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Flown through james. We wont want to ask what this james have to say say how do we sum this up theologically. And what is he adding to the well the first thing his he talks about god god the father and jesus the lord well god is the creator.
He says the father of lights and often we forget about that we forget about his creation or it becomes a simply a doctor and they dont realize that all good theology is rooted in god as creator james god then sends good to those who ask he doesnt send evil. You say god doesnt change like his creatures. He only sends good.
And he says well the the lights of heaven. They changed the moon changes. The stars seemed to change seemed to move around no god never change.
Its good good good good therefore god does not send tests. But rather gives us birth to life fascinating language. That he uses there because the word forgiving birth.
Was previous used for a feminine subject giving birth to death earlier. But and is only used for females so its a fascinating use of we could say of feminine in imagery for god and james is not afraid to do this god thou will not be two timed. He requires our sole allegiance.
One of the translation problems and james is in chapter. 4. It often says you know adulterous people or adulterers.
Or something like that and the word in greek is adulterous. Says. It is feminine and it is there on purpose to tell you that gods people are being like israel in the old testament untrue to him you know he wont be you cannot trust the world and god its with me.
Its you know me alone. Its not all its all or nothing. With me is it all or nothing with you says god jesus.
Then is the exalted lord. Whose torah is the royal law jesus will judge when he comes in fact he is now at the door. There is a final phrase.
There there is one lawgiver and judge. And that is ambiguous is it god who is the lawgiver and judge or is it jesus who is the lawgiver and judge or are they so merged in jamess mind with jesus as representing the father that james himself has not made the distinction and whatever the case god the father and jesus are the source of all authority well that was the good news. God will set things right.
And god is the creator who creates life in us the bad news is about human beings.
We need to resist trials and where faithfulness conflicts with desire. I want to do this or by compromising. My morals here or the teaching of jesus here.
I can do something that feels good or i wont get persecuted. Resisting those things resisting trials results in eschatological anticipated joy. Not joy.
You know happy happy happy. But joy in knowing that the good is coming where the return of jesus. Now the root of our divided loyalty that we have to resist something is that desire our drives or to move into another field in which i teach boland theory or family systems theory our limbic system our emotional system.
We blame god for the frustration of our desires well if you hadnt created me this way. I wouldnt be struggling with this you know that sort of thing. No no no that is just our desires that have become uncontrolled.
Following desire leads first to sin and sin to death or following desire leads to the divided mind. Thats trying to secure our our future with something other than god or a divided heart is another way of putting. It thats the way would be put in the old old testament.
And its one part of being adulterous israel. Now the good news. Is that god has birthed us by the word and given us his wisdom and that enables us to live under the lordship of jesus the anointed one thus you need patient endurance or wisdom or what we could call repented submission.
That would be james chapter. Four to live this out now. James has no problem talking about the law.
But it is probably the law as interpreted by jesus there is a lot in james. That seems to draw from the sermon on the mount tradition. There is none of pauls tension with the law.
Which for paul means becoming an ethnic jew for james. He doesnt have a problem with people telling his people to become ethnic jews. Some of them would have been but for whatever reason.
That is not the tension in his churches. He doesnt have a problem talking about following the teaching of jesus. The community gathers then probably for a common meal in a synagogue.
A gathering thats just the greek word for a gathering that became used for a jewish gathering.
We find that in james tutu. It is led by elders or pres peters. As james.
5. 14. Says and the whole letter contributes to communal solidarity.
Now jesus is the exalted lord. And yet also the judge at the door so final judgment is soon. But dont think of judgment as something negative when a ruler came to judge in the first century they would sit in the town square.
And what they did was they would say you know bring the people before me. And you know one person will call them claudius claudius. I hear you have done these great things for the town yes.
The people didnt always appreciate you but i have heard about it im going to give you this honorable status or this laurel. Reef or this particular position in my government and so on he rewards. Those who have been loyal and of course.
He also rewards in a negative way those who have been disloyal to him so judgment is a positive as well as a negative thing. We want to stand in the final judgment. Because we want the reward that is coming now.
James also talks about not just suffering. But also speech and money jesus is ruler and judge as we said and suffering is then a test of our commitment where we struggle with our desires. But where we show jesus that we really are committed with him commitment is then to be single minded or it is worthless says james and i use commitment rather than faith because for us.
The word faith often means something that were thinking about you know i believe this to be true. Whereas. When it has a personal object like god or jesus the the greek word indicates commitment to that person or i sometimes talk about allegiance to that person.
And youre either have commitment to that person or it is worthless. Its sort of like by talking about my wife. I am committed to her or it is worthless.
She would not be impressed if i said im a very energetic man and i have time for you and i have time for susie that does not go down. Neither does it go down with god so single mindedness of our commitment is seen by the control of our speech. And by the use of our money.
Particularly its use in charity commitment to jesus than his obedience jesus is exalted lord. Hes even now standing at the door about the judge and the true test of obedience to or faith in jesus is will be to him and this obedience looks very much like as i said the teaching of the sermon on the mount .
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