November 6, 2016 Sermon
Scripture Reading: James 3
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.5 Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.
Answer not—not in same manner, not lowered to their level, will not understand and will assume he’s right no matter what.
Answer—as a fool deserves—sharply and decisively and in language he can understand. Pick wisely whom you will correct and how you correct.
Matthew 15:10-14—Pharisees question why Jesus’ disciples don’t wash hands before eating:
And he called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand:11 Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.12 Then came his disciples, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying?13 But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up.14 Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.
Rooted up—God will take care of them. Parable of wheat and tares at end of chapter 13. Let them alone—don’t concern yourself with them. Go away from , depart, disregard, abandon.
Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.
And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.
Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth.23 And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.
If you cause someone to follow your opinions and advice instead of listening to their conscience before God, you blew it. It’s fine if your conscience is OK with things, but there’s no reason to go public and even less reason to make others follow your conscience.
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.15 Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. 16 Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.
Looking back often leads to going back—Lot’s wife. Perfect—fully equipped or established. God keeps people coming to Him. Go with what you got until God gives you more, then go with that. Don’t rest on the past; press forward, God will lead you. There is one course we all go on, doesn’t matter if you were once on the path, will you be on it tomorrow!?
Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.18 (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:19 Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)
We need constant warning about those who get people to leave the path. Call to follow Paul is a call to unite in that following.
Do we trust God to correct people, or do we have to do it all ourselves?
Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
Slow to take on authority and to speak things for God. Slow to being heated in debate. The anger that wells up with debate damages people. James 3:5-6--Tongue is a fire that lights things off. Be careful with it!