The Master’s Class, Summit Church
DO YOU BELIEVE GOD?  (James 2:21-24)

DO YOU BELIEVE GOD? (James 2:21-24)

February 25, 2014
Do you believe God?

Not do you believe in God, but do you believe God?  

Do you believe what God says in His Word, the Bible?  

Do you believe God the Father when He said of Jesus Christ, this is my Son in whom I am well pleased?  

Do you believe God when He says that your salvation is by His grace alone, and not by works, lest any man should boast?

Abraham was a man that believed God.  What this means is that Abraham said amen to God. God had said, “I will do this for you,” and Abraham says to God, “I believe You. Amen. I believe it.”  And that was counted to him for righteousness.   Abraham did not work to earn his salvation, it was his faith that was counted for righteousness.  But it was not just faith in anything.

It is important to note what Abraham believed, for God to count it for righteousness.  It was when he believed the promise of THE SEED.  That is when God counted it to him for righteousness.  

Ultimately it is the same for all ages.  It is the faith in Jesus Christ that our salvation rests.  He is The Seed.  

It is not mere faith that saves, but it is the object of your faith that saves.

It is not mere faith that saves, but it is your faith in Christ that saves.  

Abraham just believed God. He just accepted what God said about the promised Seed, and he believed God. That is the way each of us get saved.  That is how we receive God’s gift of eternal life.

You must believe that God has done something for you, that Christ died for you and rose again. 

It is then, that God will declare you righteous by simply accepting Christ.

Listen to this podcast to learn that it is not good works that will allow you to stand imputed with righteousness before God, but it is when you believe God.  

A TEST OF YOUR FAITH (James 2:14-20)

A TEST OF YOUR FAITH (James 2:14-20)

February 19, 2014
What is the test of your love?
   
Valentine’s Day has just passed and most of us demonstrated our love for that special someone in our life by buying a gift, candy, flowers, or a special meal of some kind.  This custom is so ingrained in our society that to fail to do something leads to being called a callous, worthless, uncaring, bum, by your recently past, not-so-special anymore, loved one in your life. There are those that see this as an actual test of their spouse’s love.

It is not enough that you say that you love them, for the word love is an often used word that can have various levels of intensity.  

It is not enough that you believe that you love them, for how many times have you really believed that you loved someone, just to find out that it was more of a physical attraction, instead of real love?

There must be more, there must be a demonstration of that love, or your spouse will consider your love dead, or missing, or simply a mental assent to the concept of love, but it must not really reach down into your heart.  

In other words, love without works is dead.  You can tell your wife that you love her, and then she will probably look at you and tell you how nice that is, but that she shows you her love by her works.  

Therefore, the test of your love for your spouse is your works.  

It doesn’t mean that you do not love her if you do not have works.  You can be married without works, but if you truly love your wife, or your husband, there will be works that are the natural result of that love.  They will come from the emotional, heartfelt, desire, to do things for your spouse that will demonstrate your love for them.  Those works will be the fruit of your love.  

You will do things for your spouse all of the time, not just on Valentine’s Day, not just because you want to pass a test, or a judgment to come, but because to love someone in the manner that God has intended for a man and a women to love each other, means that what they want and need is much more important than your own wants and needs.  

Now, if you can understand this concept, then you will be able to understand one of the most widely misinterpreted, and misunderstood, sections of the Bible as we study it today.  Listen to this podcast and learn what the Book of James says about a test of your faith, and how a faith without works is dead.  

THE PERFECT LAW OF LIBERTY (James 2:8-13)

THE PERFECT LAW OF LIBERTY (James 2:8-13)

February 11, 2014
What is the perfect law of liberty?

Have you ever considered what it would be like to go someplace where there were no laws, and no police officers to enforce those laws?  To be totally free to do whatever you wanted, for as long as you wanted, and in any way that you wanted to do it?

Sounds pretty good doesn't it?  If I don’t want to get up in the morning, I don’t have to.  If I want to drive my car as fast as it will go, then I can.  

This is pretty much what it was like for the early pioneers who opened up the western part of the United States.  When they stepped out into that wilderness, they were free from the laws and those that would enforce it.  They lived by their wits, their strength, and their courage, for even though there were no societal laws, there were always the laws of nature, and the laws of the strongest shall prevail.  

So the question is, are you truly free when you step out of the boundaries of the laws of a civil society?  Is this true liberty?

Without laws, is there such a thing as criminal behavior?  To be a lawbreaker there must be a law to break.

God, as our Creator, knew that man needed laws to establish the absolute truths about right and wrong, so He gave us His Word that we call the Bible.  It contains the Mosaic Law, The Sermon on the Mount, and it contains Christ’s Law, which is the perfect law of liberty.  These laws identify what is sin for man.  They let man know that he has broken those laws, that the penalty of that sin is death, and that man needs a Savior.  The very Savior named Jesus Christ who died on a cross to pay the penalty for man’s sin.  

As a believer we are no longer under the Mosaic Laws, but our behavior is to be controlled by two commandments.  

The first is, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind.  This is a believer’s responsibility to God.  

The second is, To love thy neighbor as thyself.  This is a believer’s responsibility to others.

How do we find perfect liberty?  Listen to this podcast to learn that the answer is to be redeemed, released, and ruled by Christ.  
CAN YOU JUDGE A PERSON BY THEIR COVER? (James 2:1-7)

CAN YOU JUDGE A PERSON BY THEIR COVER? (James 2:1-7)

February 3, 2014
How good are you at judging a person by their outward appearance?

Can you define a person’s character by the way they dress, or how they speak?

As a believer, we know that the world judges us by how we dress, how we act, and the things we say.  Our purpose on this earth is to create a desire in people to want to know more about Jesus Christ by what they see in us.  Paul tells us that even in our deepest trials we are to have our hair fixed and a smile on our face.  The world needs to know that our relationship with Jesus Christ makes a difference in how we handle adversity.

But what does the Bible say about how Christians are to treat others?  

Are we to treat someone who is dressed in nice clothes differently from someone who is dressed shabbily?  

Are we to treat someone who has the outward appearance of success differently than you do the homeless person you see on the street?

Are we to judge the value of a person based on the color of their skin, the quality of their speech, or the length of their hair?

James will tell us that as a Christian we are to treat others without distinction to their outward appearance or their place in society.  Jesus was just as gracious to the woman at the well as He was to the rich young ruler.  He was as kind to Lazarus the beggar as He was the ruler of the synagogue.  

This is the way our churches should be, they are to be hospitals for sinners, all sinners, not some special, select, club, for the sisters of society.  

Listen to this podcast to learn how a Christian is to behave towards others.