Richvale Church
Sunday Morning
  • Opener: Can you tell of a time when you were offered deal that was too good to be true?
    The challenge is to move from Hearing to doing the word. o be honest it is not just a struggle that we have as Christians… it is something we encounter in life in General..
    A recent (2015) article in The Wall Street Journal points to new research that proves what many workers already know: employees fake a positive outlook when the boss is around, and all that fakery can be exhausting.
    Do you know what's the most retweeted tweet of all time? You would think it would inspirational quote from a politician or author, or perhaps a photo of a monumental event?
    The research, reported first in the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, concluded that workers tended to put on smiles and fake happiness when higher-ups were in the room.
    What's the most retweeted tweet of all time? Perhaps an inspirational quote from a politician or author, or perhaps a photo of a monumental event?
    True religion listens first and the responds to others. It is slowly angered... because it comes not from us but from the implanted word... produces righteousness.. it leads to action taking care of widows and orphans 

True religion derived from the right motive and listens and acts accordingly.


    By contrast, when workers hold meetings with peers or with lower-status employees, they tend to express themselves more honestly.
    Nope, it's 16-year-old Carter Wilkerson's plea for free Wendy's chicken nuggets.
    In one experiment, researchers selected nearly 150 full-time employees who regularly attended workplace meetings. The participants filled out surveys about meetings they recently attended.
    On April 5, Carter tweeted, "Yo @Wendys how many retweets for a year of free chicken nuggets?" The Wendy's account replied, "18 Million." Carter's response? "Consider it done."
    We have to the word impact our hearts.
    After the researchers collected the data, it was obvious that when superiors were in the room the participants reported that they tended to hide their authentic feelings during the meetings.
    He then took a screenshot of the tweets and tweeted the photo along with the cry of "HELP ME PLEASE. A MAN NEEDS HIS NUGGS."
    The Wall Street Journal article went to say, "All this faking can be exhausting: those who feigned positive feelings actually felt less satisfied when a meeting ended, researchers found. [As one of the researchers said], 'Even if they act positive, those underlying negative feelings are still there. They feel inauthentic, which could result in lower satisfaction, or, eventually, burnout.'"
    According to the New York Times, Carter believed the tweet "might be a fun joke for his friends. He had never gotten so many as 10 retweets on a single tweet before … so topping that would be kind of cool."
    Hearing the word translates into action
    We are in a series…entitled Spiritual Hacks for the Real life… James is the half brother of Jesus and he is writing to the Jewish Christians scattered though out the known world… The questions those early Christians wrestled with are the same that you and I wrestle with today…
    How do we live out our Faith in a real and authentic way?
    Then the tweet passed one million retweets. Then two million. And "when [it] passed just over 3.43 million retweets,
    What do you think it means to be an authentic Christian?
    It would have exponentially reach beyond 18 million people… and he got free chicken nuggets for a year…
    James brings up the theme a number of times through His letter. When talking about God he says that there is no partiality with God… In other words
    Intention: we live our lives intentionally before others we will be known for kind words and know for good attitudes....and motive. Our Profession would match our practice.... Faith is more than talk but manifests itself Acts of kindness and generosity...
    God is without Hypocrisy… God is the real deal… Everything that comes from God - comes down to us… Every perfect gift is comming down from the father.
    — He brings up the topic a number of times through His letter. When talking about God he says that their is no partiality with God… God is without Hypocrisy… God is not double minded… James talks about sincere faith... In our text he calls it - Pure Religion~
    Authenticity - Pure Religion~!
    James talks about sincere faith... In our text he calls it - Pure Religion~
    Authenticity is not only desired today in our world --- It is something that is needed…
    James qualifies what authenticity looks like in a believers life… Authentic faith is derived from God’s word but it translates into words and actions..
    listens and responds to others. It is slowly angered.. Authenticity does derive itself from with us but rather comes from the implanted word...
    We are in a series…entitled Spiritual Hacks for the Real life… James is the half brother of Jesus and he is writing to the Jewish Christians scattered though out the known world… The questions those early Christians wrestled with are the same that you and I wrestle with today… What does authentic Faith Look like?
    He told the Times that "when you gain internet fame, it's important to use it for good."
    T/S -James begins with the way we interact with each other in the world
    Intention: we live our lives intentionally before others we will be known for kind words and know for good attitudes....and motive. Our Profession would match our practice.... Faith is more than talk but manifests itself Acts of kindness and generosity...
    T/S -
    These Christians are scattered through out the Roman provinces nd this
    James 1:19–21 ESV
    19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. 21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
    James 1:19-
    James tells us that we should be slow to speak and fast to listen. Why might listening be a huge factor in communication? Is it a difficult to listen? Why?
    James tells us that the authentic life begins with

