This section of our website is to help you prepare for the upcoming Sunday sermon at our Attridge location.
First… get a good night’s sleep beforehand.
Second… spend some quiet time on Sunday morning before our worship service if you can. Read the Bible. Pray.
Third… come early and spend some time with others before the service. Most of the year there are adult LIFEtime classes (learning opportunities for all ages) and PowerUp for kids at 9:30. Click “about” “LIFEtime” for more details about this. Coffee will also be on in the lobby at 10.
Fourth… wait expectantly for how God will reveal himself to you and to our congregation in our Sunday worship service. Be prepared to respond as He desires.
Our “Questions for Reflection and Discussion” from previous weeks can now be found in the “Extras” tab of our online sermon series.
Archived study questions from prior to 2014 can be found here.
Specific things about this week
(we may have specific Scripture or other ways to prepare for this Sunday). This information will be below.
Questions for Reflection and Discussion: Michael Morson
July 6, 2014 Spinning Gold from Straw - James 1: 12-27
(these are to be used personally, with family or with your Small Group)
- James says that the one who has ‘stood the test’ will receive the ‘crown of life’ (v.12). Read these other passages that use ‘crown’ language: 1 Cor 9:25; 1 Thess 2:19; 2 Tim 4:8; 1 Pet 5:4. What do the images have in common? How often do you anticipate receiving the crown that is life? How can we better train ourselves to dwell this?
- The word for ‘tempt’ in 1:13 (peirazo)is a form of the word that’s used for ‘trials’ in 1:2 (peirasmos). Trials and temptations, therefore, are closely related. However, one is a test to be endured and the other is a luring toward sin. James seems to be saying, then, that when we encounter a peirasmos, what really matters is our attitude and outlook. Think of a time when you viewed a trial as a test to be passed, and then think of a time when your view of a trial tempted you to doubt God’s goodness? What was the outcome? What did you learn from each experience? What does James have to say about doubting God’s character?
- James’ emphasis in this section is that we are responsible when we give in to sin—not God, not demons, not anything or anyone else. The problem is when we give in to our ‘desires’ that ‘lure’ and ‘drag’ us (v.14). James says when we allow these desires to ‘give birth,’ they lead to death. What desires (however small!) do you deal with regularly that could one day drag you away? How are you putting these desires to death? (Cf. Rom 8:13.)
- What does James want us not to be deceived about (v.16)? Why?
- Read 1:18. Why do you think James includes this here? What is the connection between the previous section and this verse? What does the fact that God ‘brought us forth by the word of truth’ tell us about him?
- None of us ‘do the word’ (v.22) as fully or frequently as we ought. And yet we are all called to be ‘doers’ and not ‘hearers’ only. Have you ever felt God call you to move from merely hearing to doing in a particular way? What was it like? What gave you the desire to finally ‘do the word?’ In what way might God currently be calling you to move from hearing to doing?
- Memorize 1:26. Meditate throughout the week on what it looks like to practice religion that is ‘pure and undefiled before God.’
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