by Jerry Vines

James 1:13-16
Jerry Vines

One of the reasons the book of James is so interesting to us is because it deals
with daily life. It talks about things that you and I experience almost on a daily basis. It
has talked to us about the trials and the tribulations—the troubles that come in life. It has
already talked about our need for wisdom and how that we encounter so many
circumstances on a daily basis which need God’s wisdom. He has talked about the
different economic situations in life—those who are poor and those who are rich, and the
fact that we can rejoice because if we have the Lord Jesus Christ we are rich indeed.
All of a sudden, it turns to the subject that you and I have to deal with on a daily
basis—the subject of temptation and sin. Notice here that when he talks about
temptation, he has already used the similar word in verse 2. There he talks about divers
(many different) kinds of temptations. That’s a noun. Now, in verse 13 he talks about
when a person is tempted. That’s a verb. It is actually the same word but it is used in
different ways in those two verses. In verse 2 he is talking about those testings which
come from God. In verse 13 he is talking about the temptations that come from the devil.
God puts us to the test in order to bring out the best in us. Satan tempts us in order to
bring out the worse in us. So, he is using in verse 13 the word to talk about those
temptations that come into our life that cause us to sin.
Notice there is no doubt about whether or not we are going to be tempted. Verse
13 says, When he is tempted. It doesn’t say if he is tempted. Or perhaps he might be
tempted. But it says, Let no man say when he is tempted.
One of the first verses I can ever recall memorizing was I Corinthians 10:13.
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man. Temptation is
common. It is something that happens to everybody. There may be many of ...

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