1. I remember meeting a Brother dying from Cancer on door knocking campaign
-Talked about a pair of old shoes that he kept getting repaired
-He was speaking of his body
-We have a tendency to remember "last words", because they are thoughtful and significant
-This will conclude the study on James as we look at his last words
2. So far, the book of James has covered:
-Endurance through trials for the victory crown/ True Religion/ Discrimination/ True Faith/ The untamable Tongue/ Arrogance/ Including God in your plans/ True Riches/ Patience/ Prayer
3. James 5:19-20
4. It is significant that this letter closes the way it does
a. Addresses them as brethren even with the problems that he has
b. Not only should the readers obey this letter, but they should see to
it that others do as well
5. According to this passage: If a brother strays from the truth, we must turn him back
6. You can stray away from God and be lost:
a. Gal 5:4 - "You have been severed from Christ, ...you have
fallen from grace"
b. 2 Pet 2:20-22 - "the last state has become worse for them than
c. A person can be lost after finding the truth (Heb 10:26-29)
d. When I was visiting cousins in a strange town, rode around
on bike till after dark, got lost, and almost did not find my way back
-That is how most Christians "stray away" from the Truth
7. Straying away from the Truth, what does that mean?
a. Some today think truth is relative
b. Jn 14:6 - Jesus says "I am the way, the TRUTH, and the Life"
c. Jn 17:17 - "Sanctify them in the truth, thy word is truth"
d. Jn 1:1 - The Word was Jesus (who became flesh - v.14)
e. Heb 1:1-3a
-Jesus was God's final word
-The message was not from Jesus, it IS JESUS
-So truth is not just doctrinal propositions
-Truth involves the practice and imitation of Christ
8. Must turn a sinner from the error of his way (v.20)
a. This is a general statement which is true for both brethren and non-Christians
b. He specifically applies this to brethren
c. Let's examine this full import of this statement
d. Why must we turn a sinner from the error of his way?
I. To save his soul from death (v.20)
A. Many today do not know what death really is
B. The idea of death is introduced in the first chapters of the Bible
1. It is the result of sin (Gen 2:17 - "You shall surely die")
2. The did not die (immediately)
3. Idea of death, then, is separation:
a. Physical Death - Separation of Soul from the Body
b. Spiritual Death - Separation of Soul from God
4. Hell is a place of eternal death
a. Death is not ceasing to exist, it it were, Hell would also
be a place of eternal life
b. Hell is described as "where their worm does not die,
and the fire is not quenched" (Mk 9:44)
C. Lady named Louise got a letter from Hell from a Laura,
friend she didn't try to share her faith with
1. The letter said that she was no longer a friend for letting her
be lost without trying to save her
2. She woke up, it was only a dream.
3. The next day she called to share the Gospel with Laura
4. To her horror and dismay, she learned that Laura was killed
in a car accident last night
D. Do you believe that Hell exists?
1. You should feel a sense of urgency for those the lost?
2. You should feel a sense of urgency for the erring brethren
II. To cover a multitude of sins
A. Does that mean ignore the sins?
B. Examples of usage:
1. Prov. 10:12 - "... but love covers all transgressions"
-Contrast of 2 ideas, holding a grudge or forgiving
2. I Peter 4:8 - "Above all keep fervent in your love for one
another, because love covers a multitude of sins"
3. Ps 32:1 - "How blessed is he whose transgression is
forgiven, Whose sin is covered"
4. 2 Ideas Associated with the phrase "covering sins"
a. Idea of forgiveness, paying the debt
-We use this phrase today to "cover" a debt
b. Idea of love
-Love is always the motive for forgiveness
C. A boy fell into a flooded river (on one of those rescue 911 shows)
1. Many attempts to rescue all failed
2. His brother was rushed downstream to watch, anxiously
3. Saw that last attempt failed, and he would drown
4. He jumped in struggled to keep his head above water,
eventually able to grab branch
5. Awarded a medal for bravery -- FOUND OUT LATER
HE COULDN'T SWIM!!
D. Once again, do you believe Hell is real?
1. What are you going to do to save those headed there?
ANYTHING YOU CAN!
2. If someone you care about is drowning or trapped in a burning
house, you TRY!!
3. When all depends on you, you don't think about whether
this is your "skill"
4. People are depending on you.
1. So we must rescue a sinner (Christian or not) from the error of his way
a. To rescue him from death, b. to cover a multitude of sins
2. How many rescue operations have you been involved in?
3. Do EMS teams take a casual attitude about emergencies? NO! URGENCY IS THE WORD!
4. Every account of Baptism was done immediately. Why? Urgency!
5. ILL: Man kicked a snail on the way in the door
-Sent snail into his neighbors yard
-2 years later, knock on his door, it was the snail - "What was that
-Long time to deal with the hurt (holding a grudge)
-No grudge in his voice, it took him 2 years what it would take us
hours to react to
-2 years, most would have forgotten, maybee it to late
6. Do not procrastinate, or you may be getting a special letter on night from a former friend
7. How many rescue operations have you been involved in?
8. One is coming up, our campaign in June.