    1. Mastering the Art of Good Communication.

    —Rob Lazebnik, a writer for the TV show The Simpsons
    According to Bernard Shaw - One of the biggest mistakes we make with communication is to assume that it has happened…
    Rob Lazebnik, "It's True: You Talk Too Much," The Wall Street Journal (10-4-13)
    If you're like most people, you have a clear, hands down favorite topic for most of your conversations—yourself. On average, people spend 60 percent of conversations talking about themselves—and this figure jumps to 80 percent when communicating via social media platforms such as Twitter or Facebook. Now a recent study summarized in Scientific American reveals why we like talking about ourselves so much—because it feels good.
    Knowing who God is… God who is God who gives generously and without partiality…God who is steadfast in his Nature..
    A big part of Christianity is not just the message that we have been intrusted with, but the way that we handle or communicate that message…
    Researchers from Harvard asked 195 participants to talk about themselves or other people. As they talked, the researchers scanned their brains. The results of the study showed that self-disclosure (or talking about ourselves) lit up the parts of our brain associated with motivation and reward—the same parts of the brain associated with pleasures like comfort food (fried chicken, pizza, or macaroni and cheese) or a hit from cocaine. The article put it this way: "Activation of this system [in the brain] when discussing the self suggests that self-disclosure … may be inherently pleasurable—and that people may be motivated to talk about themselves more than other topics (no matter how interesting or important these non-self topics may be)."
    The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.
    . In light of what we have learned about the nature of God- God who gives generiously and without partiallity…Every good and perfect gift comes down from the father of lights - with whom there is not shadows of turning.
    Every good and perfect gift comes down from the father of lights - with whom there is not shadows of turning.
    —George Bernard Shaw, Irish literary critic, playwright, and essayist (1856-1950)
    In other words, we love talking about ourselves because it feels good. It's a neurological buzz.
    According to Bernard Shaw - One of the biggest mistakes we make with communication is to assume that it has happened…
    it refers to what is to come…
    The word KNOW is written as an imperative and it means to reflect upon something… it is completive it is using our cognitive reasoning to meditate on this thought.
    it is completive it is using our cognitive reasoning to meditate on this thought. … it refers to what is to come…
    James 1:19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;
    James 1:19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;
    It means that we look to the Character of God.Knowing who God is… God who is God who gives generously - Every good and perfect gift comes down from the father of lights - A God of justice - Whom their is no partiality… God is unchanging and steadfast - with whom there is not shadows of turning.... It is also
    The art of communication springs as much from knowing when to listen as it does from knowing how to use words well.
    Have you ever been in a conversation and you are listening — but also thinking about what you are going to say next. There is a reason for this
    As Christians we need to master the Art of good communication and it comes from knowing when to listen and knowing how to use words well. James uses the word KNOW it is an imperative and it means to reflect upon something… it is completive it is using our cognitive reasoning to meditate on this thought. … it refers to
    James tells us we need think about the way that we communicate… As Christians we need to master the Art of good communication and it comes from knowing when to listen and knowing how to use words well.
    James uses the word KNOW means to reflect upon something… it is contemplative it is using our cognitive reasoning to meditate on this thought… It is an imperative with ropes attached… James is telling us to know how to behave in light of God’s Character. Knowing who God is… God who is God who gives generously - Every good and perfect gift comes down from the father of lights - A God of justice - Whom their is no partiality… God is unchanging and steadfast - with whom there is not shadows of turning...
    There are three imperatives …what do we ought to do when it comes to effective communication…
    T/S James gives us three memorable maxims…these are something tangible you can put in your tool box… Good communication skills always begins with listening…
    a. Be a Good listener - James says be “Be quick to hear.”
    James says be “Be quick to hear.”
    Listening is an Art…meaning that is something that it is a skill that needs to be developed. Have you ever been in a conversation where you are not fully engaged — meaning you are half tuned in and half tuned out to what is being said or presented - We can be listening but we are thinking about what we are going to say next or mulling on one point.
    The second step in preparation is to be “slow to speak.” Constant speaking means we aren’t in a mode to receive information.
    There is a good reason for this and that is the speed of thought.. we can think three to four times faster than we talk and we often get ahead of the conversation and our minds wander…
    We are thinking about what we are going to say next. There is a reason for this and is because we can think three to four times faster than we talk and we often get ahead of the conversation and our minds wander.
    James says be quick to listen…and then be slow to listen
    So often we have it the other way around… we often are quick to give a reply…and slow to listen.
    James tells us to reverse the order.... There is a good reason for this… The first is if we are constantly speaking means we aren’t in a mode to receive information… This as a wide application… it’s applies to one on one relationships, but it is also applies to hearing from God’s word
    Romans 10:17 ESV
    17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

