What does it mean to keep oneself unspotted from the world? (James 1:27, NKJV). How could that even be possible? See also 1 John 2:15-16; 2 Pet. 1:4.
Some people seem to think that if only they could move far enough away from the world, they could avoid most of its temptations. Though there’s some truth to that, and we should try to avoid temptation as much as possible (especially those temptations we find hardest to resist), our problems and [...]
If Jesus, James, and Paul emphasize anything, it is the importance of being a useful Christian. By lovingthe least of these (Matt. 25:40), by taking the time to visit those most easily overlooked, by showing hospitality-in all these practical ways and more-we reveal Jesus’ love and become the [...]
James echoes the Psalms in calling God’s law perfect (Ps. 19:7) and a way of freedom (Ps. 119:45). But notice that the law in James cannot save us and certainly cannot cleanse us. It shows us God’s ideal, but it cannot make us follow that ideal any more than seeing a world-class athlete perform amazing feats could enable us to do [...]
James combines being and doing. He does not separate them, nor does he make one more important than the other. They are like two sides of the same coin, inseparable. We are to be doers. Furthermore, the tense of the Greek word for be here refers to [...]
Someone once said this about his enemy: I see him every day-when I’m shaving. This is exactly what James wants us to recognize: our greatest enemy is ourselves. Salvation begins by seeing who we really are, not who we imagine ourselves to be.
Read for This Week’s Study: James 1:23-24; Matt. 19:16-22; Luke 6:27-38; Rom. 8:2-4; Rom. 12:9-18; 2 Pet. 1:4.
Memory Text: But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves (James 1:22).
Jean Francois Gravelet, better known as The Great Blondin, became famous for walking across Niagara Falls on a tightrope. In September of 1860, the Prince of Wales had witnessed Blondin’s crossing of the falls with an assistant on his back. After the walk, Blondin [...]
The demons in Mirella struggled against the family members who took her to the Adventist church. During the struggle Mirella fainted. When the family tried to carry her limp body through the church door, they could feel a powerful force pushing them away. Inside the church the congregation prayed while deacons tried to pull the family into the church. Finally they managed to enter the church. They laid Mirella on the floor in the pastor’s office.
Further Study: Read about sin and the power to change in Ellen G. White, Repentance, Steps to Christ, pp. 23-36 and summarize the key points.
The plan of redemption contemplates our complete recovery from the power of Satan. Christ always separates the contrite soul from sin. He came to destroy the works of the devil, and He has made provision that the Holy Spirit shall be imparted to every repentant soul, to keep him from sinning.-Ellen G. White, The Desire [...]
This verse concludes all that has been said so far about faith and salvation. It is an appeal to put away all impurity and separate ourselves from wickedness. The command put away (RSV) is used seven out of nine times in the New Testament for detaching oneself from the evil habits that have no place in a life submitted to [...]
God’s Word is powerful. But so are human words. How often have we spoken words that later we wish we could take back? Unfortunately, just being aware of how hurtful wrong words can be, and how destructive anger is, does little to help us get ourselves under control. Left to our own devices, we can never really change. That is why we need to [...]