Study in James – Jas 1:18 “If Any of You Lack Wisdom, Let Him Ask of God…”

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Study in James – Jas 1:1-18 – June 9, 2017

Jas 1:1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
Jas 1:2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into different temptations;
Jas 1:3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith works patience.
Jas 1:4 But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
Jas 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that gives to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
Jas 1:6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
Jas 1:7 For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.
Jas 1:8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.
Jas 1:9 Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:
Jas 1:10 But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away.
Jas 1:11 For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falls, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.
Jas 1:12 Blessed is the man that endures temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to them that love him.
Jas 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
Jas 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
Jas 1:15 Then when lust has conceived, it brings forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, brings forth death.
Jas 1:16 Do not err, my beloved brethren.
Jas 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
Jas 1:18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.

Going through the book of James verse by verse, we will go over the first chapter today. The first thing we are doing is looking at it as the old man and the new man.

The first thing that I have seen is that in James when it is speaking of a rich man and a poor man, it is speaking of the same man, the new man is the poor man, and the rich man represents the old man. Or as Paul points out in Romans 9:13:

Rom 9:13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

The flesh is Esau, and Jacob is the new man, rich man, poor man.

So with this thought I am going to Luke 16:19-31 and the parable of Lazarus and the Rich man to show that these two men are one and to lay the foundation for the explanation of James 2 and then on to James chapter 1.

Luk 16:19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:

This is the flesh and all that it has been given from fleshly birth by God to have what it needs in this world and to exalt itself in religious apparel, made by the flesh.

Luk 16:20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
Luk 16:21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.

This is the new man who has sores all over him because he SEES his sins as sores. He sees himself as nothing and deserving of nothing. The gates represent the knowledge of his sins. To see oneself as having sins IS THE GATE to the kingdom of God, or Abraham’s bosom. To see yourself as totally corrupt and full of sin IS THE GATE TO THE KINGDOM OF GOD. And the world even tries to comfort us in the symbolism of the dogs licking our sores.

Mat 15:26 But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs.
Mat 15:27 And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.

When I have tried to explain the total absolute worthlessness of the flesh to others, the world, they try to comfort me by telling me all the good gifts I possess. They are symbolically licking my wounds. It is also worth noting that the word used for ‘beggar’ in this parable is the same word used for ‘poor’ in Mat 5:3.

Mat 5:3 Blessed are the POORH4434 in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Luk 16:22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;

They both die at the same time, because they are both the same man. When the poor man inside me dies to all that he is, his mind is cleared, he is at peace in the Faith of Christ, Abraham’s bosom, a place of rest by faith. But the rich man is buried in his flesh, and all that he is burns him and torments him, making him thirsty for all that he used to be and have in the flesh.

Luk 16:23 And in hades he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and sees Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

That great gulf between them is really what is good in the eyes of God and what is really evil in the eyes of God.

Luk 16:24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. [The flame is the word of God – Jer 23:29]
Luk 16:25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that you in your lifetime receivedst your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and you art tormented.

There it is ….the “good” and the “evil”. The flesh was covered with purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously, and it was called “GOOD”. Our new man, Christ, is covered with sores, dirt, filth, the dogs licking him, the humility of begging every day for food, and this is called “EVIL”. Yet it was the “EVIL” that brought Him to rest. God’s ways are not our ways, and His thoughts are not our thoughts, Isa 55:8,9. We all, ALL, have had thoughts of grandeur of how God would be impressed with our good acts in the flesh, our covering of purple and fine linen. We saw this as “good” and it was….it was a very good thing that God used to bring me down to be Lazarus and experience “EVIL”. He showed me my sores that covered me. He showed me that all my coverings were as filthy rags, that I was a begger and had need of death.

Luk 16:26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.

These verses show that the flesh can never obtain what the new man does. There is a great gulf fixed by God that the flesh cannot take credit for anything it has done, hence the death of the rich man and the life of the poor man. We receive all the good things in our flesh – the praises of men, the exalting of the flesh, and the worshipping of the flesh. Now the flesh is in torments, and the spirit is at rest.

