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Confident Living (32 of 38)
Authentic Christianity. That is the theme of this book we are studying.
This morning look at the elements of a confident life. One that operates well in any conditions. James describes it in 4:13-17.
Elements of a Confident Life
1. The Purpose of my life is not to gather money . v. 13
2. The brevity of my life is part of God's plan . v. 14
3. The confidence of my life is doing God's will . v. 15
4. the danger of my life is going it alone, without God's way (Humility) and without God's Word (the Bible). v. 16-17
Authentic Christianity can operate in any setting. It thrives in good times or bad. A stirring record of how authentic Christians made it in the gulag prisons of the Stalinist Soviet Union speaks to this.
An article which appeared in Christianity Today (June 21st, 1974) was describing the Christians in the former Soviet Union. In that article is a paragraph which beautifully illustrates this hope which changes life for all who are in Christ. A former criminal, Kozlov, later a church leader, writes of life in a Soviet prison:
Among the general despair, while prisoners like myself were cursing ourselves, the camp, the authorities; while we sought to end our lives of hopelessness we opened up our veins, or our stomachs, or hanged ourselves; the Christians (often with sentences of twenty to twenty-five years) did not despair. One could see Christ reflected in their faces. Their pure, upright life, deep faith and devotion to God, their gentleness and their wonderful manliness, became a shining example of real life for thousands.
That is authentic (4) Christianity, whenever and wherever it appears.
James 4:13-17 13 Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit"; 14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. 15 Ins ...
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