Don’t Be Deceived

James 1
  /  January 14, 2024
Speaker: Jonathon Slagenweit

I’m inviting you to turn with me to the book of James for our scripture reading.

James chapter 1. This is a passage of scripture that we have looked at recently. In fact, if you are here on our Wednesday night services, then you will remember that we did a study in the book of James. And, we have looked at this passage recently, not ever been to New York City? How many of you have ever been to New York City?

Anybody ever been to New York City? Beautiful place, isn’t it? Just a beautiful place. You all have no sense of style. There there is nothing like New York City.

The hustle, the bustle, the beeping of the horns, the yelling, the you know, all of that. I mean, it’s just it’s wonderful. The smells. Yeah. That’s style.

The smells that come on trash day, from the mounds of trash. It’s just it’s a place that you just have to experience. Yeah. But one of the things that you’ll you’ll encounter, in New York City is if you want a good deal on a Rolex watch, you’ll find it on about every other corner. It’s beautiful.

Ladies, you want a Louis Vuitton bag, disdain, right? Louis Vuitton bag is a fake Louis Vuitton bag. Good disguise, looks good on the outside, but in reality, and the danger is, is there are some that will deceive themselves into thinking that they caught a really good deal. Remember as a kid, I think I’ve shared this illustration on more than one occasion here. My brother and I were baseball card collectors.

Some of you maybe in the older segment of the congregation was a $1,000,000 card, even in my day. I knew that the Honus Wagner most expensive card. There was a 8 of them and they were that had been printed and they were down to 6. And if you could come across the Honus Wagner card, you had a $1,000,000 card. And lo and behold, my brother and I came across Kellogg’s box.

Ain’t that phenomenal? One of 6 right there in the Kellogg’s And so we went to our neighbor, boy, who was about our age, and we told him, we said, we have the Honus Wagner $1,000,000,000 the Honus Wagner $1,000,000. They only trade it to you if you give us all of your The one of only 6 in existence left in the world. It was a Kellogg. James chapter 1, James writes In James chapter 1, James writes these words to us.

I’m gonna invite you to stand. Why don’t you stand with me as we read this passage of scripture? I’m sure we’re there. We’ve given you enough time. James chapter 1.

We’re gonna begin reading in verse 19. James chapter 1 verse 19. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear and slow righteousness of God. Wherefore, lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughty and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is, and and and grafted word, salvation of Make that connection before we move on. In grafted word, salvation of source, versus 20 2, be ye doers of the word and not hearers only, your own selves.

Natural face in a glass, but those who look and look into the perfect law of liberty and continue there, he being not a forgetful but a doer of the work, this man shall be bluffed in his deed. You may be take this text text that we’ve looked at and narrow it down into one verse that it seems like is the highlight of what James is trying to communicate. Congregation, particularly on Wednesday night, recently latter part of that, divining your own selves, and the word, and the word, and the Hearing the word, but failure to practice the word, This name may not mean anything to you, but Heinrich Schliemann back in 18/71 sought out to try to find the city of Troy. We we know about the city of Troy, right? If you’ve done any sort of historical, or enjoy any kind of history, then you know about the story of Troy and how, Troy was destroyed.

Right? The Trojan horse presented at the gates. You know, the people of Troy, oh, look, they’ve given us a gift. What a bliss. And they’re leaving.

The Trojan horse into the city, cover of darkness come out, open the city gates. The fleeing enemy apparently turns around, comes in and burns the city of Troy. Heinrich, Schleckman did some excavating and found the city of Troy. Isn’t it a sad thing to be deceived into thinking that everything is okay only to have your city utterly destroyed. That same deception is dangerous when it comes to the Christian Extremely dangerous.

To become a hearer of the word and not a doer and be so deceived that you would destroy your own soul through it. Warren W bybals, but their eyeballs never mark them. That’s a That’s a Bibles, and yet, if we were to look at our hearts, and our that highlighted and underlined scripture has not marked us internally. And so so look with me if you have your Bible still open, what he says. James and crafted or the implanted, and is able to save your right?

Not just the into your life. James is concerned with the idea that as Christians, you and I would simply read the word, hear the word, but not do the word. It would never take root in us And what’s the remedy of this superficial hearing of the word? On the top. It needs to be more than just a word that is heard.

It actually has to be inserted, implanted into When a tree branch I should ask a horticulturalist. We could ask Austin this. What happens when you sever a branch and just lay it down? In back and you slide that branch down inside of that and you pull it back together and you wrap it a and that branch will begin to take its nourish from all of the roots that send up the nutrition up that plant, and pretty soon that branch is not dead. What’s it do?

It’s It’s barren fruit, isn’t it? Over the years, it’s been obvious that I’ve been losing my hair, right? I don’t buzz my head like this because I think it looks good. Alright? I got tired of looking like a chia pet with mange, and I just decided it’s time to get rid of it.

