Living out what lives inside

Jan 2019 - Feb 2019
Sermons in this series
Sun, Feb 10, 2019

Hanging on to faith, persevering in the face of trials, temptation, struggles and suffering is not easy. But, as James illustrates, if our attitude to the way we use our material resources is not right, then our perseverance is in vain.

These verses are a corrective towards selfishness, a selfishness that apparently manifested itself in an extreme form in James's experience; so keen were some to get wealth and keep it, in that they were prepared to do anything to achieve their goal (v.4).

It all boils down to a question of attitude - a matter of what we are inside, that affects the way we deal with and how we respond to the needs of others.

Sun, Feb 10, 2019

If there is one thing we have learned from James over these past weeks, then it is that our responsibility as believers extends beyond ourselves and that our actions and our attitudes have a significant impact on the life of the church as a whole.

Now, as James comes to the end of his letter he reminds us once again of our responsibilities towards each other. Unless all we do is backed by consistent Christian behaviour, attitudes and, above all, the continued presence of prayer, then what we do will be useless and without fruit.

Sun, Feb 03, 2019

We all suffer from conflict at some time or another and it often appears that it is really part and parcel of our everyday lives. After all there are so many things or situations that can trigger it off aren't there? Workmates, other car drivers, members of our families, others within the church fellowship and even from within ourselves?

In these verses – having recognised the need the for Godly wisdom (3:13 – 18) James again looks at the uglier side of human nature. This is the conflict that exists between our desires and God's will.

What is the source of this conflict? What is its substance? Where does it lead and how can we resolve it? These are the questions that James addresses and, in doing so, provides us with a solution to the spiritual conflict that is at the very heart of our human condition.

Sun, Jan 27, 2019

Words are part of our day to day communication; they can build and maintain or they can destroy relationships. They can cement or they can fracture confidence and trust.

Words have power; they can communicate love or hatred, acceptance or rejection. Words can just as easily libel people's reputations and spread false information as much as they express praise or encouragement.

To maintain the bond of peace, before we speak let’s first think – is it True, Helpful, Inspiring, Necessary and Kind?

Sun, Jan 20, 2019
20-Jan PM; James 2: 14 - 25
Sun, Jan 20, 2019
20-Jan AM; James 2:1 - 13
Sun, Jan 13, 2019

I sometimes think that James is like the little boy in the Hans Christian Andersen Fairy Story who exposed the emperor's nakedness.

James has a painful habit of exposing our own spiritual pretence: do we just talk a good game? Do we know the language, read the right books, sing acceptable songs, go along to the right meetings?

Fine, so far as it goes, but James argues that if that is our faith, then it needs to go a whole lot further: much, much further in fact, into a different way of living. We are not just to listen (although that’s crucial because you have to know what you are hearing but we must think through and engage with what we’ve learned and heard and out it into practice every day. It’s not enough to hear and to know about our faith, we are called by Christ to do something about it.

Sun, Jan 13, 2019

Tough times face us, it is true but the Good News of Jesus Christ and of God’s provision is always the Good News.

Faith and trust is truly the key to facing up to the tests that our daily lives set us.

It is faith in the Lord who will equip us not just to stay still and survive but to thrive and grow to maturity through His Grace. We will not achieve perfection in this life, but it is as we are refined in the face of trials and hardships, as we trust God wholeheartedly, as we are single minded about serving him and making him known, that we will grow closer to him and to each other.

Whatever trials we face - and we may be facing them now or may do so this week - then I pray that we will face them with God at our side, with prayer on our lips and with hope in our hearts.