A Doer of the Word

Written by Pastor Albert Gregg on Dec 09, 2012 in Sermons - No Comments

Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world. (James 1:19-27)

As we think about next year, our thoughts turn to the idea of reading our Bible through in a year’s time. Everyone of us should do that. However, we should not just read it. We should read it like we believe it is the “Word of God.” We should read it to learn what God would have us do and then do it. I am afraid the reason we do not see more people saved is that they do not see anything different in us. God’s children should look, smell and act different than the world.

I. THE WORD OF GOD CAN BRING PEOPLE TO SALVATION.

Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. (James 1:21)

  1. The Word of God tells men they are sinners.

    For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (Romans 3:23)

  2. The Word of God tells men they cannot save themselves.

    Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
    (Titus 3:5)

  3. The Word of God tells men that only the Lord Jesus Christ can save them.

    And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world. (John 4:42)And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. (I John 4:14)

II. GOD’S PEOPLE ARE TO BE DOERS OF HIS WORD.

  1. Our fleshly efforts do not produce the desired result.

    Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
    (James 1:19-20)

  2. We are to lay aside our sinful tendencies – superfluity of naughtiness is the same as abundance of wickedness.

    Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. (James 1:21)Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1-2)

    That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; (Ephesians 4:22)

  3. We are to do what God says.

    But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. (James 1:22)Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it. (Matthew 7:24-27)

  4. When we fail to do what God says, we are only fooling ourselves.
  5. To fail to do what God says is like looking in the mirror and then forgetting what we look like – everybody else knows what we look like.

    For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. (James 1:23-24)

  6. To truly see ourselves we need a mirror and a strong light.
  7. God’s law is called a mirror here and in Prov. 6:23, it is called a light.

Illustration:  Many converts are not shown the mirror of the Law. We think that if they get a good look at what they are in truth, it will be too painful for them. Therefore, we just tell them, “All have sinned.” Without the conviction of sin, they will be stillborn – there will be no life.

III. PURE RELIGION

If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world. (James 1:26-27)

  1. The word, “religious”, is not found in the Old Testament and is only found twice in the New Testament using two different Greek words.

    Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. (Acts 13:43)If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain. (James 1:26)

  2. In Acts it is, “sebomai”, and means to revere, i.e. adore:– devout, religious, worship.
  3. In James it is, “threskos”, and means ceremonious in worship (as demonstrative), i.e. pious:– religious. Here it is talking about piety, not necessarily Christianity.
  4. The word, “religion”, is not in the Old Testament and is found five times in the New Testament using two different Greek words.

    Which knew me from the beginning, if they would testify, that after the most straitest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee. (Acts 26:5)For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it: And profited in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers. (Galatians 1:13-14)

    If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world. (James 1:26-27)

  5. In Acts and James it is, “treskeia”, which means ceremonial observance:– religion, worshiping. This word is translated, “worshiping” in Col. 2:18.
  6. In Galatians it is, “Ioudaismas”, meaning “Judaism”, i.e. the Jewish faith and usages:– Jews’ religion.
  7. Normally,  the Christian faith is not called religion in the Bible.
  8. However, pure religion is being doers of the Word of God.