Please read along with us in James 4:1-10 as we prepare for the sermon on Sunday. It’s wonderful that we have this time to prepare in advance to receive God’s word and have the Spirit work in our hearts. This passage points to the reality that our time on Earth is limited and what we do with it matters. Focusing on what truly brings peace and joy will certainly store for us treasure in Heaven. Reading ahead a little, James 4:14 reads, “…What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”
- James seems to draw heavily on the words of Jesus and Solomon during this passage. Please read Ecclesiastes 1:1-11. What similarities do you find in Ecc. 1:8-10 and James 4:1-3? Do a personal inventory for yourself – what are you striving for? What is the focus that makes up your daily routine? Can you remember a time where you quarreled with someone only to feel empty after winning?
- In the farewell discourse Christ says “if you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” John 15:7. Why does James say that makes this promise not a reality for people (v.4:3)? What do you normally ask God for? How does Philippians 4:6-7 say that we should petition God?
- How does James 4:6-7 give us direction in coming back to God? What similarities do you draw to John 15:18-19? What comfort comes at the end of this passage in John 16:33?