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A Flower Quickly Fading - Part 2
August 9, 2009
INTRODUCTION: "Who Am I" - Casting Crowns
"I am a flower quickly fading
Here today and gone tomorrow
A wave tossed in the ocean
A vapor in the wind
Still you hear me when I'm calling
Lord, You catch me when I'm falling
And You've told me who I am
I am Yours."
The Bible speaks often of the reality that it is not your material resources that take you through the testings of life, but your spiritual resources.
Proverbs 11:4, "Riches do not profit in the day of wrath,
but righteousness delivers from death."
James 1:9-10 describes two different people who can both rejoice. The lowly rejoices in that even though he is one of "humble circumstances" (poor in finances), he is rich in faith.
The rich rejoices as one who is "fully supplied" for he has come to realize that what he has is temporal and what he has in Christ is eternal.
The cross of Christ lifts up the poor and brings down the high. It is the great leveler of mankind.
These teachings have monumental implications for Christians today who live in Western influence. Calvin has it right, when James tells the rich to rejoice in their humiliation, to restrain from those loft motives that swell out of prosperity. The rich believer has to cultivate the spirit of humility that he experienced when he came to Christ.
James will remind us in 1:17 that every gift is from above. That alone should have a humbling affect on us as it did John the Baptist.
John 3:30, "He must increase, but I must decrease."
I. JAMES DISPLAYS CONFIDENCE. 10-11
A. THE PROSPEROUS. 10
B. THEIR PURSUITS. 10b-11
"Because, as a flower of the field he will pass away. For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits (business)."
NOTE: 3 words to the poor (lowly) in v.9
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