    The maxim or saying is to be “slow to anger.” A huge part of communication is conflict resolution… when there is more than you in the room… conflict is going to happen… this is a fact of life… should be taught from a young age… We are going to miss understand each other or say something that can cause problems.

    we are going to miss understand or say something that can cause problems.
    When we fail in the first two maxims… what happens is we can easily jump to conclusions…… When we are quickly angered, and our thinking is out of balance; our reasoning becomes undependable… When we listen and slow everything down…We actually can receive negative criticism or unpleasant truth and discern rather than react.
    I was thinking about that false alarm in Hawaii when someone pressed the wrong button. Human error that caused wide spread panic.. You can only imagine what it is like to get a text message on their phones that an immanent nuclear threat was headed their way… The their were those mind blowing words… “This is not a Drill.” People were terrified and shocked… people heading to the airport… I heard that there were some sticking their kids in to the sewers… Now, can you imagine if the US responded without doing some fact checking… pressed that button.. it would of been devastating.... How many marriages are destroyed because of poor communication? How many families are torn apart?
    I was thinking about that false alarm in Hawaii when someone pressed the wrong button. Human error that caused wide spread panic.. You can only imagine what it is like to get a text message on their phones that an immanent nuclear threat was headed their way… The their were those mind blowing words… “This is not a Drill.” People were terrified and shocked… people heading to the airport… I heard that there were some sticking their kids in to the sewers… Now, can you imagine if the US responded without doing some fact checking… pressed that button.. it would of been devastating.... How many marriages are destroyed because of poor communication? How many families are torn apart?
    The ability to defeat anger allows us to listen to unpleasant truths.
    The problem with anger is that it is normally unproductive and rarely solves anything. Rather than jumping to conclusions… James says “Put away anger” - or take off... It speaking of being in the state of something…
    The ability to defeat anger allows us to listen to unpleasant truths. When we are angry, our thinking is out of balance; our reasoning is undependable
    It is connected to the thought that the fumbles of life come from our lower nature that we enticed and baited by our desires. James says Be ready....Be prepared.... to be in the state of “taking off”… be ready to take it off — wrong attitudes …things that grieve God… rather receive with humility the instruction of the implanted word of God.. The implanted word… is only mentioned here in scripture… it speaks of the word of God abiding in us…
    Stay in the state of taking off… be stationed… be ready to take it off…
    The book of James is in the wisdom genre… practical application and he is telling us that Knowledge and wisdom come from listening… You could say when it comes to communication --- Slower is always faster....
    This is a principle that comes up repeatedly in ancient literature for example..
    The Roman poet Ovid encourages people to be slow to punish, but swift to reward. The Jewish writer Philo tells them to be swift to benefit others and slow to harm them.
    The Letters of James and Peter When to Be Quick and When to Be Slow (James 1:19–20)

    The Roman poet Ovid encourages people to be slow to punish, but swift to reward. The Jewish writer Philo tells them to be swift to benefit others and slow to harm them.

