your salvation
2.      then, for your guidance
3.      finally, to lead others to Him


b.     Resist the devil and he will flee
                                                             i.      We do this by keeping our focus on Christ and the cross, what He did for us there.  The same cross where Satan was defeated.

1.      Colossians 2:14-15 “Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.


                                                          ii.      If you are living in a sin, and you know it is a sin, you are not resisting the devil, but inviting him into your life.

1.      As long as you are inviting him in, he will never leave.
a.      Remember last week when we read the works of the flesh?

b.     Ephesians 5:3-6 3 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.”

c.      “neither filthiness, foolish talk or joking”

d.     “No whoremonger, nor unclean person, no covetous man who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ (salvation)

e.      “Do not be deceived...because of these things, comes the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.

2.      When you find yourself in sin...YOU MUST;
a.      Confess it!
b.     Ask the Lord for forgiveness
c.      REPENT, truly, showing fruit worthy of repentance (Matthew 3:8)
d.     You will be forgiven, and made clean...


c.      Come near to God and He will come near to you
                                                             i.      Run away from God {by ignoring His Word, His Spirit, the Lord’s commands} and God cannot come near you. YOU separate yourself from Him with sin, just as Adam did in the garden.

1.      When we work to come closer to God, He will be closer to us...in a relational way.

a.      We know God is everywhere, and cannot be physically closer, since He is everywhere.

b.     But in a relational way, we can be closer to Him.

c.      When we give 10% of ourselves to God and our relationship with Him, we get 10% of a relationship...
d.     If we give 90% of ourselves to a relationship with God, we will get 90%.

e.      We cannot give little of ourselves, and expect to receive all from Him...relationships do not work this way.

f.       Though there are many in this world today who try to live this way.  Giving so little and taking so much.

g.      They offer little to nothing of themselves, yet expect others to give their all to them.  God does not work this way, and neither do healthy proper relationships.



   II.            WASH YOUR HANDS
a.      After we submit ourselves to God and His will, we see the sin in our lives...and we realize we need to do something about it, now!


b.     Wash {purify} your hands {works, the “things you do”}
                                                             i.      You sinners
                                                          ii.      We need to CHANGE our works/actions!

                                                       iii.      James tells us here that we need to DO {our works} in a cleaned {purified} manner.
1.      He is speaking about the basic motivation behind our acts.

2.      When we recognize the sin in our lives, we see that all of our actions were done with selfish motivation.

a.      We help others...to be praised by them

b.     We give to charity and the poor...to FEEL better

c.      We say kind things...to make others like us

d.     Our actions all have selfish and self-centered motivation...and count for NOTHING in the Kingdom of God!

e.      BUT, these very same actions, done with the right motivation {to serve God and His will and purpose} purifies {washes} our hands {works}.


c.      Purify your hearts
                                                             i.      You double-minded
1.      Double-mindedness is the biggest threat to weak in the spirit/new converts

2.      If you are new or weak in the spirit (because you do not feed your spirit with fellowship/prayer/reading the bible, etc...) You will behave in a double-minded manner

a.      A double-minded person is restless and confused in his thoughts, his actions, and his behavior. Such a person is always in conflict with himself. One torn by such inner conflict can never lean with confidence on God. Likewise, the term unstable is similar to a drunken man unable to walk a straight line, swaying one way, then another. He has no defined direction and as a result doesn’t get anywhere. Such a person is “unstable in all he does.”

b.     Isaiah 29:13 “The Lord says:
“These people come near to me with their mouth
    and honor me with their lips,
    but their hearts are far from me...”

                                                          ii.      James is telling us, we need to change the core of our being. Our hearts must change!

                                                       iii.      Our hearts are our motivation for all that we say, think and do...it is the storehouse for all we know, and understand, and it is the looking glass by which we see the entire world.

1.      If it is impure and corrupt, dirty and scratched, this is how we view everything.

2.      But, if we submit ourselves to God, confess our sin and allow His Holy Spirit to do a work in us...our hearts will be purified, cleaned and filled with God’s Word.
a.      As we grow in faith {through the reading of God’s Word}, we are purifying our hearts, and growing closer to the Lord.

b.     However, we MUST have TRUE repentance, or there is no TRUE forgiveness for our sins.



III.            RECOGNIZE YOUR SIN
a.      Be afflicted {recognize your own misery} - You need to see the sin in your life, and all the curses it has brought with it.

                                                             i.      Mourn and weep
1.      When was the last time you cried or mourned over your sin? Ever?

2.      Have you ever truly mourned for sinning against a pure and holy God?

3.      If you do not have a new relationship with sin since coming to the Lord, then you do not have a new relationship with God.

                                                          ii.      Let laughter turn to mourning
1.      Sin against God is not to be taken lightly...
2.      It is not a past time, party time, fun time...

