1 Who Was This Man Named James? James 1:1


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Who Was This Man Named James? James 1:1 Adapted from a Jim Kilson sermon http://www.sermoncentral.com/sermons/who-was-this-man-named-james-jim-kilson-sermon-on-character-77735.asp

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1 Who Was This Man Named James? James 1:1

  1. 1. Who Was This Man Named James? James 1:1<br />Adapted from a <br />Jim Kilson sermon <br />http://www.sermoncentral.com/sermons/who-was-this-man-named-james-jim-kilson-sermon-on-character-77735.asp<br />
  2. 2. If you had a bank account that, every morning, credited your account with $86,400, carried over no balance, allowed no cash to remain in the account and, at the end of the day, cancelled what you failed to use-what would you do? <br />Withdraw it fast, correct?<br />Believe it or not, you do have such an account and it is time.<br />
  3. 3. Each morning you are credited with 86,400 seconds to spend as you wish. Whatever is not used is lost. There are no balances to carry over to the next day; no overdrafts. All records are destroyed when the day ends. If you do not use the daily deposit, the loss is all yours. There are no returns, no drawing against tomorrow. <br />Life: a thousand times more valuable than the coin in the bank. Invest and use it wisely.<br />
  4. 4. Today we begin a new sermon series taken from the Book of James. The epistle of James is probably one of the most practical and also most overlooked books of the New Testament. This letter was one of the last to be added to the New Testament Cannon. The letter was addressed to “the twelve tribes that are scattered abroad” this referring to the believing Jews that were scattered throughout the Mediterranean world, <br />
  5. 5. outside of Israel, having been scattered during the captivities of the Old Testament & after Stephen’s stoning. This also includes the Gentile believers as well, having become part of what is known as “spiritual Israel” after the death and resurrection of Christ. This book was not without its critics, Martin Luther, the great reformer called James "a letter full of straw" because he thought it centered too much on works, rather than faith. <br />
  6. 6. Martin Luther knew and taught exactly what the book of James teaches. The following is from his preface to Romans regarding saving faith: O it is a living, busy active mighty thing, this faith. It is impossible for it not to be doing good things incessantly. It does not ask whether good works are to be done, but before the question is asked, it has already done this, and is constantly doing them. <br />
  7. 7. Whoever does not do such works, however, is an unbeliever. He gropes and looks around for faith and good works, but knows neither what faith is nor what good works are. Yet he talks and talks, with many words, about faith and good works.<br />(Guzik citing Moo citing Luther)<br />
  8. 8. Its not that James was teaching that good works can lead to salvation, but moreover that doing good works is an expression of ones faith. James’ writings aren’t so much a guide on how to become a Christian, as it is a plea to his readers to live a vital, active, and practical Christian life.<br /> To get real about living their lives! <br />
  9. 9. To fully understand the ideas that James is presenting us with in his epistle it becomes important for us to understand him as a person, so today we take a look at James the brother of Christ.<br />The first thing that we want to look at about this man named James is that he was…<br />
  10. 10. HE WAS A BROTHER OF THE LORD<br />What’s in a name? A name denotes who we are. James is referred to as… <br />Galatians 1:19 NETBut I saw none of the other apostles except James the Lord's brother.<br />
  11. 11. James?<br />Which James, wasn’t there <br />more than one? Almost from the beginning a great debate has raged over which James actually penned this epistle.James was a common name in the world of the New Testament.It’s because of this that speculation arises.<br />
  12. 12. In the New Testament we read of 3 men who bore the name James. James the brother of John the son of Zebedee.James the son of Alpheus, also known as James the less. James the brother of the Lord. The first two couldn’t have been the Lords brother because Scripture clearly tells us that Jesus’ brothers didn’t believe in His Messiahship during His earthy ministry, which we will cover shortly.<br />
  13. 13. So now we have established which James we are talking about we now turn our attention to the concept of him being Jesus’ brother What does the word “brother” imply? As with many things around this man’s life the idea of him actually being the brother of Christ has come under speculation.There are three basic ideas proposed as to the meaning of the word “brother.”<br />
  14. 14. The first of these is that James and the others were born to Joseph and Mary in due course after the birth of Christ.We know from scripture that Joseph and Mary had 4 sons and at least 2 daughters. Matthew 13:55 NETIsn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't his mother named Mary? And aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas? 56And aren't all his sisters here with us? Where did he get all this?"<br />
  15. 15. The second proposition is that James and the others were Joseph’s children from a previous marriage.If this is the case then James and the others are older than Jesus and of no blood relation.<br />
  16. 16. The third proposition is that they were sons of Mary the wife of Alpheus. “Brother” in this case simply means “relation” and concludes that they were “cousins.” In Genesis 29:15 Laban calls Jacob, his sisters son “brother” in the KJV. In most modern translations the word is translated relative.<br />
