One of the ordinances of the church that have been historically consider established clearly by Jesus, the Apostles and the teaching of the Scriptures for all places, all time and all people, is called ‘The Lord’s Table or the Eucharist(thanksgiving) or Communion’ in the historical church. This practice brings together in many ways the overall saving message of the gospel of Jesus. We proclaim Him and His work of redemption, reconciliation and restoration of all things in Him. This table, with it’s elements of bread and wine are purposefully both meaning and mystery, natural and supernatural, intentionally common and sacred to speak of the Son of God and His life giving truth and work.
Our last sermon on the book of James:
See things as they are,
accept what you must,
speak only what you should,
pray all you can,
do what you can,
with whom you can,
for whomever you can.
James Chapter 2. We look at how Abraham and Rahab are extreme opposites, but make great examples of the various ways active faith is essential to a healthy spiritual life in Christ.
Facing the Person in the mirror: So what kind of person do we see looking back at us in this mirror? James briefly touches on 9 types of people in this chapter. Last week we looked at 6, today I want to look at 3 more.
- The angry person (1:19-21,26)
- The forgetful person: (1:19-25)
- The person with Dirty Duds: (1:27)
James chapter 1, part 1.
“…if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like.” -James 1:23
So what kind of person do we see looking back at us in this mirror? James briefly touches on a number of types of people in this chapter. I want to look at a number of them, in hopes that you will see yourself. The goal here is not to just make a diagnosis, but provide a prescription of active response.
1. James is an important book from a mission angle.
2. James tackles the practical challenges of community.
3. James arises out of the wisdom literature tradition of teaching by opposites.
4. James was a witness, disciple and apostle of Jesus.
5. James is reflective of the prophetic tradition and the best of the western philosophical tradition.
6. James calls us to a holistic faith that doesn’t divorce theory from practice.
From my Intro:
“I think the book of James is particularly relevant to the crisis of faith in America today. We are suffering from a divorce of belief and practice. There’s been a war waged in the theological courtrooms of Christendom that has its roots in evangelical’s reformation history. Unfortunately it has had dire consequences in the everyday life of the average believer whose disconnected from that once fresh headwaters of reform.
Somehow what started out as a prophetic call and epoch shifting return to the truth of the Bible and the faith of the fathers has resulted in the degeneracy of discipleship, the very plague that started the reform! The idea that one can believe in Jesus and yet live their lives as they want contradicts the claim of Jesus’s lordship. How did we move away from the simplicity of the gospel of Jesus that rooted faith and action in one’s confession?