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 | |

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, or Truth Digest on facebook; for our Official Church website, visit, or find us on facebook at House of Faith Church

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?”

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

Part 10 - Submit Yourselves to God


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 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 be praised by them

b.     We give to charity and the FEEL better

c.      We say kind 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 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.

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.
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?   

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