Receiving and Doing the Word

Text: James 1:21-25
Speaker: Jim Newheiser
Outline: PDF
Date: May 1, 2011

This Lord’s Day we will cover a passage which contains what many say is the key verse in the book of James. “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” (James 1:22). James addresses our attitude towards God’s Word (which should be receptive – 1:21) and our response (which should be action 1:22-25). In the following verses (for next week) James will give specific examples of the actions required (1:26-27).

James is concerned that some professing Christians are failing to put God’s Word into practice. This echoes the teaching of Jesus, which also emphasizes obedient hearing of God’s Word (Mt. 7:21ff). James implies that those who hear the Word without obedience may be deluded about the reality of their faith in Christ (which will be a major topic in chapter 2:14ff).

James places these exhortations to receiving and obeying God’s Word in the context of the work God is doing in us. God has, through His Word, given us a new birth (1:18).
God’s Word has been implanted in us (1:21). Through God’s work in our souls, His Word becomes to us the perfect law of liberty, just as God had promised would be the case under the New Covenant (Jer. 31:33 Ezek. 36:26ff).

Posted on May 1st, 2011 | Permalink