Alright? Over the years of the process of losing my hair, people have given me advice of what I could do. Mange and tail. That’ll help you. There’s Rogaine.

You can use Rogaine, right? Just put a little bit of Rogaine on there and it’ll it’ll grow You know what, the best way to to really deal with here lose it. That’s right. Just shave it. Just get rid of it.

It. If you wanna if you wanna deal with it, you can go out and you can get a toupee, but guess what? A toupee is not gonna grow, is it? But if you go in to a hair transplant clinic, they will take and they’ll harvest go in and they’ll put holes, it begins to actually take the source of life in your scalp again. And you’ll draw Do you want to know why I didn’t do that?

Because it’s about $2 a plug. And with the amount of hair loss I have, that’d be a really expensive transplant. James is concerned James is concerned about that the word of God would not be something that is just superficial laying on the surface. Because in time, if it’s only on the surface, it dies. You remember, Jesus tells the parables of the soir.

Snatches it up and takes it away. It has to take root. It what’s the danger that James is speaking about in this. It’s easy to receive the to But that’s not good enough. Word.

We know the scriptures. We know all about we do everything that we’re supposed to do. We’re going through all of the motions. But the reality is, is the word has never really taken root in our heart to bear James Remar, to me, comes in verse 22 when he cautions us be several occasions recently how much the latter part of this particular text has just gripped me. Because I’m afraid too many times, word.

Aw, wonderful truth, good truth. Oh, I so enjoyed. Good truth. Oh, I so enjoyed. Changed.

But never it? What’s what’s going to happen as a result of it? The dangers that were stirred but never changed. Being a doer of the word is not who is just a hearer as one who looks into this mirror, sees himself, and walks away and promptly forgets what manner of man. But the one who looks intently But the one who looks intently And the one who looks intently And the one who looks int word?

You ever had a, you ever had a kid who, loves bugs. I have some, some kids that don’t always like bugs. In fact, a great illustration of our family. We have one child that used to be if there was a creature and this happened back in Florida when they were younger. There was a turtle in our backyard.

And one of our boys just stood at the door and observed. That was one of our boys just stood at the door and observed. And a lot of our The patio about 12 feet away. That’s, that’s good. There’s another one that goes out on the patio and There’s another one that goes out on the patio in the Then we had one that went right out and just dropped down right in front of the turtle and started beating its back.

Word is that you come to it and you study you see a child that loves bugs, they get down, and I mean they’re mesmerized by it. They’ll pick it up. They’ll look at they’ll let it crawl all over their hand. They’ll Do you know the danger is that sometimes we want to observe the word from a distance. It, it looks so implanted in your life that it transforms you.

You do something. It’s a great observation. He said, if your spiritual life is built on merely, listen to the words of Jesus and not on a bane. And I just repeat that. And I just repeat that.

And I just repeat that. And I just repeat that. And I just repeat that. And I just repeat that. And I just repeat that.

And day, your life will eternally and ultimately end in distraught. And I’ll tell you one of the dangers we run, we want to word. You know, I read this this morning. Man, isn’t this powerful? And then we want to get into conversation dialogue about it, and break it apart, and, you know, parse it, and do all of this.

And at some point, I want to say, what you’re going to do? A draw that’s great that you got great new insight, but how’s it going to change your life? And so, I think that you got great new insight, but how is it going to change your life? The danger James says is you deceive yourself. You think, wow, look at this great truth that I just came Oh, in this.

Oh, in this. And you walk away and you promptly forget what manner of man you are and you don’t do it. You deceive your self. And I tell us this morning, church, Satan is happy for you to read the. And, can to try to keep you from reading the word.

But if he can’t keep you from reading the word, you know what? The second best thing is, innate. And meal, putting the ingredients together, fixing it, making the mead and then saying, boy, isn’t that a nice they go just set it on the table and then it just And the danger is if all we ever do is hear the word and never do anything about it, we’ve deceived ourselves. Why did David Platt say that the danger is, is that we become hearers and not doers and we become destructive because God puts his law on our hearts. Jeremiah 31 tells us that God puts his law on our hearts and he puts his spirit in us, word.

About it, we’ve dangerous places that you and I can find ourselves. Word, but we’re not John Wesley was strong on 2 elements. In our case, the foreigner. Do you know it’s really easy for us to fall off onto the ditch on one side or the other. Oh, look at me and all of my piety.

I pray regularly. I fast regularly. Look at my holy character. And then, piety? We’re out there doing this and we’re, we’re feeding the, the hungry and we’re closing those that are innate.

What about your relationship with the Lord about your piety, your time alone with him, listening to his. We’re not hearers of the word we’re not doers of the word. Because it takes the relationship with God and the working maybe this will help us this morning. Turn in your Bibles to Matthew chapter 7. Matthew chapter 7.