    Proverbs 17:27 ESV
    27 Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.
    Provers 17:27
    How do we master the art of good listening… Slow down.
    the residence got the text message on their phones that an immanent nuclear threat… Those blowing words… “This is not a Drill.” People were shocked… people heading to the airport… there were those who got into their
    Think about the
    How do we set our gauges so they look like this?
    How do we master the art of good listening.
    Give four practical ways to help in becoming a good listener..
    How does this look

    a. RESIST THE TEMPTATION TO MONOPOLIZE CONVERSATION.

    If you like to dominate a situation or feel you know everything there is to know about a subject, you're probably a poor listener. Remain open to new ideas instead of impatiently waiting for a chance to butt in with what you think is the final word on the subject. Before you speak, make sure that the speaker has had a chance to make his point. Many people think aloud and tend to grope toward their meaning. Their initial statements may be only a vague approximation of what they mean.

    b. AVOID JUDGING TOO SOON.

    Good listeners try not to become preoccupied with a speaker's mannerisms or delivery. Instead of thinking, for instance, "What a monotone this guy has," ask yourself, "What's in the message that I should know?" or "What can this add to my knowledge and experience?"

    c. DON'T FAKE ATTENTION.

    Attentive listeners remain alert and maintain eye contact. Simple gestures -- nodding, raising the eyebrows, or leaning forward -- all can convey interest. Occasional comments, such as "I see," "That's interest," or "Tell me more about that," if said with genuine interest, can go a long way toward reassuring the speaker.
    Attentive listeners remain alert and maintain eye contact. Simple gestures -- nodding, raising the eyebrows, or leaning forward -- all can convey interest. Occasional comments, such as "I see," "That's interest," or "Tell me more about that," if said with genuine interest, can go a long way toward reassuring the speaker.

    d. LISTEN FOR IDEAS AS WELL AS FACTS.

    When we listen, we tend to get bogged down trying to retain the facts and we miss the ideas behind them.
    For example, when a person starts running through a list of seven points, the listener immediately begins mulling over the first point, trying to remember it. Meanwhile, point two is being explained. How he's preoccupied with two facts and is apt to miss the third point altogether. So it goes through point seven: some facts retained, some missed, and others confused. Instead of getting lost in a string of disassociated fragments, make an effort to understand what the facts add up to by relating them to each other and seeing what key ideas bind them together. James tells us...
    Sermon Outlines for Seekers Make Way for the Word (James 1:19–25)

    The third step in preparation to be “slow to anger.” The ability to defeat anger allows us to listen to unpleasant truths. When we are angry, our thinking is out of balance; our reasoning is undependable

    Know this brothers
    Let every person
    a. Quick to listen
    b. Slow to speak
    In the message there were three ways to improve our listening. Is there one area that you find particularly more challenging?
    c Slow to anger
    Anger does not produce righteousness
    (Anger is unproductive)
    T/S living the Authentic life begin with communication but it has to translate into action.. James gives us this instruction.
    d. Put away wickedness
    Filthiness (unrighteousness is motor behind anger)
    Filthiness (unrighteousness is motor behind anger)
    Receive with
    Receive with
    meekness
    The implanted Word
    meekness
    Word
    The implanted Word
    James 1:22–25 ESV
    22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
    James 1:22–26 ESV
    22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. 26 If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.
    James 1:
    T/S Not only do we master the Art of good communication....we need to -

