“Who Is Wise?”
James 3:13-18

We are living in the information age. Knowledge about what seems to be an unlimited set of topics is available at our fingertips. We no longer have to travel to a library to learn about what interests us, we can simply Google it. Google can take us around the world to learn about other countries, cultures, and ancient civilizations. Google can lead us down the halls of philosophy, history, biology, the great classics of English literature, mathematics, and biblical studies. Because of Google we can even keep up with Kim Kardashian! Continue reading ““Who Is Wise?”
James 3:13-18”

Teachers Wanted: Beware!
James 3:1-12

On December 4, 2017 a fire began in Southern California. The fire broke out in the foothills just above Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula and was quickly spread by 50 mph Santa Ana winds. The fire burned for a little more than a month as 2,800 firefighters from all over the country worked day and night to stop it from spreading even more. By the time the fire was contained it had burned more than 282,000 acres and destroyed more than 1,000 structures. Continue reading “Teachers Wanted: Beware!
James 3:1-12”

The Untamable Tongue
James 3:1-2

Words. They are so very interesting aren’t they? They’re made up of any combination of one or more of the twenty-six letters of the alphabet, but their weight, power, and intensity far outweigh the sum total of their number. There are monosyllabic and multisyllabic words at our disposal for forming sentences, offering opinions, and making statements. You can study a language, including vocabulary, grammar, the sound of language, and how words evolve over time and that will make you a linguist. You can narrow your studies, focus solely on the topic of grammar, and master the knowledge of the structure of sentences, knowing where to place nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc. You can possess an extensive vocabulary, master the study of grammar, and have at your command oratorical skills like Winston Churchill or Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., but you will never tame the tongue. Let’s turn to James 3:1-12 and read together. Continue reading “The Untamable Tongue
James 3:1-2”

Faith That Works
James 2:14-26

Dr. Sinclair Ferguson tells the story. The funeral was not long over when the brother of the deceased man came up to the minister and said, “He’s okay isn’t he? He’s okay?” The minister said, “Well, it depends on what you mean by ‘okay.’ What do you mean by okay?” The brother said, “He’s saved isn’t he?” The man the minister had just buried had not darkened a church door in many, many years. He’d not been known in the community as a Christian believer. He’d not given any signs that he was a follower of Jesus to any of those who knew him. The man said, “He’s okay. You know, once saved always saved, right?” The man reached into his pocket and pulled out his wallet. He took out a crumpled piece of paper and written at the top were the words, “Decision Card.” He showed the minister where his brother had made a decision to follow Christ 35 years ago. “So, he’s okay isn’t he?” “Well,” the wise minister told him, “Why don’t we talk about that some time, but not today.” Continue reading “Faith That Works
James 2:14-26”

The Law of The King and His Kingdom
James 2:8-13

There seems to be a deep-seated longing in the human heart for everyone to get along, for division to be conquered, hatred to be halted, preferential treatment and prejudice to be known only in history books, and harmony among all of humanity to usher in a new day which will never end. When breakdowns take place in the social fabric of society and civility is replaced by violence and division, there comes the reminders from our leaders that we are better than “this.” They raise their voices and set out the clarion call for reconciliation, peace, and unity. We’ve heard this repeated theme here at home over and over again, but it’s not an American cultural theme, it’s repeated around the world. Continue reading “The Law of The King and His Kingdom
James 2:8-13”

Christmas Love: The Most Lavish Gift
Matthew 1:18-25

It’s Christmas Eve. Little ones are so anxious they won’t be able to sleep tonight. They’ve been dreaming, longing, anxiously awaiting the moment when their wildest dreams will be fulfilled on Christmas morning. We want those we love to know how much we love them so we try to find them the perfect gift, the gift that will leave them breathless the moment it is unwrapped. I’ve heard some stories about some pretty extravagant gifts that have been given during past Christmases. For those of you who are still searching for that one perfect gift, the one gift that will be a heart stopper, a breath taker on Christmas morning, I’ve come to help. Continue reading “Christmas Love: The Most Lavish Gift
Matthew 1:18-25”

Hope Without End
Luke 1:28-35

“I hope I will get what I want for Christmas. I hope things will work out in my marriage. I hope my children will make wise decisions. I hope my health will improve in the upcoming year. I hope my boss will see how valuable I am to the company and give me a raise. I hope I just bought the winning ticket in the lottery. I hope we can finally get pregnant and have a baby. I hope my team wins the Super Bowl. I hope I can find someone that makes me happy. I hope these bad things that keep coming my way will stop and I can be happy again. I hope…” What are you hoping for today? Continue reading “Hope Without End
Luke 1:28-35”

Prince of Peace
“Celebrating and Waiting”
Isaiah 9:1-7

We are in the Advent season. For those of you who didn’t grow up in church or for those who grew up in churches that didn’t observe the Advent season, I want to help you understand the importance of the four Sundays leading up to Christmas. The word Advent comes from the Latin word, “adventus,” which means “coming or arrival.” The Latin Translation of the Bible in the fourth century, the Latin Vulgate, used the word “adventus” to describe the coming of the Son of God, both His coming as a baby born in a manger as well as His second coming. During this month we celebrate the coming of the Savior into our world and we are waiting for His arrival, His Second Coming. We are celebrating and yet we are waiting. This morning I want us to turn to a familiar section of God’s Word. If you will turn with me to Isaiah 9:1-7. Let’s read together. Continue reading “Prince of Peace
“Celebrating and Waiting”
Isaiah 9:1-7”

Playing Favorites
James 2:1-7

You know them. Oh, you may not know them, but you know their names, you read about them, hear about them, and are aware of who they are. They are powerful. Their presence turns heads. They walk the red carpet, are profiled in Fortune and People magazines, and are the talk of those who envy their TMZ lifestyles. Their wealth is the envy of the everyday man or woman. Their good looks, power, and deep pockets garner favors from those who desire to have a relationship with them. They’re given the private dining rooms at the best restaurants and others pick up the tab. They share photos on Instagram and Facebook from exotic places around the world. They are known for their yachts, Aston Martins, $1,000 bottles of wine, and gourmet foods which have never been tasted by folks like you and me. Money opens doors, creates opportunities, and can convince the wealthy that they are somehow different from everyone else. It’s not always the case, but we all know stories of how this is true. Continue reading “Playing Favorites
James 2:1-7”