3.      The word promises, if you do not mourn and weep for your sin now, there will come a time when you do...but it will be too late to repent.


b.     Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord
                                                             i.      and He shall lift you up

                                                          ii.      If you humble yourselves to the Lord, mourn for your sin against Him, He shall lift you up!

                                                       iii.      Too many spend their entire lives trying to lift themselves up, make themselves FEEL better, make their lives more enjoyable...but to no avail...

1.      You must submit to the Lord, confess your sin, truly repent, then, and only then, will He lift you up.
CONCLUSION
When hearing the Word of God today, do you feel as if you are truly submitting to God in your life?

Remember, God has three wills for you in your life...first of all, for you to  be saved, secondly for you to seek His will in your life’s direction, and thirdly, that you help others to come to the knowledge of the only one who can save them, Jesus Christ.

Are you resisting the devil in your life, or inviting him in?

Come closer to God through faith, which is increased through the reading of His word, and He will come closer to you in relationship.

Focus your actions in life on pleasing God, not man.

Recognize the sin in your life, confess it to Him, and repent with a true repentance, and God will lift you up.




Want to learn more about Salvation and Getting Saved?   

Want to hear the audio to this sermon?   



Sunday, September 16, 2018

The Book of James – Part 9: Worldliness


The Book of James – Part 9:
Worldliness
Pastor Bruce A. Shields
House of Faith Church | www.PS127.org | www.TruthDigest.org

This Document is a Sermon Outline, you may hear the full audio of the actual sermon by following the link Online Audio Files located above for this, and other Full Sermon Audios.  For a complete list of Sermon Outlines, visit TruthDigest.org, or Truth Digest on facebook; for our Official Church website, visit PS127.org, or find us on facebook at House of Faith Church


SERMON INTRODUCTION
Have you ever wondered why there are so many wars, so much arguing, and so much opposition in the world?

Countries fight with countries; religions fight with religions, races fighting races, all the way down to couples quarreling, and even siblings not getting along.

We see as far back as Genesis, sibling rivalry.

Genesis 25:21-23
 21 Isaac prayed to the LORD on behalf of his wife, because she was childless. The LORD answered his prayer, and his wife Rebekah became pregnant. 22 The babies jostled each other within her, and she said, “Why is this happening to me?” So she went to inquire of the LORD.

 23 The LORD said to her,
   “Two nations are in your womb,
   and two peoples from within you will be separated;
one people will be stronger than the other,
   and the older will serve the younger.”

Even further back, we see Cain and Abel’s brotherly dispute.

James is going to reveal to us in the scripture today, the secret behind the fights and quarrels of man, as well as the resolution and answer to why we do, and how to stop.

James asks rhetorically three questions, then gives the answer so that we may conquer ourselves, and allow God’s Holy Spirit to rule us. 

What causes wars and fighting?  Are you a friend to the world?  Are you receiving opposition or favor from God today?
This message today can literally change your life, if you let it.

This message can take your life.

Instead of feeling like a trout trying to swim upstream your entire life just to die when you get there, God can transform your life into a peaceful pond surrounded by His goodness and providence, where you will lack nothing.


LAST WEEKS SERMON
Part 1 - Faith and Wisdom
Part 2 - Poverty and Riches
Part 3 - Endurance
Part 4 - Christian Living
Part 5 - Brotherly Love
Part 6 - Faith and Works
Part 7 - Taming of the Shrewd
Part 8 - True Wisdom


TODAY’S SERMON
Part 9 - Worldliness


SCRIPTURE READING

James 4:1-6
 1 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? 2 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

 4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us?

 6 But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:

“God opposes the proud
   but shows favor to the humble.”


       I.            WHAT CAUSES WARS AND QUARRELS?
a.      They come from Desires and Passions that Battle within you


b.     LIT. v1 “like soldiers in your body parts.”
                                                             i.      There is a battle between our Spirit and Flesh

                                                          ii.      Ephesians 6 our battle in this world is a spiritual one.

                                                       iii.      Galatians 5:19-21 Paul gives 17 specific examples of “works of the flesh”

1.      Galatians 5:19-2119 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

                                                         iv.      Jesus tells us we cannot serve two masters...you will either be serving the Spirit, or your flesh!
1.      To know which you are serving, simply examine your life, and see what fruit you are producing...is it fruits of the flesh, or fruits of the Spirit?  It IS that simple!


c.      v2 “You desire, but do not have, so you kill.”
                                                             i.      Jesus said hating your brother is the same as murder.
1.      Sometimes you desire something, and it is not provided in the manner which you see fit...YOUR WILL is not satisfied, so you hate the one who did not fulfill your will to your liking.

2.      You desire, but do not receive, so you kill (or hate them)...


d.     “You long for (covet) but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight.”
                                                             i.      Why do we try so hard to fulfill our own will?

