Wednesday, January 29, 2014

James 1:5-8

5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

Connected with patience acquired through our trials, is our need for wisdom while in them. Wisdom is different than knowledge in that to have Biblical wisdom is to have ones conduct directed wisely by it. And so wisdom here has broad implications touching on ones behavior clearly; but also our ability to Spiritually discern between what is of the Spirit of God and what is not, what is the will of God and what is not, especially when ambiguity arises, as is often the case in trials or even life in general. And so we are exhorted here to ask God for wisdom, for as the Bible clearly states when it comes to seeking sound guidance for ones life, wisdom is the principal thing, therefore in all your getting get wisdom (Prov 4:7-9; also see Prov. 3:13-18; Prov 8, vs. 11.). For by it you will escape the many snares and pitfalls that mark this life, and which leave in their wake countless ruined lives and unfulfilled destinies (consider Ecclesiastes 7:16-18). Which again begins with our first asking God in faith and then being willing to receive and obey His counsel for us. For who can know the beginning of a thing to it's finial end? Only God does. And His joy is to impart wisdom into His children so that we might experience life as being guided by Him, and not by our own resources or natural means. For truly God gives to all liberally and without reproach (vs. 3) just as James states here; just as Jesus first did, when He said to us all  "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. (see Matt. 7:7-11). Of course there is a condition too receiving wisdom from God and that is faith, "for without faith it is impossible to please God, for He comes to God must believe that He is and that He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him." Heb. 11:6
Otherwise as James states here: "...let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways." vs. 7-8 
Therefore acquiring wisdom from God presupposes that one believes in God and believes that God is fully able and willing too provide this for them. Thus we must ask in faith without doubting, "for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind." vs. 6  Thus the life of the doubter is only a life of instability and uncertainty, because they are constantly being thrown into peril and distress by the ever changing topography of ones own circumstances, or just life in general. Thus they are not rooted and grounded in Christ's love for them. Instead they are tossed about by whatever things befall them in this life, and thus their faith rises and falls with every nuance and change that happens to them, or those around them. That is essentially the person who tries to run this race of faith, by their own resources and understanding. Now in the Bible there seems no better contrast amongst men of this; of Godly faith and double-mindedness; than that of David and contrasting his faith and Godly conduct with then King Saul. For David more often than not, even before He is anointed King, is marked by this wisdom. That is the reverent and Godly pursuit of God's counsel, guidance and will. Whether in his personal life, or in his capacity as a leader. In good times and bad, David when in doubt seeks, then obeys the wise counsel of God (consider 1 Sam 18:5, 14-15, 23:1-5; 23:9-13, 24:1-22; Psalm 101:2 etc.). While King Saul on the other hand tragically seems to fit the bill of the double-minded man James forewarns of here. For Saul, though starting of well, is more often than not later marked by indecisiveness, rash decisions, and most tragically, a complacency towards the will of God (1 Samuel 15:1-35, vs. 10-23). All which brings about God removing him from being king before Him (1 Sam. 15:11). Now Saul will retain the throne for fifteen or so years, though these years are only marked by his own paranoia, outbursts of violent rage, and or his murderous campaigns to try to kill David, whom the Lord has anointed in his place (consider 1 Sam. 18, vs. 10-11, 1 Sam. 19:1-7, 19:9-24; 20:1-42, vs. 27-34; 1 Sam. 22:6-23; 23:14-29; 28:3-25; 31:1-13). And so it is during these years that permits that God forges and hones the young man David's leadership skills and abilities. As well through David's wilderness trials brings about some of the most amazing Psalms for us, revealing the depth of David's heart, faith and trust in the Lord during what must have been some of the most trying times of his life up until then (consider Psalm 27, vs. 10). Which means for you and I, if you want to be a Godly leader, or even a Godly person, there is no shortcuts or easy path to take. There is though help from God. For that is just one of the many things that God specializes in, helping us when everything and everyone else has failed. I don't know where you are at today, but if your seeking for God's guidance then your seeking rightly. For truly as Jesus says God enlightens hearts and minds to receive both His Person and His wisdom for us when we ask Him in faith to come into our hearts and lives, and direct our steps and paths out of sins darkness, and into His glorious and everlasting light (Matt. 4:16). If you would like to do that you can, by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, you are calling on the Name above all names, that is God's name given to us all through His Son, who was crucified for our sins remission and raised from the dead for our justification, so that by the Lord Jesus Christ we might all be made right in the sight of God by our faith in Him (Rom 10:9-13).
Therefore if you would like to receive Jesus into your heart simply ask Him in. By a simple prayer of faith He will not only save you from your sins but by His Spirit within you He will transform you (Rev. 3:20). Simply pray something like this: Dear Lord Jesus I confess that I'm a sinner and I am in need of Your salvation. Therefore I now invite You into my heart and life, to be my Lord and Savior, both now and forever, amen. If you have prayed that prayer, or something similar to it, then you have just begun your new life with Jesus Christ (2 Cor 5:17). And having taken the first steps of faith, you must continue on with Him by finding Christian fellowship where you can grow and be encouraged in your faith. If there is anything you would like to ask me feel free to leave a message in the comment box or email me at and I will respond to you as soon as I can. God bless you and by for now.  

Scripture Citations
The New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982

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