Sunday, 8 December 2019
“You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, ‘He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us’?”
God takes sin very personally!
Wow. The passage catches you off guard, doesn’t it? This passage is written to Christians! Such emotional, relational language is unexpected.
Listen carefully. James knows that the way we need to think about sin and spiritual failure is so opposite to what is natural for us that he throws away all gentleness. He pulls out the sword of the Spirit and he thrusts it deep into our hearts.
He says, “You think about sin in every way but the most important way. You think about sin theologically as what flows from your sin nature and separates you from God. You think about sin as demanding the death of Jesus on the cross. You think of sin as personal failure. You think of sin as having consequences. You think of how your sin affects other people. You think of sin as something you must overcome. You think of sin as something to pray to God about for help—BUT YOU DON’T THINK OF SIN RELATIONALLY!”
The picture we get here is not a picture of the Judge of the Universe responding with cold justice to the actions of men. No this is the intensely personal response of an intimate Friend who has been deeply offended.
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