Archive of Pastor Darby's Sermon Notes, transcribed from his original typewritten documents
James 1:3 2-12
THE PURPOSE OF TRIALS
Sep 27, 1970 am
THERE ARE ALL KINDS OF TESTS TODAY - POLLS, SURVEYS, QUESTIONNAIRES, PUBLICATIONS TOO
- Few can resist the advertising gambit - IQ test - or "Are you compatible", "Is your brother-in-law nuts?"
- Yet when God allows us to have a real test of our faith - grown men tremble, women complain
- We live in an age that tests men's souls - the test can bring terror, or joy -- which?
These times are exciting, the greatest Christian opportunity in all history - be courageous
COUNT IT JOY WHEN YOU ARE TESTED - JAMES 1:2
Like a book of Christian Proverbs - James touches on many very practical subjects - read well
"TO THE TWELVE TRIBES SCATTERED ABROAD, GREETING." JAMES 1:1
- James - this is the oldest half-brother of Jesus, the overseer of the Judean Church - Acts 12:17
- This may well be the first epistle in the New Testament - no intimation of Acts 15:17 council-
- Written to Christians - Jas 2:1 - of all 12 tribes - scattered- James interested in Jew-Christian
COUNT IT JOY WHEN YOU ARE TRIED - JAMES 1:2
- The word "temptation" means a trial, any kind of test, here not sin- but in v.13 it is sin
- James gave the sense of this in Matt 5:11-12, but can you rejoice, or is it of you - falsely?
- Today we are almost trained to avoid confrontation - and so we escape many real blessings
PHYSICAL TRIALS ARE ENDURED FOR THE ANTICIPATED BLESSING, WHY NOT SPIRITUAL TRIALS?
- The strong man rejoices to run a race (I don't now, but I know this by experience)
- Trials and tests have their purpose - Spiritual exercise can produce great results- if we will
- James endured the final trial of faith- martyrdom by stoning- rather than deny Jesus as Christ
We count the prophets great - happy Jas 5:10-11 but we try to avoid their trials like plague
THE TRIAL OF FAITH WORKS MATURITY - JAMES 1:3,4
We need mature men of faith today - thank God we have some- but are you included in the lot?
IS AN UNPROVED FAITH THE REAL THING WE CALL SAVING FAITH? V.3
- It is the seed in the stony places that is destroyed by tribulation - Matt 13:21
- It is the puppy love that is killed by hardship - real love is like a Chinese Handcuff-
- II Cor 13:5 urges us to prove our own selves - better than losing all before Col. skeptics
THERE IS PROGRESS IN THE CHRISTIAN LIFE THAT IS EXPECTED FROM EACH SOUL - V.4
- Rom 5:3-5 gives the growth to the place where we are not ashamed - and we need this
- II Pet 1:5-8 gives prescription for full growth to fruitfulness and blessing, one step at a time
- You can choose your tests, or let chance bring them, but they will come- no escape from them
GOD WANTS US TO GROW INTO MATURE PERFECTION IN THE CHRISTIAN LIFE - V.4B
- This perfection means to be mature, entire, nothing wanting - fully grown up. Matt 5:20,48
- There is no way to spiritual growth without growing pains- call them trials and discipline
- Remember that baby-faced innocence is not mature perfection - so grow up! No adult is innocent
If you lack- ask God, but ask in faith- be ready for trial, seek the will and purpose of God
BLESSED IS THE ONE THAT ENDURES - V.12
When patience has had her perfect work, there is a reward, and that reward is desirable
BLESSINGS BELONG TO THE VICTOR; THERE IS NO SUBSTITUTE FOR THE JOY OF WINNING!
- The stolen goalposts robbed the winning school of reward - so we thought - but gave patience
- There is real joy in serving Jesus - but too often we gripe at trial instead of rejoicing
- When we gripe, we are not enduring! This means to abide under suffering courageously!
THERE IS A CROWN FOR THE ONE WHO ENDURES TEMPTATION, AND THIS CROWN IS PRECIOUS - V.12B
- There is a joy just in great gulps of air after running a mile- but this is so much better
- When we endure- finish the course- we are promised here the crown of life- victorious life
- A person has to have spiritual life to seek this crown- it is at the end of the race!
THE PROMISE IS TO ALL WHO LOVE HIM - V.12C - IT CENTERS IN YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS
- The Lord has promised this to those who love Him - or love His appearing - does this include you?
- Are you sure that you love Him? That you know Him? Do you love Him enough to endure?
- This is a trial, or a test that we cannot fail - if we love Him! In this we cannot lose!
Today we have many different pressures - these will make your love sweeter, if you have it.
NOT EVERYONE WHO BREATHES PHYSICAL LIFE CAN CLAIM TRIALS AS A MEANS OF BLESSING!
- If you are not saved- the trials have no rewards - only warnings, urging you to come to Jesus
- If you are a Christian - seek the personal discipline that will make you strong - love Him
- If you really want joy, seek the discipline of a soulwinner - witness for Jesus daily