James 1:13-18. EVERY GOOD AND PERFECT GIFT COMES FROM GOD – 5-5-19 Devotional

James 1:13-18. EVERY GOOD AND PERFECT GIFT COMES FROM GOD – 5-5-19 Devotional

James 1:13-18      Kevin E. Jesmer
Key Verse: 1:17     5-5-19

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” (NIV)
Dear Lord, thank you for your provision. You provide for our needs as we live by faith in you. Thank you, Lord. Help Julie and I to make the most out what you provide, time, materials, experience in the Gospel, to bring you glory. Grant me your word today. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen!

Part 1: God Does Not Tempt Anyone. Take Ownership of Your Sin. (13-15)

Verses 13-15, “13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.” (NIV)

We cannot blame God for sins in our lives. He wants us to be his holy children, so he sent his Son to die on the cross for our sins. We are tempted by our own evil desires.

How easy it is to say that all that happens to us, even the sin that is in us, is all because of God’s plan. It is true that God is at work in our lives over the years. He is the sovereign Lord. It is true that God takes our past, with all of its sins and failings, and uses our changed lives as a testimony to his grace. That happens when we are rooted in Christ. God may work through these things, but he does not make us sin. He does not lead us into sin.

We need to take responsibility for our sins. We need to agree that our sins only serve to separate us from God. Satan, through our sins only wants us to be condemned. We need to see sin for what it is, a deadly force in our lives and we have allowed it to grow rampant in our hearts. When we take ownership of our sins, then we can do something about it. We can do the only thing possible, that is to repent and come to Jesus for forgiveness and cleansing. Jesus is faithful and true. He will forgive, cleanse and sanctify and take our sinful past and use it for his glory. His grace will be a testimony on how he saved us from our sins.

When sinful desires arose in Cain’s heart, God counseled him to master it (Gen 4:7). Cain ignored God’s word and yielded to his desire. Desire conceives and give birth to sin, and sin grows until it gives birth to death. We must not be deceived.

Sin is deadly. Sin, when it is full blown leads to death. Sin literally leads us to death and in saying death, I mean it leads us to the first death and then judgement and then to eternal condemnation. (that is eternal separation from God.). Sin is serious business. Sin literally ruins peoples’ lives and ruins generations of their descendants. Sin has separated people from Christ and Satan has used the power of sin to ensure that billions of people will be eternally separated from Jesus.

We cannot take sin lightly. We must hold God’s word in our hearts and master evil desires. This seems like a tall order, but Jesus makes it happen. The first step is a revelation that sin is our fault and not God’s fault. This comes from God’s light shining truth in our hearts. We see ourselves how we are more like Cain than Able. Then we must come to Jesus and depend on his grace and power, especially through his word, to master sin.

One way that I want to master sin is to get back into daily bread writing. It is great way to sit down and meditate on the word of God. it is great way to focus on Christ and his teachings. I have given up on this over the few years, but I realize that I need to get back into this spiritual discipline. It is an expression of depending on God for his power to master sin in my life.

Part 2: The Father of Lights (16-18)

Verses 16-18, “16 Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18 He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of first fruits of all he created.” (NIV)

God is righteous and loving; his character and his purposes do not change like shifting shadows. He is the one who gives every good and perfect gift. He gave us the most precious gift of new birth into a living hope through his word of truth.

I thank God for his faithfulness. I can trust God and rely on God, for his love, his truth, his guiding sovereign hand in my life and in this world. I can trust that he gives good and perfect gifts. One of the best gifts is a new birth through his word of truth. Part of this new birth is freedom from sin and freedom for death. We are new creations in Christ. We will spend eternity with our Father God.

Christ and his people are first fruits of his new creation; someday he will finish restoring all creation. Jesus is the first fruit through his resurrection. All believers are also early fruit of what is to come. We are looking forward to the resurrection into the eternal life in God’s Kingdom when we will see our heavenly Father face to face.

We can trust God in these things. He is more trustworthy than the sun rising and setting in the sky. He is more faithful than the moon in the night sky. He is more faithful than the seasons. His love for us is steadfast, faithful and true. In his faithfulness, he has made us into new creations. Nothing can take this truth away.

Prayer: Father of lights, put your word of truth in my heart so that I may not sin against you.

One Word: Depend on our Heavenly Father to master sin and live by faith.

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