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The Book of James: James, the Lord's Brother

Chris Buttery
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  • September 13, 2014
    11:30 AM
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The basis of our study material as. We have been doing and will continue to do is the. The Sabbath school quarterlies produced by the worldwide Seventh Day Adventist Church and. During our time together each day each lesson. Will bring fresh. Biblical insights. And we trust. It will enlarge your understanding of God's word and. Lead you closer to Jesus. This is really a new day for us isn't it. We're going it alone in that why I shouldn't say going it alone and look at look at this the. Congregations here. God is with us he's led us to this point and. It's just so exciting to. To continue to share God's word locally and. To Al online viewers were certainly glad you were joining us and all those who we are joining us a chilling in from wherever you find yourself we're glad that you're here because we want. Folk to benefit from the studies. As usual we're going to be continuing to share. C.D.'s and D.V.D.'s and you can. 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And also we welcome. Any come. Any feedback on the programming especially those who are viewing us. Know where you're shooting in from and viewing us from. We'd love to hear from you for sure. Well. We're going to go right into our study and. We're going to be delving into our new. New Quarterly. Lesson. And we're going to be studying the book of James. And I hope you've got your lesson. Trust you've been thumbing through it opening your bible the touring this week to look at the lesson and ready to in being gauged here and look at this exciting. Study. Before we get to the Book of James and you Miles will open there you're welcome to do so before we get into the actual content of the book of James. We want to be asking those five. W.'s. The five w's The Who The walk the walk. I and. The when it was Thomas Wilson. That wrote who was and where. By what help and by whose. Why how and when do many things disclose the five whys and they were a memorial ised by. Rajab it kept Kipling in his just so stories in which a poem accompanying the title of the Elephant's Child opens and he wrote this little poem. I keep six on a serving man they told me all line. Knew their names or what and why and when and how and where. And who. That's right. So it's come to be known as the keep. Kipling method. And so we're going to be asking some of those questions he had. During this lesson to find out who the hell I want to know who the author of The Book of James as we know who the author of The Book of James but when it want to know who James was and. Who was he writing to and for what purpose and intention and. We're going to look at that here. In today's lesson and then the following proceeding weeks we're going to delve right into the content of the book of James. And so we want to be informed about who the author is. Give us some background. And by doing so would just. Shed a little bit. Little bit allied. On the content of the book of James. All right so. We want to go over the Sunday's lesson here. And take a look here at. At James the brother of Jesus in the. If you have your Bible to turn with me to James one. And verse one and notice how the book of James opens. It's very simple. And yet. It is rich and. Will seek to unpack this here. It says in James Chapter one Verse one. James A. Bondservant of God and. Of the Lord Jesus Christ. To the twelve tribes which are scattered. Abroad. So a very sustained. Opening and into. Duction. He reveals the author of the book reveals himself as James a fellow servant a bond servant of God in Jesus Christ. And he's writing to the twelve tribes scatted broad. Now. James James His name is in the Greek. E Akko boss. Yacob boss in is the Greek form of the Hebrew name. JACOB. Which was a very familiar and common name. In the first century Judaism. Now there are many references in the in the New Testament to men named James. As a matter of fact I went ahead and count of them and there are forty references to James now there's not forty different James's but they are. Some of the Simes some one lot and. Two of those disciples we know that who were who were the James was the brother of. John that's right. That's that's one of them. The sons of. Do you remember. Sons was the sons of Zebedee but they're also known as the sons of Fonda. That's right so you've got James and John. And then. You've also got James. Who's the son of Alphaeus and. So you've got two disciples that one named James. Also a father of one of the disciples. That is Judas not Iscariot But Judas. His name was James. So father of one of the disciples name was James as well and you can read that in Luke Chapter six and verse sixteen. Now it's reasonable to suppose. The author of James is one of these or one of these James is already mentioned in the Bible. And. And that's pretty obvious because when you read and we just read James one one. He just comes out and says James a servant of God and. Of the Lord Jesus Christ. That is to the audience they knew they would know who was writing he doesn't say I'm James and I was on the far on the son all of or I'm associated with and I work here and this is my