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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.

James 1:12



12 Blessed [makarios] is the man [aner] that [hos] endureth [hupomeno] temptation [peirasmos]: for [hoti] when he is tried [dokimos] [ginomai], he shall receive [lambano] the crown [stephanos] of life [zoe], which [hos] the Lord [kurios] hath promised [epaggello] to them that love [agapao] him [autos]. KJV-Interlinear



12 Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. NASB



The key words in his verse are, blessed, endures, crown of life, and love.Nearly all of these words have been misunderstood and misapplied, making this entire verse and passage in James confusing for most folks.


First, understand that there are five crowns mentioned in the Bible.


Three of the crowns apply to ones self: the crown of victory or incorruption - 1 Cor. 9:25, the crown of life - James 1:12, Rev. 2:10-11, and the crown of righteousness - 2 Tim. 4:8.And, the other two crowns apply to others that your life may affect: the crown of rejoicing or soul winner - Phil. 4:1, 1 Thes. 2:19, and the crown of glory - 1 Pet. 5:4.


The first three crowns deal with residence in fellowship (crown of victory), testing in ones life or trials in ones life (crown of life), and the attainment of integrity or spiritual maturity (the crown of righteousness).These three crowns apply to your own self.


The last two crowns deal with bringing others to Christ or their salvation through your evangelism (the crown of rejoicing or soul winner), and your activity with regard to helping others learn doctrine and to grow up in their spiritual life (the crown of glory).


All five crowns are available to everyone for winning their possession.Crowns are representative of phenomenal rewards of the spiritual life, both in time and especially in eternity.We are warned to hold fast onto the crowns that we have, lest others may take them away.


Crowns are representations of Gods blessings or rewards, for ones attainment of these various components of the spiritual life.


The first three deal with your own spiritual life, ie., living in fellowship as much as possible, living the spiritual life through thick and thin and not falling away from your spiritual life especially when times get tough, and finally achieving spiritual maturity and holding on to it.The second two crowns deal with your interaction and help for others, whether family, friends, neighbors, or strangers.


In our passage, we are dealing with the crown of life (testing).Testing can come in many forms.For the wealthy it may deal with greed verses charity.For the poor it may deal with the frustration of life and still sticking with your Bible study.For us all, problems, disasters, tests of all sorts can come into our lives, and how we deal with them in frustration, heartache, stress, anxiety, greed, self-righteousness, and on and on, will tell the true measure of our spiritual strength.


We have already studied the definition of love in 1, 2, 3 Jn. Love is the content of the scriptures. Love is not an emotional feeling, passion, or desire.Doctrine is love, and when you have doctrine in your soul, then you have the content or principles, or mandates, etc., of love within you.


Therefore, those who pursue their spiritual life - residing in fellowship, studying, learning, applying, and growing up in their spiritual life, will have the inner resources for dealing with life and all of its difficulties.


When difficulties arise, then they will sail right through them, looking to God through doctrine, maintaining their responsibilities in life, to help them survive and thrive spiritually. To them will come the blessings of the crown of life - survival and sustaining of ones faith while under trials.


Note that these crowns are designated for believers only, and only spiritually advancing believers can achieve them. Immature or indifferent believers cannot gain them.


For anyone who has believed in Christ, but does not advance in their spiritual life, these rewards are not available. Thus the warning we find in Revelation to seize them and hold them lest someone else take them away from you.


At the Judgment Seat for Christ, we will all stand before Him for our individual evaluation. Those who have been faithful in advancing in their spiritual life, will possess these crowns, and will receive eternal rewards because of them.


Those who have not advanced in their spiritual life, will not possess the crowns and will lose their eternal rewards (not salvation though).Those who have possession of their crowns will receive the undistributed share of rewards, which are lost by those who lost their rewards (see the Parables of Christ).


So, lest your share be distributed to other mature believers, you should want to pursue your crowns and hold on to them. Thus the warning here in our verse. He who perseveres in his spiritual life, though the world hammers you, will receive credit for your crown. But, he who gets upset, blames God, quits his Bible study, gets angry, refuses to believe doctrine, rejects doctrine, doubts (as we have already studied in this chapter), will lose rewards as well as whatever rewards he has achieved in life.


The big danger in life is advancing in ones spiritual life, and then simply falling away from ones spiritual life because of frustration, anxiety, greed, hardship, etc.


The reality of life is that the world is a reflection of Satanic policies.Life is not going to be easy.Don't expect it to be. You are going to be hammered from so many directions, opinions, philosophies, disasters, that it will make your head swim.And that is why sticking with your Bible study is so important, so that you do not get blindsided and headed down the wrong path without your realizing it.


Bible doctrine gives you discernment, and crowns give you a gage (maturity awareness) to monitor your spiritual advancement and in keeping it.

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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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