Today we are reading from James 4: 7-9:
7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9 Lament and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy into dejection. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.
Today in James we look at this passage in chapter 4. As I said the other day, there is such good stuff in James, always something impactful and worthy of looking at pondering. In this passage, we see two pretty important things for our daily lives.
First, we see that we are to submit ourselves to God. We don’t live our lives for ourselves, what we want, what we desire, what we are after. We live our lives for God and for God’s glory. But then the cool thing is this, when we live fully and completely for God, we find the life that we could never find when we lived for ourselves. First, we submit to God.
But second, when we resist the devil he flees from us. I have a running joke with a friend about corny church signs, when we see one we always take a picture and send it to each other. One of the favorites I have seen was one that said – you can’t defeat the demons you flirt with. That’s stuck with me for years. We can’t defeat the temptations and sins that we keep close by. Fighting against temptation is hard; it’s always hard. James tells us that we are lead into temptation by our own desires. Part of the spiritual life and journey is learning how to resist the temptations in our lives that are destructive.
We can’t defeat these temptations if we do not make a point to actually resist them. If we keep dabbling with them then in time, they will consume and destroy us.
Resist the devil. Resist evil. Resist these things. And they will feel.
Submit to God. Resist evil. That’s a good plan for the living of today.
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