  17. 17. This proposed idea is proclaimed by the Catholic Church. It’s because they believe in the perpetual virginity of Mary. They teach that she never married or ever had any other children. But this idea doesn’t stand up to the scrutiny of scripture.<br />
  18. 18. Luke 2:7 NETAnd she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.<br />Notice “firstborn son” and not as in John 3:16“God’s…one and only Son”<br />“firstborn son” Conveys the idea Mary must have had at least one more son!<br />
  19. 19. Matthew 1:24 NET When Joseph awoke from sleep he did what the angel of the Lord told him. He took his wife, 25but did not have marital relations with her until she gave birth to a son, whom he named Jesus.<br />Verse 25 points to the possibility of Mary having more babies. It also nullifies the idea of Mary remaining a virgin as it says “did not have marital relations with her until she gave birth to a son.” If she remained a virgin why even have the last part of that sentence?<br />
  20. 20. An argument could be made Mary did not have 4 more sons because of what Jesus said on the cross. <br />John 19:27 NETHe then said to his disciple, "Look, here is your mother!" From that very time the disciple took her into his own home.<br />Wouldn’t that responsibility have fallen on the next eldest son? Consider this later when we learn more about Jesus’ brothers.<br />
  21. 21. Out of the three ideas the first one is the one with the most validity.<br />James was the younger brother of Jesus.<br />I can only imagine that it was interesting growing up as a brother of Jesus, one would think that being so close to Him, that James would be one of his brothers most outspoken and ardent supporters, but in the beginning that wasn’t the case in fact in the beginning…<br />
  22. 22. HE WAS AN OPPONENT OF THE LORD<br />James and Jesus had spent most of their lives together. Jesus was about 30 years old when He left home. We read that during His younger years… And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and with people.<br />Luke 2:52 NET<br />It seems to me to be an astonishing fact that in spite of His life and witness His brothers rejected His Messiahship. <br />
  23. 23. John 7:1 NET After this Jesus traveled throughout Galilee. He stayed out of Judea because the Jewish leaders wanted to kill him. 2 Now the Jewish feast of Tabernacles was near. 3 So Jesus' brothers advised him, "Leave here and go to Judea so your disciples may see your miracles that you are performing. 4 For no one who seeks to make a reputation for himself does anything in secret. If you are doing these things, show yourself to the world."<br />
  24. 24. 5 (For not even his own brothers believed in him.) 6 So Jesus replied, "My time has not yet arrived, but you are ready at any opportunity! 7The world cannot hate you, but it hates me, because I am testifying about it that its deeds are evil. 8You go up to the feast yourselves. I am not going up to this feast because my time has not yet fully arrived."<br />
  25. 25. Not only did they reject Him they openly opposed Him. They even came to the conclusion that he was as mad as a hatter. They tried to restrain him so that He couldn’t shame them or His home. <br />Mark 3:20 NET Now Jesus went home, and a crowd gathered so that they were not able to eat.21When his family heard this they went out to restrain him, for they said, "He is out of his mind.”<br />
  26. 26. Jesus makes some rebuking statements about His own family.Paying no heed to his biological family …he replied to them, "My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it."Luke 8:21 NET<br />Matthew 13:57 NET And so they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own house."<br />
  27. 27. One can deduce that in these statements Jesus is referring to the unbelieving attitude towards Him by those in His own home.<br />Why was He opposed? <br />I think at the core there are obvious reasons. It would be terribly hard accepting your brother is God’s Messiah which every Hebrew has been looking forward to for centuries. On top of that there always seems to be some degree of sibling rivalry in every family. <br />
  28. 28. I don’t doubt for a second Mary & Joseph always knew exactly who Jesus was. How would they persuade the rest of their children without making them feel inferior? <br />I believe only Jesus could show them who He is & only in His unique way.<br />
  29. 29. 5(For not even his own brothers believed in him.) Jesus' brothers are telling Him to "take Your stuff to the big leagues." They say, "If You really do have all this miracle power, why don't You go to Jerusalem and make Yourself really famous?" (Guzik) <br />They wanted Him to do things on their schedule not God’s.<br />
  30. 30. Why would some from his familythink that "He is out of his mind?"<br />He left a prosperous business to become an itinerant preacher.<br />The religious and political leaders plotted to murder Him, but He did not back down (Mark 3:6). They were afraid for Jesus' sake.<br />Huge crowds began to follow Jesus, and they knew how such fame and attention and celebrity can go to someone's head <br />(Mark 3:7-8).<br />
  31. 31. He showed spiritual power and ministry He had never really shown earlier in His life (Mark 3:9-11). Was something very wrong?<br />He picked such an unlikely group of disciples that His judgment could fairly be questioned (Mark 3:13-19).<br />But there was one last straw: the pressures of this incredible ministry made Him miss regular mealtimes. (not able to eat Mark 3:20 ). (Guzik)<br />
