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You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
23 And [kai] the scripture [graphe] was fulfilled [pleroo]
which saith [lego], [de] Abraham [Abraam] believed [pisteuo] God [theos], and [kai] it was imputed [logizomai]
unto him [autos] for [eis] righteousness [dikaiosune]:
and [kai] he was called [kaleo] the Friend [philos] of God [theos].
24 Ye see [horao] then [toinun] how that [hoti] by [ek] works [ergon] a man [anthropos] is justified [dikaioo], and
[kai] not [ou]
by [ek] faith [pistis] only [monon]. KJV-Interlinear
23 and the Scripture was
fulfilled which says, 'And Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as
righteousness,' and he was called the friend of God. 24 You see that a man is justified by works,
and not by faith alone.NASB
Two other passages need to be brought into the picture
here. Plus you need to understand the
timeline of these events.
6 Then he believed in the Lord; and He reckoned it to
him as righteousness. NASB
2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has
something to boast about; but not before God. 3 For what does the Scripture say? 'And
Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.' NASB
Abraham was complaining about not having an heir.He wanted a son.God promised him a son and also descendants
that would number like the stars.It was
at this time, that Abram believed in the Lord, and his belief caused God to
credit to him, Gods righteousness.This
is the imputation of righteousness to every believer at the time when they
believe in Christ.
It was not until twenty years later that Abraham, now
his name had already been changed, was told to offer his son as an offering.
Abram had believed in God long before this event.The offering of his son was not the moment of
his salvation, but a confirmation, the completion, the consummation, the
working together of both faith and the application of doctrine (works), in his
life, that has achieved, or is evidence of, his spiritual maturity.
James is drawing his illustration from two events that
were separated by a couple of decades in Abraham's life.
And this was to demonstrate a point.You may have believed in Christ in your life,
but that does not make you spiritually mature.Maturity comes with application of what you know (spiritual activities),
to your daily life.And more important,
while you are in fellowship.Don't
forget the double minded lesson we had in chapter one.
Belief in Christ, is the work of salvation, even
though faith is a non-meritorious act of a simple thought on your part.But it is what God demands for
salvation.You get no credit of human
works, for what you think.
But instead, God credits to your account, His
righteousness, which is His sinless perfection.That is Gods stamp on your salvation.When you are initially saved, you are automatically in fellowship.At least for a few minutes probably.
But once you have been saved, your life continues on
for perhaps decades.None of us were taken
to haven the moment we believed in Christ.That is the beginning of your spiritual life.
Your combination of confession (restoration to
fellowship as needed), your study, learning, and application of doctrine to
your life creates the environment of your spiritual growth.As you grow up, you become responsible not
only for those things which God expects, but with everything in your life.We have called this the circle of wisdom, in
Abraham grew up during those twenty years, had a son,
watched him grow up, and then the test of maturity came.This is often times the tough test of your
And don't worry.God is not going to ask you to commit a crime in order to prove your
obedience.If you do, then you are an
idiot, and you have not learned a thing.
Don't play games with God, or with people.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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