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A Tongue to Speak His Truth (CC)

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SEPTEMBER 16, 2012 SERMON WWW.ZIONTORRANCE.INFO Let us rise for the reading of this morning's Sermon Text recorded for us by James in his Epistle where we begin reading with Verse 17 [JAMES Chapter 1]: EVERY GOOD AND PERFECT GIFT IS FROM ABOVE, COMING DOWN FROM THE FATHER OF THE HEAVENLY LIGHTS, WHO DOES NOT CHANGE LIKE SHIFTING SHADOWS. HE CHOSE TO GIVE US BIRTH THROUGH THE WORD OF TRUTH, THAT WE MIGHT BE A KIND OF FIRSTFRUITS OF ALL HE CREATED. MY DEAR BROTHERS, TAKE NOTE OF THIS: EVERYONE SHOULD BE QUICK TO LISTEN, SLOW TO SPEAK AND SLOW TO BECOME ANGRY, FOR MAN'S ANGER DOES NOT BRING ABOUT THE RIGHTEOUS LIFE THAT GOD DESIRES. THEREFORE, GET RID OF ALL MORAL FILTH AND THE EVIL THAT IS SO PREVALENT, AND HUMBLY ACCEPT THE WORD PLANTED IN YOU, WHICH CAN SAVE YOU. DO NOT MERELY LISTEN TO THE WORD, AND SO DECEIVE YOURSELVES. DO WHAT IT SAYS. ANYONE WHO LISTENS TO THE WORD BUT DOES NOT DO WHAT IT SAYS IS LIKE A MAN WHO LOOKS AT HIS FACE IN A MIRROR AND AFTER LOOKING AT HIMSELF, GOES AWAY AND IMMEDIATELY FORGETS WHAT HE LOOKS LIKE. BUT THE MAN WHO LOOKS INTENTLY INTO THE PERFECT LAW THAT GIVES FREEDOM, AND CONTINUES TO DO THIS, NOT FORGETTING WHAT HE HAS HEARD, BUT DOING IT -- HE WILL BE BLESSED IN WHAT HE DOES. IF ANYONE CONSIDERS HIMSELF RELIGIOUS AND YET DOES NOT KEEP A TIGHT REIN ON HIS TONGUE, HE DECEIVES HIMSELF AND HIS RELIGION IS WORTHLESS. RELIGION THAT GOD OUR FATHER ACCEPTS IS PURE AND FAULTLESS IS THIS: TO LOOK AFTER ORPHANS AND WIDOWS IN THEIR DISTRESS AND TO KEEP ONESELF FROM BEING POLUTED BY THE WORLD. This is the Word of our Lord. Let us pray: Glorious and gracious God, may the words of my mouth and the meditation of each of our hearts be acceptable in Your sight, our only source of hope and comfort. Amen. [Text taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, 1973, 1978, 1984, used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.] Dear Followers of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ: The Word of God in our life is of FIRST importance. The Word of God is what brought us to faith! The Holy Spirit using that Word of God, the power of that Word of God, for most of us connected with the waters of Holy Baptism created faith within us. Faith that put its trust in that Word. Faith that put its hope in that Word. Because it IS that Word that has revealed to us the glories of God. The mysteries of God; what God is like; as well as what we as human beings are like. And our relationship with God. That relationship with God that at creation was perfect. God creating man and woman in His own image in holiness and perfection. That they had a relationship that was beyond almost our comprehension. A communion with each other that was perfect and was beautiful. A relationship that was utterly destroyed by humanity's disobedience. By Eve listening to that serpent and looking at that fruit that she thought was going to be good for her to gain knowledge to be like God. To understand things in a way she had not before. Adam standing there and not stopping her ... and eating of that fruit as well. And immediately the Word came back to them and they KNEW that they had done something that was against God's will. They felt shame at their own nakedness. When God came back in the Garden to walk with them and to be with them they hid! They hid from God because they KNEW of the punishment that they had now brought upon themselves. That punishment of death. That punishment of condemnation. Yet God, in His love for humanity and His relationship with them would not leave them to despair. Would not leave them in a place where they would be helpless and hopeless. He was the One who said: I will help you. I will give you hope. I will send to you a Savior. I will give you My Son ... who will RESTORE that relationship that you have had with Me. That HE will be the One to bear your burden. That HE will pay your debt. That HE will suffer when you should have suffered. And by His death, you WILL receive life! ETERNAL life! Your sins will be forgiven. Yours will be an eternity of glory in the presence of God with all of His saints and angels. That is the importance of the Word that God sent to us. That God gave to us. That God has allowed us to learn from and study from each and every day of our lives to strengthen our faith. To see what IT has to say; to dig into IT daily for ITS firming up of our faith. And for the encouragement that It gives. And yet our own sinful nature knows that we need to hear these words from James ... just as the people he wrote this Epistle to needed to hear it. Because how often don't we just ignore that Word? How often is it at the bottom of our list of things to get to today? How easy it is for us to neglect that Word. To think that we're always going to have it and when we need it for that special time in our life we'll be able to run to it and break the glass on the case that we have it in and save us. But James says: Look at what you're doing. Examine your life. You have been given the Word of Life. And that Word is important to you. Hear that Word. Don't just listen to it and think that that is enough. Don't just spend time with it and hear the sounds that those vowels and those consonants make. It's not enough. Because it isn't what God desires from us. God desires from us that we LEARN that Word and KNOW that Word and then DO what that Word says. SHOW our FAITH! Live a life of thanksgiving and sanctification based upon what God's Word has said. Let that Word live in us and shine for the