Deep Creek Baptist Church
Sunday July 17
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        Ryan's Growth Group

        July 24, 2022 - 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
        Meeting After Church
  • To God Be the Glory
  • Great Is Thy Faithfulness
  • Almost Home
  • INTRODUCTION:
    Is pride a serious sin????
    Most of us would think that Pride is not really that big of deal, but
    Satan was thrown out of heaven due to Pride,
    Ultimately, it was the sin of pride that caused the people of Israel and Judah to be cut off from the promised land of Canaan (Isaiah 3:16; Ezekiel 16:50; Hosea 13:6; Zephaniah 3:11)
    King Nebuchadnezzar was made to live like a beast for 7 years because of Pride.
    King Herod’s pride in accepting the people’s worship and refusing to give God the glory for his greatness brought judgment. God struck him with sickness, and he was eaten by worms and died (Acts 12:21–23).
    God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.
    Pride shuts off the endless flow of grace into our lives.
    Humility releases it.
    We can remind ourselves of this every time we are in front of a faucet.
    Shut off the water and say “Pride”.
    Turn the water on and say “Humility”.
    Humility is what it takes to receive grace; pride turns off God’s grace.
    Let’s not be too quick to assume we are on the grace-receiving side of this verse.
    I’d suggest that most of us, including me, have more pride than we realize.
    James knows the congregations he is writing to have the same problem, so in James 4:7-10, he tells us how to cultivate humility in our lives
    James does this by giving us ten concise imperatives.
    They hit fast and hard, like a jackhammer breaking the concrete in our heart.
    Many Bible scholars call them the Ten Commandments of James,
    We need to use them to cultivate humility in our life if we are to be recipients of the one thing we desperately need... God’s grace.
    So what does a humble believer look like. What attitudes do the routinely possess to stay humble.
    We need to take these in so that we are not eaten by worms or turn into a beast.
    A Humble believer will be:

    Submissive

    James 4:7 (ESV)
    7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
    Rest in God
    The first step to humility is submission of the heart.
    The Greek word for submit is used to describe a Christian’s responsibility
    to submit to those in government (Romans 13:1),
    a wife’s responsibility to submit to her husband (Ephesians 5:22)
    and the church’s responsibility to submit to Christ.
    It is a military word.
    It means to fall in rank behind.
    Think of an army marching forward.
    There is no confusion who the soldiers fall in rank behind. Think about those pictures of the North Korea or Chinese army when they are all marching.
    The soldiers are in perfect step together.
    They are in submission to their superior officer who leads the march.
    They are not meandering through the streets buying hot dogs from street vendors.
    We are to submit to God, to fall in step behind him.
    The first step to humility is relinquishing my right to rule myself and acknowledging it belongs to God.
    Life is not about me and my happiness;
    it is about God and his glory.
    I fall in line behind him.
    He doesn’t fall in line behind me.
    This is the first, and often the hardest,
    step of humility because everything in our culture tells us life is about us and the most important part of life is to be happy.
    We are not in control of anything.
    We live with delusion that we are in control, but God is in control of our life.
    We are like children at the amusement park on a kiddie car ride.
    We turn the steering wheel back and forth but we are not determining anything.
    James says we need to be like a kid on an amusement park ride that says,
    “OK God, I’ll let you drive.”
    We need to get in line behind God and realize he is the one that is steering.
    We will admit God is in control
    and tell others we are comfortable with his driving abilities
    until God steers us in a direction we don’t want to go -
    when someone we love comes down with cancer or the market drops, or when we have issues in our life that does not make sense.
    We say, “God, there must be some mistake. This isn’t the direction I want you to steer my life.”

    The test of submission is how we react when God steers us in a direction we don’t want to go.

    Job’s response showed the humility of his submission when God steered him down a path where he lost his property and his children.
    Job 1:21 (ESV)
    21 And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”
    Submission is the first step of humility.
    It is acknowledging God is in charge of the steering wheel in our lives and we aren’t.
    It is trusting God knows what he is doing when he steers us down paths we would never take if we were in control.
    It is responding in trust, like Job, when God steers us down difficult lanes. That is humility in action.
    Part of Submission: is
    Resist the Devil
    The verb here is the Greek antistete,
    a military term that literally means ‘take your stand against’,
    and there are two things about it that are particularly important in grasping its significance here.

    Resisting Satan is both defensive and active .