The gulf between the two is wide and cannot be bridged because “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God”, nor “does corruption inherit incorruption” (1Co 15:50).

Now to James 2:1-13 to explain that these verses can be taken as almost the same verses we read in the parable of Lazarus and the rich man when you see that poor Lazarus and rich are the same man. I think of the words that I have heard when I have “fallen into temptation”. I hear the shameful words, the damnation, the judgment, the pointing of the finger at the poor man who had “fallen into tempation”. I hear them in the words of those around me talking of others, or I hear them coming out of my own mouth about others. Have these thoughts in mind when reading the following verses. Read them as ONE MAN and remember Lazarus as your poor man and the rich man as your religious flesh. And remember that the Apostle James knew of these truths and wrote them in like manner. Of course they apply outwardly, but the real lesson is inward and written for the spiritual person. If all we see is the literal poor and literal rich, we have been blinded by The LORD, and we think we are covered in purple and fare sumptuously.

Jas 2:1 My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. [Inwardly of yourself and your supposed good works and evil works.]
Jas 2:2 For if there come to your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment; [Where do we assemble in worship of God? We are the temple, and it is in this temple where we assemble to worship God.]
Jas 2:3 And you have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say to him, Sit you here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand you there, or sit here under my footstool:

The gold ring, and goodly apparel is my clothing of myself as Adam and Eve did. We all love to clothe ourselves to cover who we are. I love to highlight my good deeds, my tithing, my baptisms, my giving literal money to the literal poor, my singing, my poem writing, my doctrinal knowledge, my kindnesses to those in my fellowship. But I NEVER highlight or think that it was sin that brought me to the kingdom of God. It was sin by which God humbled me. It was sin that made me low, not my goodnesses. It was sin that made me poor in spirit, not rich in spirit.

Jas 2:4 Are you not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts?

James just comes right out and says it, “ARE YOU NOT PARTIAL IN YOUSELVES, AND ARE BECOME JUDGES OF EVIL THOUGHTS.” He tells us that it IS IN OURSELVES that we have become judges of evil thoughts of what God has found acceptable ABOUT ME, not Christ, but ME. I am partial to highlight my goodnesses, clothing, and cover my sin. But it was sin that God used to bring me low, not my goodness.

Luk 17:3 Take heed to yourselves (partial in yourselves): If your brother (your old man/Esau) trespass against you (Jacob/Christ), rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.
Luk 17:4 And if he trespass against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to you, saying, I repent; you shalt forgive him.

This is an internal forgiveness. Take note there is a turning to repentance however, an asking for forgiveness. The number seven used in this parable is for the purpose of pointing out that it is a “complete” trespass and a “complete” repentance. The trespass will be used by God to “completely” destroy us until He creates “complete” repentance; because even our repentance is from God.

2Ti 2:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;

Jas 2:5 Hearken, my beloved brethren, Has not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he has promised to them that love him?

Who is an heir to the kingdom of God? The literal poor? No, the poor in spirit who have been crushed by the weight of seeing that we are beggars with open sores are the heirs of the kingdom;)

Mat 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Jas 2:6 But you have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats?
Jas 2:7 Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which you are called?
Jas 2:8 If you fulfill the royal law according to the scripture, You shalt love your neighbour as thyself, you do well:

The religious person in me, my old fleshly man, the second beast, is the rich man that beats my new man down. It is the rich man that brings my new man down by continuing to point out his sores.

“If you were a real christian, Dennis, you wouldn’t do the things you do.”

I become a judge and an oppressor of my new man. I despise Christ in me in so doing because He represents the fact that ALL THINGS WERE CREATED BY HIM AND FOR HIM. I am nothing without Him and for Him. He created me with SORES. It is by these sores that He has ordained I am to be humbled and am thereby killed and taken into “REST”. This takes us to where Paul says the following;

1Co 4:3 But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged of you, or of man’s judgment: yea, I judge not mine own self.
1Co 4:4 For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judges me is the Lord.
1Co 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.

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