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Message Notes and Questions – July 26, 2020

James: Faith in the Real World

Wk 8 It’s “Not You, It’s Me….”

James 4:1-12

 

3 Way Not to Deal with Conflict:

 

  1. Avoid-
  2. Appease-
  3. Attack-

 

James 4:1-12
​What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us? But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against a brother or sister or judges them speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?

 

The Reason for Conflict-

 

James 4:1-3
What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

 

Two reasons our desires are not met, or satisfied:

 

  1. You didn’t ask God for it
  2. You did ask, but with the wrong motives

 

The Result of Our Conflicts-

 

James 4:4-5
You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us

 

Ephesians 4:30-31
And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.

 

The Solution to Conflict-

 

James 4:6
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.”

 

James 4:7
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

 

James 4:8-12
Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against a brother or sister or judges them speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?

 

Conflict Reveals Our Need for God

 

Notes:

 

 

 

Small Group Questions:

 

  1. Read James 4: 1-12, Has mankind progressed through time? With our technological advances are we better communicators or worse off? What are some things that make us think we can go through life without God?

 

  1. According to James why do some of our prayers go unanswered? Have you ever stopped to think that you haven’t asked God for something? At times we tend to personify God and His abilities.  Do you ever catch yourself when praying writing off God performing some miracle that only He can do?

 

 

  1. What are some of the ways people deal with conflict? Does it work? Is there a better way?

 

  1. If a friend of the world is an enemy of God, how do we unfriend the world?

 

 

  1. Read Matthew 5:21-22, Is conflict offensive to God? What is the judgement associated with being angry with a brother or sister? “Raca” can mean empty headed or worthless. Why would Jesus point this specific judgement out?

 

  1. Read Ephesians 4:30-31, what does it mean to grieve the Holy Spirit? Why do you think God want’s 100% of your heart and not 99.9%?

 

 

  1. Re-read James 4:7, why do you think James put the instructions in this specific order? Would it work if the order was reversed?

 

  1. James tells us we should grieve, mourn, and wail, wasn’t that just for the folks in the Old Testament? What way(s) can we draw nearer to God? What are some things that might take us in the other direction?

 

 

  1. Two weeks ago we learned through James that our words matter, last week we learned to ask for wisdom. Why do you think God would communicate these two through His Word before getting into conflict?

 

  1. Our world is hurting and deeply conflicted and is in desperate need of a Savior. Please pray that God will help those who have been blinded from the truth and to give us the fortitude to reach out to an unseeing world without becoming a part of the world.