background. He just said this is James speaking to you. And so in this congregation if I wrote if. Came out you said hey this is. You know this is from Chris. The servant of God and. Well if I'd had the little head of Central on it you would not be coming from one of your pastors now if I said. If a letter came to you and the name was Mike. Now you might be a little might be a little tricky. We've got now to Michael's here. Posturing the church. But here it is James there it is. James I'm James so it's a shame that the audience knew who he was writing this particular letter. Of James A fellow bondservant. Now can't be the brother of John because he died around eighty forty four. And this letter was written. A little bit after that from what scholars tell us. James. There was only one prominent James that existed in the church. At the time of the writing of this particular book so we know it's not. James the brother of John the sons of Zebedee or the sons of funda. Another James is mentioned. And he's the first. Mention brother of Jesus and let's take a look at that in Matthew chapter thirteen in verse fifty five. Which is jump over there. Matthew chapter thirteen in verse fifty five and notice. What it says. Now if you thirteen fifty five. It tells us is not the carpenter's. Is this not the cop and his son talking about Jesus is not this the cup in his son is not his mother cold Mary and his brothers notice. James. JOSEPH. Simeon same. SIMON And Judas. And so one of the brothers. Of Jesus was named James. And you can also reference said in mocked up to six of those three. Poll also mentions that he saw this. James in Jerusalem. After he had returned to his conversion. And you can read that elations one nineteen which will get to shortly Now elsewhere in the new test. Meant mention is made of a leader in the church. By the name of James. And he comes to prominence. Right after the death of John's brother James. And you can read about that in Acts Chapter twelve in verse one where it says that Herod. Sent out man and they slew. James. With the sword. If you jump down the verse seventeen I. Another James is introduced and it seems as though. He's a leader of the church and so that's right away we know that. Certainly this James who wrote this book isn't the. The brother of John and we've mentioned that already so know what the James. Has been so prominent subsequent references I'm made of this James. One is significant in that it shows that James this James is very likely. James. Who's. James whose brother. Was Jesus. Now I want you to turn with medical ations chapter to take a look at this with me. Galatians two. And we'll get some folk reading some scriptures here and asking some questions and a bit collations too. And we're looking at verse nine. Places to verse nine it says and when James. See fists that's Peter and John who seem to be Pillas. Perceive the grace that had been given to me. They gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship and. That we should go to the Gentiles and they. To be or to the circumcised. And so here you have. James who is one of the pillars. Along with PETA and. Along with John. All right so we're going to lay sions chapter two. And verse nine I'm going to go to go. Chapter one Verse nineteen. And notice pole. Pole is riding about the James he introduces this James. At the beginning of his lead and then in Chapter two you. Talks about him again notice. Elations chapter one. And we're looking at verse nineteen it says. But I saw. None of the other apostles and this is referring to PETA. Rather poll after his conversion experience he came back to Jerusalem. He says that he saw no other. Except James the Lord's who brother Jesus' brother James. And then in Chapter two he talks about this leader whose name is James. And so it's very easy to assume that he's referring to the same James. If they were different he would have probably very likely have stated that this is actually another James that I'm referring to. If I wrote you a letter. And talk about letters a lot don't expect in letters for me too soon but. If I wrote you a letter and I was talking about a fellow by the name of James. And then I mentioned him in the first paragraph and then in the third paragraph of that letter I mentioned James again. You would know that I'm speaking of the same. James and it's the same thing. Right here. So it's very likely that the James who wrote the book. After his own name. Was the brother of Jesus. James was in fact. The step brother of Jesus. Remember when Jesus was on the cross and. He committed the care of his mother to who not to James but to John. That's ride and. An indicator that. That the these. These children James and the other children were sons of Joseph. Very likely from a previous marriage. And so they were a step brothers and. Any When anyone here have a step. Anyone here have a step brother step sister. Or is a step brother steps if you have one you don't you are a step brother step sister. Yeah. So I'm bracing my hand to have Step Brothers. Steps this is a step sister. And I'm a step brother. Yeah. That's how it goes. Anyone is the youngest. Step Brother or Step System and. Can be here. All right. How did it go for you. Was OK All right good. It was OK Jay. James was it seems he was mention post he seems he would be the oldest of the siblings of Jacob. Of