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Sunday, December 25, 2016 am

Drawing Near To God
James 4:4-10
Joshua Thornhill

Introduction: James records for us the exhortation “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” This is something that each Christian should be dedicated to. Let us consider how James instructs us to draw near to God.

 

I. Divorce Ourselves From The World: 4:4

                A. It is not possible for us to serve two masters: Matt 6:24, 2 Cor 11:2, Eph 5:23-24

B. We need to completely remove ourselves from the world ways: 2 Cor 6:14-17,
Col 3:9, Eph 5:22

II. Be Humble: 4:6

                A. We must always remember our place before God: Rom 9:20-21

                B. Arrogance and pride will only lead us away from God:

                                1. Pride leads to sin: cf. 1 Sam 15:17, 1 Tim 6:3-4

                                2. Humility promotes unity: Eph 4:2

                C. Let us imitate Jesus’ example of humility: Phil 2:5ff, Matt 20:28, Rom 12:3

III. Submit To God: 4:7

                A. We cannot please God without submission: Matt 7:21

                B. Some examples of submission: Exo 40:16, Heb 4:15

                C. We cannot draw near to God without submission: John 8:24, Matt 7:22

IV. Resist The Devil: 4:7

                A. The devil is coming after us: 1 Pet 5:8, 2 Cor 2:11, James 1:14-15

                C. Jesus used scripture to overcome temptation: Matt 4

                D. God has given us the means to overcome sin: Eph 6:10-18

V. Cleanse Your Hands, Purify Your Heart: 4:8

                A. To draw near to God, we must be pure: Ps 24:3-4, 1 Pet 1:22

                C. To maintain purity, we must think on pure things: Phil 4:8, Rom 8:5

                D. Only the pure of heart will be able to see God: Matthew 5:8

VI. Lament, Mourn, and Weep: 4:9

                A. We must have godly sorrow for sin: 2 Cor 7:10, Matt 5:4

                C. David demonstrated such a disposition toward his sin: Psalm 51

D. We need preaching and teaching that will bring conviction of sin to people’s hearts.

VII. Exalted Through Humility: 4:10

                A. Honor comes after we humble ourselves: Prov 15:33, 18:12

                B. Jesus was exalted to the right hand of God: Phil 2:6-7, 9

                C. Only after we serve others can we be exalted: Matt 20:26-28. 1 Pet 5:6

 

Conclusion: James here gives us a clear path to draw near to God. Let us be diligent to draw closer to God each and every day. Do you wish to be near to God?