Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Quarrels: James 4:1-10

Fights, Quarrels
Hidden Motives
"Change him/her Lord, so my life is easier."
"I don't want to live there."
"I want their stuff."

vs 3 "You ask and do not receive, because you ask with the wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures."

Who is on the throne of our life?
vs4 You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God?
 (This friendship involves wanting things so badly we would resort to our own means to try to get whatever it is -vs 2)  This "friendship" is hostility toward God.

And this is why
vs5 Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: "He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us"?
 Something else takes highest priority within us over the Spirit of God.  
We are dethroning him to attempt to satisfy our own desires. 
We are being as adulteresses who go after another spouse when they have their own.  
See Israelite nation's false worship.  
Their hearts were set on something else.  
Their trust was displaced.  
God did not have the throne.  
We fight and quarrel with each other.
We strive to get what we want by our own means.  
We piously ask God to grant our wishes so that we can stoke the fire of our passions that are waging war in our souls.
We do not receive.  
Our children pine for something, being devious, and selfishly taking it from their siblings.
Would we lovingly grant their request?   
We love them.
We would rather they not have and instead have the opportunity to change their selfish behavior.  
Would I expect less from God, who gives to all perfectly?

What motives drive the struggles we have?  Do we infinitely trust the one who is working all things for the good of us who love him and are called according to his purpose?  Our hearts are desperately wicked above all things, beyond cure... (Jeramiah 17:9)

We must surrender.
We must seek Him.

vs6 but he give a greater grace.  Therefore it says, "God is apposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble."

He yearns for us.  He pursues us.  He brings us to the pigsty (as Alistair Begg says) so that we will cry out to him and return to him.  Great grace.  He does not abandon us when we fail and quarrel and fight and these passions wage war within us and we fall.  He gives a greater grace.  Praise God.

vs7-10 How can these motives be changed?

Changed Allegiance and Repentance.

Submit to God,
Resist the devil,
Draw near to God,
Cleanse your hands,
purify your hearts,
Be miserable and mourn and weep,
Turn laughter to mourning, joy to gloom
Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord 
(which assumes you are entering the presence of the Lord)

Have you mourned over your selfish motives?  This is what he desires.
Or did we mourn because we didn't get what we wanted?

Humility.  Repentance.  Surrender. 

1 comment:

  1. I have a idolatry post waiting in the queue... :)

    thanks for sharing this. I never realized before the last couple of years how unfaithful I am...