    2. Learn to put your practice your Faith.

    2. Find ways and places toActivateyour Faith.

    How many of you have been part of a team?
    I have found that on every team that I have served with… there are basically two kinds of people- there are the Processors or the thinkers - these are the administrators, the planners, and the vision people - they can come up with solutions and great ideas… but they are not so good at getting things done.
    The problem is that they are not so good at getting things done.
    The other Group are Activators — they are about making lists, having an action plan, delegating responsibility and getting things done.
    Activators often get frustrated the thinkers....seems like nothing gets done...
    If you have a-lot of without activators…lots of good ideas with nothing happening on the ground...
    You need both groups on the team… but if you have more thinkers than activators…lots of good discussion and ideas up but nothing happens… One of the Hacks for impacting Others is that we need to Master the Art of Responding.
    James has tells us that we need to receive the word of God with meekness… James puts this high value on responding to the Word of God…
    but If you have a-lot of vision people without activators… nothing happens...James has just told us to receive the word of God with meekness.. James uses the conjunction joining these two thoughts together… He offers us another Maxim.. “Be Doers of the word”
    James has just told us to receive the word of God with meekness.. James uses the conjunction joining these two thoughts together… He offers us another Maxim.. “Be Doers of the word”
    It’s more than hitting the ball at the right time…
    The Word of God needs to have a high value in the church… Why because Life is in the Word… when it is received word of God with meekness it saves the Soul.. The word of God is the implanted word… Word of God takes root and grows within us… And when the word of God is activated its both saving faith and continued deliverance… The reason we should be motivated to action is because the Word of God has challenged us....
    Why do you think that receiving the “implanted Word” with humility should precede doing?
    When God’s word is dwelling in us… it raises our awareness spiritual realities around…
    The Theologian and author Henri Nouwen put it well in his book Reaching Out..
    Choosing Real 7. #Realisthenewperfect

    A real spiritual life … makes us so alert and aware of the world around us, that all that is and happens becomes part of our contemplation and meditation and invites us to a free and fearless response.

