James 4

Newsweek has an article this week entitled Generation Me, which talks about how our current generation lives for themselves and has an inflated ego mainly because they have not been told (and enforced) the word no. Our world revolves around entitlement and it's what our kids are learning - that they are entitled to whatever they want and it's ALL about them.

James 4:2-3 says, "You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures."

We don't like to think of ourselves as selfish or self-centered, but our sinful nature is based on self-centeredness. Remember what Satan said in Isaiah 14? "I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God...I will make myself like the Most High." Satan was the original author of "It's all about me" and our sinful nature tends to follow in his footsteps. 

How can we move past ourselves? God gives plenty of instruction on that.

James 4:7-8 "Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded."

Romans 12:2 "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind."

Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things."

Ephesians 4:29 "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."

John 13:34 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another."

James 1:21 "Thereford, get rid of all moral filth and evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you."

Zechariah 7:9 "...show mercy and compassion to one another."

Romans 10:12 "Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves."

Romans 12:16 "Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited."

Romans 15:7 "Accept one another, then, as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God."

Galatians 5:13 "You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love."

Colossians 3:13 "Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have with one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you."

Romans 12:3, "...Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you."

Really think about ways that you are selfish or self-centered. Think about your motives in everything you do. Are they self-serving? Or do you honor others with your desires? Are you serving God or yourself?

It's easy to point out other people's faults - to say they are selfish and you wish they would change. But true change starts within each of us. We can't fix other people. But we can submit to the Lord and He can fix us. 

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous4/22/2009

    This is awesome and exactly what I needed today. Thank you & God bless you! Have a great day!