Joseph rather and. And then of course Jesus. Much later on and we know the story of Jesus. Rumors spread abroad regarding his illegitimate birth. And so you can imagine what the children or the. Step brothers and sisters of Jesus. Would have said about him. Probably probably wasn't too. Pretty. So perfect if you take that book beautiful book desire of ages. And you read pages. Eighty six to ninety two. You'll discover that the chapters in title the days of conflict. And refers a lot to Jesus' home life. And some of the challenges that. Some of the biggest challenges he faced as a young boy. Were faced in his home. His parents and more so his. Step brothers and sister were sisters did not understand appreciate who he was. They thought he was very straight laced and Mary was very beauty and the. Josephs boys. Seem to encourage Jesus to follow the rabbinical traditions and. Teachings in Jesus wouldn't have anything to do with it except anything that was about saith the Lord he would obey. He would do that and. And so they consider him to be straight life's to non-compliant. To the traditions of the religious leaders. And this annoyed. Greatly annoyed. Jesus. Family and his brothers. In particular. And so Jesus. Would often escape. And this is all in desire of ages would often escape just to get away from the stress and the tension that was often felt in the home. And so here is James who's the oldest and probably the perpetrator of some of this nonsense in the home. And. And so he is the brother of step brother of Jesus. John Chapter seven. Tells us that his family tried to push him. To the forefront. They were perceiving that there was something very unique about Jesus. And perhaps even. Maybe he would be the Messiah. But at that time you know that they all had a very different idea of who the Messiah. Or what the Messiah's. Mission really was supposed to be. So I tried to push Jesus. Out into the front to declare who he was. And Jesus wouldn't have anything to do with it so they were very confused and doubtful as well. About his mission and his ministry. So this is. This is the James. That wrote the book of James obviously there was a transformation that took place. From being the oldest step brother. Another want to say a bully but maybe there was some bling going on. To being I convert. And I a leader in the Christian church. It's quite amazing. And so what happened. To James we're going to go to Monday's lesson. James the believer what happened to him did he always remain in doubt regarding Jesus mission that he always play the oldest step brother. We've gone ahead of Jolene going to read Acts Chapter one Verse fourteen force here in just a little bit. Telling is right down here. Acts Chapter one Verse fourteen. One invited us to go to First Corinthians Chapter fifteen First of all. I want you to notice here. James the oldest step brother may be a bully the one who was annoyed by Jesus' ministry. And his life. First printed what happened to him first Corinthians fifteen and we're reading verses five through seven First of all. It says and that. And that he was seen this is talking of Jesus His resurrection. And he was seen by Seafish that's PETA. Then by the twelve. After that he was seen by over five hundred brethren at once of whom the great apart remained to the present. But some have fallen asleep in the notice of a seven. After that he was seen by who. He was seen by James. Then by all the apostles. Is very likely and most commentators agree that this James. Is the brother of Jesus. And in a special séance. Jesus. Appears to him personally and. Perhaps opens the scriptures like he did when he met with others along the way. After right after his resurrection and revealed to him. The prophecies in the Old Testament concerning his ministry and his mission to clear up any doubt. Or any misconception Now if you met Jesus face to face with that change your life. I don't so yeah. It all too good to remember the time when poll. Jesus rhyolite fell off his horse. Converted changed man. Just like that. And so James. Is met by his. Met by his step brother Jesus the resurrected Lord you can just imagine the picture. What that encounter may have been like. Maybe maybe they might have been those moments where James was like OK Jesus you remember when I said this and when I said that. I don't bring that up now and. You know Jesus very likely didn't. He said OK now. I'm going to I'm going to commission you you're going to be one of the leaders of the church. Go feed my. My sheep. Just like he said to PETA. Now Lord is very gracious OK Jolene X. one fourteen X. one fourteen. These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication. With the women and Mary the Mother of Jesus and with his brothers. All right so we are referring here to the upper room experience and. Jesus had told his disciples to go back there but hundred twenty they are in that upper room. Coming together praying together studying the scriptures together. Putting away all types of differences that existed between them. And one of those. Out there was. James James the brothers not only James but also the other brothers in that interesting. Would be converted. Converted individuals changed me and his brothers were up there in that upper room. In one accord. Offering prayer and supplication so James. Really became fairly converted