    —Henri Nouwen, Reaching Out

    The challenge for us to move from Hearing to doing the word.
    It’s both saving faith and continued deliverance… The reason we should be motivated to action is because the Word of God has challenged us.... Our values need to word Driven…
    In verse 22 James uses the conjunction “But”- 22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
    James uses the conjunction joining these two thoughts together… He offers us another Maxim.. “Be Doers of the word”
    The conjunction joins these two thoughts together…we receive the word of God… but that’s not where it stops… it has to translate into responding or action… James wants us to remember these principles and he offers us another Maxim.. “Be Doers of the word and not hearers only” This statement is short concise memorable…
    offers us another Maxim.. “Be Doers of the word and not hearers only” - short concise memorable.
    T
    Why should Doing is a priority for every Christians? Here is the issue...If we are merely hearing God’s Word… It is easy to get puffed up… It is like well fed cattle on the side of the hill.... just grazing and putting on weight… Everything feels good… we have this sense of making progress… but this is a very dangerous condition.. We can fall into this category of being “Self deceived.” Self deception is the worst kind of deception is self deception because it means we have bought into a lie… or half truth.
    Filthiness (unrighteousness is motor behind anger)
    Read James 1:22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
    Why might hearing without doing doing the word be considered self deceiving?
    we are thinking that we are doing one thing but in the real world have 0 impact.
    We can think that we are impacting the world...but in reality in the “real world” we have made 0 impact…
    but in the real world have 0 impact.
    we can fall into this category of being “Self deceived.” I think the worst kind of deception is self deception because it means we have bought into a lie… that we are living our lives on mission in the world but in reality in the “real world” we have made 0 impact.
    Receive with
    What is needed is practice.... James tells us that our Faith is
    and then you have the activators who get some done… If you have a-lot of vision people without activators… nothing happens...
    James illustrates this by giving the example of a man who looks intently at his natural face in the mirror. This is more than a glance --- this is an self examination… looking intently means taking notice of what we see… This resonates with all of us..
    Something we all do.. we look at our reflection in the mirror… the reflection or the image reveals stuff.. some welcomed and others maybe unwelcome.
    meekness
    …maybe you notice you are getting some lines under your eyes.. we see things we like … or might not like about ourselves… This is what God’s word does… we see ourselves through the revelation of truth.. and it does the same thing… it encourages.. and it points out imperfection. This man looks at himself… sees the need for adjustments… change…but soon as he leaves the mirror He forgets what he is like..
    The key failure of the “hearer,” then, is forgetting.
    On the other hand..
    To “remember” God, his acts and his teachings, is to contemplate them in such a way that they make a lasting impression on the heart and the mind. The person who “forgets” what he has seen in God’s word is one who reads or listens superficially, not imprinting the message on the soul.
    On the other hand… the one who remembers… is seen in verse 25....James tells us that the one who remembers looks into the perfect law of liberty… and preservers and is a doer … he will be blessed in his doing...
    In verse 25....James tells us that the one looks into the perfect law of liberty… and preservers and is a doer … he will be blessed in his doing...
    Religion systems bring rules regulations and bondage… And there are many people that are doing and thinking that they are earning their salvation… I think is what bothered Luther --- Who struggled with the book of James calling it a “book of Straw.”
    I think is what bothered Luther --- Who struggled with the book of James calling it a “book of Straw.”
    We have to stop at the phrase… ‘the Perfect law of Liberty.” Here is the thing Religion systems often bring completely the opposite to liberty.... rules regulations always lead us towards bondage… And there are many Religions and people doing things for God who believe that they are earning their salvation…This is what bothered the reformer Martin Luther --- He never denied the inspiration or that James was part of the cannon of Scriptures.... but he did called James a “the Epistle of Straw.” One of the reasons, is because of the fact that we can be deceived into believing that we are Justified by our good works.... There are to sides to the coin...There the side that thinks that —
    at himself and pursevers..
    This a two sided coin - True Faith Hears God’s word and responds…
    We can be deceived in thinking that we are Justified by our good works....
    Something we all do.. we look at our reflection… the reflection doesn’t life… we see things we like… or might not like about ourselves…
    we see things we like… or might not like about ourselves…
    There the side that thinks that —
    The implanted Word
    Hearing is enough… the other side is DOING is enough.. How do you complement the two extremes…True faith is both Word and Works.
    James it together in Chapter 2.
    James 2:18 ESV
    18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
    Be doers of the word and Not only hearers only, Deceiving yourselves.
    Not only hearer ..
    Like a mirror they immediatly
    look in the mirror and forget
    But the one who looks into the perfect law
    finds liberty
    Perseveres
    He does not only hear but does..
    He is blessed in doing.
    T/S One of James big concerns is that of Self-Deception…
    When I was in Texas - there is this one section of high way where all the major highway intersects.
    There is this junction or you can say a sweet spot --- where The implanted Word — Our lives (that transformed) and works merge ..
    When this Happens you have authenticity… James calls it Pure religion.. Remember Anything less than authentic faith has 0 value.... 0 impact… James give us description of Authentic Faith.
    James 1:
    James 1:26–27 ESV
    26 If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. 27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
    T/S An authentic faith is one that is changed from the inside out… it is reflected in our communication… the way we interact… and the last hack authentic Faith.

