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Rob Elphick
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Paul disciplined himself to treasure the gospel that he would share in it. The exodus fathers provided examples of turning from God.
1 Corinthians 9:23-27
We now look to Him who has made us whole, and become more like Him. We are invited into the wholeness of which David speaks.
Psalms 15:1-5
Love is shown through diligence in managing your own affairs.
1 Thessalonians 4:9-12
Do not be distressed. You will be with Jesus. You know him, and so you know the way to the Father, and you know the Father.
John 14:1-7
David's hope is based on God's commitment to His own name.
Psalms 25:1-22
The Father and the Son ... at work to bring healing, life, and fellowship.
John 5:1-47
Let us go on to maturity, knowing that God's purposes, for his children's good, are secured in Jesus.
Hebrews 5:11-6:3
We have the opportunity to provide our brothers and sisters with a service of eternal value. We do so by reflecting the heart of God.
James 5:19-20
Beware of placing your confidence in wealth. Beware of abusing others in pursuing wealth. If you're in this boat, weep.
James 5:1-6
God alone is the lawgiver and assessor, and he alone can save and destroy. I am in no position to cast a verdict on my brother, so don't.
James 4:11-12
In the midst of my waywardness, God's grace abounds. It is a grace that calls for active, sincere submission, and single-minded devotion.
James 4:1-10
The prayer of the downcast: for God's light and truth to lead him back into communion with God. Meanwhile, he has resolved to hope in God.
Psalms 42-43
The gospel is worth our focus. Exalt in the excellent; avoid the worthless. Be fair and decisive with those who stir for division.
Titus 3:9-11
Through God's mercy in Christ, Christians are heirs of eternal life, and in need of reminding about how this should affect their behaviour.
Titus 3:1-8
Let our tongues yield the fruit of God's mighty redeeming work. It makes no sense for corrupt words to flow out of a renewed heart.
James 3:5-12
Spiritual maturity means appreciating and chosing what is truly good.
Hebrews 5:11-14
Hold Christ the King as first place in your heart. Hold him as your hope, and when people want to know more, be ready to gently explain.
1 Peter 3:13-16
What does a well-ordered life look like? It is devoted to the Lord, undistracted ... and knows time is short.
1 Corinthians 7:26-35
How can we be free from anxieties? Be anxious about one thing - how to please the Lord.
1 Corinthians 7:26-35
The time remaining is short so live as though undistracted, including in relation to marriage.
1 Corinthians 7:26-31
Look at Jesus. In Him, we are brothers and sisters with God's people of old.
Hebrews 3:1-6
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Becoming a friend of God
James 2:14-26
Authentic faith shows itself through generous works, and makes a person a friend of God.
Shared April 22nd, 2016
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Main point summary
Arc
Notes
notes
Main point summary
Authentic faith is evidenced through good works. Those who have such faith follow the pattern of Abraham, who was called a friend of God.
Arc
editing
NT
James 2:14-26
esv
mine
What good is it, my brothers,
What value is it, my brothers,
if someone says he has faith
If someone says they have faith
o but does not have works?
but [that person] is not active in doing good;
concessive
conditional
Can that faith save him?
that is, can that type of faith cannot save.
ideaexplanation
p If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food,
When a Christian brother or sister lacks clothing and food,
q and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,”
and one of you says to them "bless you, and stay warm!"
without giving them the things needed for the body,
but does not give them anything for their physical needs
situationresponse
what good 1 is that?
therefore that is of no use.
inference
So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead .
Likewise , faith alone, without good works is dead
comparison
questionanswer
But someone will say,
But (in response) someone will say (in defence of the one without works)
“You have faith
"You (i.e. the one without works) have faith
and I have works.”
while I have works."
alternative
Show me your faith r apart from your works,
But (James now addressing the person who supposedly has faith) you cannot show me your faith by no works
and I will show you my faith s by my works.
whereas , I will show you my faith by my works
negativepositive
t You believe that God is one;
Therefore, I infer that you believe there is one God;
you do well.
therefore , that is a good thing.
Even u the demons believe—
However the demons also believe
and shudder!
and as a result they tremble with fear.
actionresult
Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless ?
Furthermore, I will show you, foolish person, that faith without works is useless.
v Was not Abraham our father justified by works
Abraham our father was justified by actions
when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar?
because he presented his son Isaac on the alter.
ground
You see that
That is , you can see that
w faith was active along with his works,
Faith was fuelling his actions
and faith was completed x by his works;
and his actions perfected his faith.
progression
and the Scripture was fulfilled that says,
And as a result the Scripture was fulfilled that says
y “Abraham believed God,
Abraham had faith in God
and it was counted to him as righteousness”—
and so his faith was counted to him as righteousness
and he was called a z friend of God.
that is, he was called a friend of God.
You see that
That is , you can see that
a person is justified by works
a person is made right with God by works
and not by faith alone.
and not by faith on its own.
And in the same way was not also a Rahab the prostitute justified by works
And in the same way Rahab the prostitute was made right with God by works
b when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way?
by her actions (when she received the messengers and sent them away by a different route).
actionmanner
series
For as the body apart from the spirit is dead,
Therefore (in conclusion) as the body without the spirit is dead,
so also faith apart from works is dead.
so in the same way faith without actions is dead.
James loves his brothers (as himself, James 2:8) by speaking frankly.
Rhetorical If/Th question has been re-phrased as a statement.
Authentic faith is accompanied by works. A faith without God honoring actions is the faith of demons.
A faith of words, is just words. c.f Romans 10:9
I had great difficulty making sense of the ESV text as translated. Who is the 'someone', and how much of the subsequent text is a part of what they 'say'? \What is meant by the conjunction 'But'when the 'someone' says things that agree with James' argument. In 2:14-17 , James is asserting the need for works. Why would the interlocutor object (i.e. but) that they do have works and someone else has faith? I thought it would be the other way around. The NET notes ' the sense of his words is something like, “Some have faith; others have works; don’t expect everyone to have both. ”' I think that makes sense. That is, the 'someone' is a third person, defending the person who supposedly has faith, by saying 'You have faith, I have works' and so trying to argue 'What makes one better than the other?'.
What is meant by 'works'? James has just explained (James 2:1-13) that the healthy Christian should be generous and merciful. 'Works', therefore, means acts of mercy and generosity.
How does this work? How do works 'complete' faith? Faith gives rise to actions, which demonstrate the faith. The faith is already real, but the actions show it to be real. The same word is used to describe how Jesus' suffering made him 'complete'. See Heb 2:10; Heb 5:9.
discourse
Notes
(1) Question / Answer (14-17). Is faith without works of any value? Can it save? No, it's of no value, and no, it cannot save. (2) Objection (18-19): You should allow for some people to just have faith. Response: Faith can only be evidenced by works. Faith without good works is like the faith of demons. (3) Explanation from scripture (20-25). To persuade the fool. Abraham and Rahab's faith was evidenced by their actions. Abraham confirmed his faith by living it out, and so became a friend of God. (4) Conclusion (26). Faith without works is a dead faith.
Comments
Andy Hubert
and his actions perfected his faith.
I think your discussion of completed/perfected in this dot note is particularly important. Your note that Jesus also was completed/perfected via suffering is a great reference point for thinking through what James means here.
Disclaimer: The opinions and conclusions expressed on this page are those of the author and may or may not accord with the positions of Biblearc or Bethlehem College & Seminary.