didn't a federally converted he experienced. Genuine repentance so he was no longer the oldest step brother. But he had become a believer. He'd become I believe a humble servant. And you notice in James Chapter one Verse one. James did introduce himself as the brother of Jesus he introduced himself as the a fellow servant or figure the King James Version servant. He didn't say I'm the brother. He said I'm a. So if that is. That's a change right there. And you can be the oldest step brother and you know you. The older. All the brothers and older siblings often like the younger brothers and sisters on the head saying you know with the with the older ones I'm kind of the middle child. And my. Anyway. But that's you know. My sister patted me I patted my brother so that's kind of how it went. But we've become a so you know here with the older ones. And Jesus. James rather doesn't introduce himself as being the oldest step brother of Jesus I want everyone to know that the man he is is because of me. He says I'm his fellow servant. That's a change of heart and spirit is it not. That's amazing. So he was converted he was changed what else do we know about Jesus. Here's a few things I'm going to just rattle rattle them off and you can write down some of the references if you want to next chapter twelve and verse seventeen. It says Peter. When Peter was released from prison. He was told to report. The activities. Those activities to. James in Acts Chapter fifteen verse thirteen and nineteen James presided at all over the Jerusalem Council. And pronounced a decision. I will talk a little bit more about that in just a few moments that council in Acts twenty one poll reported to James concerning his missionary endeavors. Was James an important figure in the early Christian church. Oh man was he ever able was reporting to him. Sharing with him. Was one of the main central leaders in chapter two verse nine which we read earlier. James gave off already to people in Spain particular Poland Barnabus to visit other churches and to be representatives of the church and of Jesus Christ in areas where Gentiles were and to proclaim and preach the gospel so. James. Can food off the Upon these individuals to visit churches and offered to pole and bonobos the right hand of fellowship you've ever heard that phrase before. There it is right there in the collation chapter two verse nine off of them the right hand of fellowship. There on Palm with James and the other disciples they had his. Much. Heavenly authority as God bestowed upon them. Upon. Poland Barnabas. And so he gave the right hand of fellowship Go on go out and share the gospel and then. He's also referred in chapter two in verse nine. Is also referred to as one of the pillows. Of the early church and. If you're still in the lay sions nine just take a look at that real quickly it's interesting. I want you to notice again who's mentioned first and then who is mentioned Second it's interesting. And elations chapter two. And verse nine it says. And James. C. firsts. And John. Who seem to be pillars perceive the grace that had been given to me. And so the first person mentioned out of these pillars in the early Christian church. Was who chimes. Sorry paida come and popular teaching that suggests that the. Particular church that exists today. Is an extension in the leaders of that chose the Pope of that church is the extension of the. Of the opposite. Apostle Peter. But it seems as though James. Was a more prominent leader then Peter. So we apologize to Peter at this point but. James is mentioned. First before. See fists or before. Peter. And he was one of the. One of those texts that. And it's not the only one but one of those texts that show the. The false hope that all of the truth regarding that the first Pope was paid. Not true at all. And it wasn't James either. Just in case you're wondering but it certainly wasn't him either but these men were pillars of the Church leaders of the Church such Certainly. James. Not only a converted man but he was converted to the point where he became a very strong pillar in that early Christian church. A persecuted church a church that was taking off. And they needed some good strong leaders. So despite starting out in doubt and confusion. Been a bit about Jesus and His mission James ended up being one of the leaders of the early Christian church. That teaches and tells me that never underestimate what God can do with a person. Sometimes we. You know we get all hot on. Sometimes on ourselves about get hard on other people as well. I'll never measure up I'll never never underestimate he was James. The step brother of Jesus who doubted the ministry. Constantly frustrated. Jesus as a young boy. And now becomes the leader of the Church that Jesus raised up. I mean. Amazing story for sure. Complete conversion some just estimate what God can do in your life. And what can. God can do in a person's life. So we're going to choose day James in the Gospel. James and the Gospel. All right. We have someone that's going to be reading James Chapter two verse twenty two and twenty three of us thank you very much. Right down here. Now. It was Martin Luther. That cold. The A pistol of James of the letter of James. A epistle of straw. And James in Luke his mind was a very a totally really totally misunderstood. The book of James in the intent in