  32. 32. Sometimes things stare us right in the face and we still deny that it exists. His brothers denied He was the Messiah right up until Calvary. We know from experience, no matter how unfortunate it is that sometimes the most ungodly children come from the most Godly of homes.<br />Sometimes it takes them years to come back. It’s been said that “some people change when they see the light, others only when they feel the heat”<br />
  33. 33. James saw the light, the light of Christ, and he came back! We know James opposed His brother during His earthly ministry, but this opposition didn’t last, for we see that after the death and resurrection, he was no longer an adversary, but he was an Apostle…<br />
  34. 34. HE WAS AN APOSTLE OF THE LORD<br />The Resurrection brought about a transformation in James. The resurrection has a way of changing peoples lives. Convinced by Christ’s victory over the grave James and his brothers join the body of believers. <br />
  35. 35. Acts 1:14 NET All these continued together in prayer with one mind, together with the women, along with Mary the mother of Jesus, and his brothers.<br />Not only did James join with the believers, he became an Apostle as well. <br />Apostle:a delegate, messenger, one sent forth with orders <br />(Thayer Definition)<br />
  36. 36. James saw the risen Lord when He appeared to Him. 1 Corinthians 15:7 NET Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles.<br />Could it be Jesus gave His brother James marching orders to be a delegate, messenger of the Gospel at this appearing? If so & according to the definition, James was an Apostle.<br />
  37. 37. What an event that must have been for Jesus and James to have met face to face. Now not only brothers but now Master and disciple. From this time forward James starts to distinguish himself among the believers. Eventually he becomes the leader of the Jerusalem Church. A respected man among Jews and Christians alike; referred to as <br />“James the just.” <br />
  38. 38. There is a striking similarity between James and Paul. Both of them were ardent defenders of the Mosaic Law. Modern scholars even accuse James of being to Jewish. They both held Jewish views, until they met Jesus. They went from one extreme to the other. Ardent Jew to ardent Christian.<br />
  39. 39. A missionary in India told this story. When he had first arrived in India to do missions work he began to travel to the fishing villages on the coast. The Hindu fisherman who lived there met them with open hostility and even tried to kill them. But he was not deterred by this action against him. One day a fierce fire devastated the fishing villages that he had visited.<br />
  40. 40. Instead of staying away he returned to help them rebuild their homes. They asked him why he came back to help them, especially after they had tried to kill him. His response was simple, I care about you, but more importantly Jesus cares about you. That day they saw Jesus working through these missionaries, and their lives were never the same again, many of them came to know the Lord. <br />
  41. 41. There are also some noticeable similarities between Jesus and James.Both of their teaching styles were straight forward and to the point. They were easy to understand, simple explanations so all could get the point they were trying to make. Just as Jesus did James also pulled no punches when it came to the facts about things. James has been compared to the Prophet Nathan in the Old Testament. <br />
  42. 42. When he denounced David for his adulterous action he did it right to the Kings face, “Thou art the man.” <br />(2 Samuel 12)Bob Aubuchon a minister from Missouri once preached a series on James and entitled it “James, the “in your face” epistle. James, just as Jesus did with his listeners, urges obedience from his readers, I would say that he is telling them to get real about life. <br />
  43. 43. Besides their teachings they ended their days in much the same way. They both shared unpleasant experiences on the heights of Jerusalem’s buildings. Matthew 4:5 NET Then the devil took him to the holy city, had him stand on the highest point of the temple,<br />Decades later in AD 62 James met his demise on the battlements of the Jerusalem Temple. <br />
  44. 44. He was cast off the battlements for refusing to deny the Messiahship of his brother. The order for this was given by the High Priest Anaeus the son of Annas, the High priest who had condemned his brother decades earlier. He survived the fall, then was stoned. Ancient accounts record that during this stoning a fuller took pity on him and ended his life with one blow from his club. <br />(Eusebius Church History Book 2:1.4 quoting Clement of Alexandria's Seventh Hypotyposes)<br />
  45. 45. Ancient accounts also report that as he was being killed he was echoing the words that his brother has spoken when He was killed, “father forgive them for they don’t know <br />what they do” <br />There is no Scriptural account of the death of James. (ISBE) We have seen the transition that took place in the life of this unassuming man from Galilee. <br />
  46. 46. We have seen him go from simply one of Jesus’ younger brothers to opposing Him and His ministry, then we see the transformation that takes place when James sees the resurrected Lord and comes to see Jesus for who he is.<br />And when he does, he becomes one of the most ardent supporters of Christ that has ever lived.<br />
  47. 47. He met the real Jesus and his life was never the same. It’s the same way with us, when we meet Jesus our lives are never the same again. Jesus wants to meet you today, won’t you come to Him, I promise you your life will never be the same…<br />