Tuesday, 21 July 2020 James 1:19-27
“Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.” -James 1: 23-24
Most of us take time to look at ourselves at least once a day into the mirror. Then there are others who spend a lot of time in front of it. These are the individuals when they walk out of their homes look very well groomed, unlike the other ‘one- time’ lookers. Why is it so? This is because the more one stands before a mirror the more we become obvious of our flaws that we painstakingly try to cover it up!
In our reading today, Apostle James compares God’s Word to a mirror and encourages us “not to be just hearers but doers of the word.” James 1:22 [paraphrased]
What’s so special about this mirror – The Bible?
This mirror reads us- What does this mean? This is a place where we can see ourselves just the way we are. Every time we read it, it reads us - our emotional, physical and spiritual state is unveiled. Thus we are unable to hide anything from God. David in Psalm 139 [paraphrased] says, ‘God, you know everything about me, when I sit down, when I lie down, the words that I am going to speak, everything is open before you.’ That’s what the Bible does. It exposes us, to ourselves. It sees us through and through.
This mirror reflects the truth about us- It not only read us, it also reflects our inner self. This looking glass uncovers everything within us that is hidden from the outside world. Our sinful nature, sinful desires of our heart, shameful lusts and our depraved mind (Rom 1: 24, 26, 28). But it does not end there. Though God’s Word highlights the truth of our pitiful state it also reveals the glorious truth of the pardon one can receive through Christ Jesus (Romans 6: 23).
Now that we are exposed, what will be our response to what we have seen about ourselves in this mirror? James 1:25 says, “But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it--he will be blessed in what he does.”
There are 3 things we are called to do:
Look intently into God’s Perfect Law-Why must we do this? It gives us freedom- freedom from our past. 2 Corinthians 5:17 [The MSG] ‘Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it!”
Continue to Do this- Is it a one-time act? NO! Paul in Phil 1:12 says, -“….continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” It means that we make every effort to remain in the Word. James 1:21 says ‘Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.’
Do Not Forget what you have Heard- Romans 10:17 says, ‘Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.’ The only way to not become forgetful is to continue daily in God’s Word. Then we will walk in the victory of Christ.
If we follow the above principles given to us by James, only then will we be blessed in what we do. So what do you see this morning as you look at yourself in the mirror –The Bible?
Quote for the Day: “When you read God's Word, you must constantly be saying to yourself,
"It is talking to me, and about me." --Soren Kierkegaard
Listen: ‘Ancient Words’