the lab sig debate of fifteen nineteen Roman Catholic scholar. Johann. Eric. Used the book of James. To challenge mom's Luke. Martin Luther's teaching of justification by faith alone. And he insisted. Insisted that works. Be a part of the justification experience as well. In his preference preface to The Book of James in Luther's fifteen twenty two German translation. He called the Book of James an epistle of straw. Luke is contemporary and closest. Associate Maleng thin. Believe the writings of poll. And the writings of James. Did not conflict. That one harmonious you see. And in. But the reformation would continue on. Even though Luther didn't fully understand all they was to understand from the Scriptures God used him to bring forth a little I didn't. Not. Brought brought out a lot of light and and. Then you had the. The Great Awakening. George Whitfield and. The Wesley brothers. Great revivals that took place across Europe and around the world. Not only was justification by faith talk but also sanctification by faith and. So the truth continued to to to take off and to grow into. Into. What basically for the light to continue to go on then there was the second. Awakening and. Some of us know that here as the. MILLER Right Movement. And not it was not just the middle right movement that was the movement here in the U.S. but they were individuals in North Africa and Europe and South America. That were proclaiming the same message as Martin Luther was here Baptist. Fama here in the United States. And so the Reformation continued. And it continues on. Even to this day where. God says He will have a remnant and has a remnant that keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus and the faith of Jesus Christ and. What a privilege it is to be a part of that remnant as. God's truth continues to be heralded to the world around the world. In preparation for that great event when Jesus returns. And so what did Jesus what did James in fact teach regarding faith. What did he teach in James Chapter one Verse three I'm going to get to you in just a second Avis. And I think we've got a couple of questions on the on a. On this verse as well that you going to be reading. So James Chapter one. Just keep your finger there in James James chapter one in verse three. What did James teach. He says. Knowing that the testing of your faith produces while. Patients. Testing of your faith produces patience so James taught that faith in Jew is temptation isn't that right. James in Jewish temptation and. James in Jewish temptation was sure he did but faith in Jewish temptation. And also faith would be tried. Your faith would be try this is not some abstract thing that just. This. In your in your head. This is an expense seems like even from this verse. That faith is more than just mental assent. But a life experience. And then over in James Chapter two in verse five he says listen my beloved brother and has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith. And it is of the kingdom which he has promised to those who love him. And so according to James faith. Overcomes obstacles and faith. Also sees the future. And eternal. Realities doesn't live necessarily in the present although. Although helping out in making a positive influence in their lives now. But also looking forward to the time when the Kingdom of God. Would come and so that's faith and then James Chapter two. And verse twenty two and twenty three of us. James chapter. Chapter two verse twenty two and twenty three sees how has how faith. Wrought with his works. And by works. Less faith. Made perfect. And the script she was fulfilled was. Let's say if. Abraham believed God and it was imputed. And to him for righteousness and he was called the friend of God. OK thank you very much. Now I know. Richard anger Where is Richard here. Rich's got a question. Related to this particular of the. At the he's going to ask person just a moment. Just to give you some context here. James is writing about who Abraham. And what particular event is he referring to here. In. James Chapter two. He's referring to the sacrifice of. Isaac. Abraham's son. All right. And that's what it says in verse twenty one. It says what. Was not Abraham our father justified by. Works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar. And that verse has caused a lot of challenges in people's minds. I thought we would just. Fied by faith. And this was Luther's problem as well and. Well it's just a very interesting very interesting verse and then he goes on to say do you do you see that faith. Was working together with his works and by works. Faith was my. Perfect is. Is faith. Removed from the equation. No As a matter of fact the scripture was fulfilled and this is quoting Genesis. Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him for righteousness. Is accounted to him for righteousness and we ready for the question. Were good for the question OK so. Richard. Question make sure it's not too hot. And in that verse twenty two and James of. Or James says that faith is filled with His works and by works is made perfect in light of what he said in verse seventeen. As James indicating that works comes before faith that you gain faith through your works. Or as you say and something else. OK. No. No faith always proceeds. Works. Genuine faith proceeds works. The apple of least the. The horses before the cod on this one. It seems as though the other it's the other way around but it's certainly not. Let me ask this question what comes first the root or the fruit. The sum was a fruit. Hang on a second. All know I come here and I can as root. Yes So yes so. Always the root comes before the fruit. When that seed germinates what goes. Something goes down first the roots and then you've got the that stem that shoots up through the ground and then it grows. The the the. The flavor of the fruit. The amount of fruit. The quality of the tree and the brilliance of the leaves. Is dependent upon the health of the roots. That's right so the roots always proceed to fruits and. And so what James is saying here is as. As you have genuine faith. Like roots. It's going to produce fruits or. Good works. You say. And. And the wood. Hook's testified to the fact that the faith is. Works testify to the fact that your faith is genuine. And that's one of the things that James talks about over and over again and will have a lesson on this. Faith and works. If you don't have works your faith is good. Yeah. So we I mean technically and I don't want to be misunderstood but technically. We are saved by faith. By a faith that works. Yes was saved by faith alone Don't get me wrong. But it's a faith that works and genuine faith always leads a person to obedience and doing the will of God. All right there was another question there's another question related to this particular day. With regard to James on the Gospel. David. Has that question do you have that question David. All right so down here. So remember the genuine faith. Genuine faith. Carries certain. Recognizable credentials. And you go to the store today and it depends on which store but you flash. Your credit card what are they going to ask you for your I.D.. That's right. You've got to prove that you are who you are you say you are you've got to give evidence of that and. That is your driver's license you can carry your mother or father into the store everywhere you go. Tell them that you gave birth to me I'm your son. So you've got your license and you give you give. Recognizable. Your recognizable credentials or in this case a photo I.D. validating who you are. This is really me. Faith I can say I'm a Christian. But does that make me a Christian. No a Christian is a Christian. Because a Christian. Lives. As a Christian and is following the pattern of Jesus I mean we make mistakes along the way thank God for His grace. That forgives and. Enables us to become more like Jesus Amen. But we need to recognize it works. Is evidence of a genuine faith that resides in the believer works doesn't save us. And what we can. Be saved without. Obedience. So. Just let that mull around in your head just a little bit and see if that settles right David had a question. I do. Is what we believe. More important than how we live that belief. And if so why or why not. Is what we believe more important then. How we live. What we believe. Why or why not. OK All right good question isn't it. Someone want to hazard a guess of that one. Look we know that. We know that belief is very important Amen. What you believe matters. I've told you many times. If I believed I could fly and jump from this roof. Where my going. I'm going down. What I believe that is what I ought to know what I want to understand the law of gravity. And if I jump from a high place. I'm going nowhere but down so we know that belief truly matters. Jesus talking in the last days in Matthew chapter twenty four. Encourages the believers not to be deceived. Because he mentions the four times in Matthew twenty four. Don't be deceived so it's important what we believe. And that we what we believe is the right thing. But it doesn't. Believing the right thing doesn't make you right. With Jesus. Believing the right thing doesn't make you right with Jesus. It's one thing to give mental assent to let's say the Sabbath. And let's let's talk about that for just a moment. I am a Sabbath keeper. But if I am working on the Sabbath. And violating the express command of God. What's more important. My living that belief or my belief. All right. It's a good question. Well you know my billet my. My actions. The way I live. What type of witness. What I believe if I said I was a Christian and. Cursed and swore all the time. I got mad blew off the handle every all the time. I mean what type of witness would that be would anyone be convinced that I'm a Christian. None. So I'm a good question. Very good question let's jump over to Wednesday's lesson here. Of the two the twelve tribes scattered abroad. All right James chapter one in verse one James tells us that he's writing to whom. To the twelve tribes. Scattered broad. That's right. Twelve tribes scattered. Brought up to a verse one tells us that. After the stoning of Stephen there was a great persecution that took place in Jerusalem. And the disciples were scattered. The believers not just of the cycles but the believe as they were scattered they went to various parts of the Roman Empire. And over in Acts chapter eleven verse nineteen. It tells us that the Gospel was spread to the Gentiles. Beginning in Antioch. So the twelve tribes. That James is writing to is not necessarily the twelve tribes of literal Israel. Remember the Gospel was to go where to go. All over the place. And so