                                                          ii.      Because we are serving our flesh, which is full of evil desires.

                                                       iii.      We sin, and continue in sin, when we serve our flesh instead of God’s Holy Spirit within us.

e.      “You do not have because you do not ask God”
                                                             i.      Sometimes, our desires are legitimate, but pride keeps us from asking God, so we do not receive, or we try to fulfill it ourselves instead of relying on God. 


f.       “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with the wrong motives”
                                                             i.      Sometimes our desires are way off base, and we ask God to fulfill OUR WILL, so we do not receive...

                                                          ii.      When this happens, many times people will blame God for not answering their prayer...but what actually happened, was God did not obey their will...

                                                       iii.      So, they hate...they blame, they get angry at God


g.      If you are surrounded with wars and quarrels in your life...
                                                             i.      Chances are, they are coming from the desires in your flesh...
1.      Scripture says so.

2.      God is not a God of confusion and strife, but the Lord of peace and of sound mind.

                                                          ii.      Your flesh is trying to rule over you...do not let it.

                                                       iii.      You must put your flesh, along with its desires, in its place...
1.      You have to return to seeking God’s will, not yours

2.      Sometimes we may think that what we want and OUR WILL IS the right way...But Jesus warns, “There is a path that seems right, but only leads to destruction.”

3.      We cannot seek our will in life...otherwise, we are surrendering to our flesh, and its evil desires.



   II.            ARE YOU A FRIEND TO THE WORLD OR TO GOD?
a.      “You adulterous people”
                                                             i.      Why does James call them adulterous people?
                                                          ii.      Because, loving anything more than God is adultery.
1.      When someone cheats on their spouse, they put desires of their flesh above the covenant they made with God, that is WHY it is adultery.  They are committing it against God.

2.      When someone chases after money in their life, their greed becomes their God.

3.      You could lock yourself into a room, all alone, and still commit Spiritual adultery.

4.      Nothing can come before God in our lives...not even ourselves!
a.      When we chose OUR WILL over His, we are spiritual adulterers.

b.     When we follow our sinful flesh and its desires as opposed to His Spirit, we are spiritual adulterers.


b.     don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God?
                                                             i.      When we chose to follow our flesh and its desires, we become friends to this sinful world, and an enemy of God.

                                                          ii.      enmity means hate...

                                                       iii.      In essence, when you follow your flesh, you will have wars and quarreling in your life, as well as hate God...


c.      Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.


d.     Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us?
                                                             i.      You see, God wants His Spirit to dwell in us, so that we may follow His Spirit, instead of our flesh!

                                                          ii.      Choosing to follow God’s Spirit instead of our sinful flesh, will lead us to God’s Will in our lives as opposed to our will.

                                                       iii.      As long as we are seeking OUR WILL, there IS going to be strife, wars, quarrellings, and unrest in our lives.

                                                         iv.      It is IMPOSSIBLE for us to have the peace that surpasses understanding in our lives, until we rebuke our flesh and its desires and will, and seek after God’s Spirit and HIS WILL.



III.            ARE YOU RECEIVING OPPOSITION OR FAVOR FROM GOD?
a.       But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.”
                                                             i.      The proud want their way
1.      The humble want Gods way

                                                          ii.      The proud seek after their desires
1.      The humble seek after God’s desires

                                                       iii.      The proud want to please themselves
1.      The humble want to please God

                                                         iv.      The proud want others to fulfill their will
1.      The humble want to fulfill God’s will


b.     Are you receiving opposition or favor from God today?
                                                             i.      God’s favor is as close as your humbling submission to His Spirit in your life.

                                                          ii.      Not once for all...but every day!  Sometimes many times a day!




CONCLUSION

Romans 6:6
“we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— 7 because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.”

Romans 6:12-14
“Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13 Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness. 14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.”

One must humbly submit to God’s Spirit, seeking to fulfill God’s Will alone!

If you want to live a life without conflict, wars, fighting, a life filled with God’s favor, not His opposition, then you MUST be living by His Spirit, and not YOUR FLESH.

Ask yourself if you are producing fruits of the Spirit in your life?

Galatians 5:22-26
 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, compassion, integrity, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control.

Against such things there is no law.

24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.


v23 Against such things there is no law.

What does this mean??

Romans 5:1313 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law.”

When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord, He paid the debt to sin, removing the requirements of the Law from us!

Where there is no Law, sin is NOT charged against us!

You see...when we live by God’s Spirit, we will produce these Spiritual fruits in our lives, and as long as we are living by God’s Holy Spirit, and not our flesh...we will not be slaves to sin, because our hearts are right, and our intensions and actions are based on pleasing God’s Will, not our own.

Is your life a calm, pleasing pond, or are you still swimming upstream with all your strength just to die? The choice is yours.




Want to learn more about Salvation and Getting Saved?   

Want to hear the audio to this sermon?