    The first is that it is a defensive word.
    This comes across clearly when Peter writes,
    1 Peter 5:8–9 (ESV)
    8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.
    The Christian never has to pick a fight with the devil,
    because the devil is constantly attacking him.
    The Christian was born a child of the devil and an enemy of God;
    at his conversion he became a child of God and an enemy of the devil.
    The Christian is a marked man, always in the devil’s sights; his responsibility is to resist.
    The second point to make about the word ‘resist’ is that it is active and not passive.
    It is defensive, but not docile!
    ‘Let go and let God’ may be a comfortable-sounding cliché used in certain circles,
    but it has no part in the biblical doctrine of sanctification.
    An army does not assume an effective defensive formation by lying around doing nothing;
    nor can a Christian effectively resist the devil without earnest effort.
    As someone has rightly said, ‘A godly life is characterized by its conflicts with sin.’

    The humble Christian spends his life in an arena, not in an armchair.

    It is no coincidence that the command to ‘resist the devil’
    comes immediately after the words: ‘Submit yourselves, then, to God.’
    Consecration and conflict go together,
    and the greater your determination to submit to God,
    the greater will be the intensity of the enemy’s opposition.
    If you are content to be a careless and , slipshod kind of Christian,
    then the devil will not need to waste much powder and shot on you,
    but if you are determined to comply with the Word of God,
    consecrate yourself to the will of God and commit yourself to the work of God,
    then the devil will attack you again and again.
    2 Timothy 3:12 (ESV)
    12 Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted
    A Humble believer will be:

    Confident

    James 4:8 (ESV)
    8 Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
    This is a well-known verse, but it is not well understood.
    We tend to think of drawing near in terms of physical proximity.
    Many people think that we need a church building to feel closer to God. I
    But I think that Jonah felt closer to God in a belly of a fish then he ever felt near the Temple..
    The problem is sometimes people feel they need a church sanctuary to pray.
    If a church sanctuary helps you pray, that is fine.
    but thinking by coming to a church they are inching closer to God.
    The truth is we are no closer to God in the church sanctuary than we are on the Lake.

    “Drawing near” is not spatial but spiritual.

    This verse is about our Spiritual connection/Relationship with God.
    How many of you sing in the shower???
    The very fact that we are commanded as Christians to ‘come near to God’ should teach us a very clear lesson, and that is that we have a constant need to do so.
    We are not to assume that
    because we belong to a sound church,
    read the Bible every day and pray regularly,
    we are automatically walking closely with the Lord.

    It is possible to be diligent in our religion and distant in our relationship.

    Take the illustration of marriage again.
    The marriage itself takes place in a moment of time,
    but that marriage bond will need to be cultivated or the relationship will cool.
    This verse doesn’t just command us to draw near to God, but it also has a promise.
    When we draw near to God, he will draw near to us.
    The more we seek him, the more he will reveal of himself to us.
    The more we cultivate our relationship with God,
    the more he will give of himself to us.
    How do we return to him? It begins with repentance. Sin breaks our fellowship with God and when we repent, we take a step toward God. In return, he takes a massive step toward us.
    Thirdly A Humble believer will be:

    Repentant

    James 4:8 (ESV)
    8 Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
    Here is a principle written on every page of Scripture:
    as far as a man’s relationship with God is concerned, there can be no communion without cleansing.
    James now emphasizes the fact by pinpointing two serious defects.

    Cleanse your hands = Stop doing evil!

    Purify your hearts = Stop thinking evil!