that the twelve tribes is just simply another way of saying to the believers remember poll said in chapter three and in Romans two that it's you not a Jew If you're circumcised of the flesh but you're a Jew who if you have been circumcised of the heart if you've been circumcised in the hot. If we if we if we if we are Christ then we are. Abraham's seed. And it is according to the promise. And so James is writing to the twelve tribes all of the of his or all of the people of God who are scattered abroad. Did that include Jews. Yes it did and probably at this time of the. Writing because it was only. Just after a decade after Jesus died. It's very likely mostly Jews. But were they also Gentiles. Certainly. And so the Gentiles. Are included in this particular. In this. In this statement or in this letter he's writing this letter to the believers. Of the VIN Noyon. World all those that were spread throughout the. The Roman Empire. Now as. Would have it. When you have good Jews and Gentiles together that created some room perhaps for some misunderstandings and that's exactly what ended up happening. Some conflict arose which was spearheaded by Jewish converts to Christianity. And they asserted that any Gentile that wanted to become a Christian must first become a Jew. In essence they as they said that you. Miles you need to be circumcised. Before. Before you can be call yourself a Christian and. And so there was this. Caused a conflict. And a challenge. And I Council was formed down there in Jerusalem and you can read all about this in Acts Chapter fifteen. A Council was formed to discuss this particular matter. This particular issue should. Gentile converts. Be circumcised before they become Christians and. Well. That's what the discussion was an X. fifteen and you're welcome to turn they with me to X. fifteenth. And if you read the story there. You'll notice that not only Peter but James. Took a prominent role in that particular discussion. And Acts Chapter fifteen and. Let's see here. In verse thirteen. Notice it says after they had become silent. James oncet saying Men and brethren listen to me. And he stood up and he quoted from the book of Amos. Talking about how the Gospel. Was to embrace. Not only just Jews but also Gentiles. And he offered a. Biblical solution to a problem. That was existing at that particular time and you can read the solution. In verses. The letter that they sent out to the church is in verse twenty three to twenty nine. But James stood up and he read in the offer the biblical solution. And. Paul and Barnabas got up and I started talking about the ministry of. That they've been been engaged in amongst the Gentiles. And folks were impressed and when James got up to speak. And he gave a biblical onset. To that quandary. They all agreed that the Holy Spirit had lead in the discussion in the conclusion. And we won't get into all the particulars of the decision. That was made at the Jerusalem Council but one thing is very important. God's church should always. Settle issues and controversies. By thus saith the Lord Amen. Always Not by. Not through pragmatism. Not by certain. Visible evidences that attests to. Perhaps the Holy Spirit leading. But we must always. Affirm our beliefs and settle any disputes or conflicts by the Lord. Because he reveals to us. The truth reveals to us how we are to operate. Concerning every practice. And aspects of faith. And. And so. We want to make sure that we settle any. Any challenges. Locally and is as a worldwide church. By the word of God we have a big issue coming up here I don't we. In in the next general conference session next year. And the prayer is that the issue will be settled by simply of us ate the law and. What is God's Word say well as God's word saying let's just follow that let's forget what culture says let's forget what people around us a saying this is follow what God's word says. Let's not be influenced by by. What might appear to be popular. Or in the majority. Let's just do God's will that I may. Yeah that's it. All right so. Names took a prominent role in helping the believers reach a spirit led conclusion from the Bible. And a scriptural scriptural conclusion. Or solution preserve the unity of the church. That's the only thing that will preserve unity and that is the Word of God. You know every the early believers were scattered because of persecution when you think about the Seventh Day Adventist Church and you can travel to different parts of the world and you find an administration. And you know it with. Studying out of the same lesson quarterly certain things that we talk about and there's a little culture. And then we're scattered but we're one where one. Pasta Doug is in a stride you're right now. And he sent me a photo. And he's standing right next to my brother in law and. Didn't realize. Initially that. They were communicating about his trip to Australia. But he's talking with. My wife's brother who worked with the indigenous people. And still does in Australia and the tourists. Tourist islands are straight islands. And so you can go anywhere in the world. We are one people what is it that unifies. God's people in Christ. Truth. That's right. Truth unifies. John seventeen Jesus talks over and over again about you. Jesus in his Prius talking over and over again about them being one as you Father and I are one. And