I’m gonna hurry. I’m looking at our time. I want to be sensitive to to your time this morning. Matthew chapter 7. Jesus is coming to the end of his sermon on the mount.

And in Matthew chapter 7, Jesus verse 21 says this, not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord will enter into the kingdom of JUSTICE, the will of the father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name cast out demons, and in your name, perform and in your name cast out demons, and in your name, perform many. Then I will declare to them I never knew you. You who practice lawlessness. Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them.

And who hears these words of mine is, is welcome. He who hears We don’t have relationship with them. Why? Because we’re not acting on the word of God. Turn over just a little bit farther to Matthew chapter draw Jesus gives 3 parables.

The last one dealing with judgment. Him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. All of the nations will be gathered before him and he will separate them from one another as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will put the sheep on his right and the goats on the left. And the King will say to those on his right, come you who are blessed of my father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.

For I was hungry and you gave me something to I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. Stranger and you invited me naked and you clothed me. I was sick and you visited me. I was in prison and you came to me. Righteous will answer him, Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you or thirsty and give you something to drink?

And when did we see you a stranger and invite you in or naked? When did we see you sick or in prison and come to you? The king will answer and say to them, truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of the least of these brothers of mine, even the least of the left, apart from me, a cursed one’s into the eternal fire, which has been prepared for the devil in his And you gave me nothing to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink. I was a stranger and you did not invite me.

Naked and you did not clothe me. And your your did not Then they themselves also will answer, Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or imprisoned and did not take care of one of the least these. You did not do it to me. Torn. Good truth.

And do and do and do and do and just take you back to Matthew chapter 7. Jesus is ending his sermon on the But if you go through the sermon on the mount, Jesus begins to talk about the things that are really important that we’re supposed to do. And so, you know, we’re not going to talk about the things that are really important that we’re supposed to do. And so, you know, we’re not going to talk about the things that are really important that we’re supposed to do. And so, And he talks about and or anger is our anger is demonstrated.

So you’ve heard it of old not to murder. I say to you, if you are angry at your brother, you’ve committed murder in your own heart. And all of a sudden our anger arises, and goes through chapter 5, chapter 6, chapter 6, chapter 6 chapter 5, chapter 6, chapter 6, chapter 6, it teaches about and your It’s not good enough to be a hearer of the word. We must be doers. About our marriage relationship.

What about the vows that we make? What do we what about the way in which we respond when we’ve been robbed? Teaches about fasting, the way that we use our What am I saying to us this morning? God is calling us to not just be hearers of the word only, but doers of the word. It’s me this morning that so many Christians claim the name of Christ as their lord and yet in their lives, there is no evidence of the engrafted word bearing fruit.

Still filled with anger, still filled with lust, still filled with, still with, let it be and craft it into your and then you have to obey it here. But you’re not doing well with the Obey. Inviting us to stand as we close in prayer, I realize it’s late, and I’ve called attention to that on numerous occasions. I’ve called attention to that on numerous occasions. But I also want to be faithful to the holy spirit.

The word of draw You and I cannot just be hearers of the word. And that doesn’t happen by us pulling ourselves up by our boots, but by to the Lord and saying, I need your help and your grace. I need your And and to engraft that word into your life so that it can bear fruit. It wants to bow our heads, close our eyes. It’s to draw our heads, close our eyes.

It’s to Want us to bow our heads, close our eyes. And to give you an opportunity to respond to, to draw its worth. Doer? Sthieved your lie that you’re okay because you’re a good hearer of the for your and it’s not bearing fruit in your obeyed. Maybe this morning you want to just slip out and come up and and the church that if you have a need, it’s all you’re always welcome to come to the the holy spirit has spoken to.

I’m a here, but I’m a the holy spirit to help me. I want to change that. You just want to slip up your hand and say, Pastor, that’s me. I see that hand. I see that hand.

I see the authority of God’s word this morning. I want you to know God’s given us his spirit to and to aid us and help us to live that word, not just to the holy holy spirit for this truth this morning. I pray those that your spirit is speaking to, and then you’ve been faithful to open our eyes to the reality that when we hear the word, but we don’t do it, we’re deceiving our for not being a doer of your Help me through the power of your spirit to live out your word, not just and your word would bear fruit in our your word would bear fruit in our lives. It would cause us to live out the truths that we’ve looked at this morning. We would care for those that are all around us, the poor, the afflicted those that are in prison, but that it would also transform areas of our lives that we looked at in, in Matthews.

Yeah. Change how we respond to people in anger, change how we look with our eyes, the way we engage with our money and our spouse, or help us to be doers of the spouse or help us to be doers of the word and jesus. Amen. Lord bless you. You are dismissed.

And then, Lord bless you. You are dismissed.

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