Archive of Pastor Darby's Sermon Notes, transcribed from his original typewritten documents
THE TEST OF RELIGION
Jan 30, 1972 am
THE GREAT MESSAGE OF JAMES - OUR FAITH, OR RELIGION, WILL BE TESTED BY PRACTICAL ETHICAL LAWS
- With a language that is clear, uninvolved, straight to the point and impossible to misunderstand,
- James gives both a positive (Pure) and a negative (Undefiled) plumb line for religious fact.
- Like a clear trumpet call, James sounds an alarm against an invader and calls for a strong attack against the enemy of our souls- demands strong faith to win victory!
A VAIN RELIGION - JAMES 1:22-24
A vain person starts out to fool others, and winds up being the biggest fooled person around.
BE YE DOERS AND NOT HEARERS ONLY, DECEIVING YOUR OWN SELVES - JAS 1:22 - SO PLAIN
- Jesus spoke plainly about those who heard and did not do - Matt 7:24-29 - and spoke with authority
- James explained that this is like a man looking in a mirror and forgetting what kind he is.
- When you see yourself (a good view of Jesus shows a lot about YOU) do something about it.
IF ANY MAN SEEM TO BE RELIGIOUS AND BRIDLETH NOT HIS TONGUE BUT DECEIVETH HIS OWN HEART - V.26
- James sets the saint and the slanderer at such variance- how can they meet? But they do.
- The tongue is a great tool for good or evil - phones and radio multiplies it! Is yours good? Evil?
- A bridle is used for control. A runaway horse or tongue can do a lot of hurt!
SUCH A MAN DECEIVETH HIS OWN HEART, THIS MAN'S RELIGION IS VAIN! - V.26B
- So much of our culture is acting, pretending to please someone else, or our own selves! Be real!
- We need a complete honesty with God - He will show us the truth about ourselves - and others!
- Without God we miss proper value of soul and body - and, insane, go upper or downer in heart - both deceive.
God knows you are a horrible sinner - yet of infinite value to Him - so He saves.
PURE RELIGION - TO VISIT! - JAMES 1:27A
- Here is the positive approach - He tells us what we ought to do - and it is fun, so keep busy!
JAMES SAYS "TO VISIT", AND GOD COMMANDED "GO YE UNTO ALL THE WORLD" - NO GO, NO GLOW!
- The first impact of the Gospel on you - when someone came to you about Jesus loving you!
- Then we need to get up and go with the Gospel to help other people to know Jesus!
- But there is more to this than just EVANGELISM! Note 2:16 - such piety, very fundamental!
JAMES SAID TO VISIT THE FATHERLESS AND THE WIDOWS IN THEIR AFFLICTION! 1:27A
- This is the social aspect of the gospel - and very real! Not a 'social' visit (just for talk).
- Paul said - don't forget to communicate! Not for fun, but for help! Business not busybody!
- The key "in their affliction" means TO HELP THEM! Do you know of any needing help?
GOD ASKED ISAIAH, "WHOM SHALL I SEND, WHO WILL GO FOR US" - AND GOD IS ASKING TODAY!
- We turn the charity over to the Deacons, and the visitation over to the Pastor - God says YOU.
- I am sorry I have not done better - but a canned visitation program has its limits and heartaches.
- But DO YOU know of a widow or fatherless that needs YOUR help? God's answer to crime and poverty.
Not just once, but build a friendship / older folks are lonely, younger ones need love and correction.
UNDEFILED RELIGION - UNSPOTTED! 27B
This is the negative approach - He tells us that there are spots that will pollute our souls!
AS A MAN GROWS, HE IS INFLUENCED BY THE WORLD AROUND HIM, JAS 4:4 - ITS FRIENDSHIP IS DEADLY.
- Is it possible for a man to grow up without being defiled? School? War? Job? And stay clean?
- The early Christians were in daily contact with the heathen just as today, and society is worse!
- James in Jerusalem - Acts 13:10-11 - not to yoke us with many rules and don'ts, but salvation!
BUT MY PERSONAL CHOICE, WE NEED TO RECOGNIZE AND AVOID THE POLLUTION SPOTS OF THIS WORLD! AVOID!
- I do not attend the public theatre - Hollywood films, and where do you draw the line? TV, probably - show, not!
- I do not use alcohol nor tobacco - no room for argument, my body is God's temple!
- I try not to think ill of any man, nor too high either! Neither worship nor condemn!
JAMES WRITES IN V.25 "WHOSO LOOKETH INTO THE PERFECT LAW OF LIBERTY SHALL BE BLESSED!"
- "Looketh" means stoop down for a close look! Stoop low enough to kneel - then ask Jesus!
- Daniel determined in his heart not to defile himself with the King's food! Sacrifice? NO!
- Paul said all things are lawful - not under the power of any! And lest I cause a brother to offend.
There is much in this world that can defile you! Our generation wallows in the mud! YOU? Decide.
YOU ARE FREE TO LIVE WHATEVER KIND OF LIFE YOU WISH, BUT CAN YOUR RELIGION STAND THE TEST?
- Do you know Jesus Christ as your Saviour? Your evil nature can be cured only by Jesus!
- Have you allowed your faith in Christ to change your social habits? Attitude toward others?
- Do you have any concern about the salvation and help for others? What are you doing about it?