he tells us in John seventeen seventeen sanctify them through the high. Truth by word is truth. So what brings unity. Is sanctification. Based upon truth. The Word of God which truth. The would have God. Changes the believer. Changes outthinking changes our behavior. And we are unified. Upon truth Nope. Not just feel good moments. And be careful but I think you'll understand me when I say not just love. For one another now it's we sure. Ought to love one another but true love comes through sanctification of the truth. And if you don't know the truth you can't be sanctified by it. It's true the truth of God's Word not fables. Not. Untruth that will sanctify you but the truth of God's word. And that's the unifying factor. For God's people we believe Jesus is coming back again we believe he died and rose again. We believe he's up there in the most holy place in the heavenly sanctuary. Ministering our behalf seeking to close up this great plan of salvation so we can come back. These a unifying trues they founded upon Thus saith the Lord we're. We're just a blessed people. Go anywhere in the world and you can rub shoulders with a seven dollars seven that vanished and you'll have a lot in common I'm not just talking about veggie dogs and. Loma Linda big Franks or anything like that. But the. But the sanctuary message. The second coming the Sabbath the Spirit of Prophecy salvation. And these things a unifying factor is we belong to a wonderful family well. We've got one last day and that's on Thursday so let's jump over there. We've got. We've got someone reading Matthew chapter five Verse three is that you Mike. Fantastic going to a little back and forward here so Matthew. Mike stay there and. In Matthew I'm going to jump over to James let's see if we can do a couple of these real quick. Thursday James and Jesus recent studies have shown interesting Lee enough that the longer we are with someone the more similarities in appearance. Grow. So another we couldn't put another way the longer with someone the more you look like a. And so I don't know this some things floating around the Internet but you notice and. Owners and their animals and not to put people down but. It's just interesting this ends up being some similarities Anyway some stuff floating around it's not enough is doctored or not but it's very interesting. The husbands and wives end up looking a lot alike all. In some respects at least. Anyway that's what studies science and maybe you've seen that as well. Now spouses rub off on us that's the that's the fact. Jesus rubbed off on James. In a big way. In so much that the lead reflects most closely. The teachings of Jesus James's letter. Reflects most closely the teachings of Jesus. When he uses imagery from agriculture and finances. And there are a lot of allusions to the same and on the mount some will do a couple of these. You've got Matthew five versts three. And then already James two verse five. Matthew five verse three. Blessed are the poor in spirit. For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Right and then Already James Chapter two and. Verse five. And it says. Listen my beloved brother and has not God chosen the. Poor of the world to be rich in faith. And it is of the kingdom. Similarity. OK Mike let's to. Five twenty two. Matthew five. Verse twenty two. But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother. Without a Cause. Shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother. ROCCA. Shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says it you fool shall be in danger of hell fire. OK So Jesus is talking about hasty speech trying to give those twenty of James Chapter one. For the wrath of man does not produce. The righteousness of God. Matthew five forty eight. Matthew five years forty eight. Therefore you shall be perfect. Just as your Father in heaven. Is perfect and James says in James one verse four let. Patients have it's perfect work. That you may be perfect and complete lacking. Nothing or let's do a couple more we got a little bit more time. Just do this to James. Matthew Matthew chapter seven verse seven. Matthew seven verse seven. Ask. And it will be given to you seek. And you will find knock and it will be open to you. All right and then James Chapter one Verse five. If any of you lacks wisdom let him ask of God He gives to all liberally and without reproach. And it will be given to him. We could do this for I think probably thirty minutes. Going back and forward looking at the teachings of Jesus and the teachings of James and there are a lot of similarities. Do you think Jesus. Amen Let's let Jesus rub off on us out. What do you think of a man when he says rub off on us. The story of James. The story of James. Is a story of conversion. Of a man who was confused and doubting clarity and faith. Regarding Jesus. It's a story of James who was converted from being a man of unbelief to a man of faith. From being confused to having clarity. And the good news. When we read about James. Is that if we need that change as well. We can experience it. Through Jesus Christ amen. This media was brought to you by. Audio from a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free. Sermon audio. And much more. If you would like to know more about if you would like to listen to more service visit or.

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