    3. Finds the Sweet Spot of Authentic Faith.

    In tennis there is this Sweet spot its that place where everything comes together… the timing is right… the place where the ball connects with your racket and everything just feels right… There is a sweet spot that lives out authentic faith… In order to find out what authentic faith is James makes the comparison and shows us what it isn’t…
    Authentic faith is Spirit controlled Faith…
    We have this small member in our bodies called the tongue that can cause a lot of damage… James is going spend more time on this member because the tongue can do irreparable damage..
    The same mouth that bring life and encouragement when our words are unbridled they can cause damage… Once you have said a word its like scattering feathers once they have been spoken it is impossible to get them back.
    When our words are unbridled they can cause damage… words are scattering feathers once they have been spoken it is impossible to get them back.
    tells us that there is life and death in the power of the tongue… If we don’t have our words under check -- we can destroy a lot of good things that have gone on before..
    God is without Hypocrisy… God is the real deal… Everything that comes from God - comes down to us… Every perfect gift is coming down from the father and will impact our effectiveness and influence both within and without the community of faith. In fact we have to steward our words… we are going to be accountable for idol words… there is a reason for this… Words can dishearten, words can discourage, words can stifle vision and creativity...
    Our words can destroy our reputation… When you hear someone tearing down another person… it affects not only your reputation, but you are ambassadors of Christ...
    Proverbs 22:1 ESV
    1 A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, and favor is better than silver or gold.
    Prov
    Now this is the kicker…if you can’t do this… All this activity that we do under the banner of the church or ministry… under Christ… All of the progress we think we have made… is worthless..
    WORTHLESS RELIGION DECEIVES THE HEART
    does not birdie his tongue...
    James gives us examples of what Pure Religion looks like - For example Pure religion - Visits the Orphans and widows in affliction… Pure religion is always looking for the broken, wounded marginalized… always seeking to meet the need in someone else.
    Pure religion that is underfiled before God..
    Visits the Orphans and widows in affliction...
    widows in their affliction...
    I was interested in the verb --- this action of visiting...it means to check on or to visit someone in order to determine his condition. What it is saying is that there is genuine empathy and concern for those who are maybe the marginalize or forgotten in society. It is hard to get empathy when you don’t see the need…
    The great commission is about going…
    to check on — to visit someone in order to determine his condition.
    You can’t fully comprehend the gravity of what mother Theresa did on the streets of Calcutta until you see the destitute — We have an idea of what this looks like…we do have access to the internet and videos… but… listen...She lived in the slums with the poorest of the poor in our world.... she loved the most unlovely… If you want to get compassion for a segment or people group… visit the orphans… visit the widows… understand the plight.
    Knowledge is important, but it’s not enough in and of itself. James makes clear that acting on what we have heard is what matters, not just hearing it. What is meaningful to God, what really counts in his eyes? Looking after the marginalized, who have always been dear to him. We need to make sure our priorities match up with his.
    High Definition Commentary: James James 1:19–27

    Knowledge is important, but it’s not enough in and of itself. James makes clear that acting on what we have heard is what matters, not just hearing it. What is meaningful to God, what really counts in his eyes? Looking after the marginalized, who have always been dear to him. We need to make sure our priorities match up with his.

    Sometimes you have to go to see the need…
    Read Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
    She lived in the slums with the poorest of the poor in our world.... she loved the most unlovely…
    Sometimes you have to go to see the need…
    1:27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
    Why might visiting the Orphans and widows be an example of true Religion?
    Can you think of one thing you can do this week that would be demonstrate real authentic faith?
    This is pure religion.. is to keep....means to guard something… is to keep ones heart unstained (uncorrupted) from be world
    This is pure religion.. is to keep....means to guard something… is to keep ones heart unstained (uncorrupted) from be world
    Keep yourself unstained from be world
    also to Keep yourself unstained from be world
    One of the biggest problems today is being distracted by so many other things...
    unstained from be world
    The choice we face every day and every hour is how we respond to the influences around us. When we embrace and cozy up to them, we’re very likely to get stained. Allowing God’s implanted Word and freely given wisdom to shape us and to guard our hearts and minds is the very best way we can avoid those staining influences.
    High Definition Commentary: James James 1:19–27

    The choice we face every day and every hour is how we respond to the influences around us. When we embrace and cozy up to them, we’re very likely to get stained. Allowing God’s implanted Word and freely given wisdom to shape us and to guard our hearts and minds is the very best way we can avoid those staining influences.

    When our words and our actions match up… there is as sweet spot and its called influence that
    CLOSSING
    We need to think through our culture and how we can engage people with the gospel… We need to value this thing called impact.... and influence… there are all kinds of influences out there in the world… We have seen these influences impact our families in negative ways...
      • James 1:19–21ESV

      • Romans 10:17ESV

      • Proverbs 17:27ESV

      • James 1:22–25ESV

      • James 2:18ESV

      • James 1:26–27ESV

      • Proverbs 22:1ESV

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