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Turning Your Trials into Triumphs (1 of 11)
James 1:1-4, 12
Much of the material in this message is influenced by Joel Gregory's Faith Works.
How do you face life's tests?
Life Application: Although trials and testing times will come into your life, you can make them occasions for joy knowing that your heavenly Father has a purpose for them.
Introduction to the Book of James
Author - 1:1a
1. James the Brother of Jesus
* A half-brother of Jesus (Matt. 13:55; Mk. 6:3)
* James became a believer in Jesus after the resurrection (Mk. 3:21; Jn. 7:5; 1 Cor. 15:7; Acts1:13-14)
* A leader in the early church at Jerusalem - Acts 15:13-ff.
2. James the Servant of Jesus
* "doulos," literally means "slave." Although a half-brother to Jesus, James did not use his family connections for any special privileges. He saw himself simply as a servant of Jesus.
* In this statement there is an implicit affirmation of the deity of Christ. By noting that he was a servant of Jesus, James (a Hebrew Christian) is making a profound affirmation that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah.
Address - 1:1b "God's Scattered People"
* The Jewish diaspora began in the northern kingdom in 722 B.C., in the southern kingdom in 586 B.C.
* In the time of Christ there were 4 million Jews scattered abroad in the Roman world. Jewish Christians were largely driven out of Jerusalem after Stephen's death.
* In a sense, all believers are pilgrims, we are "God's scattered people."
Appeal - Faith Works!
James is not advocating a salvation through works, but he is saying that true faith results in works (see Eph. 2:8-10). The book of James confronts believers with the responsibilities of the Christian life. James defines the Christian life in terms of the moral and ethical behavior of those who profess faith in Jesus Christ. Themes repeated throughout James include God's concern for the poor, the importance of prayer, living with Godly wisdom, and tri ...
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