Week 4, Saturday, James 5:19-20

 “James”

by, Pastor Sunil Balasundaram

 

Scripture

Go to James 5:19-20

(Please read the passage before, or after, reading the devotion.)

NOTE: This is the last James devotion. Please look for an announcement for the next devotional series in our eNewsletter Connections and watch this space.

 

There are traces of Ezekiel’s call to be a watchman over his people here (Ezekiel 33:7-8). The mature follower of Christ has a serious responsibility for the spiritual welfare of others in the family (“brothers and sisters,” v.19). James is realistic about the possibility that anyone can lose their way; it can happen to me, and it can happen so subtly that I could have drifted far from Christ before I noticed it! That is when others in the church need to manifest their love by having the courage to “bring the sinner back” (v.20). We need to constantly remind each other of God’s grace (=undeserved love) in Jesus Christ that constantly gives us second chances – if we only turn back to Him. It will prevent the fallen believer from totally turning their back to God and choosing a life of self-destruction. And that same grace will once again be sufficient to bring forgiveness for the person’s sin.

 
Prayer

I wonder Lord, do I really care enough for those in my spiritual family? Do I care when one “falls away,” sins, messes up, grieves You, that I have the love and courage to remind them of Your love to turn them back to You? I know that some of this is subjective, that what I see as “sin” may not be what the other accepts as such. But if I am attentive to Your Spirit, and I love the other person, can I not show Your love and concern by my own gentleness, courage and vulnerability? Because the bigger question I can almost hear You ask is: “My child, if you do not care for your own sisters and brothers enough to be My Truth to them, why and how will you show My Love to those who don’t know me, even to those who scorn Me and cause you suffering?” I need you so much Lord Jesus, to make this happen in my life. Amen.

 

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