    James 4:8 (ESV)
    8 Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
    1. Dirty hands. ‘Cleanse your hands …’
    This has nothing to do with personal hygiene!
    It is a reference to the actions performed by the Old Testament priests,
    who before entering the tabernacle went through an elaborate ritual of washing their hands in the sight of the people.
    This was an unmistakable visual aid,
    showing that no man could enter into God’s holy presence with dirty hands,
    that is to say, with unconfessed sin.
    The same principle remains true today,
    and it is interesting to notice that Paul uses the same imagery of the hands when dealing with the subject of prayer: ‘I want men everywhere to lift up holy hands in prayer, without anger or disputing’
    1 Timothy 2:8 (ESV)
    8 I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling;
    The crucial point here is not that the hands must literally be raised in the air.
    There is biblical warrant for praying in numerous physical positions,
    but no particular merit is claimed for any of them.
    The all-important word is ‘holy’—the person seeking to draw near to God
    must do so in a spirit of confession and repentance.
    Better to pray with your hands hanging down but with a penitent heart
    than to wave them around in some kind of superficial ecstasy
    and to have unconfessed sin nullifying it all.
    Paul is not calling for a physical performance but for spiritual penitence;
    his point is not that you should lift up your hands,
    but that your hands should be holy,
    in other words that your sin should be confessed.
    2. Purify your hearts, you who are double-minded.’
    This speaks not so much of outward actions as of inward affections, and shows us something of James’s deep understanding of life.
    He begins by speaking about the
    ‘hands’—outward, individual, specific sins;
    but then reaches into men’s ‘hearts’, where the real source of the trouble lies.
    Jesus Taught
    Matthew 15:19 (ESV)
    19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.
    On the wall of my Doctor’s office this verse says....
    Proverbs 4:23 (ESV)
    23 Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.
    I find so often when counselling people in spiritual need that the trouble lies not so much in specific sins but rather in the depths of an unspiritual attitude the idea of pride and selfishness.
    3. James describes it as being ‘double-minded’, a word only he uses (here and at 1:8).
    The Greek word is dipsuchoi, which literally means ‘having two souls’.
    The picture is not of an out-and-out, unconverted sinner,
    but of a Christian who finds himself constantly torn in his affections between God and the world.
    There was famous gangster named Mickey Cohen.
    It seems that Cohen once attended an evening evangelistic meeting and appeared interested.
    As a result many Christian leaders began to visit him,
    imagining what an impact his conversion would make.
    After one long evening service he was urged to open his heart and let Christ in, based on Revelation 3:20—“‘Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will go in and eat with him, and he with me.’”
    Cohen did this,
    but as the months passed it was evident he had not left his life of crime.
    When he was confronted about this,
    his response was that no one had told him he would have to give up his work or his friends.
    After all, there were Christian football players, Christian cowboys and Christian politicians—why not a Christian gangster?
    James—Faith That Works (Wash … Purify (v. 8b))
    Ridiculous! we think.
    But it is just as much (or even more) absurd for a true child of God to serve two masters.
    The Lord calls us to a single-minded allegiance to himself.
    He wants us to have eyes only for him! Jesus said,
    Matthew 5:8 (ESV)
    8 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
    Are we two-souled Christians—
    having wandering eyes,
    one raised to Heaven, one focused on earth—
    absurd Mickey Cohens?
    If so, there is only one thing to do: repent! “Wash your hands … purify your hearts”—and get ready for more grace!
    Fourthly A Humble believer will be:

    Contrite

    James 4:9 (ESV)
    9 Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.
    These are four commands that essentially say the same thing.
    Let me first say what this verse is NOT telling us.
    It is not teaching us that laughter and joy are wrong.
    Joy is a fruit of the spirit.
    Laughter is good.
    As Christians, we should be the most joyous people around because we look at our lives from the perspective of faith.
    We look at all we have through Jesus Christ in this life and for eternity in the next and we should be filled with joy.
    Christians who don’t laugh and cannot crack a smile are not spiritual people;
    they are boring people.
    They need to get a life and learn to have a little joy.
    While we should be filled we joy, is there something we should grieve?
    Of course there is.
    It is our sin. It was the guilt of my sin that Christ bore on the cross.
    The precious blood of Jesus was shed for my sin.
    He died a tortuous death on the cross because of my sin.
    The central moment of redemptive history is not a laughing moment.
    It is deathly serious and eternally weighty.
    James tells us to never get over this. In one sense,

    We are to always be broken over our sin and sense the seriousness of it.

    Too many churches do not take sin seriously.
    I call them the happy-clappy churches.
    Everything is fun and games and a pew jumping party.
    Nobody every talks about sin, judgment, and hell.
    The Old Testament, where God wiped out thousands of people at a time because of his wrath is off limits in those churches.
    James is going after this cavalier faith that ignores the seriousness of the sin Christ came to deal with.
    If we don’t weep over sin something is wrong.
    Lastly, A Humble believer will be:

    Trustful

    James 4:10 (ESV)
    10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.
    The other nine commands tell us how to become humble. This command comes with a promise. When we humble ourselves, God will lift us up.
    When you humble yourselves before God,
    grieving and weeping and mourning and wailing over sin,
    then you do not have to lift yourself up, God Himself will do it for you.
    God will lift you up.
    God will make you who you were created to be.
    You don’t have to assert yourself.
    Humble yourself, He will lift you up.
    Resist the devil forcefully,
    seek God passionately,
    pursue purity holistically,
    treat sin seriously,
    and trust God completely.
    He will give you grace, and He will raise you up.
    This morning, humble yourself before God.
    Let him lift you up in the way and in the time he chooses,
    just like he did for Jesus.
    There is no better way.
  • Just As I Am
  • Are You Washed In The Blood (Washed In The Blood)
      • Download

        Ryan's Growth Group

        July 24, 2022 - 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
        Meeting After Church

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