world to see. Let people understand from our testimony what God's Word says. James says: Do what the Word says. Watch your tongue. And watch your temper. Those are two areas that we can concentrate on this morning ... so that we can do what that Word says. To put a rein on our tongue. To be slow to listen ... to think over what is being said and slow to speak. Because sometimes we don't hear the whole story before we begin talking. It's one of those things in conversation that just irritates me that when someone starts a sentence, the person who is listening just jumps in before the sentence is complete. Or you ask someone a question and they answer it before they know what the question is because they're answering what they THINK your question is. Communication is listening and speaking and discussing and talking to each other ... in a way that shows our faith. And how often, don't we just ignore that fact? Don't we just not think that the words that we say, how we say them and who we say them to matter? Because they matter because of God's Commandments. If we look at the First Commandment that we fear and love and trust in God above ALL things, that means that we will live in His love. It means we're not gonna misuse God's name. We're not just gonna throw it out there as if it's a throw-away thing. We are gonna use it to call upon God in praise. And the same name that praises Him ... the same person that uses that name in praise and in worship, should not be using it in condemnation and foolishly outside of church. How we talk is important! James says: Don't be polluted by the world. And maybe it's a matter of just stopping and thinking of this for a moment: Look at the way you talk and the words that you use. Would your parents have talked that same way? Would your grandparents have? And it comes easy for us to brush that off and say: Well, we're from another generation but maybe it's because they weren't so polluted by the world; that they weren't so bombarded with words that constantly denigrate God and denigrate the blessings that He gives. And how important it is for us to continue to watch what we say. To choose the words that we say carefully. That they are in worship of God. That they're praising Him. That we use His name to pray. That we not use it to defame someone else's character to bear false witness againtst them. But to support them; to strengthen each other. To use those words in a God-pleasing manner. Because that's what God has directed us to do. God's also directed us to watch our temper. To not just fly off the handle. To not make quick assumptions about a situation when we maybe do not know all of the facts. Or just have put our own assumption or all of the history that we have with someone onto a situation that isn't calling for it. And how easy it is and how quick it is for us to become angry with someone. To become mad at their behavior; to not like what they're doing and to call them out on it. To go back in our anger and use words that are not going to be helpful to them that truly are hurtful. And do more damage in our relationship with the brothers and sisters in Christ, with the people that we work with, with the people in the world. And sometimes they become even unreparable ... because of our own temper, and our own anger. And God says to us: Righteous anger is appropriate. There are things that we should be angry about. Those things that God is angry about. Those things that are against His will and against His Law. The things that He Himself has spoken against we, too, speak against. But how often isn't our anger about just little irritants between each other. Just little things that set us off. And maybe it's because we're having a bad day, and if we just would have stopped and examined the moment and waited, we wouldn't have said it. Because how often haven't we, responded to somebody's email and hit 'send' and knew the moment that we did it, it was the worst thing we could possibly have done. Because it was our anger reacting to something. We've got to take our time. Put the best construction on everything. Give other people the benefit of the doubt and give them the break until you know for certain. Give it time to work out. Give yourself time to examine it and to think about it. It's Christian behavior. Because if Christians are running around cussing like everyone else, and using the language of everyone else in the world, and reacting in anger and hatred at the drop of a hat, are we really doing what the Word says? And what is our testimony? What is our confession? What does it say about the Word of God? And we know the answers to those questions. And each of us gathered here today, knows how the Law speaks to our hearts. And we know our sinful behavior. We also know that God has forgiven that sin. And that God gives us the strength to amend our sinful life. To take today the knowledge that we have; the knowledge that God has given us in that glorious and gracious Word that He has planted in us ... not only to hear that Word, but to do what it says. Amen. Amen. Let us rise. Now may the peace of God which goes beyond all of our understanding keep your hearts and your minds and especially your lives in the one true faith unto life everlasting. Amen.

Video Details

Duration: 17 minutes and 20 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: R & M
Director: Jesus
Views: 37
Posted by: hischild on Sep 21, 2012

Pastor Dave's sermon based on the first chapter of JAMES verses 17 to 27 reminds us not to merely hear God's Word, but to be doers of His Word for true happiness.

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